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cirrus
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That's what a girl asked me for whom I did a bottom deal demonstration and twisting the aces.
the real quote is this: Is it real like witchcraft or is it sleight-of-hand?
I must have totally blown her away.

The look on her face was nice to see, and the reason I do magic. I knew she would react well.

Did you get these reactions as well? Tell us your stories!
critter
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"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
-Theodore Roosevelt

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J-L Sparrow
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Cirrus, what you wrote reminds me of an entry in A Field Guide to the Audience, located on the cheat sheet at the front of the Magic for Dummies book, by David Pogue:

Quote:
The Longbilled Believer: In this age of Psychic Hotlines, X-Files, and alien-abduction theories, an increasing number of audiences actually believe in magic. Do a mindreading trick for this kind, and you get almost no reaction at all -- just a small, knowing smile and some nodding. It can be hard to impress one of these onlookers, since they've quietly believed all along that reality is a government conspiracy.


(Other entries include The Yellow-Bellied Grabber (who can't resist grabbing your props), The Farfetched Guesser (who shouts out incredibly ridiculous theories on how a trick is done), and The Puff-Chested Boyfriend (who doesn't like to let his girlfriend see that he can be fooled).)

Though this article is written partly in jest, it is accurate in saying that some of your audience will believe in real magic. That can be easy for us magicians to forget, as we've accepted the fact that impossible feats can be done (or appear to be done) through trickery and illusion -- even if we'd never be able to explain how it's done in a million years.
J-L Sparrow
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Granted, cirrus, unlike some Longbilled Believers, your spectator was not hard-to-impress, so I think that maybe another category should be invented for types such as her: They generally accept that magic isn't real, but show them a stunning trick and you can make them re-evaluate their belief in real magic.
cirrus
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And then to believe that the workers forum bashed me for stating that she did believe in real magic. They bash me a lot over there because my views differ from theirs.
magicfish
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I guess you didn't read my post.
tommy
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I guess a myterious power made it vanish.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Al Schneider
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You may find reading about the Meyers Briggs Personality Assesment interesting.
I believe that a performer should understand his or her audience.
Understanding Meyers Briggs stuff will offer great insight into the people you work with.
A mistake many performers make is that their audience thinks like them.
First off Meyers Briggs says something about yourself.
For example, my personality type is found in 1.5% of society.
I am kind of a hard nosed jerk that demands reality from those around me.
Peoople tend not to like me.
On the other hand, there is a class of people that make up about 25% of society.
When you do a trick for them it is wonderful.
If you tell a joke it is wonderful.
Curiously, this person is very popular and every person in the room is trying to get their attention.
Any lady of this type will be surrounded by 10 guys.
A skillful performer will cater to all types with his show.
Or, he or she will pick the places to perform and aim at a particular audience.
Referencing Cirrus' reaction of the lady mentioned above, I had a somewhat similiar experience.
At a party I offered to show a lady a trick. All I did was make a balled up napkin disappear.
She was real exicted to see the trick. She folded her hands on her lap and appeared eager to see.
I rolled up the napkin and did a basic vanish.
She looked the other way as if seeing the devil.
Then she stood up and walked away without looking at me.
Hmmmm. I guess I learned something.
Al Schneider
Magic Al. Say it fast and it is magical.
cirrus
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I love my studies in psychology. I was interested in psychology before I even started. I know that I have a very likable personality. People are always friendly to me. People have said about me that I am a man of the world, that I know my way around everybody. Children like me instantly, that gives me an instant edge.

I know out of my own experience that a smile and some basic rules of politeness can get you far.

Standing straight to make you look powerfull and hunching over in humbleness can get you far at the right moment. In a basic conversation only 7 procent is the things you say, the rest is how you say it and body language.

I think in magic it is the same. 9 procent is what you say and do and 91 procent is how you say and do it (the body language and psychology behind it).

I love to perform as if my magic is real. I have to believe it, and my whole body language signals that I believe it.
Atom3339
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Fascinating thread. Thanks, guys!
TH

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magicfish
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Quote:
On 2012-05-09 03:45, tommy wrote:
I guess a myterious power made it vanish.

nnnnnope, its still there. But nice try, Tammy.
cirrus
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Quote:
On 2012-05-12 15:26, magicfish wrote:
Quote:
On 2012-05-09 03:45, tommy wrote:
I guess a myterious power made it vanish.

nnnnnope, its still there. But nice try, Tammy.


what post?
magicfish
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The post in your workers thread about the girl who asked you if it was real magic.
cirrus
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Yes, I read it, but most people on that forum will bash you.

Again on topic: I didn't tell the girl how I exactly did the routine, only that it was accomplished by sleight-of-hand. I don't like to lie about something that isn't what it looks like to be.

I would have answered her question if I was doing bizarre magic. Bizarre magic is supposed to look real.
Brad Burt
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The problem to a certain extent is how one defines "Real Magic". I mean, in truth, you could answer 'yes' to that question. But, most of us here know that when someone asks the question they mean, "Are you Harry Potter?" Or, more pointedly, "Are you using Supernatural power of some kind to do that?" So we answer 'no' and go on.

But, that brings us back full circle upon full circle upon full circle of discussions that have gone on here for years. Maybe 'magic' is not the best way to denote what we do. Personally I like 'Illusionist', but technically in the craft that describes any act that uses large animals or humans in the production of their effects. Rats.

Foolist, conjurist, .... sigh.... magician.... ;-)
Brad Burt
Michael Kamen
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I think the term "illusionist" is perfectly viable. We do not need to limit ourselves to conventions established by the magic tricks marketplace that serve it's need to differentiate categories of wares. The only consideration is how it rings for the character we are channeling, er, portraying. . . ok, selling.
Michael Kamen
Ray Bertrand
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Quote:
On 2012-05-11 07:34, Al Schneider wrote:
You may find reading about the Meyers Briggs Personality Assesment interesting.
I believe that a performer should understand his or her audience.
Understanding Meyers Briggs stuff will offer great insight into the people you work with.
A mistake many performers make is that their audience thinks like them.
First off Meyers Briggs says something about yourself.
For example, my personality type is found in 1.5% of society.
I am kind of a hard nosed jerk that demands reality from those around me.
Peoople tend not to like me.

Imagine if you would have done Slydini's paper napkins over her head. This would have really freaked her out.

Ray
On the other hand, there is a class of people that make up about 25% of society.
When you do a trick for them it is wonderful.
If you tell a joke it is wonderful.
Curiously, this person is very popular and every person in the room is trying to get their attention.
Any lady of this type will be surrounded by 10 guys.
A skillful performer will cater to all types with his show.
Or, he or she will pick the places to perform and aim at a particular audience.
Referencing Cirrus' reaction of the lady mentioned above, I had a somewhat similiar experience.
At a party I offered to show a lady a trick. All I did was make a balled up napkin disappear.
She was real exicted to see the trick. She folded her hands on her lap and appeared eager to see.
I rolled up the napkin and did a basic vanish.
She looked the other way as if seeing the devil.
Then she stood up and walked away without looking at me.
Hmmmm. I guess I learned something.
Al Schneider
EnterTRAINment at its best.
Alan Wheeler
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Performance magic is a strange type of performance art. It's more of a ludic interplay--as there are elements of reality intermixed in a way not found in most kinds of drama.

Within the safe confines of a play, the magician promises to fool the audience. Within the friendly context of a game, the magician promises to cheat you. It's something like hiring fake thieves to rob your fake house and it better be good. Maybe it's like that movie _The Game_ with Micael Douglas. One great contributer to The Magic Café called it a "real-time, real-space illusion."

The contract with the audience calls for both a more realistic portrayal AND a more fantastical effect than most theater. The audience will feel more satisfied when everything seems on the up and up--the conventions of no camera tricks, no actors involved--and when, at the same time, the experience is unexpainable and impossible.

So magicians generally have a deal with the audience. The effect proper should appear very, very real; but the general agreement is that no real magic is involved.
The views and comments expressed on this post may be mere speculation and are not necessarily the opinions, values, or beliefs of Alan Wheeler.
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Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2012-04-26 06:43, cirrus wrote:...
Did you get these reactions as well?


A few times. Once I understood the question I felt uncomfortable. The first couple of experiences got me curious about "real magic/witchcraft" and helped me get past the "tricks for attention" mode of performing and toward are more "gift of entertainment" approach.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
critter
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My boy thinks I'm a Jedi. I see no reason to correct him.
"Courtesy is as much a mark of a gentleman as courage."
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