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Joseph_Then
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One of the thing that I hated most is magicians and/or clowns who are newbies and comes out performing for fees that either undercut everyone in the market or performs a BAD show at a price that we professionals charge.

It is these people that are hurting the market rates and causes problems like what Romulo has mentioned.

I have such people in my area. They think that they could just spend $500-$1000+ on magic tricks and costume and start to charge a price that undercuts everyone.

Worse still, when they see someone in our area performing a trick that brings effect, they BUY THE SAME TRICK AND TELL THEIR CLIENT THAT THEY CAN ALSO DO THE SAME TRICK BY THAT PERSON AT LOWER PRICE!


I like the analogy that someone says, "Just because you can play basketball doesn't mean you can play in NBA"

These people think that they are doing parents a favour by charging low but it will hurt the rest of us where performing is our bread and butter.

I don't like to use extreme terms but I can't help when this is going on everytime.

I think this goes the same for clowns too. Just because I can act silly with kids doesn't mean I can be a clown.


Just to bring out the issue of clowning. In the perception of layman, they think that clowing is easy because they just have to act and look stupid in a giant costume and a make-up.

But clowning requires much more skill than just act and look stupid. The actions and response must be in sync, among other skills.
-----



Joseph Then

Singapore Ventriloquist
p.b.jones
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Emazdad, I do not beleiev that the majority of the public expect more of magicians than clowns . I beleive they are hiring a party to perform and entertain. Now some are looking for babysitting true but are they willing to pay $100. or more an hour for that alone?

Hi,
I think it's a cultural thing here in the uk people tend to think .. anyone can dress up as a clown and in truth they often do many corprate kids events have me as the magic show and several staff members as clowns funning about before and after my show.
phillip
Emazdad
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Shops in Plymouth after phoning round to get an entertainer for a promotion, be it a clown, magician or balloon modeller, and finding that their fees are a lot more than they were willing to pay, often hire a student to dress up and walk around and pay them a pitance.

One lady in Plymouth, who's shop was having a promotion was phoning to get quotes from entertainers and found they charged 4-5 times her budget, and argued that her offer of £50 for 4 hours in their shop doing magic and balloons was a good wage.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Chuck Lyons
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Again I do beleive you are right it may be very well a cultural thing. all though as nkthen has said thier are many here whom feel that they can just buy something and then be that thing. that would be like me buying a tux and a goate and a levitation and now claiming to be a illusionist.

Here in the states we have the problem that Pj speakes about with costume or big head characters. They will hire a student give them lunch and put them out to wave and meet kids. Problem again is no training no, interaction no imagination. Does the purchaser get what they want? I beleive they think do but what is the audience left with?

At the end of the day this does come down to each of us a induviduals tho help one another and make sure our performance is up to snuff. It is a winning of one custu=omer at a time and educating the public that they get what they pay for. The performer that chages little and gives an audience less will most likely not be performing long. The audience is getting very savy and they will talk and the cheap performer will not get referrals or call backs. Thank you all for wieghing in on this contrevesial and emotional subject.
Romulo
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Quote:
On 2004-09-10 03:53, p.b.jones wrote:
Hi,
I think it's a cultural thing here in the uk people tend to think .. anyone can dress up as a clown and in truth they often do many corprate kids events have me as the magic show and several staff members as clowns funning about before and after my show.
phillip


I don't think things are that easy.
They are not clown. They are, as you put it, just one person dressed like a clown. To be a clown or magician it requires much more than a magician or clown outfit. Otherwise you'll be just somone desguised for a carnival here in Brazil.

Two pizzarias managers told us that a very famous clown here in my city did nothing but whistle and wave to kids and people. I doubt someone working like that will get hired again. I really doubt!

I don't think it happens to magicians.
If you dress someone like a magician and ask him to perform, he will be a great revelation....he will reveal all secrets..heehhe
Al Kazam the Magic Man
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A very interesting thread indeed. From what I can gather from everyone's writings is that a lot has to do with the customs and atitudes in different areas of the world.

Here in Taiwan I perform as a magical clown as opposed to a Magician. I'm the only clown in an area of over 5 million people. It's a strong selling point for me. Chinese clowns are just not funny. I perform magic, just like a lot of magicians do, although mainly comedy style with a lot of talking and interaction with the crowd.(all in Chinese) I can charge more than most of the local magicians here. Most Chinese say I look like Ronald McDonald, as that is the only clown they can relate to, as his statue is outside every store here.

On the other hand if I was to return to Australia, I would probably work as a straight magician, and have my clown character as another option for the customers. I've noticed that Nickolas Johnson has many different characters for his customers to choose from.

JoJo
Al Kazam --> Magic guy in Perth Australia
p.b.jones
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I don't think things are that easy.
They are not clown. They are, as you put it, just one person dressed like a clown. To be a clown or magician it requires much more than a magician or clown outfit. Otherwise you'll be just somone desguised for a carnival here in Brazil.

HI,
We know that but what I am saying is to most of the general public here in the UK just about anyone can put on a clown outfit and be funny. I am not saying it's correct just that it's the public belief
Phillip
Al Kazam the Magic Man
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Romulo quoted:

Two pizzarias managers told us that a very famous clown here in my city did nothing but whistle and wave to kids and people. I doubt someone working like that will get hired again. I really doubt!


Hi there friend,
Firstly I agree with you that if that is all one did, they wouldn't get hired again.
Funny you mention this type of work. As a clown, I've been hired by a large shoe store chain to do basically that, as well as bring customers into the store, and perform small tricks if there is a crowd building up. The pay is pretty good for the work and they hire two of my kids to make balloons and juggle outside to attract people to the store. I wear a microphone and make announcements to passerbys, and promote the activity of the store. I've got the chance to do over a hundred shows for them, so I'm not complaining. Mind you, I'm taking it very seriously as a business opportunity and doing my best to perform up to their expectations. I try to give more than they expect and they are very happy to pay me and keep booking me. For me, it's giving customers their moneys worth and leaving them satisfied with my performance.

JoJo
Al Kazam --> Magic guy in Perth Australia
Neale Bacon
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I have to add something here.. regarding the comments about clowns charging less than magicians..that certainly hasn't been my experience.

I charge equally for both.

If there are clowns who are greatly undercutting.. they are what are known as "lipstick clowns" (You know, slap on some make up and do a couple of tricks and voila..a clown)

They are as insulting to clowns as the proverbial "bad birthday magicians" are to magicians.

Like Chuck, I have put many years into my clowning including props and training, and guess where most of the disrespect comes from? Magicians.

There ARE many who feel clowning is a lower form of entertainment, just as there are those who feel children's magic is lower than "serious" magic.

I am proud of my professional abilities in both areas (clowning and children's magic) and I feel that if other magicians have a problem, it lies with them , not me.

Sorry to get heated but this debate comes up frequently where I live and I have had some very lively discussions over it:)
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
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Rupert Bair
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Emazdad:
and argued that her offer of £50 for 4 hours in their shop doing magic and balloons was a good wage.

HA! If it were busy enough you could spend most of that just on balloons!
About 2-3 three years ago when I had been doin proffesional shows for a little while and I was working in a well known resturant. I had finshed my 2 and a half hours and I went to get paid their were a man and a woman at the desk, the man said ok just fill out the form and well pay you the woman said well, we'll get your £5 in a minute! (joking) I gave them back the form with my fee on it was £65 (very cheap but I couldn't charge to much becasue I hadn't been doing pro shows for to long) so that was £65 for the 2.5hrs and 2hrs their and back, petrol time ect. I gave the form back and the womans face went pale! They went into the back and I heard HOW MUCH!!! she reluctantly gave the money to me, the man was very satified though.
And another time not so long after I went to get my wages and I got a little bag and counted the money £14 for a one hour show with balloon moddeling, My face, went pale this time! 'Thats right isn't it?' They innocentley asked.

matt
Chuck Lyons
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Well Neale I truly beieve that thru a forum like this we clowns and magicians can get to know each other better by learning from each other. We both can realize that there are good and bad in both catagories but those of us that really care about the children and our audiences will benefit by the relatinships that we are forming here. The advise and tips I have learned in the past 2 weeks I know will make me a better performer and I can only hope that some of the tips or items that I have given will provide some benefit to someone else. As my old buddy Leon McBryde said you grow if your green but die if you know it all. Thanks again every one.
Romulo
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Quote:
On 2004-09-10 11:27, JoJo wrote:
Romulo quoted:

Two pizzarias managers told us that a very famous clown here in my city did nothing but whistle and wave to kids and people. I doubt someone working like that will get hired again. I really doubt!


Hi there friend,
Firstly I agree with you that if that is all one did, they wouldn't get hired again.
Funny you mention this type of work. As a clown, I've been hired by a large shoe store chain to do basically that, as well as bring customers into the store, and perform small tricks if there is a crowd building up. The pay is pretty good for the work and they hire two of my kids to make balloons and juggle outside to attract people to the store. I wear a microphone and make announcements to passerbys, and promote the activity of the store. I've got the chance to do over a hundred shows for them, so I'm not complaining. Mind you, I'm taking it very seriously as a business opportunity and doing my best to perform up to their expectations. I try to give more than they expect and they are very happy to pay me and keep booking me. For me, it's giving customers their moneys worth and leaving them satisfied with my performance.

JoJo


Hi JoJo,

Look, the pizzaria I work for is called Circus Pizza. It has a layout - from inside and to outside - that looks like a real circus. It's a very beautiful place, there's a stage where magicians, singers, etc used to perform, there's also playground areas for the kids, etc, just for you to have an idea how it looks like. So, after my show on the stage, I go table to table to entertain and interact with the customers while waiting for the order, and so its expected the clown to do the same.

Now they hired another clown that mime with other are doing, he walks up behind people following their footsteps and doing the same gestures, he goes table to table tell funny things with a baby voice, shake hands, plays with everybody, this guy is really funny and makes his presence noticed by everybody, including the manager who is very satisfied with his work.

I presume that if he was working in a venue like yours, he had to do what you mention you do.

Quote:
On 2004-09-10 12:44, Neale Bacon wrote:
Like Chuck, I have put many years into my clowning including props and training, and guess where most of the disrespect comes from? Magicians.

There ARE many who feel clowning is a lower form of entertainment, just as there are those who feel children's magic is lower than "serious" magic.


I guess I know what you saying. Once we were to perform in a kid's party and the clown and his team were already ready to start, and after arguing a little bit to decide who will perform first, it was agreed the clown would be the first one. He told us he were perform 30 min, give a break for us, we present our 30 min magic show, then he would get back to finish with one hour more.

Who believes he fulfil our agreement? Who???
Ok, he fermorde his entire act, his full 1 hour and a half, and after that we present our show. We were about to grab his neck. we had paind in our legs and backs to wait all this time stand up with all our props ready to go.

But not desrespecting his act thinking it is less important than our magics.
I think those who think like this is explained with one word: envy.
Chuck Lyons
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Romulo my first question why did the two performers argue? The customer or booker of the party should be in charge of what order the program runs in. Not the performers. It must have been a large venue for any one to want 2 hours of a sit down and watch type of program in the fist place. Again there are people whom are untruthful in every field, as a clown I am sorry that you had this kind of expierence.
Romulo
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Quote:
On 2004-09-10 16:28, Chuck Lyons wrote:
Romulo my first question why did the two performers argue? The customer or booker of the party should be in charge of what order the program runs in. Not the performers. It must have been a large venue for any one to want 2 hours of a sit down and watch type of program in the fist place. Again there are people whom are untruthful in every field, as a clown I am sorry that you had this kind of expierence.

We asked the booker who she wanted to go first and she said it's up to us. So...

It was a party celebrating the 1st birthday of twins brothers and there were almost 100 people.

Thanks and you don't need to be sorry, of course. It only shows how good you are as a professional and I hope you never do this kind of thing with anybody else. I can tell you - it's really bad.
Chuck Lyons
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No I don't and a party for 1 year olds with a clown and a magician. Talk about over kill. No wonder you had problems. Sounds like it started with the client trying to Produce or impress some won. That being said the clown should have stood by his word. Too bad.

I know I have had young clowns try to upstage a performer when we are at school staff doing a show for the students, thinking it was funny. Being younger they don't get it that comedy that last (in the minds of the audience longer than 2 minutes) is often worked out, rehersed and timed.

As I have said before there are a lot of jerky performers out there. I teach and I try to educate my clowning students not to be like that.
Emazdad
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<<<<Once we were to perform in a kid's party and the clown and his team were already ready to start, and after arguing a little bit to decide who will perform first,>>>>

This shows the clown had a very unproffesional attitude. I've turned up at gigs before to find they have booked another magician as well, due to the bookers inexperience at organising events we've had to get together, workout between ourselves the running order and discuss our programs to make sure we both don't do the same stuff. Then we 've gone to the booker and told him/her what we've decided is the best way to maximise trhe entertainment for his/her guests. As for who goes first, The easy way is whoever has another gig to go to that day goes first.

I've also had another magician turn up 1/2 way through my show. He'd been booked by another bloke in the club who didn't know I'd been booked because the committee didn't comunicate. This shows the importance of a signed contract. The other guy had to leave as he wasn't wanted and as he was a part timer, who didn't send out paperwork etc he didn't get paid. If I'd been the 2nd one to arrive after the first guy had started they would have had to pay me as I had a signed contract.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Neale Bacon
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Quote:
On 2004-09-11 03:03, Emazdad wrote:

The other guy had to leave as he wasn't wanted and as he was a part timer, who didn't send out paperwork etc he didn't get paid.


Even as a lowly part-timer, I ALWAYS send out paperwork. If a performer neglects that, it just shows he hasn't figured out show BUSINESS and that can happen to full timers too.
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
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Emazdad
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<<<Even as a lowly part-timer,>>>

Being a part timer doesn't make you lowly, being part time does not stop you having a very professional attitude to you magic business.

It's just that there seems to be a lot more part timers, who are the ones who havn't properly got to grips with the business side, some see it as a simple means of earning extra cash, maybe to fund their magic hobby, and don't feel the need to go into all the paperwork, whereas the majority of full timers know the importance of correct business practices. Note I said majority not all.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Donald Dunphy
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Well said, Emazdad!

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Neale Bacon
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Emazdad...

My bad, from your side of the world you couldn't see my tongue in my cheek Smile

I was just teasing..I know what you were saying..honest!
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
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