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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Jazzercize (9 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

David Thiel
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Inner circle
Western Canada...where all that oil is
3813 Posts

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It starts with Osterlind suggesting that when he performs he completely buys into the idea that he's really reading minds. He works to forget about method completely -- and concentrates instead on trying to re-discover the information he just just learned through method.

Then...a chance comment from my pal Eric Samuels about performing Mental Ep*c...and how he will work to REALLY glean information from the person's mind before he hears it...that he actually writes his thought down in the panel in question...even though he's the only one who knows this is what he's done. He's not standing there as a performer...but as a mind reader...actively engaged in trying to read a thought.

(Fascinating proposition, huh?)

Add a dash of the guys who prefer to do it as close to "real" as they can possibly get: guys like Jerome, Neal and Pete.

I have been thinking about all of this over the past several months, because the ideas being presented (and performed) go WAY beyond that old chestnut of "A magician (mentalist) being an actor in the role of a magician (mentalist)." They start easing into the delicious territory of ACTUALLY being a mentalist. Actually seeing every single thing in your show as a MENTALIST.

Since so many of us come from the performance/objective oriented worldview of magic, REALLY entering into this thinking is pretty radical. Mentalism is all about performance and character and presentation. There are no flash bang pyrotechnics or flashy dragon props. Usually...it's just a guy on stage with index cards and a Sharpie trying to read someone's mind.

So I've been re-vamping myself on the inside as I go into shows. What does that mean? As I perform I really DO work to forget the information I've learned and letting it percolate to the top of my consciousness as if I were actually reading a mind. The audience sees me working for it. That was step 1. It had a tremendous impact on the core of my shows from the inside out.

Step 2 has been an even greater adventure. I've been taking a lot of chances. As a magician, the very notion of failing would make my knees sweat. I worked tirelessly to ensure there were NO MISTAKES EVER. Now? I go with flashes of insight or hunches. I'll start REALLY looking at the person I'm working with for the kind of cues that will allow me to reach some reasonable conclusions about who they are. I mean that I concentrate on them completely when they are with me on-stage. I listen to them with my eyes, my spirit and my heart. Does that make sense?

While it would be very cool to say that most of the conclusions I reach are correct, it wouldn't be true. I'm right some of the time...but often I need to backtrack or re-phrase a thought. I need to be very careful about how I word my observations...I have to be willing to be wrong...and I need to be acutely aware of the tiniest tells from the person I'm working with, minute physical cues.

The really cool thing is that I STILL have one or two 'for sure' hits in my back pocket from the CT or imp (or...whatever method) so that even when I miss, I still achieve the ultimate goal.

Q and A presentations have been revolutionized. Many of the things the clients hear are doubly effective because it's stuff they never wrote down and on some occasions, thought only to themselves. A CT, a pendulum routine or a First Kiss memory goes way beyond an unveiling of information and becomes a vastly more powerful experience for the volunteer, the audience and myself. I love the way all of this is headed.

Many of the things I read by Voodini...TPR...The Canvas...Scryer...McCleod and Cassidy -- things that ride a more ragged edge than the cut and dried performance/method/revelation process are now making perfect sense as they come into play. This is stuff I read and found interesting from an informational standpoint...but never really saw myself using because it was more along the PSYCHIC school of performance and didn't really apply to me at all. It turns out it DOES apply. Who knew? Smile These folks have a lot to teach.

Making it more real all the time is a wonderful challenge. Stepping outside your comfort zone is a splendid exercise. You nearly always wind up somewhere more interesting. Of course you have to be willing to get your head shot off once in a while...but it's all part of the process, right?

What would happen in YOUR show...how would it change...how would YOU change...if you were a REAL mind reader?

David
Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Except bears. Bears will kill you.


www.MindGemsBrainTrust.com
www.magicpendulums.com
www.MidnightMagicAndMentalism.com
Gerry Hennessey
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Kudos to you David !You write some extremely interesting & thoughtful posts.

Please continue to do so.

Many thanks

Gerry
"Every discipline effects every other discipline. You can't straighten out the corporation if your closet is a mess" Jim Rohn

GerryHennessey.com
psychomind
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Quote:
On Apr 10, 2014, Gerry Hennessey wrote:
Kudos to you David !You write some extremely interesting & thoughtful posts.

Please continue to do so.

Many thanks

Gerry


Ya, I like his reviews and posts as well. Loved his review on Artful mentalism 2 and others, hope he continues.
IAIN
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Eternal Order
england
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Past two years or so I have changed quite a lot, a bit as a human being, and quite a bit as how I see what and why I do what I do...

i have decided that everything is permissible, if its truly "me"...and I think I am now finally confident enough within myself and what I do, to truly not care what others think... don't get me wrong, I care about what my friends feedback to me about certain things - but ultimately its ME that lives with it, and does it...so I have to be as happy as possible to do something...

soooooooooooo, I absolutely no longer care about the label of magician, mentalist, reader, whatever...they don't actually matter to me...and all I want people to believe in, are the things I share with them...and by believe I mean be interested in it, invest their time, and we share a good, healthy experience together...if I employ a magic or mentalism technique to do that, (or something else entirely) - then fine, but I do not define it, nor see it as magic or mentalism...

if you want to see "me" - great, but if you want to give me a list of what you want ("gimme something like dynamo!") - then I will absolutely tell you that I am not him, and you should hire him instead...if you want ME though, this is what I provide, and its a, b, z, q, 123....

playing cards, hand made bluebirds on a blue ribbon (seriously!), imaginary art galleries, melting watches, wishes written upon coins that bend by a group think/wish making process, drawings, smells, rose petals, all kinds of things...and obviously TPR too..

i've even started to apply some Robert E. Neale thinking to what I do, and soon will have some new things to share with people...

with that said,i completely realise that as a non-full timer, I can indulge myself and others to a degree, I can afford to turn down offers of gigs, I can come and go as I please...i do not have those pressures nor pleasures...

however, what I do have - is the love of it, the romance of it, and the joy of performing when I do, and how I do...i enjoy being me, and I completely enjoy meeting and sharing all kinds of things with others...we experience all kinds of emotions, all kinds of highs, and even share a couple of lows together too...its real in that sense...

anything and everything is permissible, if its true and feel authentic to you...and even more so, it should represent an aspect of yourself as well...

that's how I see it, anyways...
Jeff Wassom
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David I adore your posts!

Made me think of imaginging what it's like to be in another persons skin and STARTING the from there. This of course means I need to up my rehersal time to get to the point where I don't have to think about the mechanics, method, presentation, etc. Those things need to be alive and breathing inside me.

Iain I like the ideas of no labels as well. My thought is the more one approaches what could be held up as art, the less they care about such things. I also think labeling is the opposite of whatever mysterious force produces creative openings.
cirrus
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his minions made
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David, can you pm me? I would like to discuss something over pm.
mindhunter
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Upstate NY
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Awesome post (again)

I'm a fan of "#### ##, let's do it live....."

Bryn
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Thanks,
Bryn
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saysold1
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Thanks David - I certainly have much to learn. I agree that taking those chances on stage and even in more intimate settings is worth it and makes the whole experience far more real.

It goes beyond cold reading into the realm of taking risks with even bigger rewards of amazing both the spectator and yourself with insights that make a performance like a good glass of red wine: more complexity, greater depth and those little subtleties that are more delicious as you said.

I'm nowhere near there but on occasion I hit these notes when I take some risks and it pays off more than you think.
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Scott Soloff
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Philadelphia, PA
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David,

Welcome to the dark side...

I haven't been around here that long but I have always enjoyed your posts.

After a while, one begins to feel as if they know someone here. Everyone has their own personalities, opinions and perspectives regarding mentalism. In some instances, even though many of us never have the opportunity or privilege to meet in person, one naturally gravitates to certain people and perhaps even regard them as friends.

What impresses me most about this recent post is (and please correct me if I'm mistaken) that you are the guy who gives a great deal of thought to what he does. And, even more revealing is that you double and triple check everything.

This suggests, just like everyone else in creation, that you have a certain 'comfort' zone.

What I'm hearing from your post is that you that you didn't merely step outside your 'box'; you leapt!

Congratulations... I believe that adding this dimension to your performance increases its depth; is more rewarding for the performer and much more memorable for the audience.

Please continue sharing, I always look forward to your thoughtfulness and what you have to say.

(How many run on sentences can be put in one post?)

As always, best wishes,


Scott
'Curiouser and curiouser."
Scott Soloff
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Philadelphia, PA
960 Posts

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Quote:
On Apr 11, 2014, IAIN wrote:

soooooooooooo, I absolutely no longer care about the label of magician, mentalist, reader, whatever...they don't actually matter to me...and all I want people to believe in, are the things I share with them...and by believe I mean be interested in it, invest their time, and we share a good, healthy experience together...if I employ a magic or mentalism technique to do that, (or something else entirely) - then fine, but I do not define it, nor see it as magic or mentalism...

anything and everything is permissible, if its true and feel authentic to you...and even more so, it should represent an aspect of yourself as well...

that's how I see it, anyways...


Iain,

I love where you're coming from...

Very best,

Scott
'Curiouser and curiouser."
David Thiel
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Inner circle
Western Canada...where all that oil is
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I made this post and got busy over the weekend. I just got home and popped in to have a look.

Thank you all for the kind words. I appreciate them. Hopefully we can discuss this over a tasty beverage in Jack's one fall afternoon at MindVention. Smile

But what I was trying to communicate was that the very instant I changed my perception of what I was about as a performer, the show changed. I know it's not rocket science...and that, since I'm the one doing the show, my perceptions of what I'm about is destined to have a profound impact on what happens on the stage.

However, what is even more difficult to express is the complete shift in energy radiating from the stage as a direct result of those profound internal changes. What is that old saying? "To be confident, act confident." Can it be that simple? Gee. "To be a mentalist, act like a mentalist." Or maybe more to the point: "To be a mentalist....well...be a mentalist."

Heavy, huh?

David
Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Except bears. Bears will kill you.


www.MindGemsBrainTrust.com
www.magicpendulums.com
www.MidnightMagicAndMentalism.com
Jeff Wassom
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David I think a lot of people talk the talk, but haven't put in the work to have honest insights like this that bring up everyone around them.

Simple, but layered in a way my experience level doesn't yet support, giving both direction and inspiration. Cheers.
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