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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Diary, of a new busker... (Day, 1) (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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unilogo
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Yesterday, was my debut; And, it was a fiasco... Smile

You: Read, rehearse and theorize an original show... For, months. With, lessons from this forum and busker blogs. And, the masters are correct... Street magic, for money, is not easy.

I, set-up, in the most solitary area of 'Fremont Street.' Here, in Las Vegas; A, bad location, intentionally. Because, I was afraid, of "creating" a big crowd. Why? I, remember, reading that a beginner should work a small (10) person, audience for $10.

That, was a mistake; I was, hidden in an area people were primarily, leaving (Calling, it a night) ... And, new people, were: (A) Probably, expecting / eager, for the attractions on the main area (B) Too distant, from where, I was calling them. I had, performed a trial show, before; On, Fremont... That, was a success. Primarily, because, it was free and quiet enough (Daytime.)

Were, people afraid, of the trickle hat... I, placed, on the floor? I, only, did that; Because, I, do not wear a hat. Is, there an alternative?

I, was extremely nervous / terrified! Asking, people for money, psychologically, killed me... The, responsibility, to put on a good show.

A, panhandeler approached, me; Asking, "If, I could make a dollar appear for him..." And an unattractive lady, from the red light district; Saying, when I had money, I should, set-up a "date" with her, to put it kindly; It is, Las Vegas...

So, tourists would ask me, what I was doing; Shouting, light-heckler, remarks. But, since, I did not have the courage to start... I, would lie, that the show would start in 5, minutes. In, reality; I, was scared to build a crowd.

OR

THIS, WAS MY BIGGEST PROBLEM; I, did not practice how to build an edge..."To, Lure with Spectacle" In, my ignorance, I thought my props; Being, displayed and music from my amplifier, by saying "magic show" would be enough. My, props just received a fleeting glance... The, music in my amplifier, could not be heard over 'DJ' and 'Live band' sound levels... And, I was too scared, to even say "magic show" because, I felt it would not be enough...Eventually, I would be, correct. Ha...

So, I stood there, doing nothing for an hour and a half; Thinking, of quitting... Since, "I will, re-work, an approach, to attract a crowd... Beside, my finale is impractical." (You, will read, about, the magic soon...)

When, a magician, named "Adam Flowers" you can see him on Youtube; Was, infront of me. Asking, what, I would do... I, reluctantly said... "A, magic show." He said, he just finished his 'shift' on Fremont... And, after some small talk. I, went for it...

I, started screaming and he did too... But, nothing. Until, a group of 'mid-life' gentlemen, asked him what was the fuzz... And, they decided to stay and see, me. Then, a young couple, was standing, there. And... That, was it. First, show for five pedestrians and a magician / busker. Since, calling, people was yielding no results... With, my monotone "Magic, show... I, will also, recite some poetry... Bring, your kids this is a show for the whole family {There, were hardly any kids.. Ha} ... If, you do not like the show it is free."

Failure, time... Smile

My, show was scripted so, that it would flow with my music. And, I knew my show would primarily appeal to ladies / women. And, it was more of a serious than comedic, theme... BAM! Very few, of my lines would work; So, I automatically, had lost half my script... 4, men and a couple would not work. I, required atleast a single girl or group of girls. So, I need to attract, that by force, next time.

I, started, with Bizarro's color changing, spongeball; The, men were, like... "Cool" and the couple were kissing. So, they did not see it. Since, I place it as a clown nose, when the girl saw me again, she pointed and started laughing... So, I did a poetic clown gag, with a balloon (You may, re-read, that; It, is written correctly...) It, went, ok. Then, did an origami animation by Robert, Neal... Not, that, magical... But, the couple liked it. The, group of men, were surprisingly focused. This, had all been rushed and compressed badly into 2-3, minutes... By, the way. I, felt awkward. And, I announced, my finale... They, were all surprised... Haha. "Already?" They, kind of chuckled.

SECOND, BIGGEST MISTAKE OF THE DAY.

Even, with the most gentle of breeze (3-5mph / wind) it was wrecking havock. On, my "bright" idea... To, finish with, Tony Clark's, gypsy balloon. I, am definetly, replacing, this... Although, it went surprisingly, ok... From, what, I can tell. (In, less, than-ideal, conditions.) I, could tell the girl, enjoyed the show... The, men were kinda, 'puzzled' by the disorder of my poetry / magic...

Eugene Burger, is my biggest influence; Imagine, a student, of him... Street, performing, somewhat nervous and romantic. This, 'wreck' by my standards; Earned, me 4 dollars *2$? By, the magician*

With, a dumb, hat line I made on the spot. "This, is my first show ever... And, you are the best audience, I ever had."

They, laughed, and pointed the obvious... It, was a nervous, joke; Any, way.

I, thanked and asked "For a dollar or two" Which, may be, what I deserved... Or, not. Ha...

Called, it a day. Knowing, I need to learn: How to build a crowd, script so I do not require my music, get girls to watch the show too and change my finale.

But, I will not quit... I, refuse Smile

Thoughts, comments... Appreciated.
ASCII
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The thing to remember is you learned more in one day performing then all the months beforehand preparing.
its can be stressful but its the best (and fastest)way to learn.
Keep it up,
bluemagic
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I have a question about your magic show.How did it go for the five person.did you do the way you rehearse.Do you need to make big changes there to.Now you learn alot.Get a note book start writing down on where you need to changeand next time you go out write down more changes.I find when writing it help me keep on one thoght at a time.Start with small group is ok when coming up with new lines.you can see what works and dosen't work.
Tim Friday
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Congratulations!!!
You got out there and that is much more than most ever do.

One thing I want to point out is in your post you make a number of comments like "first mistake, big problem, failure, second mistake, etc"

I feel it is extremely important that you take the experiences that you view as "mistakes" look at them in a different way. In fact, I would encourage to go so far to say: there are no mistakes, there are no failures. Instead say: this is a learning experience. If something doesn't work like I hoped, that is good, because now I have learned a valuable lesson. I know now how to do better next time. Lesson learned, move on.

I am in the learning process myself, and every time I go out and perform I learn something new.

So to sum it up, great job for getting out there, you have demonstrated a great deal of courage. Don't beat yourself up and dwell on what you might perceive as a "mistake", instead say "lesson learned, now I know how to do it better"
Dave V
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I have questions about you. How old are you? How do you portray yourself? Do you have a "character" or is it pretty much you?

More importantly, are you coming to Jimmy Talksalot's lecture next Monday night? If you don't, I'll track you down and drag you there.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Devious
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Great job getting out there with some experience. Perhaps having a fellow magician there may have intimidated you somewhat. I'm glad that he seemed very supportive of your efforts.

Try to not beat yourself up so much as you continue to grow and learn. Remember to do your very best, but for the most part you will never see the same people ever twice there on the streets of Las Vegas.

They are tourists just passing through. Do not reflect on the negatives of your initial mistakes. No one is keeping score, but you. So learn from the mistakes but don't feel self conscious about them as each face is a new one. Make sense?

I'm very touched that you are so candid in repeating your experience to everyone here guy! Good for you. Keep your crowds small until you learn to manage larger groups. Yes, if you don't wear a hat, this may actually be working against you. Folks will think that you are just a tourist as well, without any clear lines of definition to your character.

To build a crowd, I suggest that you find some routine or idea that you can jump into as you see folks headed in your general direction. This way you don't have to start at the beginning when a different set come up right behind them. Find an effect that keeps running over and over. Without beginning, middle, or end for the most part.

Think along the reasons of why Miser's Dream works well. Noisy, flashy, magical/intriguing, effortless, entertaining, thus crowd building.

To give you an idea, Jimmy Talks A lot utters, "Watch the Stick" in a very loud tone, he will then bounce it off the ground and catch it, He then makes the stick vanish into his vest. He will repeat this over and over until his crowd is built.
Try to find something along similiar lines.

If you are advertising, folks will expect that you have the goods, be sure to bring the goods with you!
Keep it up Brother!
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
Devious
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Leave Fremont Street and head over to the The Bellagio. Position yourself with your back to the fountains. Perform between each show.

You will sometimes find fellow buskers there as well, in the evening. This should put you at ease, so you don't feel so alone or intimidated, as it seems you were based on reading your post.

Keep trying and do remember, Bruce Lee had his arse kicked before he started kicking arse! It happened to many when they started out in the game.
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
troppobob
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G'day Unilogo
Congratulations on getting out there and having a go at it.
What may be called mistakes are better perceived as learning experiences.
In my current street show I include 2 rope effects (one is the closer) and in each of them I explain that the rope should be cut into 2 equal lengths and in each routine there is a section when the ropes are cut into unequal lengths - on each occasion I state -"Do you know who the person is who never made a mistake? - The person who never made anything" - this is followed by a magical moment. It becomes a bit of a running gag and works well for my character and it sounds a bit deep and significant - and yet it is true.
I look forward to hearing more about you progress.
Bob Latta (aka Troppo Bob)
unilogo
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Thank, you, all; I, feel much better now... I, really do.

I am, 23. I have character, but I am not a character. I, dress, normal... That, is. My, presentation, is bittersweet... Intellectual, sometimes - Poetry... Maybe, not suitable for the streets? I, just look at magic, as a form of self expression; Like, any form, of art.

ASCII |Hands-on, is the best way to learn. The masters, seem to have thousands of hours worth of experience.

Bluemagic |I, am making the magic Café and my brain, the notebook. You, live... You, learn.

Tim |You, are correct; I, could use a more positive mindstate. I, believed, 8 years of experience, would automatically translate on the streets. My, ego, is fine now... It, is ok, to call myself a beginner, street performer; Not, experienced, close-up magician, or whatever...

Dave |I, will go, to the lecture. I remember reading the magic shop, moved? Is, this correct?

Devius |Serious, words of wisdom... The magician, in my audience, builds with a floating cigarette and people flock to him... Works, in that never ending, concept. I, have to find something, that fits my style.

So, to keep, optimistic; Even, if it was bad... "Get, them to stop, get them to stay, get them to pay" did, happen Smile
unilogo
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Troppo |Do, you know the guy, who plans to make many more mistakes? *This, guy...*

Devius |An, alternate location, is a priority; A, friend mentiomed, the Bellagio. Good, pattern...
Dave V
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Don't take this personally, but I've been trained to pause when I read a comma, which makes your writing very hard to follow.

Unless you're related to James T. Kirk, then I can understand it.

I haven't seen the D&L banner over the building like it used to be, but I don't think they have changed their address. It's worth checking out. I don't want to miss this over something stupid like not knowing where to go.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Tim Friday
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Quote:
On 2011-10-12 18:59, Dave V wrote:
Don't take this personally, but I've been trained to pause when I read a comma, which makes your writing very hard to follow.

Unless you're related to James T. Kirk, then I can understand it.

I haven't seen the D&L banner over the building like it used to be, but I don't think they have changed their address. It's worth checking out. I don't want to miss this over something stupid like not knowing where to go.


Dave, thanks for saying something.

Unilogo, if at all possible go easy on the commas.

I'm starting to wonder, if you speak, with many, pauses, to increase, the effects of, the drama...

could not resist giving you a hard time on that one, but I mean it all in good fun Smile
unilogo
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I am sorry guys.

The commas are a bad habit. I use them to seperate ideas when I write personal notes.

I do use silence to increase drama. Or to simplify a deep concept inspired by a cerebral philosopher or poet. Maybe too much, good observation. Smile
solrak29
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Quote:
On 2011-10-12 14:28, unilogo wrote:
When, a magician, named "Adam Flowers" you can see him on Youtube; Was, infront of me. Asking, what, I would do... I, reluctantly said... "A, magic show." He said, he just finished his 'shift' on Fremont... And, after some small talk. I, went for it...


I met Adam when I was down in Vegas and he's pretty cool. You spoke to the right guy
when it comes to working Freemont as he does it full time and has been doing so for quite
sometime. I'm sure he could help you further along.

It's great you are out there workin' it. You got good advise above and some great
guys out there in Vegas right now that can help you along your way. You just gotta
find 'em (you found one)....

Thanks for sharin' keep us updated.
To Find Me On The Pitch, Follow me :On Twitter
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EVILDAN
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As much as you read, rehearse and go over things in your head, nothing can substitute for an actual first day on a pitch. Only there will you quickly find out what works, what doesn't and if you're lucky, why it doesn't. This is in the grand scheme of things. But you're better off than most because you actually did it.

I haven't been to one, but I'm sure you'll hit gold if you go to Jimmy Talksalot's lecture as Dave V mentioned above. You'll get a fast learning curve. His book, "To Lure With Spectacle" is gold.

I love working the street and festivals. Right now my wife and I are working a haunt. We have a spot set up between two sections of the haunt. One thing I learned is no matter how long you've been doing this, there's always something to learn. It's a great gig. Relax, Have fun with it, Enjoy it.
by EVILDAN....
"The Coin Board Book" - moves and routines with the coin panel board. - http://www.lybrary.com/the-coin-board-book-p-827955.html
"SLASHER - A Horror Whodunnit" - a bizarre close-up routine based on Bob Neale's "Sole Survivor."
PM me for more info.
"Zombie Town" - a packet effect about how a small town turned into zombies. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nzJhcoJtyOM
CarlEJones
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Congrats on doing it!! I agree with the others who said you learned so much more from doing than from preparing.

Jimmy Talksalot would be a HUGE help to you. He has great advice!

Good luck!
THANK YOU for helping us carry on our laughter ministry in hospitals to kids of ALL ages. Our visits are ALWAYS free. We NEED & DEEPLY appreciate your gifts of magic so that we can do what we do. Please PM me with questions or, for a faster reply, in most cases please text or call 214-578-1601

https://youtu.be/2DbAdXKIf-A
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bluemagic
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Evildan,what kind of act do you do at the haunt
EVILDAN
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My wife and I do an act together. It's a mix of bizarre magick, sideshow and juggling.

We're on the ground. We build an edge, entertain the crowds and then disperse them to the different haunts. We help lessen the time one spends in line waiting to get in a haunt. No hats, straight up pay.
by EVILDAN....
"The Coin Board Book" - moves and routines with the coin panel board. - http://www.lybrary.com/the-coin-board-book-p-827955.html
"SLASHER - A Horror Whodunnit" - a bizarre close-up routine based on Bob Neale's "Sole Survivor."
PM me for more info.
"Zombie Town" - a packet effect about how a small town turned into zombies. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=nzJhcoJtyOM
gallagher
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Forget the Busking, letś get back to the Punctuation!!! A great great book on the subject: Eats Shoots and Leaves. Youĺl enjoy it,.. and your Show will improve!
give it easy,
gallagher.
unilogo
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Poets are sick philosophers and artists are madmen.

How can you expect proper grammar? "I went to public school.."

XD
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