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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Drinking before a show (38 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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phillsmiff
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My personal thinking is that if there is any facet of your life that *requires* you to be under the influence to function then the advice you need is probably outside the scope of a magic forum.

Phill
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IAIN
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I'll drink to that...
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DynaMix
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Sorry not trying to compare the two just pointing out that having a buzz can spark ideas in the moment that wouldn't come otherwise.

I guess this will teach me not to open up on these forums again!
Tim Cavendish
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Quote:
On Sep 19, 2014, phillsmiff wrote:
My personal thinking is that if there is any facet of your life that *requires* you to be under the influence to function then the advice you need is probably outside the scope of a magic forum.

Phill

Yes.

This.

Hopefully you opened up here partly because you knew it might be useful to hear someone say this.
Martin Pulman
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Good God, what a question!!!

Under no circumstances, before during or after a gig must a professional performing mentalist ever, ever, EVER drink anything but neat vodka.

It's the only thing you can't smell on the breath.
NeilMcCauley
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I think only two things matter:

- Will the audience notice (and will it change their perception of you?)
- Will it blunt your pacing, timing, dexterity and so on?

If you can't guarantee that the answer to both questions is no, don't drink. If you're experienced and self-controlled enough to just have a couple of bottles of beer, then go for it. Having said that, it's probably better not to develop a reliance on alcohol as a substitute for real courage, relaxedness, and so on.
sandsjr
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Quote:
On Sep 19, 2014, phillsmiff wrote:
My personal thinking is that if there is any facet of your life that *requires* you to be under the influence to function then the advice you need is probably outside the scope of a magic forum.


I wouldn't go that far. I would say almost everyone is nervous when they are new to performing. It takes time to feel completely comfortable. That doesn't mean you have serious issues, it means you're normal.

It's understandable how someone might think having a drink would be the answer. However, it's not a smart idea IMO... particularly if you take the business seriously.

My advice would be if you feel you'd like to have a drink before your show to calm your nerves, DON'T DO IT! Don't get into the habit. The fear will diminish the more you perform. The best way I can tell you to combat the fear is to be so prepared you could do your show drunk. Smile
Pakar Ilusi
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Don't drink before your show.

Trust me on this. Smile
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Chaz93
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You wouldn't drink before going to the office would you? I do not drink before the sow, during the show, or anywhere in the presence of my client or their guests. No one wants to see someone slurring their lines and smelling like a dive bar on stage. If I hired entertainment and they were drinking before the show or during you can bet I would not be re-hiring them.
John C
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Ricky Gervais
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That guy that drinks guiness and tells stories

It's part of their act. They can do anything they want. Robin Williams drank a lot of water. Does that count?
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John C
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Quote:
On Sep 19, 2014, Martin Pulman wrote:
Good God, what a question!!!

Under no circumstances, before during or after a gig must a professional performing mentalist ever, ever, EVER drink anything but neat vodka.

It's the only thing you can't smell on the breath.


Absolutely!
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Chaz93
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On Sep 19, 2014, John C wrote:
Ricky Gervais
Ron White
That guy that drinks guiness and tells stories

It's part of their act. They can do anything they want. Robin Williams drank a lot of water. Does that count?


None of these people are mentalists. Different context, different performances, different rules.

I try to avoid even smoking before a gig, as I don't want to smell like an ashtray. I can't understand how anyone would think it is appropriate to say hello to a client or volunteer on stage with liquor on the breath. Wait till you get back to the hotel bar, and then celebrate.

I never drink before, or during a show, and even after will only have one glass of wine if the host insists while networking. I also never eat with my clients/audience if there is food. I am there as the entertainment, and I am there to work, not to drink, eat, and socialize.
Doc_Z
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I think there's clearly a difference with corporate gigs, and I think we all agree that it's inappropriate to drink before a corporate performance.

But, for the sake of argument, I'm curious people feel just as strongly about a performance in a theater-type setting, or strolling, or other less formal environments. Are there a different set of rules?

Personally I would say it is fine, so long as: #1) it doesn't negatively affect your performance in the slightest, and #2)that whoever booked/paid you doesn't mind. If either of those don't hold up, it's probably best to cap your 40 until after.
robwar0100
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I don't drink alcohol, so my answer is no before, no during and no after.

I am a journalist and listened to a psychologist talk for more than an hour last night about addiction. If you knew the short-term, intermediate-term and long-term damage done to the brain when people abuse alcohol and drugs, then you might consider staying away from them all together to avoid what might become a slippery slope.

I was watching Mark Elsdon's Penguin Live lecture yesterday, and I loved it. However, he was drinking lager throughout the whole thing, which turned me off.

Bobby
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Chaz93
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Quote:
On Sep 19, 2014, Doc_Z wrote:
I think there's clearly a difference with corporate gigs, and I think we all agree that it's inappropriate to drink before a corporate performance.

But, for the sake of argument, I'm curious people feel just as strongly about a performance in a theater-type setting, or strolling, or other less formal environments. Are there a different set of rules?

Personally I would say it is fine, so long as: #1) it doesn't negatively affect your performance in the slightest, and #2)that whoever booked/paid you doesn't mind. If either of those don't hold up, it's probably best to cap your 40 until after.



To me, Venue doesn't matter. You don't drink on the job. Save the celebrations for afterwards. There are exceptions, such as having a glass of champagne at a new years show or a glass of wine during a toast, but for the most part I feel that it is in bad taste to show up to a job intoxicated. That's a quick way to hurt your reputation and image in my mind.
MaxfieldsMagic
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Quote:
On Sep 19, 2014, John C wrote:

Robin Williams drank a lot of water. Does that count?


Robin Williams was sometimes blasted on coke while doing Mork and Mindy - or at least, that's what he told Nikki Sixx during a USO tour.
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Head Case
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There are a lot of mixed answers and thoughts about this topic.

To the OP. It simply just comes down to the person in question. Nobody can answer this for you. However, there are some general things to keep in mind when deciding if you should drink before, during, or even after a show.

* You wouldn't drink before going into an office job. Well. On that same note, you wouldn't stand up and crack jokes and light flash paper on fire at an office job either. Because an office job is nothing like the job we do. So you cannot compare.

* How do YOU respond to alcohol? Are you the type of person that can drink a 5th of liquor and still pass a sobriety test? Or are you the type of person that has 1 Smirnoff ice and it makes you act like a completely sloshed high-school girl at her first party and blames losing her virginity on the fact that she was drunk.
This all comes down to YOU. If you can honestly say that you would be able to have a drink or 2, and still be able to conduct yourself in a mature professional manner and the affects of the alcohol will not hinder the quality of your performance, then I don't see why you couldn't give it a try.

* What type of person do you want to be perceived as? On stage and off stage. Nobody can comment on this but you. You know your surroundings, the theme of your show, your character and your clients. Either way. There is a fine line that shouldn't be crossed that falls somewhere between "He is a fun and approachable guy that knows how to have a good time responsibly....and.... He is an unprofessional, immature, borderline alcoholic that should never be allowed touch alcohol.
As long as having a drink fits your personality, and you don't believe it will give off the wrong impression to the other people around you. Then by all means, give it a shot. Like for me, I use to pull off the funny, lushy, flirt guy that love to party and joke and laugh with everyone while I'm hitting on a married guys wife, I would steal drinks and chug them in the middle of the show, and I had a running gag of me taking a drink and calling it my "magic potion". And that worked for me. I would always replace the peoples drinks I stole after the show, and that would also give me an excuse to sit at the bar and start up a conversation with people, And more times then not I was successful in exchanging business cards and pulling more work from the exact people I was (As other people on here would say) "rude" to. But I knew how to pull that off and it worked. Until I got a bit older, and now I switched up to a more conservative character. - The only reason I said all that was to show that it CAN work if you do it right. No matter how much people on here will tell you that it is wrong, and rude, and people will hate you for it. Well, I beg to differ. Nobody can tell you what will work for you. YOU have to figure that out for yourself.

* SELF CONTROL - Its simple, if you are able to stop drinking when it is needed, You have a clear understanding of YOUR limits, and you never fall into the frame of mind of NEEDING to drink before a show otherwise you cant do it. - As long as you have all those bases covered, Then I don't see why not. Go ahead and give it a try.

It all comes down to treating it like you would anything else, start off light. test it out, see how yourself and the people around you respond to it, and then adjust accordingly. If t doesn't work, then stop doing it and move on.

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saysold1
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I never drink before a show, not do I drink after it - even if offered. I like a few glasses of wine or a beer as much as anyone but personally I not only feel it would be unprofessional but it would take me out of character. That's just me.

I also never ever eat the food at a party. Ever.

I tend to think along the lines of Richard O or Ken Weber from his book - we are kind of "supermen" (or women) and you would never catch Superman drinking booze or eating the food.
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MatCult
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Slim King
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It was a Christmas party for Universal Creative in Orlando. It was swank, and they had hired Jake Blues and his Nun assistant back from Purgatory to entertain the best creators in the world (Not counting the Disney dudes of course, disputable at least) The evening was winding down and eventually Jake end up in the cocktail line ... And there he was.. The President of Universal Creative getting last call with the Paranormalist from Purgatory ... Jake Blues.... As we sipped on our adult beverages he said ....wait for it ......."Show me something!"
Of course I had that one ZINGER still waiting to be ZUNG... and I performed one of the greatest routines of my life ... Drink in hand..... I wouldn't trade that moment for anything! Smile
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