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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Time after time » » Monthly/weekly Magic/Mentalism challenge (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

neoinwonderland
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Hey everybody,

Let me start of by saying that this thread is for both the magician and the mentalist.

When I just started out in magic I performed for everybody and everywhere (often with a friend who loved to watch me perform and help me improve). I used to perform for random people on the street, waiting in line, in vacation parks, on my school and in cafés. Now I am in the lat year(s) of my university and I practically never am at school anymore (lots of homework, working on papers and so on) and my favorite go-to café shut down. That friend of mine and I we both got a girlfriend so we rarely hang out anymore.

Now that I am more serious about magic I always wait for the right moment, the right spectator, for a good opportunity to hand out my business card and so on. I notice it is good for my professionalism but I also notice that it sometimes becomes more serious than fun (don't get me wrong I always have fun when performing magic but the atmosphere differs greatly from those spur of the moment times). Because I have less time these days I tend to look for opportunities to make every performance special for potential bookings and sometimes forget about the fun of not worrying at all.

That is why my idea was to start a threat where we give each other fun to do monthly/weekly challenges (depending on the free time the magician or mentalist has). The idea was to split them up in two types of challenges:

-challenges that are just fun to do and motivate you to perform (for example get at least one free drink this week by performing magic, startle a spectator, make them laugh at a bad joke that nobody would laugh at, say a specific phrase or word that doesn't fit in your script without them noticing it)

-Challenges that will improve your magic/mentalism (for example hand out at least 5 business cards in an original way, give at least 5 compliments to spectators, make a genuine mistake (yes on purpose) and come up with an original clever comment to get away with it and tell us how it went, perform a magic trick by surprise (making sure that they didn't realize you were going to perform magic until they see the magic moment), use magic as a lead in to start a conversation about someone else his/her personal interests and after that genuinely have a conversation with that person)

The idea is to have one person post that they want a challenge, for example:
"I would like a challenge to improve my magic that I have to complete within a month" (or a week, depending upon the free time you have at the time)

And the person that is next to comment will give them a challenge and ask for one themselves, for example:
"The challenge is to go out and perform a trick you came up with yourself and have never performed before to 3 complete strangers" (be realistic with this, a week is probably too short to come up with a good trick and practice it as well so adjust the challenge to the time they ask for).
"I would like a fun to do challenge that I have to complete within a week"

If there is no response to the person who asks for a challenge it is also okay for somebody who already has a challenge to respond and give them a challenge (for now let's just say if nobody replied within 24 hours?).

Last but not least share your experiences here, I am sure there will be some good stories after completing challenges (and if you want you can directly ask for a new challenge however this is not necessary the idea of this thread is to have a place motivate you to challenge yourself whenever you need a bit more motivation).

Some quick afterthoughts: Keep the challenges realistic and fun, the idea is to make everybody enjoy doing magic more and motivate everybody to go out and perform, if the challenge is unrealistic or too uncomfortable it might actually discourage people to go out and perform. That being said there is nothing wrong with pushing yourself out of your comfort zone as long as the reward afterwards was worth it. Because of this I think it is best that we give everybody to accept or decline the challenge (just reply with "declined" or "accepted"). Also state if you would like to perform magic or mentalism (this might influence the challenge you get). If you want to give more details, for example upcoming gigs, vacation or anything else that might influence the challenge feel free to write them down.

I will kick this thread of by asking for a challenge to improve my magic that I will have to complete within a month.

Kind regards,

Neoinwonderland

PS: Excuse me for my bad grammar, english is not my native language and feel free to correct me if I made a horrible mistake.
landmark
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Very good English, Neo, what is your native language?

I like the thrust of your post a lot. It's got me thinking. I would say it's very hard to give a worthwhile challenge to someone without knowing them well as a person and a performer.

But since I'm sure you understand that, and want a challenge anyway, I'll help you play:
For the next two weeks, every time you perform, find a way somehow to get absolutely honest feedback from each member of your audience.
neoinwonderland
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Quote:
On Aug 6, 2015, landmark wrote:
Very good English, Neo, what is your native language?

I like the thrust of your post a lot. It's got me thinking. I would say it's very hard to give a worthwhile challenge to someone without knowing them well as a person and a performer.

But since I'm sure you understand that, and want a challenge anyway, I'll help you play:
For the next two weeks, every time you perform, find a way somehow to get absolutely honest feedback from each member of your audience.


Thank you! Dutch is my native language =).

I think you have a good point. The main idea of this thread was to motivate people to go out and practice on real people, since I believe I learned a lot from performing for real people especially because I noticed that when you feel comfortable you can get away with the biggest p*nk* br**k, the sloppiest p*ss and so on. I think having fun when doing magic is the best way to make you feel comfortable when performing, that is why I was looking to add some more fun to it.

That being said every performer is different off course and what suits one performer won't suit another. I don't take myself too seriously when performing magic as I believe it just suits my performance style but whenever I am trying some mentalism I go for a more serious approach (I am not a mentalist, just a magician that has a strong preference towards mental effects although I have to say my interest in the subject keeps growing and growing, I just don't feel that it would be fair to call myself a mentalist).

So maybe if anybody still wants to have a challenge it might be best to give some minor details about what kind of performer you are =).

That being said, thank you for replying! I accept the challenge!
neoinwonderland
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Update:
I had a show last week in a relaxed atmosphere that allowed me to get some honest feedback.

Feedback in overall was very positive. I found out I had an angle issue during a trick (I was fully surrounded so the standard mirror practice didn't do it). I thought I was just doing table-hopping for 50 people but the group was so small that everybody kept paying attention when I switched tables. One of the people who made me aware of it told me he didn't mind the flashing, he enjoyed everything else he had seen so far and he might be interested in booking me, so I quess he was happy with the overall experience.

apart from the two flashes I got great feedback. I used it to adjust my set list, some tricks will be replaced (since they weren't as hardhitting as expected), and other tricks will get the attention they deserve (I didn't expect them to hit that hard).

My next steps are going to be:
-rethink the trick on which I flashed and try to make them foolproof for when being fully surrounded.
-Filling in the gaps in my repertoire by finding better tricks that get stronger reactions.

Thank you for the challenge!
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