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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Cups and Balls size for Busking (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Profile of Eldini
Hello all,

Looking through Rings and Things amazing products right now for a cups and balls set.

Is the large size best or necessary for busking?

Thank you!
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Inner circle
1462 Posts

No. Size is what you can handle. How big your loads are. For the audience it does not matter. It is the routine and suprise ending.
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I went to the Magic Cafe and all I got were these lousy
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Profile of Rook
While you may be a bit concerned with having a large enough cup (and corresponding load) to be seen at a fairly large crowd, I've found that the standard size cups still do well. One of the primary things to be concerned with, however, is weight. If you have light cups (as many of the inexpensive versions are), you might find them blown over on a windy day. I use an old set of Paul Fox cups (standard, not the larger chick cups) and have had no problems.
Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.

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Profile of whocares
Rook said it well. What kind of cups act do you do. I had nice big Gary Animal Cups and used oranges as final loads.

And how big of a crowd would like to draw. If it is five or six folks, any set of cups will play well enough. If you want to draw a real crowd, push them back behind a rope line, and still be seen well enough, the bigger, the better. And once you have drawn that many, you need a solid act, or they will all turn and walk away. But if you engage them, and entertain them, drop the right Hat lines throughout the multifaceted performance, you WILL get paid.

Tip: If performing outside, and you are using your hat for the tips, start the process by throwing a dollar rubber banded to a full deck of cards into the hat.

1. It confirms to the pitch that you want money in the hat.
2. The deck of cards keeps the hat from blowing away in a light breeze. If it is very windy, use two decks of cards to anchor the hat.

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Profile of EllisJames52
That’s a cool tip! Thanks
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Myrtle Beach
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Profile of JoeJoe
Michael Ammar teaches to start with the final load ... then find a cup that it fits in best. You want the load to fill as much as the cup as possible.

In other words, don't use a cup large enough for a grapefruit if your load is a lemon. If your load is a lemon, use a cup that the lemon fits into just right. Smile

Watch the Pilot Episode of my new TV Show:As Seen on TV: The JoeJoe Magic Show
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Profile of StarkRavingMatt
I have two sizes for two different routines... One is a found set for producing juggling balls in a two person routine, the other is a super cheap aluminum chop cup set I use in my solo routine. The light ones have never blown over (I keep them in a bag until the routine starts) but it would be trivial to weight them.
I admire the workmanship of well designed cups, but I have never found a legitimate reason to put an expensive beautiful cup into my rancid street rat esthetic. (the found set of cups we use with a walnut as a ball are at 49 seconds in
Harry Murphy
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Profile of Harry Murphy
All great advice above, let me reinforce the one variable that friend ROOK mentioned that is critically important to working outdoors. That is weight. Heavy cups don't get blown away and they make a nice sound when being stacked or struck with the wand.

Gazzo and others like and use the large cups because their routines call for orange or baseball final loads. As JoJo mentions the final load and routine demands a large cup.

Jim Cellini worked with a smaller cup. In Amsterdam in the 70s he was using the Ross Bertram cups sold by Magic Inc. in Chicago. They were about the heaviest cups made at that time. I saw him two decades later still using those cups. They are not big cups and hold a lemon final load. Interestingly he rarely (outside of lectures) used the cups that carried his name. He didn't design our use on the streets the so-called Cellini cups. He said that if he had designed them he would have designed the saddle and skirt differently. They do take a baseball or lacrosse ball as the final load. Funny story. I saw Cellini perform his Cups and Balls routine in Baltimore inner harbor using aluminum, standard (small) Morrissey cups. His working cups were not available at the time and he grabbed wha a local friend magician had on hand. He played to a crowd of about 80 and, judging from audience reaction, he amazed the crowd. There was a slight breeze that day and he kept good control of the lightweight cups.

Mario Morris (member here on the Café') uses heavy porcelain coffee mugs right off the shelf. His routine calls for the unique quality of them being breakable for his finale.

I use the Biran Watson "Anytime Anywhere" cups. They are about the same size as the smooth copper Sherwood cups and a hair shorter than the R&TII polished copper Mendoza cups. They take a tennis ball final load. They are proportionate to my hands thus easy for me to handle compared to my old Gary Animal "Babe" cups and a joy to use. They are heavy and won't be blown about by the wind.

Good luck on the quest.
The artist formally known as Mumblepeas!
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