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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Multiple shows in one day (Be careful) (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Jaxon
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Inner circle
Kalamazoo, Mi.
2537 Posts

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This year at Halloween time I was booked for a gig at a theme (Scream) park. This was the kind of establishment that had many attractions going on and guests purchased tickets to each attraction.

My shows where only 10 to 15 minutes each depending on how full the audience was. That means that toward the end of the night when many of them have already left to go home and only a few people went to my show at the last minute I might spend a little more time with them.

Anyway, doing these many shows may seem exciting and at first it was. This run lasted for 2 weeks but after about the 10th show of the first day all the excitement was gone. I learned a few lessons doing this gig and I thought I'd share some of them here with you all.

You've got to do a good show of course but as strange as this may seem. It can't be to good. What I mean is that when I normally perform I put my all into it. I get into that zone and I don't always know what to expect. I often don't even know exactly what I going to do because my act relies mainly on audience participation. you never know what situation is going to arise so outside of knowing what tricks and routines you plan to do the rest is your relationship with your spectators.

When doing this many shows you loose that. You would literally exhaust yourself. you have to come up with an act that you can do over and over again. You have to be able to just run through it and you do this over and over and over again. So you have to be good but you can't be so good that you need to be in that zone. unfortunately that "zone" is what usually brings on the best moments in a show.

You may ask why I wouldn't want to do my best show. Well, I did. I just had to regulate myself for the situation. What makes it work is that to each audience it is a new experience. It's just nothing new to me.

Your entire act must reset very quickly. I was learning as I went along at first but by the end of the first day my entire act was reset about 2 minutes after I was done with my last show.

Also, if you're ever in this situation. Don't do tricks that are physically demanding. Even something like the Zombie ball. If you performed that trick 10 to 15 times a night for 2 weeks believe me. You're forearm fingers and hand will be hurting. I did my levitation and my legs and back where killing me.

Well, I just thought I'd share the lessons I learned from this experience.

Ron Jaxon
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After regaining my ability to hear after 20 years of deafness. I learned that there is magic all around you. The simplest sounds that amazed me you probably ignore. Look and listen around you right now. You'll find something you didn't notice before.
calexa
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Inner circle
Germany
1635 Posts

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Thanks for sharing (again) your thoughts!

Magixx
Optimists have more fun.....
Kent Wong
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Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
I think the really important thing to recognize is that your show and performing style must fit the situation at hand. For instance, a gig that requires a large number of mini-shows would be very different from a birthday party performance in someone's living room.

In the first case, I would design a number of mini-shows that I could rotate through during the course of the day. That way, my interest is maintained and I can incorporate the same level of enthusiasm throughout the day. Although I may have to repeat each mini-show several times, there will still be enough variety to keep things interesting.

But I also recognize that my enthusiasm does not depend heavily on the effects I'm performing. Indeed, by the time I present a show, the effects are so second nature that I barely think about them. Instead, much of my energy is directed towards patter and interaction with the spectators. In fact, it is from the spectators and their reactions that I get most of my engergy - not from the tricks themselves.

In the case of a birthday show, I design the show in advance, depending on the age of the children. One show. One performance. But everthing else stays the same. I think very little about the technical aspects of each trick, instead focusing on my interaction with the kids and feeding off of their energy.

By performing this way, I put ALL of my energy into each and every show or mini-show.
"Believing is Seeing"
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Frank Tougas
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Inner circle
Minneapolis, MN
1712 Posts

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Multiple shows with a grueling pace such as you did Ron is a real reminder to magicians that there is a point at which magic is no longer an avid interest, or glamourous (?) hobby, but a job. A real, sweat producing, work it every day for a living, job. Even doing something you love can lose it's appeal to some degree when placed into the job category.

This is not to discourage the aspiring magician from choosing magic as a profession, but that it should be looked at with an eye towards reality.

Frank Tougas
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
zur
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Special user
California
671 Posts

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I would say this doesn't just apply to shows but in life in general. Its better to not schedule so many happenings in one day, so that you have a buffer just in case something comes up or something unexpected occurs. Also we must always remember to not overwork ourselves and keep our schedule balanced.
Jaxon
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Inner circle
Kalamazoo, Mi.
2537 Posts

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Good point. It doesn't really apply to my case though. I mean I was able to handle it all. It was just different and as Frank pointed out. It was work. I was glad to have had the experience and I'm sure things like that will come my way again because it got a great responce. It brought me spots on the news, it newspapers and litterally thousands of people saw my act.

I agree that one shouldn't take on to much and to know there limits though.

Ron Jaxon
Image


After regaining my ability to hear after 20 years of deafness. I learned that there is magic all around you. The simplest sounds that amazed me you probably ignore. Look and listen around you right now. You'll find something you didn't notice before.
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