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christopher carter
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After all, the object of our work is pretty much the same: providing first-rate mystery entertainment. At least I hope that this is the case.

Joe Z.



I think you're dead-on in your assessment of quality ratios. Perhaps a bit generous to both camps.

Paul's comment was VERY funny, but the fact is that neither magic nor mentalism hold any particular esteem within the greater worlds of entertainment or performing arts. In fact, while I rather like the term "mentalist," it would be a mistake to suggest that it has anything but minimal awareness among entertainment buyers.

I know many long for a time when mentalism is in a position of relative prominence. I actually dread that time. I really don't think the craft will fare well in the open sun. Maybe I'm wrong, but at the very least, I LIKE the fact of being on the fringe. Doesn't bother me in the least.

When I commented on not hanging out with magicians, I didn't mean to imply any general disrespect for magic. Paul says frequently that magicians just don't "get it" when it comes to mentalism. I feel the same way. Magicians come to my shows and wonder why I spend so much time telling stories. They don't notice how much the audience is getting into the tales, or the theatrical purpose they serve, the just want to get on with the tricks. Sometimes magicians will suggest that I substitute this or that sleight or method because, in their opinion, it would be more deceptive, while I look at the particular sleights or methods they suggest as being substantially less natural and casual. Magicians as a rule don't seem to appreciate the necessity for absolute naturalness.

Are there exceptions? Of course there are. But I don't think that, theatrically, magicians and mentalists are working toward the same ends at all.

--Christopher Carter
mysticz
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Christopher Carter said: "But I don't think that, theatrically, magicians and mentalists are working toward the same ends at all."

No, theatrically they are not, but from an entertainment standpoint, they should be.

As far as your statement that "magicians just don't "get it" when it comes to mentalism," I would say many magicians probably don't (possibly most of that 80 percent I cited). BTW, as most of my professional performances are as a psi-party entertainer/psychic reader, I would assume even fewer magicians would probably understand my segment of the mentalism market. In fact, I've known quite a few conventional mentalists who don't "get" this type of entertainment either.

However, to say that "magicians as a rule don't seem to appreciate the necessity for absolute naturalness" is not a fair blanket statement to make, especially if we are to assume by this statement that most mentalists do appreciate the same.

I would say that the best magicians do understand this need for naturalness in performance and there are many examples of conjurers who do indeed cultivate this in their approach. In the same way, the finest mentalists (and there are many out there) do the same.

However, I would underscore that many magicians, mentalists, and bizarre practitioners alike fall short of attaining any semblance of naturalness and performance skill in what they do, and this in itself should be enough to keep each faction from feeling too *** superior.

Joe Zabel
Joe Zabel
"Psychic Sorcery"

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

-- Shakespeare's Hamlet I.v. 174-175
christopher carter
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On 2002-07-16 15:17, mysticz wrote:
However, to say that "magicians as a rule don't seem to appreciate the necessity for absolute naturalness" is not a fair blanket statement to make, especially if we are to assume by this statement that most mentalists do appreciate the same.
Joe Zabel


Sure, it's a generalization, but with qualifiers like "as a rule," and "don't seem," it should be pretty clear that I'm just basing this on subjective experience. I'm well versed in sleight-of-hand, and I'm aware of the schools of thought that advocate naturalism within that field, and it just doesn't seem to be the same type of "natural" as when a mentalist uses the term. Feel free to disagree, I won't be bothered. I'll have to put a curse on you, of course, but I won't be bothered Smile

--Christopher Carter
wayman
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Joke dudes, it was just a joke. Smile
Wow, I did not know there was a gap/war between Magicians and Mentalists (alphabetical order to stop arguement) Smile

I have never labeled myself in such a way to say that I am a Magician or a Mentalist or a Cardist or an Escape'ist or a Coin man/woman or whatever, I only like to see the look of bewilderment and magic on the face of the participant(s), as this IS what makes me happy. Smile
Thoughtreader
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Sorry Darmoe but I will not be at the 72-Hour Gathering Andy Leviss & Quintin are pulling together as my schedule just won't allow it at that time but keep an eye out for my lecture as I am currently organizing my next tour to cooincide with shows in various areas. Then you can meet me face to face.

Mysticz,
You have a very valid point in your last post too. Most magicians and mentalists take themselves way too seriously. They put their seriousness in their attitudes and not elsewhere such as performance techniques where they would be better served.

Thankfully we have a new generation of both magicians and mentalists that do provide good examples for all to watch and learn from. Chris Carter, Banachek, Quentin Reynolds, Mac King, John Carney to name a few.

PSIncerely Yours,
Paul Alberstat
Canada's Leading Mentalist
http://www.mindguy.com
AB StageCraft
http://www.mindguy.com/store
Andy Leviss
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the 72-Hour Gathering Andy Leviss & Quintin are pulling together


Just to pick nits, my co-producer is Quinn Pearl, not Quintin. He's not a hugely known name, but a very talented performer with some great ideas. One of his effects was published as part of Kenton's Killer Konceptions book, and his seance work, which is being featured at 72 Hours, is wayyyy cool. Some of you may have met him at Docc's Weerd Weekends in the past, as he was at a few of those.

BTW, we'll be making a few more announcements of lecturers and other cool events/goodies in the next day or so!

Anyway, that nit out of the way, I now return you to the topic already in progress :o)
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
Allen Gittelson
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Mentalism is different things to different people.

Language is an attempt to have a way to communicate with each other. Language is a concrete representation of an abstract (that abstract being thoughts) which is used for communication, and this could be considered one of language's greatest strengths and greatest weaknesses. I can even imagine a presention of mentalism with this as the theme.

Mentalism is also something about which even those who are the most knowledgeable will disagree on its definition.

There is no single definition that is correct. Discussion can be interesting, but I don't believe that any single answer and clear definition will arise. Isn't language great? ;>)

In thoughts,
Allen
saglaser
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Paul says frequently that magicians just don't "get it" when it comes to mentalism. I feel the same way. Magicians come to my shows and wonder why I spend so much time telling stories. They don't notice how much the audience is getting into the tales, or the theatrical purpose they serve, the just want to get on with the tricks....
--Christopher Carter


I think Christopher may well have something here. I've been getting reports back from the SAM convention to the effect that Marc Salem's show was not well received and that many walked out.

Now, I haven't seen Salem's show myself so I can't comment on it. But I've read the raves. Perhaps he was having an off night. But perhaps it's more likely that the show just doesn't play well, on average, to magicians who have a mind set more towards seeing tricks.
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