The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The words we use » » Scripting (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
Neale Bacon
View Profile
Inner circle
Burnaby BC Canada
1775 Posts

Profile of Neale Bacon
At the recent Eugene Burger lecture/workshop, he spoke a lot about scripting your routines.

He was saying that we should actually write a script for each routine.

I have started doing that for my routines.

My question is how many others are already doing that?
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
JimMaloney
View Profile
Inner circle
1184 Posts

Profile of JimMaloney
I think it's surprising how many people DON'T script out their routines. I think it'd be interesting to see the folks on Broadway say "Eh...I don't need a script...I'll just wing it." Good luck, there.

So, yes, I script out everything.

-Jim
Books and Magazines for sale -- more than 200 items (Last updated January 17th, 2014. Link goes to public Google Doc.)
Larry Barnowsky
View Profile
Inner circle
Cooperstown, NY where bats are made from
4863 Posts

Profile of Larry Barnowsky
Scripting is essential. Unless you can ad lib like Robin Williams, winging it can be very risky. In many of my routines, there is an exact written script. In others, there is more of a synopsis of a script. Several of my routines are done in verse (cups and balls, linking rings, perpetual coin routine). This can be easier to memorize, and gives the magic a nice pacing. That is something which, in my experience, audiences really respond to. An outline of a script would suffice. You need to write down the gist or idea than you want to communicate to the audience at each important moment of the routine.
JimMaloney
View Profile
Inner circle
1184 Posts

Profile of JimMaloney
Quote:
On 2004-02-19 14:29, Larry Barnowsky wrote:
Unless you can ad lib like Robin Williams, winging it can be very risky.


Even Robin Williams doesn't ad lib like Robin Williams. You'd be surprised how much of his act is scripted (pretty much all of it). He just has the incredible talent of making it all seem like it's impromptu.

-Jim
Books and Magazines for sale -- more than 200 items (Last updated January 17th, 2014. Link goes to public Google Doc.)
Rob Johnston
View Profile
Inner circle
Utah
2060 Posts

Profile of Rob Johnston
Quote:
respond to. An outline of a script would suffice. You need to write down the gist or idea than you want to communicate to the audience at each important moment of the routine.


I agree with the outline idea. Keep in mind that just because you have a script doesn't mean you need to recite it word for word. People are different, we need to play to our audiences, and if that calls for improvisation, then so be it.
"Genius is another word for magic, and the whole point of magic is that it is inexplicable." - Margot Fonteyn
Payne
View Profile
Inner circle
Seattle
4572 Posts

Profile of Payne
Scripting is vital. You need to know what your going to say and when and how you are going to say it.
As Mr. Burger pointed out in his lecture, there can be no timing unless you know what you're going to say.
Another plus to scripting is the level of confidence you present to the audience when you perform is increased. You no longer hem and haw or fill your presentation with endless "and. . ums". The opportunity for audience members to interrupt you when you are performing is greatly reduced as there are no pregnant pauses caused awkward lapses in ones presentation for them to exploit.
You need not stick one-hundred percent to ones script but one shouldn't deviate too far from it as well.
I may not write down my patter for every trick in a script form on paper but it exists in my head in that fashion.
I do however have some extremely complicated patter that had to be completely worked out as a script as well.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
DwightPA
View Profile
Regular user
Dwight Powell
113 Posts

Profile of DwightPA
I think you'd find that all true professionals script their work. Even if you are not performing as a profession, you are performing to entertain and owe it to the audience to do it professionally.

Dwight
filem
View Profile
New user
47 Posts

Profile of filem
Quote:
On 2004-02-19 11:18, Neale Bacon wrote:
At the recent Eugene Burger lecture/workshop, he spoke a lot about scripting your routines.

He was saying that we should actually write a script for each routine.

I have started doing that for my routines.

My question is how many others are already doing that?

Yes, if you want the most effective presentation then you'd most likely have to. I do. The good thing is that once it's done you can deviate from it, because you have a structure to go back to.
wsduncan
View Profile
Inner circle
Seattle, WA
3618 Posts

Profile of wsduncan
I find it interesting that those who spend the least amount of time on what they say during their magic are doing the kind of magic that would benefit most from a script. Not because sleight of hand magic needs a story more than box tricks do but because if you don’t have a solid and well rehearsed script and you’re doing a half dozen secret moves then you are sure to stop talking while you do the move and signal the audience EXACTLY when you are doing something tricky.
DanielGreenWolf
View Profile
Veteran user
Waterbury, CT
363 Posts

Profile of DanielGreenWolf
Quote:
On 2004-02-19 11:18, Neale Bacon wrote:
At the recent Eugene Burger lecture/workshop, he spoke a lot about scripting your routines.

He was saying that we should actually write a script for each routine.

I have started doing that for my routines.

My question is how many others are already doing that?


I am, specifically because of Eugene Burger's influence on me several years ago.
I think the best part of a well rehearsed and well planned script is that, through a script, you can make your words and actions seem totally impromptu but clearer, funnier and more meaningful than anyone really being
too spontaneous. Nothing is wrong with seizing a moment, but look at how Robin Williams performs. 99% of his stuff is scripted to the letter but he makes it seem like he's just doing it. That's the beauty of a script which is why I've written mine.

-Daniel GreenWolf
-Much love,
Daniel GreenWolf
Celtic Magician

www.GreenWolfMagic.com
JamesinLA
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3400 Posts

Profile of JamesinLA
I work from a script. I also tape record most of my performaces. I then listen to them to see how close I came to the script, what I left out, what I forgot, and also for what I "rewrote" during performance. Often times, those spontaneous "rewrites" get put into the script.

Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
A C Spectre
View Profile
New user
Connecticut
75 Posts

Profile of A C Spectre
Quote:
On 2004-02-19 14:45, JimMaloney wrote:
Even Robin Williams doesn't ad lib like Robin Williams. You'd be surprised how much of his act is scripted (pretty much all of it). He just has the incredible talent of making it all seem like it's impromptu.

-Jim


I think that is it in a nutshell. Scripting is essential, but in my opinion a routine isn't complete until you've rehearsed it enough so that you can make it look like your flying by the seat of your pants. Once you've attained that type of comfort level with a routine I find it a lot easier to adlib with it as things pop up.
Bill Hegbli
View Profile
Eternal Order
Fort Wayne, Indiana
22774 Posts

Profile of Bill Hegbli
In other word, memorize your lines/patter. Know the trick inside and out. Then while performing you can put all your attention on your audience.

Them stage fright sets in, and you are now becoming a professional.

Scripting also helps if you change your material and you want to go back to it later. Refresh your memory and your on your way.

I never really knew all the effects of Seabrooke Bill in Wallet until I scripted it out. Then it all fell into place.

If you cannot fully script a trick, then you have something to work on because it is not complete. If you can write it down completely, it may be complete. Now many will say you will always be improving. Yes, I agree. A good routine is always changing.
comedyillusions
View Profile
New user
Canada
3 Posts

Profile of comedyillusions
Quote:

Even Robin Williams doesn't ad lib like Robin Williams. You'd be surprised how much of his act is scripted (pretty much all of it). He just has the incredible talent of making it all seem like it's impromptu.

-Jim


Oh, it's all scripted all right, but by who? Now I never like to say anything bad about anyone BUT I have friends in the comedy business who wouldn't go on at open mike nights if Williams was in the audience. Nuff said.
Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.
Big Daddy Cool
View Profile
Inner circle
The Houdini Room at The Casa de Cool
1596 Posts

Profile of Big Daddy Cool
I script everything. And I mean EVERYTHING, down to every gesture, head bob, and the like. I even script the places where an audience member is supposed to respond...

Funny story about the script... I was searching for a director for my last show Swingin' At The Roxy. She wanted to read the script, which includes a lot of magic, including descriptions of the methods. From just reading the script she was amazed by some of my magic and even asked how I did that. Well the method was right there on paper, but she still missed it, and was still amazed. BEFORE she ever saw any of it performed! That's the power of a script!

Another incident... We recently filmed a new promo video, but on one of the key routines we had audio problems. Guess what? I went back to a performance from two years earlier and dubbed the audio into the new video. Know what? It synced 100%. I didn't have to tweak a thing. The power of a script.

And even more recently, I was the subject of a PBS documentary called Magical Time Trevelers. The filmmakers created a seamless performance of my sponge ball routine using footage from five different locations! It is super cool, because they were able to cut the footage the same way in each spot, and never miss a beat! It was amazing! The power of a script.
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
John Pyka
www.johnpyka.com
JimMaloney
View Profile
Inner circle
1184 Posts

Profile of JimMaloney
Quote:
On 2004-05-23 22:32, comedyillusions wrote:
Oh, it's all scripted all right, but by who? Now I never like to say anything bad about anyone BUT I have friends in the comedy business who wouldn't go on at open mike nights if Williams was in the audience. Nuff said.


Never like to say anything bad, huh? Oh well...

1. I don't know how that's relevant to the conversation.

2. I've talked to some people who have actually written for him, including one well-known magician.

3. I've never heard that accusation before, but even if it is true, that still doesn't have any relevance to the fact that his routines, which appear totally impromptu and stream of consciousness are totally scripted.

If you want to have another conversation about theft of material, start a new topic. It has no relevance to this one.

-Jim
Books and Magazines for sale -- more than 200 items (Last updated January 17th, 2014. Link goes to public Google Doc.)
JohnDoh
View Profile
New user
85 Posts

Profile of JohnDoh
Wasn't it Milton Berle who quipped, "I laughed so hard I nearly dropped my pencil"? Eh, back on topic...

Who here scripts their "improvisations"? I once saw an aspiring performer make a list of tried-and-true digressions that he could add to his routine at any time, if he saw fit. I've never actually tried writing these out, but it seems like it would work pretty well.

Some plays use this same method. For example, I recently read a script with optional segments geared towards crowds with latecomers, non-responsive crowds, etc. Who else writes out optional material? Is it worth it?
Big Daddy Cool
View Profile
Inner circle
The Houdini Room at The Casa de Cool
1596 Posts

Profile of Big Daddy Cool
I do write Improvs, and yes it is worth it.
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
John Pyka
www.johnpyka.com
owen.daniel
View Profile
Inner circle
England
1048 Posts

Profile of owen.daniel
I do several draughts of a script.

first draught: This is what I would like to say in my routine. Because a lot of my magic is impromptue I often do not stick to this. But it is a basis.

Second: I write down a less detailed script. With the essentials, but in a style which is not as scripted.

Third: I now write out a set of bullet points, these include maybe the points when misdirection is needed, the basic plot, and any gags which I don't want to miss.

Of course when I perform I often add in new gags, which just work at the time, and therefore I add these at a later date, so that the routine can be updated. For this reason I make all of my scripts on the computer.
Over the last year there has been the occasional good essay about scripting in Genii Magazine. I have not got the references on me, I will post the dates of the issues over the weekend.
owen
JimMaloney
View Profile
Inner circle
1184 Posts

Profile of JimMaloney
Out of curiosity, why do you reduce to bullet points?

-Jim
Books and Magazines for sale -- more than 200 items (Last updated January 17th, 2014. Link goes to public Google Doc.)
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The words we use » » Scripting (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.15 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL