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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Nothing up my sleeve... » » Ideal length for a coin routine (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Tanay
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Hi guys,

I'm getting more and more into coin magic and I'm faced with new questions on a daily basis! One thing I've noticed is, the shorter my coin routines, the better the reactions I get.

So I was wondering, what is the ideal length for a coin routine?

I was also wondering if it is possible to have a fairly long coin routine which still remains magical to spectators. This is something that I would love to do - since it would be great to have just a few different coins in your pockets and be able to entertain for 3-4 minutes or more.

But it seems that after a while, spectators can almost get 'used' to the fact that you're hiding coins somewhere, and they can sense certain palm positions if they're repeated.

However, I've seen performers like Aurelio Paviato (in his FISM 82 winning coin act) where he performed with only a few silver coins and four cards, and was able to entertain for 6 minutes constantly. It was one of the most magical routines I have ever seen with coins. Last time I tried to do a multi-phase coin routine which lasted more than 3-4 minutes, it ceased to be magical and more a demonstration of skill...

I hope this proves to be an interesting topic!

Thanks for your help Smile
Tanay
Mb217
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Hiya Tanay, where you been man? Smile

I think it all depends but I like shorter routines as long as they are complete. Too many coin routines in a row can be daughnting to specs unless they come to a parlor just to see coin magic. Smile Regular folks like variety, so pick out a couple of good coin effects and you'll always seem fresh to people when they see you. Change them up every so often to keep them guessing and learn how to mix in a card and close-up trick and you'll smoke them, and seem a bit more complete as a magician. Smile

If I don't just do one trick and move on, then typically I like to do 5 minute sets for people and it works rather well. Smile I begin with a coin trick (as I'm a coin guy mostly) Smile , throw in a good card trick (and there are many great easy ones gaffed or ungaffed), a closeup effect (usually a piece of mentalism or Sankey-type stuff) and finish with another good coin trick, and out. Smile The variety works well and rounding off the moments with another coin trick gives people a break in the middle, and it all happens in 5 minutes when you get it down smooth going from one effect to another. Smile I have found that people's sense of amazement is attached somehow to their attention spans, or something like that. Smile

But of course longer coin effects can work as well but most coin tricks don't take as long as one might think (One of my favorite effects, "My Fly" takes about a minute to do with patter but is a very complete routine). But you can embellish and make it longer or shorter. You can do a good coins across in less than a minute or deliver one like Tommy Wonder that takes a few minutes and is magical throughout...It truly depends. And if you keep showing folks coin tricks I guess they can get used to what's happening and not be as amazed by it, so don't do that. Smile

I think there are a lot of wonderful longer coin effects out there that are quite magical. In the end it's up to you and how the shoe fits...you and your specs. Smile
*Check out my latest: Gifts From The Old Country: A Mini-Magic Book, MBs Mini-Lecture on Coin Magic, The MB Tanspo PLUS, MB's Morgan, Copper Silver INC, Double Trouble, FlySki, Crimp Change - REDUX!, and other fine magic at gumroad.com/mb217magic Smile


"Believe in YOU, and you will see the greatest magic that ever was." -Mb Smile
The Burnaby Kid
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That's sort of like asking what the ideal length for a story or a song is. It needs to be as long as it needs to be. Yeah, you probably want it longer than a millisecond but shorter than an hour, but otherwise, the trick itself will probably tell you how long it wants to be.

That is, unless, one's in the habit of just stringing together a bunch of moves and calling the result magic.
JACK, the Jolly Almanac of Card Knavery, a free card magic resource for beginners.
AdamChance
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I think you can have a longer coin routine if you keep them surprised throughout the routine. so if you're just using normal coins and using all slight of hand... they might get a little bit tired of coins vanishing somewhere and appearing in the other hand or whatever. so maybe start off your routine using real coins and slights... then, mix in some gimmicks after a while. they'll just be expecting slights, but then you can shock them with something special. for example, if you're doing a coin routine and they're getting tired of watching coins travel around... do a switch for a coin through cigarette gimmick and that'll probably keep them entertained. especially if they've been handling the coins in earlier parts of the routine... sticking a cigarette through one of the coins should be pretty unexpected. or do a coin bite or something like that... and that's the type of thing that will leave a lasting impression on people. it's kind of ironic that it might take years of practice to get really good at slight of hand and develop a really good coin routine... but if you do a coin bite at the end of it, the spectator will remember that you did a bunch of cool coin tricks, but then took a bite out of one of the coins and spat it back on! a trick that takes 10 minutes to learn, probably leaves a more lasting impression than a routine that takes 10 years to learn. anyways, I'm sure many people disagree with my perspective... but give it a try and see what kind of reactions you get.
bowers
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When I do walk around magic ill do some coin magic and like mb said throw in some card magic. but I also throw in some silk and rope magic also and have a varity so no one has time to get bored.
Tanay
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Mb, I've been here all the time, just busy practising with my coins Smile and also recently, busy studying for exams! Your 5 minute act sounds perfect, although I'm wondering, which coin routines/effects would you use to close your act? They would have to be pretty strong to beat a good Sankey card effect, wouldn't they? Smile

Also I've seen your My Fly routine, it is awesome. Many magical moments, and best still, it looked like real magic to me Smile

Andrew, stringing together some moves is exactly what I don't want! I've been working to ensure that doesn't happen. I've shortened my coin routines to only 1-2 minutes long with emphasis on each magical moment, and minimal use of the same sleights again and again. I really appreciate the advice you had given me before (regarding my video), it has worked! Smile

AdamChance, the gimmicks idea sounds great! But, at the moment I'm only a beginner so I'm trying to perfect (or at least get very good at) all the basic coin sleights and non-gimmick routines. I was talking to Kainoa Harbottle about this, and he said 90% of coin magic can be done with sleight of hand, gimmicks are just for that extra 10% to make it even better.

And guys, I definitely agree about the variety for an audience. I'm sure that so many magicians only perform with a deck of cards...and there are some great ones at that (Aaron Fisher, Helder Guimaraes, and more). And I have done an act with only card routines. But I'm sure that variety brings a lot of benefits, especially if some members of the audience don't like card or coin tricks Smile
Tanay
Mb217
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Hiya Tanay, hope you're doing good on those exams my friend. Smile

First, thanks for the kind words about My fly, it's really become a pet effect for me. Smile

As to an example of a set I would do...

-I like to open with my ReVisited. Why? Because it is simply put and invites people in with just 2 coins that they clearly see right up close. It plays very well and really showcases the Crimp Change in a grand way. Smile

-Now I bring out a deck of cards, a regular deck that a spec can shuffle before I do a few flourishes and my quick variation of Ambtious Card with a ACAAN finish to it. It's fun to do or you can simply substitute your favorite packet trick here, something like Dr. Daley's Last Trick or Re-Flipped, plays well with just a few regular cards.

-At this point I do a close-up trick, a bit of mentalism or something by Sankey like his "Leaving Home" where I would actually be wearing the key around my neck to spark the interest. Smile Or maybe Color Changing Knives, or I might do something like Ultimate Positive Negative, a slick little easy piece of mentalism that involves 3 "invisible" coins and a little yellow envelope. Smile Almost done now...

I finish with another coin trick, usually my "Grandpa's Coins" and of late sometimes "My Fly" depending on where I'm at. I sometimes do a simpler "exit" type tricks like my new "Ike & Mike's Revenge" and I'm out. Smile

So 4 effects in about 5 mins...It keeps people's attention, gives them variety, sells you as a complete magician and you look pretty cool while you're packing light for great impact. Smile I can mix & match different effects and do at times for variety. And all this is flexible as you don't have to do 4 tricks, you can just do 3 in the same 5 mins. And you don't have to do it in the order I describe, do what feels good to you at your pace. Smile I open with what I think I do best - coins, and finish that way. But I can start in any way, and often just do 1 or 2 tricks and move on, it all depends on the moments but 5 minute sets is how I keep it all in order. Smile

I mostly do my stuff when it comes to coins but classic tricks like Roth's ['d Coins Across works well, they are classic for a reason and plus I love that effect, it's one of the very best bar none pound for pound. Smile

So a nice set could be:

-Coins 1 - Any of Roth's clever coin effects, Winged Silver, Chink A Chink but ['d Coins Across is money! Smile

-Cards - Use a Packet Trick: NFW, Double Back, B'wave...All powerful packet effects and not difficult.

-CloseUp - Sankey has great stuff like Leaving Home, Killer Key, etc., Also you can do wonders with a simple TT & hanky, or try a Bill Switch, easy enough and quite amazing to folks. Smile

-Coins 2 - Use an out effect, one where you can easily say goodbye like a little One Coin Routine, a few vanishes & reproductions, and out. Smile

Hope that helps to illustrate some. Smile
*Check out my latest: Gifts From The Old Country: A Mini-Magic Book, MBs Mini-Lecture on Coin Magic, The MB Tanspo PLUS, MB's Morgan, Copper Silver INC, Double Trouble, FlySki, Crimp Change - REDUX!, and other fine magic at gumroad.com/mb217magic Smile


"Believe in YOU, and you will see the greatest magic that ever was." -Mb Smile
fonda57
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Tanay, sounds like you're having a good time with magic. If you like longer routines then Gary Kurtz' Trio(Unexplainable Acts) or John Carney's Silver and Glass (Book of Secrets) would come in handy. If you perform either one of these you won't need any other coin routines in set. Both are very magical and are fun to do.
And anything of MB's is a good idea.

By the way, MB, I still have your Coins on Edge book.
I j
BenSalinas
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All great advice. I think the key is to keep it fresh and vary the effects. As long as the routine is entertaining. Think of the best comedy routines. The longer ones take a theme and expand on it, then there is usually a good call-back at the end to wrap the effect up. An example in card magic might be when the final card revealed is the signed card that was destroyed at the beginning of the routine.
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vmendoza
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All good advice. I like to keep things under 3 feet 7 inches in length. Generally speaking.
Lawrence O
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Quote:
On 2012-02-13 09:18, BenSalinas wrote:
All great advice. I think the key is to keep it fresh and vary the effects. As long as the routine is entertaining. Think of the best comedy routines. The longer ones take a theme and expand on it, then there is usually a good call-back at the end to wrap the effect up. An example in card magic might be when the final card revealed is the signed card that was destroyed at the beginning of the routine.

I think that Ben is supplying the right advice: If you have a theme, a story with a conflict of some sort for the act covering your tricks (each trick supplying one facet of your character), then you can go at length even for half an hour. If you don't, after a while and even if you vary the effects, spectators get a blurred view of what you're doing and they accept that you can do anything with your coins and then lose interest in anything with coins.
Magic is the art of proving impossible things in parallel dimensions that can't be reached
David Fillary
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A bit late now, but here's a little thought of my own. I always end a coin routine with something that happens in their hands as it truly blows them away.
So routines I do are copper silver transpositions with the last one happening in their hand, followed by penetrations through handkerchiefs (expansion of texture) happening in their hand. Four coins across, ending in their hand. Coin through ring, with coin ending in their hand without me touching the coin or ring.
Laypeople love coin productions and this especially works after another trick. For instance, I will do a card trick where the card changes in their hand. While they are in shock staring at the card, I have prepared some coins for a 4 coin production followed by 4 coins across. Or I do a silk handkerchief through their arm trick, produce the coin from the centre of the handkerchief and do the coin through ring.

So in general, my routines start with productions, have one or two effects of a differing nature (penetrations, vanishes, transpositions etc.) in the middle and end with a shocking effect in their hands. I can't imagine my coin routines lasting less than 5mins like this, but I guess most of the time is spent with patter and chatting to the audience, so the actual sleights only take a few minutes.

Good luck!
OliveroG
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The longer the routine, the better you have to construct it, generally when talking about walk around or table hoppping situations, the ideal feat we're going for is impact, we slap them with visual, strong magic. However, if you want to construct a formal close up show only around coin magic, you're gonna need a lot more than just impact. I remember Dani Daortiz saying that he had a show of 2 hours with only card magic, and the Juan Tamariz told him that his show was incredibly good, but it had a big flaw, everything was so powerful and energic, that nothing really stud up (He basically setted the bar too high, leaving all the magic a little bit down). After that he added slower routines that were based more on a concept rather than in just visual impact (See his version of triumph, only one effect, with a very good concept behind the presentation).

Of course, it's difficult to compare cards with coins, I personally do not enjoy telling stories with the props ("This coin here is mike and this one is his friend and the went to a bar..."), but rather to illustrate a story with the props (Talking about for instance, an old man who went mad because he had coins that whenever he touched, vanished into thin air, and illustrating by doing so).

When constructing a long routine, you have a lot of advantages, you have more time so you can slowly create finales right from the begining, so they become absolutely impossible by the end (You could load coins into spectators pockets during the routine, and at the end to a coins to spectators pockets, just imagine the possibilities). I strongly recommend "Reflections" by Helder Guimaraes, it's a book about card magic, but it has so much good theory about the construction of routines that it will help anyone. I also recommend Tamariz work on "La via mágica" and Ascanio's theory book "La magia de Ascanio Vol 1".

-Marcos.
I hope you understand, my dear friend, that everything you are seeing is a lie, but everything you are feeling holds true.
martysh
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I think coin routines are the greatest.. they are visual distinctive and immediately impressive....
but the work is so intense that people after a short time can't or might not be able to keep their attention ....

so much in such a short time might be too much for anyone to perform

the audience might need some sort of break in the action.


marty
Suren
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I always practiced coin magic. However I never do false routines (even though I can perform them smooth). I always do a few fun/short tricks just to warm up the audience. I never used coin magic as a base for my performances. Ill get a lot of negative replies but I was always sure and I am sure that coin magic is not the strongest magic out there. Yes it is fun to praqcitce. It is fun to perform and improvise with it. But I think that you can always do something stronger than the best coin effect.
Just my thoughts.
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