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Eternal Order
Look mom! I've got
14062 Posts

Profile of daffydoug
I feel it a workable idea whose time has come.
The difficult must become easy, the easy beautiful and the beautiful magical.
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Profile of illusionist-paul-uk
Renting certainly is a good idea...I've been doing it for the last few years.
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767 Posts

Profile of rmoraleta
Renting is OK if the person renting it does not mass produce the illusion.

This happens here in the Philippines. Does it happen in other countries too?
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Loyal user
Long Beach, CA
239 Posts

Profile of PaxMentis
I was somewhat surprised to see that no one mentioned Owen Magic Supreme. During the late 80's my company was trying to be innnovative in the production of local concerts. One of the bands wanted a fresh new idea to open their show. A Flash Appearance seemed the best way to go. And at the end, the lead singer wanted to de-materialize right in front of the audience. Both effects were accomplished by renting two props from Owen Magic. The cost was not prohibitive and the band went on to be rather famous.

The packaging and shipping would be the two biggest problems facing the renter. Direct pickup and return seems to be a workable situation.

Pax Mentis
Do not go where the path may lead, but go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
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Saratoga Springs, NY
515 Posts

Profile of mysticalmike
I think it a good idea. If you are doing like a show at a theme park. That what I think.
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371 Posts

Profile of Farrell
I dunno maybe to a corpoation 50% of the price of the illusion is good... but I think if I'm gunna spend half the cost of an illusion... I may as well buy it... I mean half down half on completion.... then I get to keep it... that's just my opinion
The Mirror Images
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Inner circle
1980 Posts

Profile of The Mirror Images
To the corporation they will only use it they will pay the price...but they dopn't want to keep the illusion. Once they do what they need to with it why do they need anymore??

Any up-dates from the poster of what you are going to do??

Steven and Michael, The Mirror Images
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Profile of jrabenho
I think that renting could work out great financially for both parties given proper handling of the prop by both the rentee and renter. Your only real problem within this situation may be your target. Your target is going to be so narrow that you'll have no choice but to bear huge shipping charges in order to make reasonable income. In addition to this, wear and tear should be minimal given a professional performer, and a professional prop. Accidents will however happen, and repairs will have to be made, therefore having a good builder on hand is a necessity.
Michael Taggert
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Fredericksburg Virginia
653 Posts

Profile of Michael Taggert
Ok kids here is my two cents on this. I have staged sveral theatrical productions where a long term rental was the best option. one or two day rentals don't make a lot of sense if you are renting an illusion for one special event you are not focusing on your performance but going for the cool TRICK!! don't do that. rentals and theater go hand in hand. I can only store so much equipment so I tend to rent for the run of the show and return it so I don't have to store it. My average run lenght is three to six months. If it is for my own pertsonal show I own It. the equation is simple if I pay the bills I buy it if some one else is paying anmd would rather not pay long term storage after I rent it.! shipping is small on a long term show.
Believe you then that I do strange things
Bill Hegbli
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Eternal Order
Fort Wayne, Indiana
22825 Posts

Profile of Bill Hegbli
Being you are in the New York area. This would be best if offered to business. Contact all the world headquarters in NY city. You may have hit on a gold mine. I believe magicians are not your market. I would line up a few actors or good magicians to perform the illusions at the company events either to perform or as an advisory position.

Also you should offer the full deal, portable stage, curtains, lights, CD tracks and music machines. Maybe even have a list of dancers available.

Also you should make up scripts and directions on performing. You should also have videos of the illusions being performed, maybe you can send these out as your sales information.

I would also include a no exposure close in the rental agreement. Business is your market or maybe even some NY plays. You are really posting on the Café to magicians.

I worked for a heavy equipment company that rented there machinery. Companies paid $12000.00 a month just to have the equipment available when they wanted it on their property.

Go for it!!!
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Profile of jl
A magician in the uk called Russ Stevens rents illusions at
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528 Posts

Profile of MDS
I still don't think that I would rent out any of my illusions.
Matthew David Stanley,
Comedy Magician
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Regular user
Western New York
131 Posts

Profile of bnadworn
I think it is a neat idea. People rent homes, cars, and many items that they can not finance through other methods or they may need it for a limited time frame. I once did a large show and borrowed some equipment from 2 other magicians. That is not always an available option for everyone and renting would be a better alternative than not doing the show. That is calculating that the show will pay for the rental and that the props that are rented are needed in the show. I would say try it and see. Like any business do your research, test the market place, and figure out a business plan. Make sure your contracts follow good business practices and the magicians code and I think you will have a lot of satisfied customers. Good Luck in your endeavor.

- Brian Nadworny
"They say the hand is quicker than the eye but I won't believe it until I see it."
Dennis Michael
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Inner circle
Southern, NJ
6018 Posts

Profile of Dennis Michael
In John Kaplan's Fundraising Magic program, specifically "Stage Fright" he explains how rentals of "Spidora", and "Headley-Disembodied" can make a sponsoring agency additional funds as well as a marketing technique for the Stage Fright Fundraing show.

When create minds like Kaplan have proven this can be done, and you get your name out there without doing anything but renting these illusions. It is a win-win situation.

Lots of similar illusions in Paul Osborne's Haunted Illusions, fit in this same category.

Now I wouldn't rent out my Gamolo, or Sword suspension or 3-in-1. But an Illusion like "Clara" to promote an illusion show, that's another thing.
Dennis Michael
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Inner circle
7409 Posts

Profile of hugmagic
I believe Abb Dickson still rents out some of his illusions.

I agree with Ken. You have to be careful what and who your rent it to.
Richard E. Hughes, Hughes Magic Inc., 352 N. Prospect St., Ravenna, OH 44266 (330)296-4023
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Inner circle
Los Angeles
2545 Posts

Profile of magicofCurtis
Great idea,, I am in the market for a few rentals .. There is a company in toledo Ohio htat rents them out.. Do you have a website for your equipment?


Also,, does anyone know of any places for used illusions for sale besides I am in the market for the eurpean sword through neck,, a chair levitation,, and a few others...

email me...

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Regular user
Rehoboth Beach, DE
128 Posts

Profile of Cashetta
You can always check ebay. I'm always suprised that there are frequently illusions for sale there.
I always ask around the locdal magic shop, Tannens in my case, as there alwayss seems to be someone looking to sell something.

Happy Hunting

Big Daddy Cool
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The Houdini Room at The Casa de Cool
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Profile of Big Daddy Cool
You are all looking at this in the wrong way. Why do only pigeon-hole magic to be a solo performer doing tricks?

Magic is a theatrical tool, and sometimes a production company needs a specific illusion to tell a specific story. At that point you can either buy the plans and build a prop that will never be used again and take up room in storage, or rent it for the run of the production.

Also, what if there is an immediate need. A corporation wants a specific type of vanish or appearance. They may be willing to budget 3500, but forget 20000! So you can't buy, but rental becomes an option.

And there have been several top pros who did get their first Vegas show using rented illusions...
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
John Pyka
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Elite user
Cincinnati, OH
447 Posts

Profile of freefallillusion1
Well, I seem to be in the minority here, but I would never rent out my props. This is entirely because I am 100% against the mentality that simply having the prop makes one capable of properly presenting the illusion. If a guy rents an origami, his performance won't look anything like DC's, because DC took LOTS of time to work out the staging, lighting, costuming, proper music, then rehearse it 15 zillion times, then tweak it all again. The guy who rents an origami will look like a guy who rented an origami- "Hey, look at what my box can do, and try not to laugh at the way I wave my hands magically here and there because I really don't know anything about this EFFECT other than the mechanical workings of this fancy box". This seriously cheapens magic. Yes, people do rent houses, cars, etc., but no comparison can be made between this and renting an illusion for the purpose of entertaining an audience. I agree with a previous poster that if one can't afford an illusion, maybe that individual isn't at the point in their carreer where they need to be performing that illusion. When someone BUYS an illusion, I believe that they will definitely put more time and energy into making sure it looks right. I just can't see how running a "dial-a-prop" rental service is doing any good for magic as a whole. Just think of how many bad performances you've seen of otherwise good tricks. This is exactly what this would produce. Can you make money by renting out your props? YES. Does that make it right? Well.....
Kevin Ridgeway
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Indianapolis, IN & Phoenix, AZ
1830 Posts

Profile of Kevin Ridgeway
I can see both sides of this...However couldn't one that is naturally a good performer with plenty of skill, rent an illusion, work on it for a week and do a decent job with it?

If you say no...then I guess you also did not like Hans Klok on Worlds Greatest see he rented or borrowed a Windshear (the very first one to be exact), he also borrowed or rented a Smoke Chamber.

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