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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Table hoppers & party strollers » » Hitting the Mall (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Prophet
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Caledonia, NY
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I was thinking of going out and testing some of my close-up on people at the mall. I want to hone my skills over the next 10 weeks so that when I am done healing form surgery my magic and spectator interaction will be top notch. How would you approach people in a public area like the mall? I have my approach down for table-hopping but not random public interaction.
Yours In Magic

Mike

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If you are new to Magic check out my article
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=462185&forum=41
Duct Tape is like the Force. It has a dark and a light side and holds the universe together.
davidpaul$
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Pittsburgh, Pa
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This has been discussed in the past and the recommendation was to FIRST get permission from the main office in the mall. There are legal and insurance issues that malls have to adhere to. It's a great idea especially in the food court and lounge areas. Just get permission first. Good Luck
If you can't help worrying, remember worrying can't help you!
Christopher Lyle
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First and foremost, you need to get permission from the mall before you try this out or plan on being escorted out by their rent-a-cops. Malls frown on random acts of entertainment like this. Many years ago, my Barbershop Quartet just showed up at a local mall and began singing for people on Valentine's Day. By the 4th time we stopped and took pitch, mall security was on us and quickly ran us out. We weren't busking or asking for money, we just thought we'd make people happy on Vday. We were told we'd have to apply for a permit from the mall to be there.

Another time, one of my friends showed up at a mall to twist balloons. He went to one of the stores and asked if he could stand out front of their store and twist for people as they walked by. It would bring people to the front of the store and entice them to enter after receiving a balloon and he wouldn't charge them anything. He just wanted to pass out his cards to try and scare up some work. The store said AWESOME!...free entertainment and we'll make money on it. Do it!

He had made 3 sculptures and mall security showed up and told him to leave. He said that he had permission from the store to be there and they didn't care...b/c the store didn't have permission from the mall. So he got thrown to the curb.

Just an FYI...call the mall and make sure that they're ok with you being there or expect drama!
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
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Christopher Lyle
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David posted his while I was writing mine...DOAH!
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
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jay leslie
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And don't forget to get permission from the mall manager.
I like magic so much... I might take it up as a hobby!

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Mary Mowder
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You may try "The "Sidewalk Shuffle" or "Street Magic" as well. While neither may be the perfect fit, they may have suggestions for if the Mall thing doesn't work out.

I've never been to "Street Magic" myself but "The Sidewalk Shuffle" gang is very friendly and helpful.

-Mary Mowder
Daz Buckley
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Echo the advice here............
Lundonia
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It never hurts to ask permission but all the stories here are about people trying to draw crowds (big or small) and of course they won't like that since it draws the customers away from the shops. This guy is going to do close up and I guess he won't be keeping anybody for long.

I'm from Sweden and maybe it's there's some kind of difference with the legal stuff but I can't imagine that anybody would be asked to leave a mall if they did close up magic here.
Of course, as always, we need to use our common sense and the situation I'm imagining is that you go up to people who are not in the process of buying something or even window shopping. If I would do it I would go about it as a normal table hopping gig and approach people in the food court or at cafés.
"Only two things are infinite; the universe and human stupidity - and i'm not sure about the former" - Albert Einstein
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Christopher Lyle
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Quote:
On 2012-04-15 19:04, Lundonia wrote:
It never hurts to ask permission but all the stories here are about people trying to draw crowds (big or small) and of course they won't like that since it draws the customers away from the shops. This guy is going to do close up and I guess he won't be keeping anybody for long.

I'm from Sweden and maybe it's there's some kind of difference with the legal stuff but I can't imagine that anybody would be asked to leave a mall if they did close up magic here.
Of course, as always, we need to use our common sense and the situation I'm imagining is that you go up to people who are not in the process of buying something or even window shopping. If I would do it I would go about it as a normal table hopping gig and approach people in the food court or at cafés.


There's a BIG difference...people on your side of the world (in general) love live entertainment. People over here think that we're all a bunch of beggars and they think if they stop to watch something then they'll be scammed or we're doing something illegal. Malls don't mind if you wish to do something but you must get a permit to do so and pay for such a permit. It's all about turning a buck! Sad but true.
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
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Prophet
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OK we'll I don't want to buy a permit just to get some live practice, I know of a bar I can go to and "hang out". Maybe that will work better.
Yours In Magic

Mike

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If you are new to Magic check out my article
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=462185&forum=41
Duct Tape is like the Force. It has a dark and a light side and holds the universe together.
ThatsJustWrong!
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Try craft fairs, Prophet. A lot of folks hate malls and go in, get what they want, and get out: we call them Men. People come to craft fairs prepared to stroll and browse or get dragged along and are looking for distractions (We call THEM husbands). Unlike other kinds of fairs, craft fairs rarely have entertainmment lined up that you might conflict with.

It's easy enough to find the contact info for upcoming fairs (my wife works a lot of these), and most organizers are thrilled to tell their vendors, "I'm providing entertainment" as long as they don't have to pay for it. Just don't let it cost YOU money with the old, "I won't charge you for a table but I do need something for insurance" scam; carry your own and if they want a certificate naming them, make THEM pay for it. Good luck!
Joe Leo
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All entertainers can benefit from some help from an experienced stage director. How about you?
Prophet
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I never thought of fairs Thanks Leo. I was also thinking about retirement homes(not nursing) and maybe the children's wing at a hospital.
Yours In Magic

Mike

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If you are new to Magic check out my article
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=462185&forum=41
Duct Tape is like the Force. It has a dark and a light side and holds the universe together.
ThatsJustWrong!
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If you're trying stuff out, craft fairs will give you the biggest range of responses because you will run the full gamut of ages to gauge reactions from. Working for kids in a hospital is noble and reqarding but you don't try new stuff with them, you use your polished no-thinkers because if you have any heart at all, you'll be thinking a lot more about them than the workings of a new effect. Likewise, a retirement home gives you a more limited cross section of ages. Good luck!
Joe Leo
www.MisfitMagic.net
All entertainers can benefit from some help from an experienced stage director. How about you?
Lundonia
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Quote:
On 2012-04-15 19:21, Christopher Lyle wrote:

There's a BIG difference...people on your side of the world (in general) love live entertainment. People over here think that we're all a bunch of beggars and they think if they stop to watch something then they'll be scammed or we're doing something illegal. Malls don't mind if you wish to do something but you must get a permit to do so and pay for such a permit. It's all about turning a buck! Sad but true.


Hehe strange, my experience is that people in the US are more used to street performers, walk around magicians etc and are more open to performers in general. Very often when I've performed for my friends while in the US people at other tables have asked me to come and show them a trick or two. Almost never happens in Europe. Swedes are known to be shy and introvert though so maybe that's a reason for it... Smile But if you just get going they will absolutely enjoy it of course.

On the other hand, as a result of people in the US being more used to magicians they are not as easily impressed as Europeans. At least that's my experience although I haven't done any serious work in the US.
There's also a tipping culture in the US that we don't have here at all, I guess that's why people on your side of the pond sees us as "a bunch of beggars". I guess there are both good and bad things with tips... Smile

Back on topic Prophet - a bar is not a bad idea. I guess it's a better setting and whenever I need practice that's usually the kind of environment I'm aiming for.
"Only two things are infinite; the universe and human stupidity - and i'm not sure about the former" - Albert Einstein
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Rindfleisch
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Mike just go to the food court and sit next to someone and show them magic. don't ask for money just be friendly and show some tricks to small groups. If a mall cop comes over show him a trick. Sometimes its better to ask for forgiveness then to ask for permission.

Joe Rindfleisch
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Aaron Smith Magic
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If you can get permission go for it. I worked in a magic shop in a mall for 3 years, and people don't just want to shop and leave. There were days where I would gather crowds of hundreds. I would go out to an open area, and just stand there and demo certain effects. People had no idea I worked at a magic shop. I would gather a huge crowd and then when I was finished walk over to the shop, and tons of people would follow me and buy products. It was a lot of fun. Don't worry about getting people interested, if you have the charisma.
Leland
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I was at the mall earlier this month with my daughter and wife, prom dress shopping, by the way, that was a big mistake!

Found a bench, sat myself down to wait for the 'Ok we need you now' meaning it was time to pony up $$$$, so I whipped out the cards just for my own entertainment and before I knew it, I had a small crowd wanting to see me 'Do that again!'. The ham that I am I couldn't resist the attention. I expected the Mall Cops to surround me,

"Sir, step away from the cards"

but they never did. Wished they had, it would have saved me money!

Any way, prom was this last weekend, that reminds me, I have to go find her boyfriend and beat'em up. Maybe he didn't do anything but I know he thought about it!
Life of Magic!
Daryl -the other brother
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I once had a gig in a wine shop at a mall. They were having a special event and hired me to do walk around magic for their patrons. The event started out kinda slow and I suggested stepping out in front of the store to draw people in. The manager said I had to stay on the stores property, even performing out front would be considered promoting the store in the general public area of the mall and could result in a fine.
Ray Bertrand
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We appear to be back into POLITICS & 'Petty Jealousy'. No one wants to share because... God forbid... they may lose out on a piece of the action. As Mr. Rogers said: "Why can't everyone just get along?"
EnterTRAINment at its best.
Christopher Lyle
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Quote:
On 2012-04-19 19:27, Ray Bertrand wrote:
We appear to be back into POLITICS & 'Petty Jealousy'. No one wants to share because... God forbid... they may lose out on a piece of the action. As Mr. Rogers said: "Why can't everyone just get along?"


Where in this thread is there POLITICS or PETTY JEALOUSY?
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
Magician, Comic, Daredevil, and Balloon Twisting Genius
For a Good Time...CLICK HERE!
Prophet
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Caledonia, NY
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I thought we where all getting along and playing nice. In fact I got allot of additional ideas and help from everybody.
Yours In Magic

Mike

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If you are new to Magic check out my article
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=462185&forum=41
Duct Tape is like the Force. It has a dark and a light side and holds the universe together.
Daryl -the other brother
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Chicago
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Quote:
On 2012-04-19 19:27, Ray Bertrand wrote:
We appear to be back into POLITICS & 'Petty Jealousy'.


Apparently beauty isn't the only thing in the eyes of the beholder Smile
Leland
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Not sure where the 'Politics & Petty Jealousy' at? Did I miss it?
Life of Magic!
Maestro
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I think the poster was referring to the mall management being petty for not wanting to share buisiness.

I wish it were different, but I can kind of see the managements point. From their point of view they are probably somewhat responsible if some creepy guy starts twisting balloons for children and they have no idea who it is, haven't done any background check, etc... Obviously not saying anyone here is creepy, just from their point of view they don't know who you are, what you are trying to sell, and if you might be potentially disruptive to the other store owners who pay to be there.
Ray Bertrand
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My comment on POLITICS and Petty Jealousy was aimed at the other tenants in the mall as well as mall management. They want to maintain total control of the situation just in case one store gets more attention than the other. It would be nice if the strolling magician could end up with a full time gig performing for one store after another in order to solicit clients for each venue. Sorry if I didn`t state this clearly. I apologize.

Ray
EnterTRAINment at its best.
Christopher Lyle
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Quote:
On 2012-04-26 17:19, Ray Bertrand wrote:
My comment on POLITICS and Petty Jealousy was aimed at the other tenants in the mall as well as mall management. They want to maintain total control of the situation just in case one store gets more attention than the other. It would be nice if the strolling magician could end up with a full time gig performing for one store after another in order to solicit clients for each venue. Sorry if I didn`t state this clearly. I apologize.

Ray


Now it makes sense...and I AGREE!
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
Magician, Comic, Daredevil, and Balloon Twisting Genius
For a Good Time...CLICK HERE!
Daryl -the other brother
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I Second
Prophet
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Third! The motion is passed.
Yours In Magic

Mike

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If you are new to Magic check out my article
http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=462185&forum=41
Duct Tape is like the Force. It has a dark and a light side and holds the universe together.
Ray Bertrand
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Thank you Christopher, Daryl and Mike. I appreciate the positive feedback.

Ray
EnterTRAINment at its best.
Brainbu$ter
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I echo Daz.
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