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Brad Lancaster
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Lee,in my opinion you've said it all!
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I agree that the tux is not the way to go. Not only do you look like a bus boy, but it is magic cliche. Nevertheless I find you are referencing the dress of Alan on TV and two well known street performers. Corporate entertainment and society functions are a different game. As I understand it, Don was a coat and tie man at the hospitality suits.

Of course, personality go a long way. But let's consider the first impression.

You are in a multi-million dollar home. Most people are wearing Armani or better. Everyone is pressed and neatly dressed.

Into the room walks a man in a bright blue coat, sleeves rolled up, and a flashing rabbit in hat pin.

Is the first thought, "Oh, I wonder how unique and charming that fellow is going to be. Let's give him the chance to win us over and show us his originality?"

Or,"Oh a magician. We had one at our daughter's third birthday party. I think he was drunk."

If our image suggests a "type" we will be defined by that "type." I believe that the associations MANY people have of our TYPE are negative. Why start with your foot in a hole?

How much better to look like one of them. Introduce yourself. SHow you have a charming personalty while winning them over - which I agree is crucial - and then introduce the magic.

According to your own post, Lee, this would work. The personality is what sells them. SO make sure the first thing they fix upon is the personality, not the stereo type.
Lee Darrow
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Agreed, however, doing something that stands out slightly from the normal attire of the crowd is still a good way to delineate to the audience that you are not just someone coming up to them at a function and interrupting to do a few tricks. There are way too many Uncle Alberts out there who do that at these events who are most emphatically not professionals, nor are their prsentations of a professional calibre.

This is why I suggested the "slightly off the center of the bell curve of fashion" approach rather than the "way down at the tacky end of the bell curve" approach of the guy with the blinkie pin and the loud colors. Unless one is doing an obnoxious character (ala "Rent-a-Nerd" and yes, there are such companies out there that do that to people), one should still be slightly off center, fashion-wise, but it should probably be either further up into the rarified areas of clothing style or something laterally comparable to the crowd, but which still has a slightly "different" look to it, without being tacky, nerdish or just plain creepy (unless it's Halloween, then all bets are off).

I use, for many occasions, a waistcoat (vest for those of us the the US) that's a very muted brocade depiction of the Day and Night theme from a famous woodcut. The colors are muted, but the design and make is superb and I get lots of comments on the vest, such as where I got it, how did I find it and where can I get one? from both men and women. It's something that gets noticed, but is not flashy - a fashion statement, rather than a fashion emergency.

To me, the real key is meeting the client's expectations and, perhaps, exceeding them slightly - which is why I always ask what the dress code for any event is going to be and ask about costuming and dress for myself for the evening, getting prior apporval first, if needs be.

Excellent posts!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
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