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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Are Street Magicians looked down upon?? (5 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Profile of Zauberman
Are Street Magicians looked down upon???

I asked this question in 2 parts.

First by other magicians
Secondly by the public.

What are your experiences with regards to this, good or bad.
Mine have, sadly, have been negative at times. What does everyone else think???? experiences?

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Profile of gallagher
A two part question,
I have THREE different thoughts(!), 🤔
And a 'fourth'....experience. 🙃

I think it depends a lot on 'which' Show they SEE!
As a Street Performer,
we ALL have 'good' Shows,
and ALL have 'bad' Shows,..
the best of us.

When other Performers, see us turning a 'good' Show,
they smile and wink,.."bwaa."
When the 'public' experiences the same,...
the same,..."bwaa."

When we have a 'bad' one, one wants to know you!

The two Shows can be a half-of-an-hour apart!
The Streets.
One Show you're 'god' and get licked(!).
The next,
you're a 'dog' and get kicked!

The 'third' group:
those who DON'T see us,
but 'imagine' what Street Performing is.
(good luck!,..
especially when you're over 60!...! 😕)

There are the 'romantics',
..and there are the 'realists',...
or should I simply say: 'pessimists'?
'Pests', for short.

I NEVER try to explain.
They simply cannot imagine it.

My fourth 'experience',
came from my family(!).
That was a surprise.
After a good 20 years behind me,
...and honestly,
the first 20 ARE the adventurous ones(!),
I started hearing comments,
from my eight brothers and sisters,...
("siblings", they call themselves..)

"It's never too late to go to college."

"A 'real job' would definately be more rewarding."

"...and your children?"

"You always liked McDonald's food. Why not WORK there?"

On my 55th birthday,
my mother told me:
"The Catholic Church excepts un-married men,
in the seminary, any age."(!...!)

{,...Monika responded:
"He prefers having sex with women."}


In all honesty,
it's in our own heads.
I can honestly NOT think of ANYTHING better to be doing!
It's simply,..the greatest.

I'm a Street Performer, by choice.

I wish all my Collegues
the same blessing.

Have a nice day,

p.s.: Yesterday...blessed in Perleberg.
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I have danced upon
662 Posts

Profile of Magic.J.Manuel
Stilt walkers look down upon everyone!
Nothing would get done at all, if man waited so long that no one could find fault with it.
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Profile of thomasR
It takes a special kind of talent to be a “real” street performer. For one, you have to be good enough to get people to stop and watch you despite their fears (is this guy gonna scam me, is this some kind of set-up, will people think I’m weird for watching... etc.) out on the streets, that’s talent right there. To get those same people to give money, give cash willingly to some guy on the street? Even more talent. To me that’s way more talent than performers in a Vegas theatre, cruise ship, etc.

I believe the public sees most street performers as either - 1 homeless people / hippies that live in a commune that are performing so they don’t get in trouble for begging for money. 2 - hobbyists who are just out performing for fun.
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Profile of TheAmbitiousCard
I don't know the answer.

But I do know that as a street performer, it's not a license to say , do ,dress, behave in any manner you want just because "you're a street performer".

You need to follow the rules where you're performing; don't create a situation where people are complaining about you.
You should dress appropriately. My advice... Lose the "cargo shorts and sandals" look. Hand Crafted Magic
Trophy Husband, Father of the Year Candidate,
Chippendale's Dancer applicant, Unofficial World Record Holder.
D. Yoder
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Profile of D. Yoder
I think the answer to both questions is that it depends on the performer as well as the person who is doing the evaluating. Yes, buskers are just a step above being homeless beggars. Yes, buskers are romantic vagabonds free from the oppressive jobs that many people suffer through each day. Of all the hat lines that I have heard, I think Niko the Magician on a Motorcycle is the best at answering the question on whether he should be admired or pitied.
Phil Ainsworth
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Profile of Phil Ainsworth
I’ll answer the OP’s question with another question:

Why should a Street Performer CARE whether or not he or she is looked down upon?
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Profile of Zauberman
Thanx for the responses lads. Interesting and valid food for thought.

My initial post was prompted by a couple recent events where I am at the moment.

Firstly, a couple pitches that I rely on here were suddenly 'Pitches No More'. One was public land administered by the State and the other, while used by the public, belonged to and was run by a private firm. Both of these places had a change-over in staff....that suddenly decided that Buskers/Street Performers didn't portray what they thought was 'Art and good business'. A lot of this stemmed from their (misguided) attitude of what 'Busking and Street Performing' entails.

At the same time, a couple magicians I am acquainted with let it be known that they thought the very idea of performing magic on the street....brought Magic down as an art, by the very fact you are performing for a non-paying crowd. Sigh.

My personal thoughts....unfortunately there is an attitude out there towards buskers that while not hateful, tends to put us in a lower category. This is by no means the Majority....but it is more common than I'd like...and when these people get in charge, busking is at risk.

As for would think this is the last place you find this...but there are (amateur) magicians that because they do a few corporate gigs....put themselves above the rest. But again this is by no means most....any magician that has been trying to make a go of it for any length of time has had their egos put in place more than one way.

But that's just my feelings at the moment, nothing written in stone.
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