The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Where to start (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Jbbreckin
View Profile
New user
13 Posts

Profile of Jbbreckin
Hi guys. After some help one where to start with stage illusions?
thomasR
View Profile
Special user
593 Posts

Profile of thomasR
Hi there -

2 Very good places to start is "So you want to be an Illusionist" - a book by David Sebach and the various books, videos, and blog posts by J C Sum at illusionbookstore.com

Are you currently performing shows? what type of shows are you doing now? and in what kinds of venues?

Do you know what size show and what types of venues you would like to be working? That can help us give you more specific ideas.

One thing to think about is starting with illusions that you can easily transport and perform by yourself. The Harbin Chair Suspension, the Harbin Bow Saw, Smoky Mountain's Thru Steel, Floating Table, Magellan levitation... these are all good examples.
Mark Boody Illusionist
View Profile
Inner circle
1049 Posts

Profile of Mark Boody Illusionist
Jbbreckin

Here are a couple of resources that should be of tremendous help to you.


https://davidandteesha.com/product/on-stage-with-illusions/

http://www.penguinmagic.com/p/S20291

I also highly second ThomasR recommendation of David Sebachs book, also checkout Davids column in the SAM magazine.


Best of luck

Mark
Jbbreckin
View Profile
New user
13 Posts

Profile of Jbbreckin
Hi guys thank you for the kind words and help so I do mentalist and close up but I have always wanted to do illusions and transporting would not be a issues as we as a family own 7.5 ton lorry's
thomasR
View Profile
Special user
593 Posts

Profile of thomasR
So what information are you looking for specifically? Which illusions to start with? How to put together a show? Market the show?
Jbbreckin
View Profile
New user
13 Posts

Profile of Jbbreckin
I am looking at how to put a show together what to use and where to buy from or get plans from
Donald Dunphy
View Profile
Inner circle
Victoria, BC, Canada
7324 Posts

Profile of Donald Dunphy
Although Paul Osborne has passed away, his widow still runs his website. I've purchased a number of his illusion books and his illusion plans over the years, and think they are excellent. I prefer physical plans over e-plans. The Big Black Book was one of my favorite books, full of plans and tips.

Here's a link to that website: http://hamiltonholtinc.stores.yahoo.net/

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
thomasR
View Profile
Special user
593 Posts

Profile of thomasR
I have most of Paul Osborne's books and really like them. It's a great place for anyone to start either as a builder or designing a show as many of his designs incorporate various themes and will get your mind going.

Personally, I think it's well worth the money to get illusions from the pro builders (Bill Smith, Owen, Willie Kennedy, etc.). Keep an eye on the used sites and you can save a lot of money getting used illusions. The thing is you want to have an idea of what illusions you want. Build an outline of your realistic dream show... would you have 4 illusions? Ok.. what's your opening, what's your closing, and what are your 2 middle illusions?

here's a generic idea -
Opening - Appearance illusion like smoke chamber, vertical shadow box, elevator, etc.
Middle #1 - Sawing trick - Modern Art, Thin Model, Wakeling, Harbin Bow Saw, etc.
Middle #2 - Pass through trick - Interlude, Walking through Mirror,Wind Shear, Walking through Steel plate etc.
Middle #3 - Puzzle / Box Trick - Origami, Op Art, Lady in Puzzle etc.
Closer - Levitation - Asrah, Blaney Ladder, Double Lev. etc.

Depending on what you get used and which tricks you choose to get that's around $25-50k investment right there.

Obviously that's' a generic outline... but it's a place to start.

Trained assistants are an added expense. You need to pay them per show, pay them for rehearsal and hope they are available for your show bookings. I would recommend building a show that does not use trained assistants at first. You can still hire assistants to help fill the stage and help with moving props and assisting, but you won't have to worry if so-and-so isn't available and now you can't perform the Sub Trunk for example.
61magic
View Profile
Special user
Seaside, CA
711 Posts

Profile of 61magic
My advise is to start with some smaller illusions like a head chopper, head sword box, Head twister, etc... this will get you started learning the more important aspects of stage work and coordinating with assistants.
As you get more proficient you can move to larger illusions and first go for those that can be performed in a surrounded environment like Sub Trunk, Modern Art, Zig Zag, Hindu basket, temple of Benares, sword box, etc...
Done make the mistake of trying to do appearances or vanishes that require backdrops, wings and such to load/unload. Most of the work you will find in the beginning will be usually terrible conditions.
Levitation illusions and most suspensions are also not great surrounded with maybe a Broom suspension or chair suspension as exceptions.
Basically think about the various conditions, the number of on stage and off stage helpers you may need. The books above are great resources and also find a copy of Illusion Show Know How by Ken Griffen. The book may be hard to find but it has been a standard goto resource for a long time.
Enjoy this will be a fun trip.
Professor J. P. Fawkes
jimgerrish
View Profile
Inner circle
East Orange, NJ
2751 Posts

Profile of jimgerrish
I have found a good way to start is by building proto-types from large cardboard cartons. Unfortunately, you can't always get cartons in the large sizes you need, so my next best method is found on The Magic Nook Web site: PVC Pipe Illusions. You basically build the illusions using PVC pipes and connectors from local hardware stores and use them as flexible prototypes to help determine everything from the best dimensions to use to actually rehearsing and performing with the PVC pipe illusions. Once you have decided which illusions work best for you, you can then improve on the PVC pipe versions with paint and coverings (PVC Pipe Illusions are light weight and come apart and stick back together with ease) or you can use the PVC Pipe Illusion you built as a model for rebuilding it in wood or metal. The cost of each Illusion is minimal, compared with building from wood or other materials, and you can adjust the sizes relatively easily at low cost to make the changes as needed.
Frank Simpson
View Profile
Special user
SW Montana
877 Posts

Profile of Frank Simpson
There's a lot of good advice above. Let me advise on a slightly different tack.

We (naturally) tend to put a lot of emphasis on which "boxes" to get to create a show and then think of how to string it al together as an afterthought. If you're fortunate enough to have a strong theatre in your area or university, you might be able to find a director who could help you to design a show first, determining which illusions to use.

If you consider the flow of a show first you can then intelligently look for illusions to fit the "beats" and emotional high points and low points. By considering the entirely of the proposed performance before you begin you'll be much more likely to create a cohesive and ultimately more satisfying show. Of course you can just patch together a bunch of "tricks in a row" and do OK. But you can do so much better with a show that is well-conceived from start to finish.

Wishing you every success!
Jbbreckin
View Profile
New user
13 Posts

Profile of Jbbreckin
Thank you all so much where is a good place in the U.K. or Europe to get illusions from ?
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Where to start (1 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2018 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.17 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL