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Profile of WR
I was hired for a Chuch show. All was well until I came to My Rope through the Body effect. I have a Volunteer from the audience and also selected a helper. I made jokes about .."do you have a good insurence plan and does anyone know the number for 911..." I did one new bit with them signing a form from my Lawyers, Burton, Copperfield and Houdini, it was blank and I asked them to sign on the bottom and I would fill it in later. "This way I have never been sued."..Well came time to pull the rope through the body and something went wrong. The helper had twisted it so we pulled and it tightens around the poor guys mid section. His eyes BUG out and he releses a loud OOF! I smile and say that some times the magic does not work. Everyone laughed. THEY THOUGHT IT WAS PART OF THE ACT!!! The next day in church I saw the victum again and explained that I knew what had gone wrong and that we should try it again but this time with a HIGH C wire from a piano. He laughed..
The secound time I was doing a kids show and did Fusion Illision, By DARYL, well the flash paper went off and so did the fire alarm. The people could not get it to stop.
Most magically yours,
WR Smile
"Tell Em WR sent Ya."
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Harris Deutsch
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Profile of harris
Re: Geoff's "faux pas"

During the 80's I was working a comedy club.
Back then I was into suspenders and the British thing.

I saw someone with a great pair and said,
"nice braces". Silent pause, I looked down to see that the man had "leg braces."

Words are very interesting. I am more aware of things these days.

Harris Smile
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
music, magic and marvelous toys
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956 Posts

Profile of Margarette
Worst performance experience.....a school show....I forgot my cd player (actually left it at the school I was at the day before), so I couldn't do my opening kid in the front row kept shouting "hey, I know how she did that....she <insert comment>"....then the teachers got the bright idea to serve snacks in the middle of my show, the kids were then more interested in eating than watching the show....then the prinicipal met with me after the show and told me they weren't going to pay me the full price because they didn't think I did a very good job. Well, I won't ever do a show for that school again, and I always work with a contract now, at least for school shows.

The only stupid question is the one not asked.
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New Jersey
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Profile of JBmagic
I would have kindly told that priciple that his school seemed like half a school, so you did half a show.

Jay Buchanan
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Profile of Enigma3613
I was doing my first stage show over the summer. Due to the costs of rent, we were unable to have more than one day of rehersal in the theatre before the show.

When we arrived there, I found out that I had miscalculated the dimensions of the theatre seating. We spent all of our rehersal time running through the tricks to find the best places to put them on the stage. This meant that my assistants never really got to practice some of the illusions we were doing.

The day of the show comes (I couldn't cancel because I had shelled the money out of pocket and it was nonrefundable) and we make the audience wait outside for 30 minutes to do a run through. I figured that making them wait was the worst of my worries... WRONG!!!

We get to one of my star pieces, an illusion I built myself where I walk through a locked cabinet behind a sheet I am holding with my hands. I get out of the cabinet and wait for my hidden assistant to close the door, just like we had practiced in rehersal, and I drop the curtain after I hear the door close. THE DOOR WAS OPEN!!!
I heard the audience clap for 2 seconds until the sheet I was using for cover hit the floor and they saw the gimmick. There was dead silence! It turns out that he had kicked the cabinet trying to reach the door. Somehow I managed to finish the set and go on with the show. Luckily I was able to get back to normal and blow them away with my closer.

Lesson Learned: practice until you can't move, rest, and practice some more. Also, never trust anything to be perfect, always use signals and have backup plans.
- Robert Doidge
Lonnie Dilan
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Profile of Lonnie Dilan
On 2001-12-16 09:26, Magicman0323 wrote:
OK I guess I’m up now.

I was sitting on my bike, pulled out those wonderful cuffs and explained that I was an escape artist and I wanted to prove it to all them. My best friend told me to hold my arms out and place them around the frame to make it even more impossible, so I did.

He locked them on WAY to tight to the point of cutting off circulation, I told him to loosen them just a little bit, and he dropped the key right into the stream, and since it was raining all day long, the stream was starting to look like a river.

I couldn’t escape from these things to save my life, I ended up having to have my bike taken apart so I could get my arms FREE, then having my Mom go to the hardware store and buying a huge pair of bolt cutters to set me free.

I couldn’t bend my thumbs for the rest of the day since they were so swollen.

Now I know what is running through your mind, why didn’t you just get the other key, well it ran through everyone else’s mind too, since they demanded to have both keys before the escape took place. Smile

Darn thumbcuffs Smile



This is your life and it's ending one minute at a time - Fight Club

I don't understand how you were freed from the bike. If you were cuffed with your thumbs around the frame you would have had to have the frame cut too. There would be no need to take the bike apart cause it would still not free you from the frame. All bike frames are bars that are welded together. It would not make sense if you were wrapped around the handle bars because you could easily slip off the end of the bars.

Did this really happen to you?

I just curious cause I have been into bicycles for 15 years and I have yet to see a bike that could be taken apart bar by bar.

The only logical solution would have been to cut you out from the cuffs without damaging the frame or taking the bike apart...or taking the bike apart and having you sit in a car attached to the frame on your way back home. That must have been uncomfortable....

I take it you guys always ride around with all of the proper tools to totally take a bike apart as well or did you walk your bike all the way home...that must have been a long painful walk too.

I don't mean to tear apart the story, but it really makes no sense. Sounds like a really good story if you don't pay attention to details.

sounds fishy to me.
Bill Martin
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I am still trying to get over the fact that somebody put flash paper up their nose and lit it. I have to admit that it would look pretty cool! Smile
The Village Idiots
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Profile of The Village Idiots
Gosh, so many horror stories. After performing for over half of my life I have had my share as well. Here are a few highlights.

Have had a guy have a heart attack during a show. Don't know if he made it through or not. Paramedics came and took him.

Had a lady fall down and break her leg, BAD, right before our show, along the front row. We didn't know about it and our stage manager was told to start the show so they could get her out with out to much attention. We enter, at the time I was working with 3 other guys, performing our opener. I look down and see her making a face that I could not tell if it was happy or mad. I had no idea what was going on till the paramedics took her away.

Have performed outside in the rain to many times to count.

During our finale my partner, Wally, rolled his ankle real bad and it swelled up like a grapefruit in a matter of seconds. We still finished the show. He stood on a ladder instead of riding his 6' unicylce.

Have had hecklers that I scolded then later found that they where mentally challenged. AHHG. That was embarassing. Lesson learned.

My personal fav.
We where performing at a ampitheater during the summer. I was introducing us, "Ladies and Gentleman, Please welcome the AAHHHH" I had just been stung in the face by a wasp. Right by my right eye. My partner finished our intro and I ran unstage trying to juggle as the side of my face swelled up. One half looked normal and the other looked like Elvis. My eyes where watering so I droped a little more than normal. Still finished the show.

There are just a few,
Sillily, Will
Some are born idiots.

Some are made idiots.

Some have idiocy thrust upon them.
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Profile of MagicRay
At my Magic Club's Close-Up Competition last year I was doing Cody Fisher's 52 Thoughts. There wasn't exactly a large audience there so the choice of volunteer was not huge. I asked a lady called Mary to help me and I told her I would mentally send an image of an animal to her. I asked her what animal she was thinking of and all she kept saying was 'I'm not getting anthing'. So I said please just think of an animal. She couldn't name a single animal for what seemed like an eternity. Eventually she said a dog.

I then had to ask her to think of a playing card and she couldn't name any at all. All this time the clock was ticking away on the 7 minute time limit !!!

I was so short of time for my final effect - Simon Aronson's Red Sea Passover that I had to rush and completely fluffed the Braue Reversal.

At that point I admitted defeat !!!

Ray Smile
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Profile of Fon
Hey Magic Ray,

Why didn't you take credit for confusing the womans mind??? Smile

Always thinking..........?
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Profile of MagicRay
Thanks Fon,

I wish I had thought of that on the night !!

"Just try to remember how unconfused you were before seeing this act !!!"

Ray Smile
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Profile of Steve
This was about 4 years ago.

I had agreed with a local school to help out and dress up as Black Peter for a Saint Nicolas fest they were having.
We were met by about 500 wild kids that came to get Saint Nicolas and escort him to their scool, along with a couple of people dressed up as Black Peter, I was one of them.

Now on the way to the school, I start doing some acrobatic stuff, wildly jumping up and down witht the kids.

All of a sudden, when I land from one of the jumps I feel something snap in my legs as I come down.
Pain, agony. Smile
500 kids look at me ... I don't want to give away the story to these kids, so I limp all the way to the school, putting on a brave face, smiling, sheerfull. 500 kids go wild, screeming, pulling my arms, shouting do this and do that, but all I can think about is : I want to lay down, this hurts.

We arrive at the school and I ask one of the teachers for a chair so I can sit next to the throne they had prepered for Saint Nicolas.
The show continued for 4 long agonizing hours.
After the show I was taken to hospital and had my leg in a cast for over a month.

The kids never knew ...

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Profile of AllThumbs
14 or 15 years ago I was doing a show in front of my whole school. Everything went well until it came to my finale:

Rope through neck.

Yeah you can imagine what happened. I tugged and the two ends and the rope constricted around my neck. My face went red from both embarrassment and the constriction as I gasped for breath struggling to free myself. I did eventually, reset, and succeeded the second time.

Even now when I run into some old school friends then mention the incident...

Kris Sheglova
The above is all rubbish, except that which you chose to believe
Reg Rozee
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My wife and I were performing for a kids Christmas party Smile and I was closing with a version of "the magic colouring book" I do. I pour smarties out of the book into a bowl my wife is holding when I vanish all the colours from the book. Well, these kids were already wired on candy, pop, and Christmas gifts, so when they saw my wife with that bowl of candy in her hands they swarmed her and literally started climbing her like a tree to get to the candy! Smile She actually looked pretty scared for a moment Smile and I was so shocked it took me a little too long to react. By the time we started peeling kids off her the candy was gone and she was pretty disheveled (and p.o.'ed!). She has never assisted me with a kids show again, and if I even mention it, she just glares and says "Remember those smarties..." Smile

Just as a side lesson to this, if you are performing for kids parties try to go on before they are completely insane with sugar highs Smile, by that point they are almost impossible to control!

-bigwolf {*}
Reality is what doesn't go away when you stop believing in it. -Phillip K. Dick

Who are you going to believe, me or your own eyes? -Chico Marx
Cheshire Cat
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Not really the worst moment but remember placing the chosen card back into "Dippy Duck's" little pack in his holder. "He's now going to find the card". (press lever). But Dippy Duck was a little too hungry this time and picked up the whole pack and dropped them FACE UP on the floor. Circa 1980 in front of a whole lot of 8 and 9 year olds!
Kent Messmer
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Profile of Kent Messmer
I know how to pick'um...

Doing my egg bag routine I have the child do several silly things then act like a chicken. I'm halfway through the trick and the child walks off the stage,(not a young one either) I couldn't get them back to help...

Then in front of about 900 people I was doing a chair suspension and couldn't get the girl to lay down. Finally she does but keeps setting up to try to see what I'm doing... I was afrade that she was going to fall off...

One time I had a girl come up to help me and jokingly said "stand right here, over the trap door" she freaked out! Screaming, kicking and crying. I don't know but I think someone has put this poor child in a celler or something. I almost wanted to call a social worker after the show to check it out.

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wrote the theme to the TV show COPS!
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Profile of Lyndel
Once I was performing the Abbotts Suckerette effect in which you place 2 or 3 doves into a box and then take the box apart and the doves are gone. But there is a suspicious lump under the table cloth. The audience believes the lump to be the doves. When the cloth is pulled away, there is a rabbit there instead.

My rabbit apparently had some very serious digestive problems and had pooped an unthinkable quantity on the table under the cloth. Of course I didn't know this until the audience did...

When I pulled the table cloth off the reveal the rabbit, it looked like I not only had produced a rabbit, but an entire box of coa-coa puff cereal which immediately began to roll off the table in all directions! The audience howled... I was so embarrased!

Another time, I unknowingly tripped on an unsealed milk pitcher just before going out on stage but did not realize why all of the props that my assistant was bringing out were either completly soaked or had tiny little white droplets all over them.

And yet another time, probably my worst performance of all... I was performing on a flat bed trailer used to transport heavy equipment like tractors and the such.

My wife and I were performing the sub trunk as a closer. Right at the critical moment of the exchange, the box rocked a tiny bit and the wife fell off the trunk backwards with her back hitting the edge of the trailer. That knocked the breath out of her.

She continued to flip over to the ground 6 feet below where her toe kicked the ground HARD! She wound up with a broken back and a broken toe. Smile

But even worse, knowing something had gone terribly wrong, I was faced with the decision to either expose the illusion in front of 400 people and help my wife or stay in the box until someone let me out.

I chose to remain in the trunk... One of the hardest things I've ever had to do in my life... On an up note though, I had plenty of time to get into the bag and into the handcuffs before someone finally let me out ten minutes later!

That my friends, I will never forget!

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Profile of RandyStewart
At the expense of others, I only wish you guys could of heard how terribly loud I laughed at some of these stories. Believe me I can identify - somehow funnier to those of us who've "been there done that" - even though it's never funny while in the moment.
Some of this stuff absolutely floored me. Very funny. Thanks for sharing.

Randy Stewart
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Profile of Terry
Hello all - my first post as I have be lurking recently. I am new to magic, I was interested as a kid, but now I am 44 and still a kid, and I am rekindling my interest.

There are some really great stories here!!
The most awfull event I have seen did not happen to me but I witness this...

A juggler in San Fransisco was tossing bowling pins around and doing a really great job with his patter and routine. It came time for him to toss a bowling pin to an audience member and have that person toss it back. While juggling he identifed a somewhat meek woman and her daughter and asked if she would help. She indicated that she would. He toss a bowling pin through the crowd with pinpoint accuracy, but the woman freaked and ducked. The pin sailed over her head and hit another woman who was standing behing her in the head.
He had to stop the show and run over and help her off the ground. I heard the CRACK of the pin on her head from the other side of the park.
I think he had some sharp words for the woman who ducked.

BTW - I'm just glad to be here...

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Profile of Maestro
He toss a bowling pin through the crowd with pinpoint accuracy, but the woman freaked and ducked. The pin sailed over her head and hit another woman who was standing behing her in the head.

Whoe!!! Smile How fast did he throw the pin and how far away was he from this woman. Sounds like a catastrophe!
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