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14 Posts

Profile of fifia
I've mainly performed person to person and only like twice on stage. Every time I perform my hands start to shake and I lose lots of my "cocky magician vibe" that I like to portray. Not to mention the shaking really isn't good for sleight of hand.

I've also noticed I end up focusing more on my cards/props than I do on the audience and I think that draws people's eyes to what I'm trying to hide more often than not.

Any advice?

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Inner circle
The Beautiful State Of Maine
6724 Posts

Profile of Dougini
Welcome to the Café, Fifia! I have learned never to show a trick unless I know it backwards and forwards. I don't do cards, but something quick and simple. I've been doing Magic for more than 40 years, and I still have confidence issues...

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Veteran user
Washington, DC
397 Posts

Profile of kShepher
Well said, Dougini.

Some people are naturally confident, like James Bond. The rest of us mortals need to step up and just fake it until it becomes reality.
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Inner circle
York, PA
2460 Posts

Profile of WitchDocChris
Well, in my experience very few people are truly without any form of stage fright when the performance starts. The experienced people have just learned to transform their nerves into excitement for the performance. So don't feel like you're less for those nerves - most people have them. The more you perform the easier it gets to handle them.

Couple pieces of advice -

1) As Dougini mentioned- rehearse. A lot. The material should happen without conscious thought. Practice the physical sleights, and rehearse the full routines/show. I was once told that if I'm not bored of the material then I probably haven't rehearsed enough.

2) Start with something fool proof. "Self working" tricks are great for this. Things that don't require a ton of fine motor control - that way if your hands are shaking you can still do it. Personally I usually open with a poem. I've also opened with human blockhead. On rare occasions I open with a dumb joke (ren fair audiences). This gets people's attention, commands the stage, and lets you relax into the performance.

And remember - it gets easier. The more you perform the easier it is to control the nerves. That's part of why rehearsal helps a lot, the mind sees that as a sort of performance.
Witch Doctor

Psycho Seance book:
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New user
60 Posts

Profile of JBD
A key to good magic is to have a smaller number of effects that you learn inside out. For beginners self working tricks are a great start. As a beginner there is temptation to buy all the latest you can afford! This can lead to a having lot of magic that is possibly not well performed. Many times the most important part of the magic is the performance, rather than the complexity of the trick!
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Inner circle
Beverley, UK
1069 Posts

Profile of wulfiesmith
"Fifia" ...
respect to you.

Peform effects which are self-working, to allow your confidence and performance to grow.
What do you perform now?
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