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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Ran Gafner on Penn&Teller Fool Us (33 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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mentalran
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Thank you very much guys Smile
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Quote:
On Sep 30, 2017, Martin Pulman wrote:
If you don't want honest feedback I don't see much point posting a video on here. Unless people are just looking to be told how wonderful they are -which I would say is your mother's job.


But has "honest feedback" actually been given?

And perhaps the point of posting is to share a routine with the fraternity (who may not be watching P&TFU) and to inspire them by showing how a classic idea can be adapted with a new twist.

It certainly beats the times I've seen acts presented the same way that every other magician has presented them.
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
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Amirá
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Wonderful performance Ran, congratulations!

Relaxed, casual attitude but with a strong sense of charismatic control.

Keep doing your good work Smile
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Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, Philemon Vanderbeck wrote:
Quote:
On Sep 30, 2017, Martin Pulman wrote:
If you don't want honest feedback I don't see much point posting a video on here. Unless people are just looking to be told how wonderful they are -which I would say is your mother's job.


But has "honest feedback" actually been given?


Are you saying the people praising Ran's performance, including me, are not being honest? Or is it only those who don't like it that you are accusing of dishonesty?
Samuel Catoe
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It was my honest opinion of the routine Philemon. Whether you would call that feedback or not, I can't say as I didn't give the opinion with any expectation or intent of anyone taking it as advice. I posted my feelings on the routine. That has nothing to do with Ran's creativity in creating the routine itself, only my opinion regarding the performance of it. I think the premise is a brilliant one and that the methodologies that I saw were beautifully done, and I applaud his creating a routine unlike most of what is out there. If he gets great responses from his clients and they love him, then truthfully, does my opinion REALLY matter for anything? I don't think so. I get that my opinion really wasn't asked for, nor wanted, but it's there and I can't delete it. Nor am I taking anymore space here trying to defend it.
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Martin Pulman
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Keep giving your honest opinion Samuel. Many of us appreciate honesty -even if it is negative criticism.
Slim King
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Quote:
On Sep 30, 2017, Lior wrote:
I saw the full routine that has much more then what was
shown on the PT and it is Incredible.
Incredible.
The routine is original and have many liars that
make it a very strong pice of visual mentalism.
(And aoudio as well)
I think that Ran fooled them and they didn't get
the right solution.

Lior

I agree. I seriously doubt they could duplicate this so easily.
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS.. The Worlds Foremost Authority on Houdini's Life after Death.....
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Quote:
On Sep 29, 2017, Samuel Catoe wrote:
When I first saw the routine, I thought it was ok, but not terribly entertaining. It seemed overly long and tedious. There were several good lines that helped break the tedium to me. It was interesting but not compelling. As for methods, I saw several possibilities and methodologies at work. Do I think it would fool an audience? Certainly. Do I think it would entertain an audience? Not necessarily. I wouldn't use the routine, as it was performed, as a closer, but more of a filler routine in the middle. I feel that's a shame as that routine could definitely be a closer with some tweaking.


While Samuel was definitely being honest with his opinion, does this really constitute honest feedback? Certainly Samuel has the right to express his opinion that he was not entertained and that he felt the routine was "overly long and tedious." It is when he states that he does not think it would entertain an audience that he crosses the line from just expressing his personal opinion into venturing into territory that he has inadequate experience in.

As we can clearly hear and see from the P&TFU audience, they WERE entertained. Ran also states that the routine consistently entertains, and he would know from direct experience. If it didn't, I doubt that he would keep performing it. The fact that it won an award at FISM demonstrates that even his peers thought it bore merit.

I also found it curious that Samuel needed to state how he would and wouldn't use the routine. Um, it's not for anyone else but Ran to perform (until such time he decides to publish it or sell it). It is HIS routine, truly original, and no one should even think of performing it. As for whether it is better suited as a "filler" or a closer is likewise a ludicrous argument. As has been expressed by countless professionals in the past, no routine should be a "filler;" every routine should be viewed as a potential closer, otherwise it should be removed from the act. If it is so weak as to be thought of as a filler, then it has no place in a full act.

There's a fine distinction between "negative criticism" and simply tearing down another person's act. Criticism does have its place, but it should always be constructive, and should come from a place of well-informed opinion. And personally, I believe that criticism should only be given when it has been asked for by the creator. Ran shared his video so that we could watch and enjoy it. It's fine to not to like his routine, but then one should just move on. Ran should only be concerned about how his audiences react, not what a bunch of amateurs think. Not many of us are of the caliber to win an award at FISM or even be invited to perform on P&TFU. Until we have, then our opinions remain merely personal, and often are not well-informed.
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
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"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, Philemon Vanderbeck wrote:
As for whether it is better suited as a "filler" or a closer is likewise a ludicrous argument. As has been expressed by countless professionals in the past, no routine should be a "filler;" every routine should be viewed as a potential closer, otherwise it should be removed from the act. If it is so weak as to be thought of as a filler, then it has no place in a full act.


I couldn't disagree more. A performance has to have dynamics. If everything is a closer then nothing is a closer. A performance should ebb and flow and hit climaxes at certain points. It is a well-known rule of creating film and theatre that there are certain beats within the piece that have to be built to, and then followed by moments of release to allow the audience to prepare for the next climax. "Filler" is a poor choice of words, but there should certainly be moments within a routine that steady the ship, that lower the tension and weight for a moment. They might be comedic or simply fun, but they should certainly be there. And your climax should definitely be the highpoint of your film/play/mentalism act (unless you follow it with a coda which is a sadly unexplored idea in mentalism performances).If your closing routine isn't operating at a higher level of wonder, mystery and entertainment than the rest of your performance you better get to work on pumping it up to a higher level.
Quote:
There's a fine distinction between "negative criticism" and simply tearing down another person's act. Criticism does have its place, but it should always be constructive, and should come from a place of well-informed opinion. And personally, I believe that criticism should only be given when it has been asked for by the creator. Ran shared his video so that we could watch and enjoy it. It's fine to not to like his routine, but then one should just move on. Ran should only be concerned about how his audiences react, not what a bunch of amateurs think. Not many of us are of the caliber to win an award at FISM or even be invited to perform on P&TFU. Until we have, then our opinions remain merely personal, and often are not well-informed.


I didn't see Ran making any complaints about the Café members who praised his routine? Nor do I see you dismissing them as "amateurs". I disagree with Samuel but found his comments interesting to ponder. You can always learn something from all criticism -regardless of its origins. Even if it is to learn that you can't please all of the people all of the time.

Never let praise go to your head, and never let criticism get to your heart -as they say on those annoying cards they sell in every tacky gift shop.
Philemon Vanderbeck
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I said "every routine should be viewed as a potential closer," not that "everything is a closer." Obviously a performer should choose their strongest routine as their actual closer, but every routine along the way should be strong enough to be performed alone, if necessary. Ever watch a film that had a scene that "went nowhere?" That's what a "filler" piece of magic is like; it doesn't go anywhere and doesn't contribute to the overall act. You can certainly include elements that foreshadow a moment later on in the act, but they still need to be part of a strong piece of magic.

When we praise a routine, we function as audience members. When we dare to criticize, we are elevating ourselves to the status of well-informed peers, which not all of us truly are. If you don't like something, say so (if you wish), then move on, but do not dare to presume that everyone feels the same. To speak as if you know the collective mind of a performer's audience is simply presumptive hubris.

As performers, we should cherish any praise we receive, as it is rare nowadays. Likewise, we should ignore most criticism, as any idiot can tweet out 140 characters.
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
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Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, Philemon Vanderbeck wrote:
I said "every routine should be viewed as a potential closer," not that "everything is a closer."

Much as I enjoyed Ran's routine, it is never a potential closer in a million years. So it is actually failing the strange test you are setting.

Quote:
As performers, we should cherish any praise we receive, as it is rare nowadays. Likewise, we should ignore most criticism, as any idiot can tweet out 140 characters.

And any idiot can tweet out 140 characters of praise. Perhaps a little less praise and a little more honest criticism would stop terrible performers inflicting terrible mentalism on audiences, and stop terrible creators inflicting shoddy, half-thought out effects on buyers.
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Ran says he has been using it as his closer for five years now. What makes you think it's not a "potential closer?"

There will always be "terrible performers inflicting terrible mentalism on audiences" despite how much "honest criticism" is bestowed upon them thanks to the Dunning-Kruger effect. And most critics themselves are subject to the D-K effect as well, believing that their criticism is well-informed, when it's not.

As for terrible creators, they thrive on gullible buyers, but that has nothing to do with Ran or his routine.
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
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"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
IAIN
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Maybe we could have a new part of the forum where users get to critique other users posts...
I've asked to be banned
Greg Arce
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, IAIN wrote:
Maybe we could have a new part of the forum where users get to critique other users posts...


That's a terrible post.
Smile Smile Smile Smile

Greg
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IAIN
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, Greg Arce wrote:
Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, IAIN wrote:
Maybe we could have a new part of the forum where users get to critique other users posts...


That's a terrible post.
Smile Smile Smile Smile

Greg


6/10 for you Greg...
I've asked to be banned
mentalran
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Philemon thank you so much! I really appreciate it and you really expressed my thoughts..though I accept criticism with love, it should be constructive.

Martin thank you for saying that you enjoyed my act but I really don't get how you can say that it can't be a closer for a million years?.. I close my show with this routine ( which has another element that was missing from mt FU act) and it kills my audience, most time I get standing ovation for it
Yuan Moons
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Quote:
On Sep 29, 2017, Sven Rygh wrote:
I have just two questions;

Why did you take this on P&T?
Why did you post it here?


P&T is a magic show and this is a magic forum. Are you in the right place?
Last Laugh
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, IAIN wrote:
Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, Greg Arce wrote:
Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, IAIN wrote:
Maybe we could have a new part of the forum where users get to critique other users posts...


That's a terrible post.
Smile Smile Smile Smile

Greg





6/10 for you Greg...





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Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On Oct 1, 2017, mentalran wrote:
Philemon thank you so much! I really appreciate it and you really expressed my thoughts..though I accept criticism with love, it should be constructive.

Martin thank you for saying that you enjoyed my act but I really don't get how you can say that it can't be a closer for a million years?.. I close my show with this routine ( which has another element that was missing from mt FU act) and it kills my audience, most time I get standing ovation for it


Then perhaps it is the missing element that turns it into a closer worthy of a standing ovation? I'm only judging the routine on the performance you posted. I thought it was a beautiful, engaging routine with a fascinating premise and -for a US audience- a pleasing pay-off. I also loved your humorous interaction with the host during the selections.
But -as presented here-I would find it too gentle and slow-paced to be used as a closer, with too few climaxes and an absence of theatrical tension or emotion.

But that's just my opinion. Other opinions are available. And I really did think it was beautifully performed.
mentalran
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Here is the ending of my FISM act with the added element.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwM1rH3_PxY
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