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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Opening Gambits (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

djw.tyler
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Just wondering what opening gambits you use in walk-around situations. What would you use on the street as opposed to a function (e.g. drinks reception)? What about in a restaurant? And what are some of the howlers that are to be avoided?

Thanks,

Dave
Yellowcustard
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Lots of information missing. Like what’s your character? What stuff are you already doing? What type of functions? When you say street do you mean like Blaine or busking like Gazzo?

However hopefully I can still help. Big help at functions is getting the planers to advertise you so if you’re doing a drinks reception foe a wedding say. Have on the time table have drinks reception and entertament by…………
With the past idea you just approach and introduce yourself and go into your first effect. It should be short and quick to establish you as a magician.

On the street you need catch eyes stop passersby. So something that can be repeated like a rope routine, silk vanish or levation of a cigarette. Once people stop or look engage and start routine.
You can be more direct on the street and a bit direct, this dose work as well in formal functions as well not to say it can’t.
Hang out at a fancy bar and watch people see how they act to one another and see how they act. Then go out on the street and watch people. Rember that there basically as a cross section the same people yet different environments. Take notes and then see how your effects and patter fit in to it.

Nothing is hard and fast. But I think a fire wallet is to forward for a private function but great for the street.

Hope this kind of helps.

(Bare in mind there are many people using fire wallets in private functions)
Enjoy your magic,

and let others enjoy it as well!
Dirtytrix
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Whilst my own favourite genres are mentalism and cards I've found that really good intro's into the kind of thing I do have absolutely nothing to do with my main material and involve everyday items which are deemed to be impromptu, quick, and allow you to finish clean. I've found that coins seem to fit the requirement nicely even though I'm not big into that kind of magic myself. So I find stuff like Hopping Halves (Coin Return) and Coin Unique are great openers. Really simple to execute, very impromptu, as quick or as slow as you want to make them, and you can finish clean.

When you've just had a crowd of people turn up at a reception and some guy is standing there with a deck of cards I honestly think it's a mixed reaction, which ranges from "oh goody a magician" to "omg this guys gonna do card tricks, how cliche".

You might also think about how your opening material can link into your next piece. When I say 'link' I don't necessarily mean in terms of the context of the actual effect, but in terms of pacing and gearing up, which helps to gradually gain more interest from the people around you. I think you're right in spending time on working out what is a good opener, but you need to follow it with something.

When I've got their attention with a nice quick effect and a few more people start showing an interest, I gradually start to take more liberties with their attention span and move to simple prediction and mind reading effects from an ESP deck, again quick stuff, keep the effects simple but expanding the patter a little more, before going into more fully developed mentalism effects. By this time I've generally got the attention of many more people and they are now conditioned to seeing my own style at my own pace, which if I'd delivered from the outset I doubt I would have had the immediate buy-in from the people present. I love mentalism but if I start out with some of my favourite effects it just doesn't work. The thing is, no one knows who I am or what I do, but when people buy a ticket to see Derren Brown they know what to expect right from the outset.

Phil
djw.tyler
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Thanks for the replies.

I deliberately left the question quite open but I guess what I was getting at was the opening line that you use when you walk up to a a table in a restaurant or up to a group of people a function to get you started. As you rightly say Phil, just walking up with a deck of cards in your hand is not necessarily going to work!

Maybe I should reframe and repost the question in the Table Hoppers section as it's probably more relevant there.

Dave
EXTREMENINJA1
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On the street I am planning to use invisible deck as an opener. It is quite a strong effect Smile.
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