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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » Ideas For Haunted House opener (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

sibbie
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East Coast
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I am seeking suggestions on routines to open a haunted house. It is an extremely popular one in my area so I want to research all options and narrow down to some perfect choices. What I am looking for are routines that not necessarily scare but make the audience a uneasy before they enter and let those who inhabit the house do the scaring. A psychological haunt if you will.

The situation will be set up with kind of how Disney does the Haunted Mansion where the next group will be ushered to me and I will get to spend a few minutes just us in a separate section before they move into the main attraction.

I have some criteria which makes this a tad more difficult to narrow down: As few props as possible, instant reset if any at all, keep the technical stuff to a minimum (I love sleight work but would rather keep it to a minimum here and go further with presentation), and stand up to repeat visitors.

I am thinking of 4-6 routines that I can cycle through during the evening in the event of repeats which are guaranteed to occur.

Couple I have been thinking of are the Nardi/Spellman No Chance with a spike (routine about their choices will decide their fate in the house) and possibly a routine with Sanctum and the room (again, they will be in small groups when I am working with them). Just a couple thoughts thus far.
handa
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Inner circle
Pittsburgh, PA
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I've written 3-4 scripts for effects in our attraction each year for the past 10 or so years. Our opening effect is what sets the story, so is there a particular theme for this attraction or anything else that you can offer?

I can tell you from experience that the magician who simply "performed magic" in one of our rooms years ago had much less success than any of the non-magicians who perform magic scripted specifically for the attraction. The reason is that despite the creepy factor of each of his effects, there was no connection to the rest of the tour.

One of the effects that I have used as an opener for the attraction is in Jim Magus' ebook on Outlaw's SM. (You can use the SM, any other spirit bell, or even a rapping hand.) Another solid idea is actually something that I use in almost every public appearance and is written in my own Presentation Companion. I'll be happy to talk with you privately as well.

Chris
sibbie
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East Coast
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No specific theme as a whole but my thinking was something about the choices that are made and ending the brief set with something like "Now you have to make a choice to enter or leave. Your destiny is in your own hands."

I in no way just want to perform. I don't even want to be made out to be a magician. Just someone who is part of the attraction who sets the tone is all.
handa
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Pittsburgh, PA
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We've done riffs on things found in Rick Maue's BOOK OF HAUNTEDMAGICK. One piece in particular--Predetermined--stands out as something that can be very powerful and plays on the whole choice vs. fate theme.

I have another idea that I taught at the National Halloween Convention this past year. It is very easy to do with minimal reset and uses a very common magic prop that can be doctored up any way that you would like. I'll PM you.

Chris
dpe666
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The Haunted Key. Smile
Dreadnought
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Athens, Georgia
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Ambitious card routine with Tarot cards, force the death card on them.
Peace

"Ave Maria gratia plena Dominus tecum..."

Scott

Would you do anything for the person you love?
EddiefromEugene
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Eugene, Oregon
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A spirit slate routine would be useful as the message that is revealed could relate with the rest of the haunted house. Maybe even some cleverly veiled or spooky instructions ( don't touch anything !)
Dreadnought
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Athens, Georgia
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I like the spirit slate one, a clue to find your way out.
Peace

"Ave Maria gratia plena Dominus tecum..."

Scott

Would you do anything for the person you love?
RicHeka
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Inner circle
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Quote:
On 2011-06-12 18:04, dpe666 wrote:
The Haunted Key. Smile


I agree. Especially a 'Mansion' sized Haunted Key.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTY2yBgWJ8Q
Godzilla
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Tied & Untied Witches on
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Rich has got a... Big One !
"If you watch Godzilla backwards, it's about a big ass lizard who helps rebuild a half burnt-down city, then moonwalks back into the ocean"
Sean-Paul
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Where and when is the national Halloween Convention?
handa
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Inner circle
Pittsburgh, PA
1346 Posts

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First Weekend in May: Valley Forge Convention Center/Greater Philadelphia area
vanitywilde
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I have seen people do routines in haunted houses and the problem I always notice is the acting. It is always over-the-top, sounds scripted and they wear too much costume making the whole thing carnival like. When I have seen this, everyone has a smile on their faces and are expecting to be entertained. We loose a lot when we loose the element of surprise.

Is there a way that you could be hiding off to the side in the dark and when each group comes in, you join them without them noticing you? Then, you could inch your way to an area of the room and try to get peoples attention and warn them of what happened to a friend while you were touring the house. You could even carry a flashlight so your lighting is not professional. You could do your presentation and, making it seem as if you have been cut off, you have someone who works the house escort you out as if you are just a "crazy" person who is disrupting their attraction. If done well, it will shock people and make them uneasy about what you just did and what is to come. They will feel disoriented and wont know what is happening or if it was all real.

Vanity Wilde
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