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Dick Oslund
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Profile of Dick Oslund
About 30 + years ago, a couple of the card guys in Chicago planned to tease ED MARLO. They spread the word that there was a gorilla in the Lincoln Park Zoo that could do a good double lift. They thought that this might stimulate a good discussion when the card guys met on Saturday afternoon at the Greek restaurant near Magic Inc.

Eddie didn't even blink an eye! He asked the group: "Does he use a push off, or a strike?

I'm quite definitely NOT a cardician! I'll admit to having read Erdnase when I was 14, but I never got "infected"! I learned fanning, and fancy shuffles. I do enjoy watching a GOOD card man. I've had the privilege of meeting and knowing men like Alex Elmsley, Ricky Jay, Dai Vernon, Charlie Miller,Jon Racherbaumer,Chuck Schulien, et al. I just sit there and watch(ed) with awe, when they picked up a pack!

I do know this: It takes TIME and TALENT! + A LOT OF PERSISTENCE! You can't buy any of those things "over the counter"!
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Profile of acesover
Many times when you perform for friends and family it is not so much getting nervous. While that is definitely part of it. I feel that a bigger part is being self conscious. Not exactly the same thing. You begin to go completely out of character that they know you are. You are fighting two demons. The actual performing of the effect and trying to overcome your phony way of talking and acting. By that I mean. You start to use patter which is nothing like you really act or talk. You are coming across as being phony and you sense that and they feel it. You are acting weird to them and not being yourself. Already you are putting so much pressure on yourself. You know you can perform the effect as you already did it 100 times. That is not the problem. The problem is the circumstances involved here are unnatural and phony. You know it and so do they.

My suggestion would be to try and talk to them as you normally would and work your patter around being natural with them. You cannot come off like Richard Osterlind to them because they know that is not how you act or talk. Start with something simple like saying. I am going to show you something and I want you to tell me what you think. As opposed to. I was away on a trip and met this gypsy woman who gave me this deck of cards and said that you will know when to use them etc, etc...it sounds like to much BS because they know you did not meet this gypsy woman and you weren't anywhere in the last 6 months but home and seeing them every day.

However if performing for strangers you can use any kind of manner you want as they are strangers and do not know how you really act. I hope you understand what I am trying to say here. More than likely you are showing them an effect you just learned and do not really have an act prepared. You are showing them a trick...You do not show people tricks you perform effects and entertain them. So by asking them something as simple as, tell me what you think of this and begin your performance in a most natural way not imitating someone you watched do the effect but be yourself to family and friends. You now do not have to act as a complete other person. All you have to do now is perform the effect and concentrate on that alone. Which you know you can do as you already did it 100 times. It should remove much of your anxiety which is what messes up your performance.
If I were to agree with you. Then we would both be wrong. As of Apr 5, 2015 10:26 pm I have 880 posts. Used to have over 1,000
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Profile of bowers
I always felt more pressure from family or friend's
when I was doing a show than a crowd I didn't know at all.
I think you feel you have to prove that your a good magician.
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Profile of Poof-Daddy
I may have missed it if someone else already said it, but as for stage fright or general nervousness of getting caught. Always remember - "Don't Run If You're Not Being Chased" you will realize in time, exactly how much spectators miss because they don't even know the method exists and they have no idea what to look for. Practice till you get it, then try it out. If you get caught or make a mistake - Learn from it. It happens to all of us from time to time but until you perform for several audiences, you cant really learn audience management. Keep it up, it will get better with time and real world practice.
Cancer Sux - It is time to find a Cure

Don't spend so much time trying not to die that you forget how to live - H's wife to H on CSI Miami (paraphrased).

Smile Smile
Dick Oslund
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Profile of Dick Oslund
Poof! 1350!!! (I didn;t know that card guys could count that high!!! (HEE HEE)

Youse have quoted the late & Honorable AL BAKER! ("...Don't run if you arent beibg chased!"). If you look back far enough, you'll find him on the cover of "SPHINX". (early '40s)

He was well known for his "Letters to Harold" (a mythical young magician to whom, Al would offer advice). Al had a very dry wit! I remember his suggestion to Harold, who was having a problem with the classic force. Al wrote: "So, you're having a problem with the "CF". You say that when you offer the fanned deck, the person takes the card just above
"the" card. Well, move "the" card up one before you offer the deck!"

Me!? I use Hurling Bull's "invention". (as recommended by EDDIE FIELDS (of INVISIBLE DECK FAME) a "SEVENGALI".

Yr's 'til the deck is shuffled!
Dick Oslund
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Profile of Dick Oslund
Before someone jumps on the typo above.....Al never said "beibg"!
SEVENGALI is not a typo. That's what Eddie called Hurling's deck. ==I 'usta" pitch them there decks!
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Profile of Quentin
There is a difference between practice and rehearsal.

Practice is learning the moves and the handling. Then you need to put words to your presentation. It is a bit like learning the piano. You practice with the left hand and you practice the notes with the right hand, then you try both hands together. Then nothing seems to work, but keep at it and the hands will learn to work together and you will have a melody. With magic you practice the handling, then the words - your patter, until they flow together.

Then comes rehearsal when you run through the whole presentation as though the audience was present. This helps you work out the misdirection and blocking. Blocking could be where you stand in relation to the audience so they don't see anything they shouldn't, or where you place something for later use so it doesn't intrude on what is happening now. During rehearsal, you imagine what might go wrong and deal with it as though it were really happening.

The best advice is to start with self-working tricks and when you feel relaxed and the audience is enjoying you, do a few moves like DL's or a palm or a classic force that have absolutely nothing to do with the trick. That will help with your misdirection and timing, so when you really do need to use those moves under fire, you already have some experience with them.
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Profile of Madloxxx
At the moment, I have the same problems as you have. I practised a slight 100 times and it worked without a problem but then showing the whole routine a audience and it fails becaus my hands were shaking and I was very nervous.

Now I developed another method for me to learn sleights. I practise not only the slight at itself, I do the whole routine. Then I often change what I'm practise. For me its good to learn 2 - 3 sleights / tricks at practing session. I repeat all 2 or 3 for like a half to an hour. I noticed, that it isn't good for me to practise more than 1 hour without a break. I prefer to practise more than once a day.

The problem with beeing nervous at performing has a simple solution for me: More performing with strangers (not family / girlfriend / boyfriend). It's the only way for me to learn to handle my fear from failing.

Hope that helped.


Logan Five
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Profile of Logan Five
Practice in public. I work with my cards and other things at my local Starbucks. Practicing there provides lots of noise, people talking with one another, it's almost like working a gig.

All the best,

Self concept is destiny..
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