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epoptika
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Robert,
The producers of America's Got Talent deliberately sabotage the magicians (pro or amateur) who appear on their show to make them look bad. I don't know why any magician would want to appear on that show.
Too bad Johnny Carson is gone.

epop
Sir Richard
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Eddie, you bring up some good points, so I'll comment where I can:

Quote:
On 2010-03-18 10:33, eddierush wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-03-18 09:58, ROBERT BLAKE wrote:
Scott, for me it IS important that the performer shows a good show and doesn't take the art of magic down. you are a good performer and maybe you do well on the street or not, who cares. be a good representative of our art.

I have seen very bad street performers and street magicians and very bad stage performers too. most important HAVE FUN!

I encounter many audiences who have a bad idea of magic because they only know bad magicians. why do you think magic is on a low point in AMERICA'S GOT TALENT.


You are right! So here's is the "million dollar" question ...

Why don't we see more good magicians out there (inside or out) performing?


I've met a lot of folks that seem to have a problem accepting "constructive criticism." Both my mentor, & others in the club try & help these people, yet they seem to think that they've reached where they need to be.

Quote:
For example ... I have seen many (MANY) really dancers but that does keep me from watching dance shows and concerts. It's because I have seen many more really good dancers that I have seen really bad dancers. But the point is that they get out there and dance. They dance because they love to dance. They dance to become famous. they dance to make money. BTW - I was a professional dancer (jazz & modern) before I became a semi-professional magician.

My mother taught me something that I have followed to this day: "If you do what you love, the money will follow" How do you know if something is a passion for you? If you are willing to do it for free. I'm not saying that anyone should give-up their paying gigs to go out and do free shows. However, what I am saying is that we should get out there in mass and just perform. Just do it because we love it and in turn so will they.

I cannot agree more! I love to perform, & will continue to do so for free for COMMUNITY events. The up-side is that I've gotten paid gigs out of these as well. After-wards I get great props, & I always give the credit to those who have taken the time to help teach me.

Quote:
I have another "million dollar" question concerning America's Got Talent (and other similar shows) ... If they have such a distaste for bad magic and/or magicians then why do they continue to show so many really bad dancers, musicians, singers, and the lot?
Great question! Because America loves to watch people fall on their faces; it's why "Magician in Trouble" works so well; the spectator thinks they've got us!

Quote:
Eight seasons of American Idol and I still hear people talking about all the crappy singers on the show ... yet they continue to watch the show (I don't). Figure that out and we can elevate the art of magic to a position that will be loved by the world.
I watch the show as I have a niece that auditioned for them once. She has an amazing voice, pleasing to look at, great stage presence, perfect pitch, & she never made it past the 1st auditioning group.(You gotta go through 3 auditions before you ever reach the judges.) However, they did pass the guy through in the cow costume. It's all about how to work the audience. Think about the theatrics used in the wrestling arena! It's the same psychology!

Quote:
Oh ... and don't give me that line about, "people don't like to be fooled". I don't believe that. People get fooled everytime they watch a movie or a "reality" TV show. People don't like to be belittled or made to feel stupid.
Right on! If you make a snide remark to a spectator, be sure you have a friendly smile on your face. I, on the other hand, turn the insults back on me.

Quote:
I believe that these are serious questions that need to be addressed and answered.

Your comments?


Sir Richard.
"In the land of Murphy there is but ONE law!"
ROBERT BLAKE
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Nice discussion here.

the problem with magic is that if you don't know how he does it he is good. we all know that is nor true but many people think so.

micheal Ammar said once:"everubody needs a place to be bad"in his case it was the old people homes (don't know the correct word).

the beauty of the street is if it goes wrong you try again in 10 minutes. on the street you can try and try. that's why you get better quickly on the street then on the stage, because if you do it wrong they are gone. on the stage the people are still there.

AMERICA'S GOT TALENT: people like to see other do wrong. with dancers and singers we all can see that it is crap. with magic people don't know what is good magic.
eddierush
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"... with magic people don't know what is good magic."

I don't believe that is all together true. So many people have seen and still remember the David Copperfield shows on TV. Although most of us can't live up the the image of David Copperfield (or should I just speak for myself) neither does Mac King, Penn and Teller, or Kozmo. That's because Kozmo is Kozmo and David is David and they are both excellent entertainers ... in their own right.

In addition ... always remember that what is "good" in the public's eye is highly subjective and changes often. There are a few famous magicians (no names) that I do not like but evidently others do because they continue to sell high priced tickets to their shows.

We just need to get out there and perform ... perform like there's no tomorrow (because there may not be - no promises). Many will not like us. Some will hate us. But many more will like us ... if and only if we step out of the "shadows" and show ourselves and the talent each and every one of us have within us.

Sorry about the lecture. I do feel very strongly about this subject.
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Bill Palmer
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Eddierush said:

Quote:
My mother taught me something that I have followed to this day: "If you do what you love, the money will follow"


That's only true if you become good at it. I've known a lot of performers -- musicians, jugglers, magicians, mimes -- who loved what they did, but couldn't perform worth beans, because they wouldn't find someone who could coach them. They thought they had "a vision," but their vision was astigmatic.

They were willing to invest a lot of money in props without investing money in good props, for example. They wouldn't believe people when they were told that they needed someone to help them with simple things like show structure and color coordination.

In the case of musicians, I've seen people who had an incredible love for the music they preferred, but had no sense of rhythm. They couldn't play with a band. They couldn't keep time. Or they didn't have a sense of pitch.

Quote:
How do you know if something is a passion for you? If you are willing to do it for free. I'm not saying that anyone should give-up their paying gigs to go out and do free shows. However, what I am saying is that we should get out there in mass and just perform. Just do it because we love it and in turn so will they.


I'll tell you how you know if something is a passion for you. It isn't if you are willing to do it for free. It's if you are willing to go out and perform when you are sick as a dog. It's when you go to an outdoor show and there is a drizzle. You start off depressed and realize that if you don't get out and perform, that handful of people who wanted to see you will be disappointed, so you get out in the bad weather, do your show, and the appreciation your audience shows you helps build your passion for your art.

Magicians shouldn't inflict their performances on unwilling audiences.
"The Swatter"

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My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

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Angel_7
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Why the expectation of low money? I don't know of other Australian performers returns but I used to take $60 an hour, two/three shows, do that a couple of times a day and you'd be sweet surely...

Without trying to be rude, does anyone else have an average they'd like to share?

As always, wise words Bill.

-Anthony
illusion is a choice
Bill Palmer
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The subject of American Idol has been brought up here, along with all of the "well, they treat magicians like dirt" and the "my (niece, nephew, neighbor's kid, etc.) has a really great set of pipes and looks very nice, but they couldn't make it past the first audition" complaints.

Let's get right down to the facts of the matter. These people are not looking for magicians. They are not looking for jugglers. They don't want stand-up comics. They want singers. They let the occasional variety act on so they can make the competition look like something it is not. And that is a fair talent show. It's not a talent show. It's a hyped-up publicity gimmick to sell music. All of the networks are connected to record labels, one way or another. Running a talent show on any network isn't a cheap proposition. The network has to get a return on its money.

How do they get this return? By selling music. That's it, pure and simple. If Kevin James had actually won America's Got Talent competition he was in, how would the network have recovered its money? Not by selling videos of his act. The amount of interest in a magician is so far down the chain from the interest in a singer that it's like comparing BB's and baseballs.

Everything is about image these days. The record labels want people that will sell records. What better way to develop a following for a group of singers than to have a competition that is more of a popularity contest than a talent contest? Even the second place winner will have enough of a following to sell music.

Most magicians are not really very versatile entertainers. Generally, they don't make good actors or stand-up comics. There are rare exceptions, of course. OTOH, singers usually know how to portray emotions in their performances, which is much more than most magicians can do.

Did you ever wonder why David Copperfield has never played the lead in a movie? If you wonder, watch Terror Train.

Most magicians are mediocre actors playing the part of a mediocre magician.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
HerbLarry
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Somewhere deep in my magician psyche I feel swatted.
You know why don't act naive.
Scott Compton
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Great post Bill.
Magic is an art. I am merely a tour guide.
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eddierush
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Hi Bill,

As always, those are some good and wise words. Thank you.

What my mother was saying about doing what you love, was that she really meant LOVE .. not like or really, really, like. Real love means commitment, sacrifice, hard work, the willingness to learn , and more. So, if one loves to perform then they need to realize that it takes all those things I mentioned above (and more). I would dare to say that those people you mention above, "musicians, jugglers, magicians, mimes -- who loved what they did" may not really love what they are doing but instead love the appearance of being one of the "talented" ones. If a blind boy can learn to play the piano, how much more can a sighted person do if they are willing to do what's necessary.

You are sooooo right about you statement on passion. Those who win the gold, play through the pain and suffering.

Concerning American Idol ... unfortunately, you are correct. It's really sad that it happens to be like that. You're right. They are in the business of making money and a magic act doesn't sell records (a pre-mp3 audio media for all you kiddies out there). A juggling act doesn't sell magazines (re: America's Top Model). So the question I pose is ...

How can we change that?

So what ever happened to Celebracadabra? I see soooo many trashy shows on cable tv that it boggles my mind why we don't see more magic related shows.

If it's really true that the general public doesn't care about the magic (as I've heard several well know magicians say) then why are we spending hundreds (or thousands) of dollars on effects, costumes, and shows? I'm the kind of person that doesn't care if the whole wide world doesn't like magic ... I do ... and I did when I was a 7 year old kid watching my first magician, Mark Wilson on TV.

"It's Time For a Change"
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gaddy
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A beautiful, awesome, gorgeous, sunny day here in San Francisco... And I made 18$.

Ah well...
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
eddierush
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Excellent gaddy!! Go buy yourself a couple of beers to celebrate. Make mine a Yuengling.

Any day you can walk away with money in your pocket is a good day.

Oh my ... we've spilled over to another page, have we? Smile
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic
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Bill Palmer
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Eddierush wrote:

Quote:
What my mother was saying about doing what you love, was that she really meant LOVE .. not like or really, really, like. Real love means commitment, sacrifice, hard work, the willingness to learn , and more. So, if one loves to perform then they need to realize that it takes all those things I mentioned above (and more). I would dare to say that those people you mention above, "musicians, jugglers, magicians, mimes -- who loved what they did" may not really love what they are doing but instead love the appearance of being one of the "talented" ones. If a blind boy can learn to play the piano, how much more can a sighted person do if they are willing to do what's necessary.


Eddie, I wish that were true about the people I am referring to. Unfortunately, it's not. The ones that I came into contact with who LOVED what they did, but had no talent, were so far away from being talented that they couldn't hear or see how bad they really were. There are people like that. They suffered from having friends who wouldn't tell them how bad they were. In their own minds, they felt that the fact that, for example, no band could accompany them when they sang was a sign that they had a much better sense of pitch and rhythm than the band.

HAH!

They are the very ones who need the lessons, but they won't take lessons or coaching because the teacher or the coach wants to teach them stupid stuff like how to count or how to breathe or how to sing on key. They are flawed individuals.

I had been out of magic for about a decade or so when I went to my first Dai Vernon lecture. I learned more in the hour or so that I spent at that lecture than I had learned when I was doing magic as a kid. I thought I was good when I was a kid. Watching and listening to Vernon convinced me otherwise, but it also showed me how to correct a lot of what I was doing wrong.

Roger Klause gave me a lot of good corrective material. It was actually in the same vein as what Vernon had told me. I went to another Vernon lecture later, that eventually spawned the Desert Magic Seminar and the World Magic Seminar.

When I first started playing music for a living, there was a woman here in Houston who was one of those no-talent individuals. The problem was that she had money. And she had big political connections. The word was that if you ever worked for her, you could count on keeping your price low for at least five years, because you would have a reputation as someone who worked free. Her big deal was that she thought she was a Broadway singer and dancer. She worked to recorded music.

She was good looking, but she didn't know that she could actually get people to pay her and the acts she booked. She was one of those who worked free for political campaigns and worked both sides of the aisle. I had a folksinging group that she booked into a political fundraiser. I got a good dose of what happens when people with very little talent and a lot of money book themselves into a performance.

There are performers who work that way today. In Las Vegas, there is a term called "four-walling" a show. The performer leases the hall from the casino and becomes responsible for selling the tickets. It doesn't matter how good or how bad he is, he works steadily. He might as well. He is paying for it. If the casino finally figures out that he isn't very good, and they decide to terminate his lease, then he has to find another place to work. Sometimes if they have to pay more rent, then they will take out an ad that says he has signed a contract with a new casino at a higher price. People misinterpret that one.

There are acts that could be very good if they would just quit believing that they really know what they are doing and get a really good director. But some of them believe that they know exactly what they are doing, and they continue to make the same mistakes again and again.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
eddierush
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Bill -

"In their own minds, they felt that the fact that, for example, no band could accompany them when they sang was a sign that they had a much better sense of pitch and rhythm than the band."

LOL

True, true, so true
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gaddy
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Quote:
On 2010-03-20 00:00, eddierush wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-03-19 23:34, gaddy wrote:
A beautiful, awesome, gorgeous, sunny day here in San Francisco... And I made 18$.

Ah well...

Excellent gaddy!! Go buy yourself a couple of beers to celebrate. Make mine a Yuengling.

Any day you can walk away with money in your pocket is a good day.

Oh my ... we've spilled over to another page, have we? Smile


And the flip side: today I made well above my daily goal in the first 3 hours... It's a good thing!
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
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