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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Can you manage ten parties most weekends? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Tony James
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Cheshire UK
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There are people - admittedly the North American side of the pond rather than the UK -who claim that at weekends five a day is usually normal.

Is it for you?

And how do you achieve it?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
Kondini
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I get Tony James to do them for me!
Al Angello
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Eternal Order
Collegeville, Pa. USA
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Tony
The few times that I have done 5 shows I found myself staggering around, and a little punch drunk for my fifth show. If you want my best work three 45 minute shows a day is my limit, at my age.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
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"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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This is usually a birthday party magician. I know of several who bust their butts on weekends.

This what they all have in common:

  • Pack-in/Pack-out under 10 minutes (Reload as they perform)
  • Make one-trip in from the car
  • Charge less than $151 dollars
  • Need the business to "make ends meet"
  • Keep show around 35 minutes
  • In and Out within within an hour
  • Next show is with 30 minute drive time.


Having said this, I tried 5 or 6 shows in a weekend 3 max each day.

  • Pack-in/Pack-out under 45 minutes
  • Make three-trips in/out from/to the car
  • Charge $250 dollars or more
  • Do NOT need the business to "make ends meet"
  • Keep show around 55 minutes
  • In and Out within within two hour
  • Next show is with 30-45 minute drive time.
  • Sometimes one of Friday and two on Sunday.


Results for me was complete exhaustion and needed Monday and Tuesday to recover. This lasted only two months and I backed down to one a day, max.
Dennis Michael
Ken Northridge
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Atlantic City, NJ
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I would make one exception to Dennis’s list. I know of a few magicians that claim to make much more than 150 dollars per show. I believe they boast up to the $500 range per show and still claim to do five shows a day.

Personally, I think they subscribe to the theory that you talk like you're successful and you will be successful. In other words, they are hoping they will have 5 shows a day. But I have no proof either way.

I can tell you that for me six shows on a weekend happens, but it is rare. You have to have everything line up just right to make it work. Frankly, I have little trouble with the physical aspect of it, I keep in good shape. But the logistics (driving time, etc.) is very difficult.

In summary, I believe ten parties per weekend is possible, but you have to be on top of your game in both areas of performance and marketing. I may have to give the hairy eye ball to anyone who says that performing ten shows per weekend is their usual.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
www.KenNorthridge.com
wbzwolinski
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Two years ago I performed 6 Christmas holiday shows in one day. It took me several days to recover from that day! It would take something extraordinary for me to decide to do that again.

A 'good' day for me is 2 shows...3 shows maximum (and that would be pushing it). I do not mind perfoming multiple shows at one location. It is the packing up, travelling to another location under time constraints, and resetting up that tends to be the exhausting part for me...and most of my show are a 'quick set up show'.

Wolly
Keep it Simple...Play it BIG!!!
Al Angello
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I agree with Dennis's list except I do 45 minute shows, and I get $200 to $250 per show. I allow one hour at each house, and 1/2 hour travel time between shows. I have no set up time, and it takes me 5 minutes to repack. I always cary water, and if I have time I change into a clean shirt. I cary everything in one trip.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
Regan
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No way....unless the shows are at the same venue. My shows are prop heavy anyway, so set up takes time. I do 6 theme park shows per day, but they are short, and no moving between shows. I do have to reset the shows of course, and I use some different props at times, but that is nothing like setting up, packing, loading...traveling...unloading, unpacking, setting up, etc. I also do 3-4 festival shows per day sometimes, but it is like the theme park with regard to set up and travel between the shows. If I am going to travel, set up, and perform at different venues on the same day, I usually will not book more than 2, and once in a while 3 shows on the same day.
Mister Mystery
Donald Dunphy
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I don't think I've ever done 10 shows on the same weekend. When I was younger, I do recall doing 7 shows in a day a couple of times (once in December, and once in May). And the 7 shows were not all birthday shows. But those days were very well planned, and rare.

Nowadays, I typically do 1 or 2 shows on a date. Occassionally, I'll do 3.

And they might not all be birthday shows.

I think that one of the reasons I tend to do fewer shows, is that I have increased my rates.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
magicone
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Doylestown, PA
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I can only do 3 shows at most in a day and with that am exhausted by the end of the day. My shows are 30 minutes magic/30 minutes balloons (30 minutes pack in, setup and 15 minutes pack out tear down)

Two weekends ago had 2 magic shows Sat, 1 magic show/1 Easter Bunny on Sunday, and 2 magic shows/2 magic classes at a school on Monday. Took a good 2 days to recover. Smile I'm definitely getting older....

Whoever is doing 10 a weekend, GOD BLESS THEM!
Mr. Pitts
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David Pitts
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I've done one day of 5 shows at different locations. I load in one trip and set up quick. I re-set as I go. But it's still exhausting and I wouldn't book that many in a day again. Typically the only time I have the opportunity to book like that is the summer. Here in San Antonio people will book parties for little kids anywhere from 10 am to 9pm in the summer time. People here stay up late, and because it's so hot during the day, my summertime prime time is more like 5 to 7pm, and even later parties aren't that unusual. I keep it to 3 a day at the most if I'm driving place to place. I've done as many as 15 in a day at festivals, but those are mini-shows, 15-20 minutes with no balloons. Still makes for a long day. I think the driving from gig to gig can be more stressful than the show itself.
David Pitts
The Astonishing Mr. Pitts
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harris
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Harris Deutsch
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I did 2 yesterday, and that was plenty.
2 today as well....

Back in the "day", did about that many at the Ren Fest on the weekends...but as mentioned above it was at the same venue.

Two for Tuesday or Saturday works for this nearly normal one.


Harris
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
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jackturk
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My longest day of shows, which was a mix of birthday parties, a school event, and then a final evening event somewhere added up to five. And I had a couple shows the next day.

My voice was shot to be honest. And I was bushed.

The only way you can do anything like that is to be in good health, decent shape, and consume vast quantities of water, fruit, and other decent snacks. A few fresh shirts is a good idea too.

Doing three shows in a day isn't uncommon - and that does eat up a whole lot of me as my programs are very high energy and I give a lot during the program.

If you've ever done theater where you do a matinee and an evening show on the same day, you experience the same physical and mental effects. It's tiring, but if you enjoy performing (which is kind of a pre-requisite don't you think?) then the
energy you get back from the audience does help a lot.

--Jack Turk
"59 Ways To Recession Proof Your Entertainment Business -- FREE!"
http://www.GetLeadsLikeCrazy.com

"How To Make $25,000 a Year Doing Birthday Parties Part-Time"
http://www.magicmarketingcenter.com/birthdayPT
Donald Dunphy
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In my area, there seem to be 2 main birthday party times. 12-2 and 2-4 (and slight variations by 30-60 minutes either way). Occassionally, there is a late morning or early evening party, but those are only occassionally.

There's also a trend for more birthday parties on a Saturday than a Sunday.

I cannot see a person doing 5 birthday parties on a Saturday, and 5 birthday parties on a Sunday, weekend after weekend, in my area.

The demand doesn't seem to coincide.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Mary Mowder
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I can do 5 great shows a day.

I bet.

Frankly it has never come up . As far as I remember 3 is all I have ever done in one day at different venues. that's all I would really want if they are were Birthday Parties. I felt OK but my "look" was fading.

- Mary
derrick
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I dug holes for
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Like most everyone else I top out at three birthday shows a day. I usually spread them out at around at 10 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 4 p.m. I'm dead tired with more than that. For the most part, I have settled in at no more than two shows a day unless I have a solid repeat client contact me or there is a fat corporate budget involved.

The only way I have ever managed five or more shows in a day is when performing at the same venue with a high turnover (i.e. classic car shows and such). Like others have said, this isn't a normal full show but a parlor type, 20 to 30 minute show, usually working from a brief case with immediate reset as I'm performing. I'm fortunate enough to get this type of bookings about a half dozen times a year and usually work an 8 or 10 hour day. It reminds me a little of trade show work without a sales pitch or busking without hat lines.
Andrew
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Sounds as if we are all pretty much in agreement here. Six shows a day at different venues not only diminishes the health of the performer, but the quality of the show.
I have animals in my show as well as the necessary props to produce and transport them. Add to that other props such as my tables and a chair suspension and the time restraints of setting up and breaking down and the burden becomes even greater.

Through the years I’ve worked at making everything as efficient as possible regarding transportation and setup, while at the same time not impairing the show’s quality.
Other magician friends of mine are able to perform from a suitcase and I suppose I could as well, but it wouldn’t be the same show, nor would it (in my opinion) be as entertaining as the show I currently offer.

Two shows a day suits me just fine. An occasional three per day is acceptable. I’ve never performed four in a day (at different venues) and I believe trying to schedule such would probably be more stress than I (or my client) would desire.

andrew
Andrew
Professional Provider of Wonderment!
www.andrewsfamilymagic.com
Sam Sandler
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10 shows a weekend? not good shows anyway. or as mentioned above you are at a theme park or something.

when I was at the tropicana in AC I did 3 shows friday 4 shows saturday and 4 shows sunday th ey were 30-35 minutes long each. when at theme parks I will do 3-4 30 minute shows a day.

I have done 8 shows in one weekend in differnt locations but it was not fun bythe 6th show. I limit to 3 on staurday and 1-2 on sunday however that being said sometimes I only do one per weeknd as its my full stage show and it takes 7 hours to set up then 90 minutes to perform then sales table then tear down its a 12-15 hour day.

my best yet though was doing 442 shows in one year yes that's right 442 shows on one year I was crazy busy but loved it. I charge A LOT more these days so its down to 175-225 shows a year now.

I cant see doing 10 shows a weekend just does not sound fun.

as Dennis Michael pointed out about how he does the shows I am similar (charge more though) but I do need the income as this is my full time job. I do believe in pack small play huge!

have fun enjoy your shows!

sam
sam sandler- America's only full-time DEAF Illusionist
http://www.samsandler.com
http://www.deafinitelymagic.com
Alan Munro
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Kentwood, Michigan, USA
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I've had many three show days, and they give me a good workout, but I recover well after a good night's sleep. A typical day of birthday parties is far less taxing. I've had some 4 show days and that is a bit much - all I want to do is sleep for the next 12 hours.
TrickyRicky
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TrickyRicky
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It can be done---I've done it for quite a while, my shows were 30 minutes long.
I got sick really from all that running around on the weekends.I made a decission not to do it again.Now, I pass on some of my customers to my magic friends.
I'm quite sure for some of you, the customers will change the date to accomadate you schedule. Quite often I get the customers to do just that..
If you are luckily enough that the ciustomer really wants you that bad, they most likely will adjust the time and date.
TrickyRicky
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