The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » Subtext (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3~4~5~6~7 [Next]
BarryFernelius
View Profile
Inner circle
Still learning, even though I've made
2532 Posts

Profile of BarryFernelius
Quote:
If Whit's in agreement and amenable to this equation of magic book effect and story as told story/text maybe we can call this the "The Haydn Equation" or "Pop's Principle": What they report, the story they tell after the fact to their peers is what the "effect" was for them - this amounts to acceptance of subjective reality in our literature and our explicit intent to script or write as much of that experience as we can for the sake of our show. This brings us into parallel with literary theory/dramatic writing so we can discuss our stories (which involve magic) using the same language and tools as the playwright and screenwriter

I also love this idea because it helps me to focus on what's important. For me, this idea leads to the following sequence:

1. Ideally, what story do I want my audience to tell other people after the show is over? How do I want them to tell this story?
2. After the show, what story does my audience actually tell? How do they tell this story?
3. How are the stories in steps 1. and 2. the same? Where are the differences?
4. After analyzing the differences between the ideal story and the actual story, what do I have to change in my performance to persuade the audience to tell the story that I want them to tell?

Pop's Principle helps me to figure out what's working in my show and what's not working. It helps me to ask the right questions so that I can continually improve the show.
"To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan and not quite enough time."

-Leonard Bernstein
Alan Wheeler
View Profile
Inner circle
Posting since 2002 with
2038 Posts

Profile of Alan Wheeler
Tell us more, Jon.

I am not sure the effect can be considered the entirety of the "text" in a magic show. The effect is just part of the text in the magic show, according to the model I have been using for years. Other scripted things include the impact and the presentation. The effect, impact, and presentation are not mutually exclusive BUT must all be present to avoid other kinds of text. For example,

Presentation and Impact (without Effect) would lead to special effects of other kinds...squibs, fake explosions, strong man stunts

Impact and Effect (without Presentation) would lead to Charlatanary or Real Magic

Presentation and Effect (without Impact) would lead to Clown Magic or Storybook Magic

Here's a diagram of the possibilities: Elements of Magic
The views and comments expressed on this post may be mere speculation and are not necessarily the opinions, values, or beliefs of Alan Wheeler.
A BLENDED PATH
Christian Reflections on Tarot
Word Crimes
Technology and Faith........Bad Religion
Pop Haydn
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3369 Posts

Profile of Pop Haydn
I think what Jon is referring to as effect is as in "The Effect:"--the description of the trick that appears before the explanation. This is the way Larry Jennings always looked at "effect." It is the trick as it looks to the spectators. What Jon is saying, I think, is that we should substitute "the story we want the spectator to tell" for the traditional THE EFFECT: part of a description. Is that close, Jon?
landmark
View Profile
Inner circle
within a triangle
4863 Posts

Profile of landmark
"I really like this, Jon. I think that we are right on here. The point is to write the story the spectator will tell--to make him feel like an important part of the story. He was the witness, he is the apostle. Create a story for him with a magical character that does something magical FOR HIM. Who is this character?

Look at the story that the children would tell when they are grown up about having had Mary Poppins as nanny. "

That's quite wonderful, Jon and Whit.
Thanks.

Where do you see the notion of subtext fit in here?
Pop Haydn
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3369 Posts

Profile of Pop Haydn
The subtext is in the story we create for him, for example, who is this magical character they just met, what does he want? We could tell them, or it could be shown in the cues given off by the character.

If we look at a magic trick as a story we create for the spectator, then we will want to create as full and three-dimensional an experience for him as possible. The magical character, and any other characters--assistants, stooges, etc.--need to be convincing, and each could have some subtext.

We not only write the story, we have to enact it as well. We must engage the spectator. The more he sees himself in the story, the greater his interest will be...
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
If we call the text/the story <=> the effect we still have at least a couple of missing components missing to provide a full "this is what they feel/think" and all the "backstage details of what we do/have/say/lighting/music".

The latter is related to what we call "the method" - all that "I do" stuff including the props. That seems very close to the musical score for a piece or a complete script that includes all the backstage work.

The former though appears to be something that relates to a perspective of someone watching how the audience reacts. Something closer to a director's perspective. Their job is to sit there and see what comes across as funny or mysterious or magical.

In another field there are names for these perspectives.
First position is what you see through your eyes and feel as yourself.
Second position is what the person you are addressing sees and hears.
Third position is what someone a few steps away sees as the two of you interact - or in our case what the audience is responding to and how.

IMHO subtext is part of the script that is communicated without direct expository dialog.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
tommy
View Profile
Eternal Order
Devil’s Island
15959 Posts

Profile of tommy
The problem with all of that is that the climax of magic will blow the depth of the story away and so they will only speak of the effects afterwards. They the muggles don't talk of the character of a magician but go on and on about the effects in the aftermath. I believe the depth is important in the present moment in time of the act but after when the magic happens its gone with the wind. A young fellow came into my place a few weeks ago and caused a sensation with his magic. All the people there were telling me that he hid this and that and described all the miracles he performed. Not one mentioned him and I in the end had to ask them about the fellow and the said he was a young fellow with red hair like the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland and then the went on again about the effects. All of which tells me that Maskelyne was correct when he explained the difference between drama and magic. Yet you fellows are talking about muggles talking about magic as if they talk about magic as if it is the same thing as drama.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Yes, agreed - they were impressed with the tricks and did not care about the character of the performer. A FAIL of that performer IMHO but at least they have effective tricks to work from.

As best I understand the business of getting jobs - you want them to remember the performer.

Contrast the report you gave with the review and commentary about the magic castle and too many card tricks on another recent thread where the author clearly recalled Whit's character and his magic.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Stellan
View Profile
Special user
Sweden
580 Posts

Profile of Stellan
Have you noticed that some women have wonderful subtexts that seem full of promises? The more wonderful subtext the more you tend to forget about their tricks. Hmmm.
"There is no reality, only perception."
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Quote:
On 2011-09-05 01:15, Stellan wrote:
Have you noticed that some women have wonderful subtexts that seem full of promises?...


You mean their behavior and communication offers mixed messages? Or perhaps this about some of the (obvious to adults) non-verbal cues that some folks associate with "glamor"? Either way that's still most likely text and discussed in detail in the PUA threads on other websites. Smile

Subtext would be when those messages are being sent when the husband is around.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Stellan
View Profile
Special user
Sweden
580 Posts

Profile of Stellan
No....just fascination.
"There is no reality, only perception."
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
It gets better when you meet one (or more) who show you how they turn that channel on and off when they want. That's amazing stuff - so many nonverbal cues.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Stellan
View Profile
Special user
Sweden
580 Posts

Profile of Stellan
Yes, you tend to remember them and think of them. How do they do that?
"There is no reality, only perception."
tommy
View Profile
Eternal Order
Devil’s Island
15959 Posts

Profile of tommy
"Shakespeare doesn't really write subtext, you play the subtext."

-Gary Oldman-
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
? you want to learn about anchoring? that's also in the PUA discussions. Just a touch or glance after you get the start of an "interested" response can do that.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Quote:
On 2011-09-05 01:56, tommy wrote:
"Shakespeare doesn't really write subtext, you play the subtext."

-Gary Oldman-


There's a considerable amount of onstage activity that is not in the scripts but seem to be in many productions. It's in "The Script" by way of tradition. Sometimes we get innovative directors like Peter Brook exploring non-traditional stagings.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
tommy
View Profile
Eternal Order
Devil’s Island
15959 Posts

Profile of tommy
"There's no subtext in Harry Potter really; it's all magic, anything can happen. Why do I say this? Because it's a magic spell. It's quite nice in a way. There is a real freedom to it."

-Michael Gambon
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Michael Kamen
View Profile
Inner circle
Oakland, CA
1315 Posts

Profile of Michael Kamen
What, pray tell, is this PUA discussion that is apparently a source of enlightenment. "PhD'd Union Actors" ? "Philosophy of Understudies in America" ? What?
Michael Kamen
Stellan
View Profile
Special user
Sweden
580 Posts

Profile of Stellan
PUA = Pick Up Artist
"There is no reality, only perception."
Jonathan Townsend
View Profile
Eternal Order
Ossining, NY
27083 Posts

Profile of Jonathan Townsend
Pick Up Artist - the folks who use cues, scripts, some tricks from NLP and even magic to engage interest and smooth the way for an evening of fun without unnecessary entanglements.

And now back to our discussion of where subtext goes into a script and how to avoid getting misdirected by inappropriate magic-shop-book language?
...to all the coins I've dropped here
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » Subtext (0 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3~4~5~6~7 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.29 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL