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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The tricks are on me! » » The Social Magician (7 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Dick Oslund
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Quote:
On May 29, 2017, spyers.vdm wrote:
Hi Guys. Can someone please help. What is the trick called where the magician uses an arrow and the kids direct him.
He then turns the card that the arrow is printed on.
He goes in completely the wrong direction. Saw this and cant remember the name...

Thanx
Morne


It sounds like the guy that you saw do it, didn't have much of a presentation for the prop! It's more or less a "nothing" trick, without PRESENTATION!!!

"That" trick has many names! E.g. Chinese Compass and "Hi Sign" are just two of many.

I'm more familiar with "Hi Sign", since I've used one since 1951. IIRC, the late Clayton Rawson wrote some clever patter for it. I think the late Milbourne Christopher sold it through Lou Tannen's NYC shop. I first saw Norman Jensen perform it on a USO show, when I was in the Navy.

"Hi Sign" has had a number of different versions sold in the past 66 years!
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Wilktone
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Quote:
On Jun 5, 2017, Doc Willie wrote:
Merchant of Magic has made a fee eBook available on this topic: https://na282.infusionsoft.com/app/linkC......b495a48b

There are also a number of blog entries on that site that are pertinent to this topic.


Thanks for posting that, Doc. I missed your post when the topic got pushed to another page.

The eBook is called "Pitfalls of Showing Magic to Your Friends." There's definitely some good advice in there, however I have a quibble with the following quote from it:

Quote:
Performing for your family and friends can be very rewarding. Magic is a great hobby and can become a life long obsession. Showing a trick, leads people to want more, and spurs you on to keep learning. However, to develop further, you will need to take the next step and perform for the public. The dynamics are quite different.


I agree 100% that the dynamics are quite different, but I don't feel that the point that "developing further," as the author puts it, is necessarily the goal of the social magician. I enjoy juggling, for example, but I don't want to perform it for the public, but I do practice (occasionally) because I want to get better (or at least maintain my current lack of juggling chops). Some folks enjoy playing a pickup game of basketball with friends, but don't want to compete. Likewise, many social magicians want to get better at magic and are serious about learning it, but have no desire to perform for the general public. I think that this is a characteristic that many professional magicians either forget or simply don't understand when offering advice to amateur magicians.

At least that's how I feel. I'm sure many amateurs feel differently.

Dave
Some_Magical_Idiot
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Interesting topic - thanks for starting!
P.L.Green
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Quote:
On Jun 5, 2017, Doc Willie wrote:
Likewise, many social magicians want to get better at magic and are serious about learning it, but have no desire to perform for the general public. I think that this is a characteristic that many professional magicians either forget or simply don't understand when offering advice to amateur magicians.


Dave, I share with you my lack of interest in performing in public, at least for the time being, but compared to juggling, effects and sleights only become magic in front of an audience, right? For me it is actually the toughest one you can face, aka my family.
Can you keep a secret?.....So can I ;o)
Wilktone
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I wanted to resurrect this topic for a bit to share something I came across on the Jerx web site mentioned earlier:

http://www.thejerx.com/blog/2017/10/22/t......e-gambit

A short while ago I decided to try out the idea by telling my friends that I had been invited to "audition" for a "very exclusive magic club." The audition process supposedly involves lots of stages, so over the course of a year or more I'm supposed to pass lots of different trials.

This has opened up some social performing opportunities for me. First, my friends now occasionally ask me how the audition is going. This gives me an organic way to get into showing them a magic trick because they asked about it (rather than trying to force magic into a social situation). Secondly, it's given me some fodder for patter that makes more sense in a social context. For example, when showing Three Fly I introduced it as a "move I'm working on" that invisibly tosses a coin from one hand to the other.

At least one of my friends has already questioned whether or not the whole thing is a bit I'm putting on for their benefit, which is partly the whole point. I may never do the ending from the Jerx post (partly because my circle of friends that would participate in this bit are the same folks I'm performing for), but everyone is having fun.

Another lesson I've been learning from this experience is when performing in a social context I can think of my performance as less of a single trick or short set for my friends once in a while, but instead one long extended performance that goes over the course of months or even years.

Consider other possibilities. For fun, I've put together some 20 minute formal close-up sets. It's very unlikely that I'll be out with friends with all my props in place, ready to perform (and it would be rude to my friends to dominate a social activity this way). However, when I have friends and family over for a visit, it makes sense to ask them if they could watch an "audition show" that I have to perform. Now the advice that is easy to find on routining magic shows and such that is directed towards professionals is relevant.

Just some thoughts for the rest of you interested in performing magic in social situations. If you're a professional, it obviously won't interest you.

Dave
Dick Oslund
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On the contrary, Dave! I do find your posts very interesting, and well worth reading!

Over the years, I've done "some" (!) mentoring. Not all of those being mentored, wanted to be full time pro's. (Although some have, and, are doing very well.)

You obviously do some thinking, before you write! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
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