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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Smooth as silk » » How Much Is TOO much? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Jimmy Joza
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A magician here in NYC, who goes by the stage name Olmedini (he was street magician way back and he's originally from Ecuador), has a 20-minute or so act of mostly silk magic. He also produces a few feather flower bouquets, candles, and doves in between but his focus is on a silk act set to music. In addition to the amount of folding (before and after), I was also struck with the quality. Most of his silks are P&A, some of which were custom made. So his act is based on an investment in both time and cost.

Jimmy
"Those who simply walk in others' tracks leave no footprints."
hugmagic
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I remember Ward Thomas doing his whole act with Rice silks. String of 36" silks, followed by 6' silks.

I swear I could hear the magicians running adding machines.

But no one ever stole Ward's act. They were too cheap to invest in the good silks.

Richard
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
www.hughesmagic.com
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Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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A magician's act is an investment. Of course, to the public silks and feather flowers are free since they just appear! In fact, they can become quite upset when they can't just have them after the show. But that too is a sign that it is something they want to remember.

The "running adding machine" is too true. Sometimes I'm afraid magicians miss the show taking stock. But that proves the point too. He who dies with the most toys wins.

"Cheap" includes more than money. How many magicians don't do silk magic because they are also too cheap to practice, learn something new, or invest in the setup time? The only part the audience remembers is the show. Color goes a long ways there. I think audiences have a very good understanding of "Cheap". They buy the tickets! (It's strange that people will pay to hear a comic on stage with zero props but refer to a card workers' routine as cheap for lack of props. Ask a booking agent.)

I like to produce all the silk time will allow.

Bob Sanders
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Bob Sanders

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Jimmy Joza
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Well said, Richard and Bob! My investment in this is a little at a time since I am not a full-time working pro. I love my main job as a school counselor and I can integrate magic into my work, either as a treat for the students or as a way to illustrate a point. And I also love magic. Silk magic is a favorite of mine because of the variety it provides by itself or in conjuction with other routines (e.g., candles, flowers, doves, rabbits, appearing poles, etc.).

Jimmy
P.S. I usually don't mind the folding. In some ways I find it relaxing ---- perhaps because of the feel of the silk.
"Those who simply walk in others' tracks leave no footprints."
Bob Sanders
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Jimmy,

I thought that was just me! I actually enjoy the time folding and refolding too. It is not only a little time alone but it also allows me time to think and rethink the show. I have never really liked the idea of someone doing it for me. For multiple shows I just buy multiple props so I can do the setups and repackings myself.

A lot of new creative ideas come at those times.

Bob Sanders
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Jimmy Joza
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I'm sure we're not the only ones, Bob. I, too, have found myself reworking ideas as I fold a 25 or 50 foot streamer. It does help one focus.

Jimmy
"Those who simply walk in others' tracks leave no footprints."
hugmagic
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I know that Johnathan Neal Brown did a huge silk act and he said that he got to point he could reset the whole act in 15 minutes while talking with someone. Of course, that was doing the same act for weeks.

The good news is "flash" magic is coming back. Producers are tired of minimal props on stage. They want color and flash for the lay audiences. I just finished a huge act for a show in Hawaii. I am working on a similar act for a new cruise ship. And next year there will be a production show touring that will be recreating the Blackstone Flower act among other things. In short, I have never been busier.

There is a hope for us old guys yet.

Richard

Richard
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.
Darkwing
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Nashville Tn
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I hope you are right, Richard. Funny you mentioned about the set up time. This last Halloween our local ring had our annual Halloween show (go figure about the name). All the our acts were busy killing time with each other while I was busy about setting up my silks for the show. One of the cast members I noticed came by several times and then finally asked what was wrong? I was puzzeled about the question and he asked if I was mad. I laughed and said no I was focusing on what I was doing and was actually going through the routine as I was setting up. Then I realized something that Dai Vernon said about enjoying practice. I guess I must have been in my own world and really enjoying myself with the disipline of magic.

Up until about 7 yrs ago I spent a total of over 20 years in the martial arts, practicing and teaching. Ours was an old school Japanese style where training was very hard and disiplined ( no corporal punishment). When we went to karate tournaments, people from other styles would come up to us and ask us what the Japanese kanji symbol one the back of our gis meant. They would always look at us with puzzled looks when we would tell them "patience". It was the creed and by-word of our style. My point is, I truly believe that had I not spent all that time in the martial arts I don't think I would have the self disipline, patience, and will to do the manipulations and silk magic that I do. I enjoy the practice and all the work because of the final product.

I have even carried this over to the puppet ministry I have at church. One of the moms and I spent over six hours to do a nativity scene and skit that lasted only 10 min. But the final result was spectatular, fog, fire, glowing angels, a shooting star, and countance around the baby Jesus. The audience reaction is always worth the effort.

Sorry about being long winded.

David W.
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