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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Keeping it all straight...rookie looking for sage advice (7 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Profile of SvenSigma
Hi Dick,

I was mostly confused to see that spin of topic, not by the details.

Regarding clarity of definitions: with computer science as major at university and philosophy as minor (a while ago), I can only agree with you. In my perception this thread just was more about the frustration of tackling it when in general you have a good idea of what is required in terms of practice and performing.

It takes a baby in the belly six months to learn how to put the thumb in the mouth.

The rest of life is essentially the same problem.

Dick Oslund
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When I was a teenager (mid to late '40s) I was fortunate to have several mentors who were full time professionals. Both of them stressed: "It's not the prop (or the trick!) it's your PRESENTATION!"

The late Dr. A.M. Wilson, editor of the long defunct "SPHINX" MAGAZINE, wrote in his op-ed page: "Magic is an art that sometimes instructs, often amuses, but, always entertains."

I was 14 when I read that, and, since Dr. Wilson was an adult, obviously well educcated, AND, EDITOR of a national magic magazine, I believed him. After another year or two of studying Tarbell, Maskelynne & Devant, et al, I realized that the good doctor was WRONG.

MAGIC IS NOT INHERENTLY ENTERTAINING. My mentors were RIGHT! It's not the prop or the trick, it's HOW IT IS PRESENTED.

Eminent magician, the late S.H. SHARPE, wrote many years ago: "Those who think that magic consists of doing tricks, are strangers to magic. Tricks are only the crude residue from which the lifeblood of magic has been drained."

That's enough preaching!

If you have a question, feel free to PM me.
Wizard of Oz
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Dick, I wouldn't say Wilson was wrong necessarily, if we assume he is referring to magic being done correctly. In that context his comment makes sense. Magic presented well can be those things. Magic performed poorly is at best, a stunt, and is neither entertaining nor magical.
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.
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