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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Entertainers who don't own a car (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Red Shadow
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Hi guys,

Quick poll / question. I'm aware of numerous entertainers who don't own a car, yet still perform shows. I would like to find out how many magiccafe members are in this same situation and how they get to their bookings.

I know the obvious answer would be taxi. Simply because buses won't get you to where you need to be. I have one friend whose wife drives him to every show. Another friend whose parents drive him. Those in large cities like New York are famous for using the subway and walking to the bookings, especially when a show is in a high-rise building and your entire show is contained in a briefcase, it makes sense to take public transport and you can carry your show easily.

Can I ask, how do you get to your bookings, and is that related to what type of city do you perform in? Also, how long is your show? (as it depends on how much equipment you need to lug around).

Steve

P.S: I live in a big city and drive a car. I perform up-to three-hour long shows and have tons of equipment. I also perform on average 4 times a week, so cost wise, its more effective for me to own a car. But I understand that if you only do one show a week, then public transport and a shorter show might be the better course of action.
kidshowvent
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Hi Steve,

I have always had a car (a Toyota Matrix mini-station wagon) and my wife does all of the driving, thus keeping me fresh for the shows (bless her heart!). I do on the average 6-8 shows per week and carry plenty of equipment, even a back drop, sound system, and all my props and especially all my puppets (I am a kidshow vent). I perform in large cities to small venues in the country...mostly schools, with libraries being the main focus in the summer and even a few daycare centers thrown in for good measure. I have always had a car and probably always will as we don't have the intricate train and mass transportation systems like in Europe. Americans tend to like their cars.

Mark
markwade@kidshowvent.com
Mindpro
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Eternal Order
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How serious of a performer can one be if they don't have their own transportation? Responsibility and dependability are key factors in any professional or even amateur doing this for pay, and to not have control without having to rely on others doesn't bode well with me and I'm sure wouldn't for their hiring customers either.
Ken Northridge
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I tend to agree with you Mindpro, but there are exceptions. I imagine one can make a very nice living in New York City without car. In fact, I think its a huge financial advantage not to have a car. I did a gig in NYC a while back and had to pay $65 to park for a couple of hours!
Quote:
On 2011-04-11 07:32, kidshowvent wrote:
I have always had a car (a Toyota Matrix mini-station wagon) and my wife does all of the driving, thus keeping me fresh for the shows (bless her heart!).

More proof that behind every great man there is a good women!
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
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David Thiel
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I can't imagine anything but close-up working on any kind of transport other than my own vehicle...

But I know a female magician who contracts private drivers for busy times like Christmas etc and books them for the whole season...and uses cab drivers who know her the rest of the year. It seems to work for her.

David
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Sam Sandler
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If I am not mistaken silly billy (david Kaye) dose not drive to his shows and he does a boot load of them in NY.



agreed though in general you need reliable transportation to get to and from your shows. I put about 35,000-40,000 a year on my truck doing shows. I do all the driving and love it. love traveling to other states to do a show. its fun for me and my assitant. my daughter goes with me as well and its a great time to spend with her.

sam
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magicgeorge
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Oh go on then...

I can't drive. I took about 10 lessons 10 years ago. I didn't like it.

I would earn a lot more money if I drived and I would love a funky painted up van or car (a magicgeorgemobile)

However, I have managed as a full-time performer for 12 years. I hire people to drive me around at the weekend and use taxis and occasionally buses during the week.

Clients are often surprised I don't drive but I always arrive on time and have a back up plan if anything goes wrong so they don't lose anything as far as service goes.

Also it means I can drink a bottle of whiskey before I do a show and don't have to worry about driving.

George
Eldon
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I have a friend that lives in New York City. He is a full time performer. He does mostly kid shows. He is very busy and makes a good living doing magic. He takes the subway or walks to all his shows. He is the king of "packs flat and plays big". Almost all his props pack flat. He has a two wheel luggage cart that holds his entire show minus his rabbit that he carries in a small travel cage.
TonyB2009
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I have a van, and put in about 50,000 miles a year on it. I could not imagine doing the job without my own transport. However if I lived in London or New York, perhaps. I never recommend a performer, or hire a performer, who has no transport, with one exception. I have a friend who is a very good magician but who has his wife drive him everywhere. However there is a good reason; a childhood accident means he will never be able to drive. Apart from him, I find dealing with guys who don't drive is too complicated.
bp3535
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I live on the edge of London own a car and use for most gigs however I agree with Ken parking in big towns is expensive and doing show in London during a weekday could cost £10.00 for the congestion charge and £25.00 for parking. That sid I know a very succesfull entertainer working in London that dosn't own a car.
keeblem
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I've just had a letter from the Ministry of Transport to say that if I take my van into Greater London as from the 3rd January 2012 it's going to cost me £100 A DAY as my van doesn't meet the required "clean air" standards.

B*gg*r!

Mark
Potty the Pirate
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I know of several entertainers who don't drive. I have no idea how they manage. Many of my gigs are in the middle of nowhere, though admittedly a large number are in central Brighton or Worthing, where parking can be an issue.
I worked with a face painter yesterday who had walked 40 minutes to the seafront for the Brighton Marathon. Mind you, she was exceptionally good, possibly the best face painter I've ever seen. Actually, I'd describe her as an artist, not just a painter!
Tony James
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I know a number of London based entertainers who work without a car and they are far, far, far superior to George.

They can drink at least TWO bottles of whisky before every show!

Any advance?!!?
Tony James

Still A Child At Heart
seadog93
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Well, I do OWN a car but it doesn't work.

If it's not convenient to take public transportation (it usually isn't) I rent a car.
"Love is the magician who pulls man out of his own hat" - Ben Hecht

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Mindpro
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I can understand it in a major metropolitan area like NYC where you have a great deal of public transportation, but for the vast majority of the rest of the entertainer community who do not live in such areas I stand by my original post.
Mind_Magic
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I have been seen a lot of performers in Europe using the public transportation service.

In North America at Florida, all of the performers use its vehicle.

In big urban cities like NY, it is easier to use the subway system.

In Canada I have a friend that always use the subway.

So, I think it depends on the country / City you live.
magicgeorge
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Quote:
On 2011-04-11 13:49, TonyB2009 wrote:
I never recommend a performer, or hire a performer, who has no transport...I find dealing with guys who don't drive is too complicated.


I get that not driving makes life less convenient, more expensive and more complicated for me. I don't see how it would effect anyone else. What's the difference between you hiring someone with a car and them turning up on time and doing a good job and hiring soomeone who doesn't drive who also turns up on time and does a good job?
Red Shadow
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George, can I ask - How long is your show and how much stuff do you carry? Do you work out of a briefcase, suitcase, roll-on table etc and do you take a microphone or backdrop with you?

Many thanks.
magicgeorge
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Hi Stephen,
I do a 50 minute show or an hour and a half with balloons. This all fits into one medium sized luggage case that turns into a table.

For larger shows I also have an amp. I very occasionally use a backdrop.

If I wanted I could take more stuff with me as most often I am travelling by car to gigs anyhow.

George
Red Shadow
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Thank-you.
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