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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Peformance problem (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Owen Thomas
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Some guys at work found out that I do magic and unexpectantly asked me to do a trick. I did a trick where a 2p coin turns into a 10p coin in there hands. I didn't make a mistake with the slieght because when I asked him "Can you still feel the 2p in your hand?" he said yes. But when he opened his hand to see a 10p the reaction I got wasnt that stong.
Later in the day they came to me again and asked me to do it agian. I had a funny feeling that they just wanted to bust me so I told them that "i have to save up more magical energy, and can't do it now" His friend said in a negative way "I told you, he can't do it again Why?
What did I do wrong?
What is the right thing to do here?
BerkleyJL
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Chicago, IL
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Some people just don't like to be fooled. It's possible that magicians in the past have fooled them and refused to repeat tricks, and they're bitter about not being able to figure them out. They probably figured you're "just like the others."

I wouldn't stress out over it unless it happens over and over again...then look at your presentation style and make sure it's not confrontational.
I need a stage name.

Joe Berkley
Verno Inferno
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Chicago
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Atmosphere.

I'm not entirely sure it's possible to convince co-workers that you are a worker of miracles when they walk up to you and ask you to show them a trick at work.

"Hey, Owen does magic tricks. Let's go see."
"Yeah, but I gotta get this paperwork finished first."
"C'mon, it'll be really quick."
"Ok, fine."

You control nothing in that environment, so impromptu magic can come off as puzzling tricks. Your audience may be thinking about deadlines, lunch, going home, getting fired, etc. But they sure as heck aren't walking into your office with the same atmosphere/mood as those folks walking into a theater waiting to see Copperfield.

So, they weren't primed for magic. They saw a puzzle. And they wanted to see it again to figure it out.

Show the same trick to the same people at a bar or a party when you control when the magic happens, and I'd wager you'd get a different reaction.

My thoughts, anyway.
Kent Wong
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Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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When you perform for co-workers and friends it is extremely difficult to elevate the magic beyone a mere puzzle or challenge. You can still milk a lot of entertainmetn value out of it, but I wouldn't expect miracles.

Also, do you really expect anyone to believe that "Magic Energy" line? It may work for a 5 year old kid show, but for adult co-workers, it just seems hokey (but that's just my humble opinion).

Whenever, I'm asked to do a trick again, I will either respond by either:

1. putting an entirely different spin on the effect
2. showing them something different
3. or politely declining

If they persist, I will usually tell them that "The first time I do a trick, it is entertainment. The second time I do a trick, it is a lesson - and I charge for lessons."
"Believing is Seeing"
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Owen Thomas
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Magicman845
I know the line is silly but I didn't know what to say. If you say your line "The first time I do a trick, it is entertainment. The second time I do a trick, it is a lesson - and I charge for lessons" then its not magic but tricks.
Verno Inferno
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Quote:
On 2004-12-10 11:19, Owen Thomas wrote:
Magicman845
If you say your line "The first time I do a trick, it is entertainment. The second time I do a trick, it is a lesson - and I charge for lessons" then its not magic but tricks.


I never liked that line either, but for different reasons. Sounds pretentous to me. However, I'm only 26 yrs old, so my character can't get away saying something that condescending.

Luckily, I stick to comedy. So I don't have to come up with some serious, plausible reason for why I'm not going to do another trick.

"I'm not your trick monkey" works for me. Time it well, say, "thanks for putting up with my magic" and walk away.
Rob Johnston
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Utah
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Do something else for them. A tested and sure-fire effect. It may not be good to do the same trick twice, so why not do another one?
"Genius is another word for magic, and the whole point of magic is that it is inexplicable." - Margot Fonteyn
Owen Thomas
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I didn't want to do anything else because I got a feeling that these guys just wanted to mess up the magic.
Jaz
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NJ, U.S.
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Quote:
On 2004-12-10 11:19, Owen Thomas wrote:
If you say your line "The first time I do a trick, it is entertainment. The second time I do a trick, it is a lesson - and I charge for lessons" then its not magic but tricks.


You may have people believe that there's real magic for a few moments but..
most people will know something secretive was done. Your job is to entertain them and give them no clue as to what or how you did what you did.
There are some good one liners here.

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......orum=106
MagicalArtist
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Hobart, Indiana
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Quote:
Also, do you really expect anyone to believe that "Magic Energy" line? It may work for a 5 year old kid show, but for adult co-workers, it just seems hokey (but that's just my humble opinion).

...If they persist, I will usually tell them that "The first time I do a trick, it is entertainment. The second time I do a trick, it is a lesson - and I charge for lessons."


I see nothing wrong with the "magic energy" line, if it's said in a humorous manner. You don't expect anyone to actually believe it.

How would your line be any better? They would still have responded "I told you, he can't do it again." Your line is as much as admitting that if you repeat it, they will figure it out. How is that better?

The bottom line is, the response of these co-workers was ungracious, and there's not much you can do with someone like that.
Father Photius
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El Paso, TX (Formerly Amarillo)
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I'll tell you exactly what it was, an intimidation attempt. They first wanted to prove you were no good, why they asked you to do a trick. They were sure they could catch you. You did the effect and they didn't catch it, why there was no reaction, not what they expected, they expected to catch you. They came back wanting you to do it again, this time hoping to catch you, or at least hoping you were no good (what they were trying to prove in the first place) and would bungle it. When you refused the response from them is their trying to goad you into doing what they want, and if you don't it was their means of justifying to themselves that they were right, you are really no good, because if you were good you could do it again. I assure you, if you had successfully done it again, they would have only been back trying to goad you more. This is an antagonistic behavior on their part. They aren't interested in your magic, only in proving themselves superior to you. I'd tell them to take a long walk off a short pier. Lots of people out there with that sort of problem and behavior. Ignore them and go on. If they ask for another trick some time, tell them your a professional and your fee is 500 pounds a show, and if they would care to contract you for a show you would be happy to see if you can work them into your schedule, but the payment must be in advance.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
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