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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Books, Pamphlets & Lecture Notes » » Eugene Burger's "Mastering the Art of Magic" (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

sethb
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I am about 75% of the way through this book, which has just been reprinted by Richard Kaufman. I can say that it is the best $65 I've spent in a long time!

Although there are some tricks and routines (mostly cards, but also things like sponge balls and IT), it is primarily about how to PERFORM magic. Mr. Burger assumes (probably correctly!) that the reader already knows more than enough tricks and has drawers full of apparatus. What he offers is information on creating routines, making the tricks entertaining, and how to rehearse effectively, so that you aren't "polishing" and "performing" at the same time, which is a recipe for disaster.

Next to "Strong Magic" by Darwin Ortiz, I think this is a wonderful book for magicians who want to take their craft to the next level. Click HERE for a listing of the Table of Contents and HERE for ordering info.

BTW, the hardcover book is beautifully done, with a good sewn binding and sufficiently heavy paper. It's made to last, unlike plenty of modern books. Kudos to Mr. Kaufman for his high standards! SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
alexanderN
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I agree, it changed my thinking about magic...one of the best magic books I own.
Crowslide
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This also had a huge effect on my thinking about magic. I was so fortunate to come accross it early in my magic interest. Was there any one particular "ah ha" moment in the book for you so far?
Necromancer
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One of my all-time favorites. I'm constantly recommending it to magical performers of all stripes (it's not just for close-up guys).

Best,
Neil
Creator of The Xpert (20 PAGES of reviews!) and the Hands-Off Multiple ESP System ("Quality and design far exceed any ESP cards on the market"-Genii), and contributor to the ebook GOLD: When It HAS To Be Performance GOLD -- all at Penguin.
sethb
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Quote:
On 2010-01-07, Crowslide wrote: Was there any one particular "ah ha" moment in the book for you so far?

Actually, there was! I do a Svengali Pitch and was taught by Don Driver (click HERE and scroll down for more info if you're interested. He emphasized that I needed to memorize the entire pitch, word for word. That's because the pitch is set up in a particular way, to first draw a crowd, then demo the Svengali Deck, and finally, to "turn the tip" and get them to buy. Learning to do a good Double Lift was just the beginning; you also need to be entertaining and to "sell" the deck.

I struggled with learning that script, but found the effort to be well worth it. Once you have a script down pat, it completely frees your mind to concentrate on the specs. It also enables you to focus all of your energy on performing and selling, as opposed to worrying about "what comes next" or what to say. But you can still ad lib if you like, so you're not totally tied down, either.

This is exactly what Burger keeps stressing -- that it's not enough to simply practice your sleights and then peform "off the cuff." You also need to rehearse, which means dovetailing the practiced sleights with the patter and other bits of business, so that the whole thing fits together. Also, not just rehearsing it "in your head," but actually physically working through the routine and talking to some invisible specs. He reminds us that, contrary to the claims of most magic dealers, you CANNOT take a trick out of the box and perform it in ten minutes.

It took me a solid year of rehearsing and pitching to perfect the Svengali Pitch and Magic Worm pitch. But now they are mine, done my way, with my touches and Don's script. And my receipts tell the tale -- I routinely pull tips of 20-25 people all day long at street festivals and fairs -- and when I turn those tips, believe me, they STAY turned! SETH
"Watch the Professor!!" -- Al Flosso (1895-1976)
"The better you are, the closer they watch" -- Darwin Ortiz, STRONG MAGIC
mrmuji
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This is a book I go back to from time to time. There are something I can pick up everytime! A great book Smile
Best Regards,

Bob
Turk
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I cut my magic teeth on two of the Burger OOP booklets in the compilation--"Secrets of the Close-up Entertainer" and "Intimate Power". Lots of great advice on magic presentation and scripting and how to create spectator interest in your performance. Those two and The Jinx opened my mind to the world of magic. Like a comfortable pair or slippers, I constantly go back to them, re-read them--and learn something new that I had overlooked (or maybe not appreciated the first, 2nd or 3rd time around).

I also own all but one (maybe two) of the other manuscripts contained in the compilation.

Unqualified recommendation.

Just, IMHO, your mileage may vary.

Mike
Magic is a vanishing Art.

This must not be Kansas anymore, Toto.

Eschew obfuscation.
Waters
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Agreeing that this book is fantastic, is like agreeing that "water is wet". Instead of stating the obvious, I will say this is one of my all-time favorite magic books. Eugene is definately one of my favorite magicians and one of magic's foremost thinkers (again obvious statement warning). All of his works are must-reads, in my opinion.
Donal Chayce
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'Tis a wonderfully insightful and inspirational book, to be sure, but for my money Eugene's best book (yet) is The Experience of Magic. I read it cover-to-cover at least once a year.
Davy Davis
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I don't know that book but my favorite book of his is The Performance of Close-Up Magic. I'll have to check out Mastering the Art of Magic
Tim Friday
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Two questions:

1) Is "The Performance of Close Up Magic" out of print?

I can't find it on Murphy's.

2) Are "The Experience of Magic" and "Mastering the Art of Magic" the same book?

They both have a very similar description on Murphy's...

Thanks
Dr. JK
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1) Not sure

2) They are not the same book: see magicref.tripod.com/books.htm for a listing of contents of each
- Jeff Kowalk, The Psychic CPA
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octave
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The performance of closeup magic is not out of print. It is available here -> http://geniimagazine.com/kaufman/booksandtapes.html. I have Mastering the art of magic and Performance of closeup magic and they are excellent books in my opinion.

-octave
the fritz
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All three books (Performance, Experience, Mastering...) are good reading, although I tend to agree with one poster here on the Café who said Eugene writes and rewrites the same book over and over. I must just really like that book! The only one I find deviates a little is Spirit Theater, which I also really enjoy. Maybe he preaches the same message in many different ways because he believes in it! Who can argue with one of the best close-up magicians living today?
peculiarone
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Fence almost done. I've already put in
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I have all the original booklets with the exception of rediscoveries and the Schulien book. Fortunately, I had these books at the beginning of my magic learning and it was from them that I really learned how to be a magician. Highest recommendation!!!
dirtyfoucault
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Will this amazing book ever get a re-print? It's criminal that it's unavailable (except at insane prices), while new magicians are subject to a constant stream of effluent from nobodies lacking Eugene's knowledge, charm and unparalleled performative acumen. You could build a successful career from these pages. I was heartbroken to lose mine in a house move. Please, somebody, re-print this!
magic.99
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Quote:
On Oct 21, 2021, dirtyfoucault wrote:
Will this amazing book ever get a re-print? It's criminal that it's unavailable (except at insane prices), while new magicians are subject to a constant stream of effluent from nobodies lacking Eugene's knowledge, charm and unparalleled performative acumen. You could build a successful career from these pages. I was heartbroken to lose mine in a house move. Please, somebody, re-print this!


Actually, this book is available at a very decent price on eBay! If this book is that important to you, why not drop the $75 and buy it now? If this book ever gets a reprint, it will likely cost at least this price....Mr. Kaufman is not really swift with reprints....
magic.99
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Mastering the Art of Magic by Eugene Burger: https://www.ebay.com/itm/194496682099?ha......QhRhawB6
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Books, Pamphlets & Lecture Notes » » Eugene Burger's "Mastering the Art of Magic" (0 Likes)
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