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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Smooth as silk » » Silk fountain (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Vibono Magic
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Växjö,Sweden
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Yuji Yammamoto of UGM Ltd. in Japan has a great silk fountain blendo where the fountain changes into a Peacock silk.
Vibono Mirage
Magic entertainer and Balloon artist
BroDavid
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I have done the silk fountain a couple of times recently, and certainly agree with Richard that it needs a kicker.

It is kind of like adding an exclamation point to a beautiful phrase.

Duane Laflin has a number of recommended final loads for the fountain, and I like his 30 foot streamer. His silk fountain DVD also shows how to make one, but I think it is nearly as costly (time and money) to build one, and the overall quality might not be as good. I was lucky and bought my fountain for around half-price from another member here at The Magic Café. But now having used it, I am ready to get another one as a backup.

It is an elegant peice of eye candy.

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Snidini
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Magician81, you have a great idea with your final load of an appearing pole. As is atested to the posts here, everyone is in favor of the climatic kicker. An inanimate object of extrordinary size (such as your 5ft. pole) or animate object like a dove would be an appropiate and very visual ending. I love Jimmy's idea of a little fire and superflash also. With all of the above, I think you would have a great trick.

Snidini
magicinsight
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I have a silk fountain from Tannen's that I purchased many years ago. It came with a clear plastic tube to assist in the folding. The silks, 18 12" inch silks, are sewn together and held in place with a button. It also came with a pin to attach a final load ie. spring flowers.

How would you compare this fountain with the ones currently on the market being sold by Mr. Laflin and P&A?

Thank you very much.

Michael
“Belief matters more than truth. Every moment, belief in imaginary things alters lives while truth sits unnoticed and waits.”
—Hakim, Loreweaver
fccfp
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I think the Paul Diamond lecture also shows the fountain with a button sewed in to help make it easier to hold. Do the other versions (Lafflin, P&A, etc.) also use the button?

I know that Duane's fountain has a unique system to hold it ready for the production. Do the others?
A.K.A. Jay The Magician
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hugmagic
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I had a fountain with a button and found it too hard to grab in a hurry. I make a little handle about 3" wide and 1" high on mine. It is very easy to slip your fingers into.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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email-hugmagic@raex.com
Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
R Don
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I did the silk fountain twice a night in a club for a couple of years and I realized that for me the audience would start to clap when 7 silks were visible. They did not clap more for 10 silks nor 12. So I made the fountain 8 silks.In the centre I also minimized the amount of flowers. I also made the appearing silks progressively smaller so that all the colours were visible when the trick was over. If the last silk is the biggest it swallows or hides all the others.
It worked for me.
Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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In the 60s I had a homemade silk fountain that used a plastic Easter egg, with modifications. It worked great! I noticed this week that WalMart has the same eggs again. (My original probably became an unauthorized souvenir for someone. But I made a larger one.) I think graduated sizes are a good trade off for more colors. I don't ever use the diamond cuts for that.

Audiences love silk fountains.

Bob
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mcmc
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But what exactly is the draw or purpose of a silk fountain? I'm definitely not knocking it, but just wondering what the magic of it is that we are displaying, since I'm not sure of it. I like how it looks, but it doesn't strike me with awe as, say, a series of card fan productions does.

Is it that there seems to be an endless supply of silks magically rising up out of my hand?
Is it just the sheer visual eye-candy?
Or...?
In one sense it seems less like magic than a piece of performance art. And do audiences actually not know that it is simply a bunch of silks folded in on each other?


Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Bob Sanders
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It is simply a very pretty fantasy the audience likes!

Audiences won't pay you one red cent for complexity. They came to be entertained. (Many of them live with stacks of paper all day at work.)

Save the complex stuff for magic club meetings. There it might be appreciated. The objectives are decisively different than for a paying audience. And the audience makes the rules.

As magicians we flatter ourselves often by believing that when asked to "Please do that again" that they are looking for "how" we do it. Often it is like a piece of music, they just want to enjoy it being done again. As a stage musician, I never remember anyone ever asking, "How did you do that?" I have heard "Play it again" many times. I don't think magic for paying audiences is much different. Would you pay to repeat surgery just to enjoy the complex skills of the surgeon?

We are there for the audience in the entertainment business. We hit a lot of notes that are no challenge at all. It has nothing to do with whether or not we have a hit. That’s judged by the audience.

Enjoy!

Bob
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mcmc
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Hi Bob,

Thanks for the insightful words, it is good information and advice from a seasoned pro!

But there was a portion of my question that I think you may have overlookd - simply put, the silk fountain doesn't look like a piece of magic, as I understand it. It's just unfolding silks. Is this true, in your opinion? Or am I missing a fundamental understanding, from the audience's perspective, that makes this a piece of magic (i.e., a super-normal event)?

Thanks!
maurice
Bob Sanders
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Maurice,

Thanks for your kindness to a white-haired old man. We are always learning too!

While to the magician, the silk fountain is almost self-working, I think the audience gets into it and sees it as silks blooming out of the magician's hands. We know that you can put two 18" silk into a 35 mm film container. They don't. They see an 18" square. And another and another...

I really believe that the audience thinks that an 18" silk is larger than a tennis ball. (And you know what we could pack into that space!) We just demonstrate, but they believe. Remember the question to ask the audience is, "Which are you going to believe, what I tell you or your very eyes?" (Oops! We loose, We Win, We Win. They defeat themselves! They didn't come to see the possible. They came to see the impossible. They will! Let them.)

Mechanically speaking the silk fountain is unfolding silks in the same sense that most card tricks are just hiding and miscounting cards. But well done, it's magic.

To me, good magic is more theater than mechanics. Learning the mechanics is basic training. Learning theater is not a drill!

Does that address it?

Scheme!

Bob
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fccfp
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I agree (as usual) w/everything Bob says. To the audience the "magic" is that silks keep apearing, one after another. From their perspective it is the Energizer Bunny of silk productions. Not one, not two, but it keeps going & going... The colors add to the overall beauty of the effect. It would not look nearly as magical if the silks were all the same color, imhop. I have seen some beautiful combinations where the colors seem to flow into each other like a rainbow. Others are built with more contrast from silk to silk, A Red, A blue, a yellow, dark green, etc.. You are limited only by your imagination and budget.

The question becomes "how many is too many?" I think the answer is that it depends on how entertaining you can make it by contrasting colors and sizes of silks as well as other things like folding in confetti or glitter. You can also reach in from time to time and pull out objects like an appearing wand or candle.
A.K.A. Jay The Magician
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Bob Sanders
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Quote:
On 2005-02-26 07:22, fccfp wrote:
I agree (as usual) w/everything Bob says.

Bruce,

What would you charge to talk to my wife? How good a magician are you? I could use help like that!

I think you are actually taking the poster one step further. Encouraging the poster that the fountain can really be personalized to fit the theme is a valuable step. Ultimately, the magicians will design fountains that fit his show rather than make his show fit the fountains. That is quite a leap in creativity. The pay off can be very good!

Bob
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fccfp
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Quote:
On 2005-02-26 23:25, Bob Sanders wrote:
Quote:
On 2005-02-26 07:22, fccfp wrote:
I agree (as usual) w/everything Bob says.

Bruce,

What would you charge to talk to my wife? How good a magician are you? I could use help like that!

I think you are actually taking the poster one step further. Encouraging the poster that the fountain can really be personalized to fit the theme is a valuable step. Ultimately, the magicians will design fountains that fit his show rather than make his show fit the fountains. That is quite a leap in creativity. The pay off can be very good!

Bob
Magic By Sander




I don't know, you would have to ask my wife. Smile
Thanks for the kind words, Bob. I think the best, most entertaining, astonishing, magic comes out of the personal style of the Magi. Whether you intended to or not, your show is you. If you tried to do another's performance word for word, move for move, it would still come across differently. And if it did not fit your persona, it would not come across well.

The key to all of this as I see it is that we have to take every trick and make it our own. I think this has been said many times before by wiser, more experienced people than I. It does, however, bear repeating.

Bruce
A.K.A. Jay The Magician
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Bob Sanders
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I agree. I think that is the essence of making silk magic, card magic, or any other kind of magic, magic and entertainment. Tony Slydini could do more with a Kleenex than I could with $100,000 worth of props and a year of all the consulting magician time money could buy. I remember one blonde that got more mileage out of singing "Happy Birthday" at the White House than everyone else in the room that had spent most of their lives and millions and millions of dollars just to get elected! It's showmanship!

Bob
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Magicman1319
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Quote:
On 2005-02-25 15:01, mcmc wrote:
In one sense it seems less like magic than a piece of performance art. And do audiences actually not know that it is simply a bunch of silks folded in on each other?


Magic is performance art.
mcmc
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Bob,

Thanks for your thoughtful reply to my question. I see now where the 'magic' lies - in the magical appearance of the silks, one after another, from the bud of the silk fountain. That's important info! Because if I want to present magic, I have to know what the magic is that I want to convince the audience of =)

I think I will try to work this in to my act. Thanks for all the advice!!

maurice
Bob Sanders
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Maurice,

I think you will find that it is a winner!

Let us know how it works out for you.

Good Luck!

Bob
Magic By Sander
Bob Sanders

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hugmagic
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I agree it is a winner. Dale Salwak has always said it is the perfect thing for a television shot where they want a minute or two of visual magic.

Bottom line it doesn't fool anyone. It is simply eye candy. And audiences like that stuff also.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
www.hughesmagic.com
email-hugmagic@raex.com
Write direct as I will be turning off my PM's.
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