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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Mentalism with out projecting the darker side of magic (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

WR
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First;
I beg your forgiveness. I am fairly new to this field of magic. I have been doing mainly comedy and kids shows for the last 15 years. I want to do More mentalism but do not want to project a "Bad Aura" if you will. I want my magic to be positive. I have Magic friends who are into Bizarre magic where they do quite alot of darker magic. PEntagram, 666, chants etc... I relize this is all for show but I don't want to come across this way.
Back to my question;
Is it possible to do Mentalism without doing the "darker" side of magic??
Most magically yours,
WR Smile
"Tell Em WR sent Ya."
Allen Gittelson
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It is possible to perform mentalism with light or dark, and I would say that it is possible to do bizarre magic with a light or dark side also. It depends on you and what you present.

I have touches of light and dark in what I do, as that is a part of who I am, my beliefs, what I work to create, and what defines me. I'm sure there are those who perform very dark magic and for whom the devil, 666, rituals and such are not all for show. There are people who believe in these things.

Take a look at yourself from the outside inward and from the inside outward and determine what you should do. Then do it.

In thoughts,
Allen
Peter695
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Yes, WR. It is quite possible. There's even a genre of the art called comedic mentalism which might tell you something. You might do mentalism as a college professor giving the audience examples of the potential of the mind. Another persona would be that of a person with a difficult and challenging childhood who found their outlet to be in their mind: "It was something of a survival mechanism for me to know something extra...". I like Allen's last line: "Take a look...".

Um, you might stay away from the "Abducted by aliens who gave me a special gift" angle.

Peter
WR
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thanks...but i WAS abducted by.... never mind... Smile I like the idea of the proffesor angle.
Most magically yours,
WR Smile
"Tell Em WR sent Ya."
Peter695
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This is the alien director speaking. Must see Bob Cassidy's video: "Mental Miracles".

Peter
Michelle Labonte
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The 'professer-type-comedy' persona has already been very well captured by Marc Salem.

Im not saying you shouldn't try it out, I'm just saying it's already been done.
"Mentalism is easy to do. . .badly" -Max Maven
Thoughtreader
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Perhaps a more topical one would be to walk out in a Darth vader type outfit...oh wait, that WOULD be bringing them to the "dark side". As Emily Littela would say "Never Mind".
PSIncerely Yours,
Paul Alberstat
Canada's Leading Mentalist
http://www.mindguy.com
AB StageCraft
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Bruno
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We must never forget that while people are fascinated and entertained by mentalism there is also an underlying response of fear and resentment inherent in the human psyche when led to the very edge of its understanding. To realise how fragile ideas, soley based on an individual's perception are can be extremely disconcerting and mentalism at its best can ellicit some very dark emotions. Regardless of how light I try and keep the mood with talk of everyday nonverbal communication being the main factor for the success of a routine I often notice some specs becoming nervy and unsettled by a dynamic sketch duplication, or telepathic routine, wanting to offer explanations or demanding to know how it was achieved.In that sense it will always be a thing of strange fascination, and therefore dangerous in the wrong hands.
Bambaladam
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Yup, that's right.

If I perform anything vaguely strong for anyone, they're always very "how did you do that". And I'm very honest, so I tell them it's a "trick", but that the trick is a secret they will never figure out. The thing is, with cup and balls there is an apparent, although false, explanation in "he just moves too fast for us to see". In sketch duplication, especially a close up using blank business cards or something, there is nothing except the real method. And I don't think nonverbal covers all bases as some effects are just too strong. Like sketch duplication. Noone will ever believe there is body language for "I just made a drawing of a swan".

I've had people flip through notepads I've used looking for "the business" for half an hour after I performed an effect, and while it is a bit of a boost for me as I got someones attention, it kind of does hammer in the fact that some of this stuff spooks people.

I guess one way of emphasising the light side is to keep discussing light topics. Basically, don't let them draw anything, but an object related to a happy memory. Use favoured technique, then cold read the rest of the memory out of them.

Could work. Should spread good vibes anyway as they get to dwell in something nice. And that should ease them into accepting what happens as entertainment rather than riddles.

I wish I had a better response than saying it's a trick. But I don't. And why is it always men who can't live with not "finding you out"?

/bamba
Peter695
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The opening is extreemly important for establishing who you are in the mind(s) of the audience. It's a main opportunity to establish rapport and your persona. It's an opportunity to, in effect, install some information before their mind can even get to the dark stuff. It all adds up to 'context'- providing the audience a context.


Peter
davekilpatrick
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Peter,

I like your idea of the comedy/college professor thing. I AM a college professor! Psychology, no less! And I love doing comedy. Oddly enough, I've been too dull to think of this angle, as my mentalism is fairly serious, not dark in any way, just not humorous.

My normal magic persona is very comedy oriented. The mentalism hasn't incorporated humor, however. Any one know of any resources that could give me ideas regarding comedy mentalism? It's difficult for me to envision what that would be like.
Peter695
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Dave,

Oh, that's right. I remember your post that had to do with cognative therapy.

Actually I wasn't thinking about a comedy/professor, but you certainly can. I was thinking along the lines of engaging humor. Endearing, charming, flirtatious humor. Just enough to 1. take the edge off and 2. for like ability 3. enough to disarm. And, of course to provide enough context to communicate to the audience that they can relax.

What are your thoughts on a comedic presentation?

Peter

PS. The truth is, I would love to costume myself in one of those used $25.00 powder blue tuxs with the words "Lounge Lizard" embroidered on the back.

Peter
davekilpatrick
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[quote]On 2002-04-28 23:43, Peter695 wrote:
I was thinking along the lines of engaging humor. Endearing, charming, flirtatious humor. Just enough to 1. take the edge off and 2. for like ability 3. enough to disarm. And, of course to provide enough context to communicate to the audience that they can relax.


I like that Peter. For me, mentalism is always presented as magic/illusion, so my goal is to ENTERTAIN, not to make them think I'm something I'm not. That's why I use so much comedy in my "regular" magic. Even though my goal is baffling the heck out of them, my overriding goal is for them to say "this guy is great" "I'm having a great time" "Let's have him back," and not "That stinker, how'd he do it?" "I hate not knowing."
Peter695
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I see your point(s). You don't want to leave them thinking: "The guy is a freak". That's only going to make them hostile.

Peter
saglaser
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I do not do mentalism professionally, so take my opinion with as many grains of salt as you think it warrants, but my main approach to taking the sting out of mentalism is to make it appear as much as possible that I'm not doing it, but my participant is.

I like to explain that mentalism effects are matters of communication and that you (the participant) are actually making this happen as much as, or even more than, I am. Yes, I'm guiding you, and maybe you don't know why it works, but that's all right. Many mentalists don't really understand why some of this works either.

And then, when it works, it's THEIR triumph.
Andy Leviss
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For a teeny bit of a shameless plug, I would encourage you to check out my book Ramblings & Revelations. As those on the board who have read it can attest, I go into a bit of detail on the issue of mentalism being a scary concept to an audience and how to get over that, as well as how to approach things to keep it "light" and how to use humor to increase your likability. I go into much more detail than I could ever go into on a post here, purely out of length and time considerations :o)
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
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