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Starrpower
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In another thread, someone was angered that a few names were mentioned as being people who's acts were not enjoyed, or even (heaven forbid!) bad performers. It was implied that we shouldn't do this.

Steve Brooks was quoted on this issue. I will respect Steve's opinions, particularly because it's his forum we are using to have these discussions. But, I think he is DEAD WRONG.

By ignoring poor performer's we are validating them. The quote that was made said it's bad to talk behind their back, and worse to do it publicly. WHY!? Now we can't even voice an opinion for fear of offending someone? True, I wouldn't walk up to someone and say "You suck!", but on the other hand if they ASKED my my opinon I would certainly tell them face-to-face what I thought. And I assume the same would be done for (or to) me.

We review products, books, videos, etc. here. Isn't that just as much an infraction as reviewing someone's performing? Either one is their personal work. It just seems hypocritical to me that we should just accept poor quality shows, or at least fail to discuss them, because ... well, I don't KNOW why! All I know is we're somehow looked down upon for doing so.

This is a professional forum, meant for such discussions ... even personal reviews and opinions, albiet casually done. If at times we do so in a humorous way, or even a sarcastic way, so be it. Shining a spot light on a cockroach never hurt anyone -- not even the cockroach.

In my country it's all about free speech, even if it's painful to accept that someone may not like what you do.

BTW, the names in question were all people who decided to place themselves in the magic limelight, so to speak, by writing books, making videos/DVD's, or making appearances at magic conventions. These actions remove them from the realm of the guy who does this day to day for a living, and into the area of perceived expert. It opens them up to discussion and criticism.

Opinons?
Michael238
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Well.....maybe not in the forum, would it be good to discuss who is bad. I would personally like the proffessional advice on improvement, but not so much in a public forum. Some people like to just slam others, (no one in mind in this statement) where as there are the others who truly help.

My 2 cents worth are this: put our thought in a pm, or e mail, unless the individual has asked in a post how they are viewed.This makes it an open forum invite, which no one should be offended if they openly asked fot the good and bad.
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Starrpower
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The problem is, this method limits our discussion. If Mr. Magic is a poor performer, and he has a lot of published materials out there and is asking for MONEY from us for his knowledge, shouldn't he be open to public discussion?

If he puts himself in front of PAYING CHILDREN'S PERFORMERS at magic events, doesn't he open himself up to discussion and criticism by that same group?

If he writes for a "Children's Perdformer" column in a magic publication, read by children's performers, thereby presenting himself as an "expert" in doing so, isn't he fair game for evaluation here?
p.b.jones
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HI,
I agree with Starrpower, if you are selling your knowledge or expert advice then you are open game if you are not up to par (or appear to be)
Phillip
Michael238
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In that case, Starrpower, I do agree.
I was referring to a performer, not in the case stated. Sorry to mis understand what you were saying.
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Alan Munro
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Well, many magic authors were never performers and felt free to dispense advise. Always consider the source!
Starrpower
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Agreed, Alan. But shouldn't it be our option to let our peers know about those authors, and their lack of experience? How can we "consider the source" without knowing what the source is?
kenscott
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I am assuming you are referring to my post on the other thread. My point is sometimes magicians are quick to jump and say that guy sucks. There are many different styles of performers. David Ginn has been around and published many things and has DONE TONS for a lot of children's performers. Yet my style and they way he performs are night and day. Can I learn from him? You bet!!

One of my mentors and great friends JC Doty who really has never performed for money. He built many props from a lot of the big name stars in magic he also built Tom Mullica's bar in Atlanta in 80's. Yet he has some of the most the most useful information for me ever time we get together. I have seen Trevor lewis who I think is one the best children's performers not do so well at a lecture here in the states. Yet when I saw him again at another function he KILLED.

Sounds that we have tons of experts here yet most have nothing inprint or published. What are you waiting for??

Maybe instead of knocking the people you read about or see we should look at our selves and check out our own show and make sure it is the best it can be. If it is like I said then one should publish their knowledge and help out the children's performers of the world..

Ken
Emazdad
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This will amaze you all, for once I'm in full 100% agreement with starrpower. it's amazing what you can learn by listening to others opinions of your work, often they will pick up on stuff that you've never thought of.

Where is it written that just because someone written a book or two and is considered by some to be a so called expert on kids entertaining that everyone must like their stuff?
Yours Funfully
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Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
RJE
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Subjectivity is a slippery slope when we try and pass it off as the definitive.

How could we all possibly agree on what is really good or what is terrible? I like this forum because when I ask for opinions, I get them, often pro and con.

There is a plethora of "magic experts and authors" out there today. Many of which I know or have known personally. I have worked with them, performing in the same shows or on the same card. Do I like all of their styles of performing? Absolutely not. Do I envy some of their skills and techniques? Of course. Do I have the right to say they aren't any good? I don't think so. At best, I can say, "Personally, that's not something I would do." Or, "It's doesn't fit my performing style."

Jay Sankey and I have worked in the past together in magic shows and stand-up comedy shows. He has a very distinct style that I could never hope to emulate. The audience finds us both entertaining, but vastly different in our personas.

I have worked with Greg Frewin when he was up and coming. I thought he was very talented but that he wore too much make up on stage. Obviously not. He was doing all the right things.

I was fortunate enough to know Doug Henning personally. I thought he was a little "silly" on stage at times but obviously very charismatic. History speaks for him now. He opened a lot of doors for us.

And it goes on...

My point is you cannot like every magician's style or choice of routines. You will not agree with every magician's opinion on what is good or bad. You cannot state objectively on a matter that is subjective. And, being subjective, it is really just your opinion, which you have the right to, but should not in any way be construed as a definitive point of view.

Anyway, that's the way I see it.

Rob
p.b.jones
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HI Ken,
I think that what you are saying is different, I have seen your video and you and I have different personas, as does David Ginn, Sammy Smith ext Yet I still think that they are good kids performers, there are others however whom I have seen yet seemed to lack the fundementals of being able to hold their audience I saw one performer (not well known) who came off stage delighted with his show yet if the kids had behaved like that with me I would have thought god what an awful show. If I do not like the show/performer but the lay audience loves them then I do not feel I can critisize, However, if they bomb with a lay audience then try to market advice sorry but I will critisize.
Phillip
Starrpower
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RJE - I don't think anyone claims that their opinion is the definitive point of view. But, it is still a point of view, and they should be able to state it in regards to other performers. If I read 12 opinons that a program or performer is no good, and one that he's excellent, that says something, doesn't it?

Ken - I like to think that we ARE analyzing our own work, and that's why we have such heated debate here. You seem to think that, unless we are published or otherwise acknowledged, we have no right to share our opinions. Again, I disagree. ANYONE in this arena has the right to have an opinion about anyone else. In fact, I tend to listed more to the "average" guy in the trenches, working every day. He is the one in position to truly evaluate.

BTW, I have been published, have products on the market, and have been a magic columnist for the past 8 years. And I have taken a LOT of heat in the past. And people have the right to do so, just as I think I earned the right to also voice my opinion.

Clive - You wrote: "This will amaze you all, for once I'm in full 100% agreement with starrpower."

Hey, soften the blow a little, will ya!

You also wrote: "Where is it written that just because someone written a book or two and is considered by some to be a so called expert on kids entertaining that everyone must like their stuff?"

Seems it's written in Ken's post, above! (Just a little joke there, Ken!)
RJE
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Hey Starrpower,

As to the 12 to 1 theory, I would have to say that I disagree with your arguement about it saying something. Who are the 12? Perhaps the 1 is more knowledgable or has more experience than they do and therefore the 1's point of view has more weight. Without that knowledge, how would we know?

However, as to the issue regarding point of view, I agree with you. On this forum we all have a wonderful opportunity to express our point of views. We can agree or disagree with anything that is stated here. Personally (IMO) I think that's great.
Starrpower
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RJE - Yes, you have a point about the 12 to 1 ratio. Still, the 12 should have their right to post opinons, which is my whole point. I think that by disallowing commentray that's negative in nature, we are also missing out on a lot of informaiton.

For example, I know of one magic product reviewer who, in the interest of good relationships in magic, doesn't want to offend people. So, he tends to only review products that are good, or at least not terrible. The problem? What if we don't see a product reviewed? Do we assume it's a bad product, or just one he hasn't gotten to yet?

And that's why we should not shy away from mentioning people by name if we see fit .. and particularly if they offer a product or service to the magic community. I like to think that someone who may think I'm a lousy performer, or a poor writer, can still see me as a friend or a good person.

We should know the good AND the bad.
RJE
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Starrpower,

I agree. I would also suggest that when we state our opinions, pro or con, that we offer an explanation why if we can. I enjoy reading the threads in the product reviews as well as the "Sweet and Sour" forum. I have also asked for opinions on products that I have been thinking about buying and I respect and appreciate those who have taken the time to respond. It is their opinions and insights that I sought to make a more informed decision. It is through this type of dialogue that we can all become more knowledgable.

I've enjoyed the rapport, thanks!

Rob
NJJ
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I think we should be free to say anything we like about anyone at all...unless people start talking about ME!
Starrpower
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Nicholos Johnston, it doesn't matter if what they say is good or bad ... as long as they spell your name right.
magic4u02
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Star man so right. I can not tell you how many times I see ads that say a MAGICIAN will be here. Uggh I am not just a magician I happen to be The Magical Illusions of Kyle and Kelly. Drives me nuts but I do make sure it is clearly stated in my festival contract how I am to be worded in ads etc.

Infact, since I am a designer, I offer to do and design the ads for them. It is solving a need of theirs and I make sure my name gets spelled right every single time. hehe It works. =)

Kyle
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Starrpower
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A-Ha! Conversation for a new topic ...
magic4u02
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Star:

Thanks for starting the new topic thread. I also saw it and posted some new thoughts and ideas of how I get around this subject. Thanks for doing that as I feel it can be a great new thread for discussion.

Kyle
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