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Veteran user
New Port Richey, FL
317 Posts

Profile of Lar
Hello all,

I have a question about choosing a performing name. I hope this is the right forum.

My name is Laurence; everyone call me Lar. At present I have done a few parlour shows, parties for friends, family, some fellow magicians (but not the public at large). Responses have been very positive, so much so that I am considering taking this to the next step, namely public performances.

Magicians of old used lofty epithets such as "The Astounding", "The Magnificent", "The Amazing", etc.

Friends and family now know me as "The Slightly Less Than Mediocre LARENZO"; that's the name I have been using thus far.

It's just a silly play on words that I came up with. Poking a little fun at myself suits my personality. I should say that the stuff I do is not actually "Slightly Less Than Mediocre" Smile

So, I would like to get some business cards printed.

The question is, should I retain the "Slightly Less Than Mediocre" epithet?

Friends, family, fellow magicians may get the play on words, but would the general public?

Would an epithet like "The Slightly Less Than Mediocre" turn off prospective clients? Would it seriously undermine my attempts to solicit business?

I don't know. Truthfully I kind of like it but would the public?

I would really appreciate any feedback from my fellow magicians.

Any suggestions ?

The Slightly Less Than Mediocre Larenzo.
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Special user
731 Posts

Profile of HerbLarry
To find out how the public will respond is to first act.
This works with stage names, trick selection, patter choices, and...
You know why don't act naive.
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Veteran user
New Port Richey, FL
317 Posts

Profile of Lar
Thanks for the reply HerbLarry.

Well sure, if I want to know how the business cards will be received by the public then I should just get them printed and put them out there.

However before even having business cards printed I know that there are things to be mindful of when when designing my business card.

Keep it simple, don't make the composition or design too busy, plus loads of other things I'm sure you guys already know.

All I would like is to get some feedback from fellow magicians as to whether or not an epithet like "The Slightly Less Than Mediocre" would turn off prospective clients.

Although I believe that some members of the public may not "get" the play on words and may actually believe that I am "Slightly Less Than Mediocre" I think it would be a small minority.

What do you think? Is this a big "no-no" or am I unduly concerned?

Should I just do as HerbLarry suggests and do a small sample run of business cards to gauge public response?

The Slightly Less Than Mediocre Larenzo
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Inner circle
2087 Posts

Profile of panlives
Words are funny little things.

Whereas “… a rose by any other name…”, if you tell someone you are mediocre, they may well experience mediocrity despite an overt display of excellence.
"Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?"
"To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time."
"The dog did nothing in the night-time."
"That was the curious incident," remarked Sherlock Holmes.
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Inner circle
Anchorage, AK
1161 Posts

Profile of MagicJuggler
If you're selling a comedy act it's entirely appropriate. If your act is more serious, then using the title would be misleading to prospective clients.
Matthew Olsen

I heard from a friend that anecdotal evidence is actually quite reliable.
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Elite user
413 Posts

Profile of DoctorCognos
In my humble opinion...

I think a performing name needs to be memorable. And if it it too long, or too complex, or just too "cute" to you, then it probably wont work.

On the other hand, if strangers easily know you by that name, that will work.

But I go back to my first comment. Simple is better. You can always use the longer version as an explanation and even a running gag to try get an audience engaged.

The Doctor
The Doctor Knows.....
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