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Topic: No fear
Message: Posted by: Stephen Long (Dec 19, 2001 06:39PM)
I have just come off the phone from talking to my brother, he said that whenever he performs his close up there are certain types of people that he looks to avoid.

Are you the same?

Or supposing you see a 400lb chap with several dozen piercings and black eye shadow?

Do you approach him?

Obiously it depends if you have been hired for an event or not.

But letís suppose for this situation that you are not being paid.

What would you do?

No fear?



"All the worldís a cookie jar,

The people merely crumbs.

I happen to be one of the chocolate chips"

Message: Posted by: Peter Marucci (Dec 19, 2001 07:09PM)
Whether I was performing or not, I think I would tend to avoid a 400-pound guy, with several dozen piercings and black eye shadow! :rotf:


Peter Marucci

Message: Posted by: Magicman0323 (Dec 19, 2001 07:22PM)
And are we performing in prison? :rotf:
Message: Posted by: JaymesR (Dec 19, 2001 07:37PM)
When I perform close-up I tend to avoid couples. For some reason I found out that the men in the relationship, not all, but a lot of the time will do anything to avoid being "shown-up" in front of their date. Lying about the card they selected, grabbing at props, and overall rudeness convinced me to stop performing for them.
Message: Posted by: Steve Landavazo (Dec 19, 2001 11:18PM)
Hi Gonzolo!

Itís funny, but sometimes people have really surprised me! Iíve done magic for people that from all outside apprearances seemed very intimidating, but proved me wrong for some reason or another!

I worked group homes years ago, and some of my best spectators were those kids that had the, "toughest" type reputation; yet they were the greatest pleasure to perform for! Maybe they were not used to others approaching them, so when someone finally does theyíre given the opportunity to sort of open up a little! Iíve been proved wrong many times! More often, itís proved to me that I was a jerk for judging them in the first place! Anyway, I think for the most part, people take it as a compliment when a magician approaches them! Makes emí feel loved!

Just my two cents! :banana:


Courage is the willingness to be afraid and act anyway!
Message: Posted by: Magicman0323 (Dec 20, 2001 08:40AM)
Good Point Steve :nod:
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (Dec 20, 2001 09:12AM)

JaymesR wrote:

When I perform close-up I tend to avoid couples. For some reason I found out that the men in the relationship, not all, but a lot of the time will do anything to avoid being "shown-up" in front of their date. [/quote]


When you approach a couple, ah heck, when you do any magic close up, you should be sharing, not challenging. Think about the way you present your magic. That is what creates the challenge.

As for counteracting the challenge, it is very difficult to be comedically fun and light with challenge type magic. A tough role to be proficient at.

If your goal as a performer is not to trick your audience, then the challenge is removed. You could be sharing the marvels of the world around us. You could be highlighting the folks in your audience, making them the stars. You will still get the credit for the "entertainment" and your audience will love you for it.

Present something people can enjoy the wonders of each other in rather than the wonders of you. That is the real magic.

The biggest stars are those who know the boundless rewards of sharing the spotlight.


Tom Cutts

Publisher, AM/PM

About Magic...Performing Magic
Message: Posted by: Peter Marucci (Dec 20, 2001 10:09AM)
Excellent advice, Tom.


Peter Marucci

Message: Posted by: Steve Landavazo (Dec 20, 2001 11:47AM)
Great advice Tom!
Message: Posted by: Davro (Dec 20, 2001 11:59AM)
My two pennyworth (cents to you guys) on this side, I canít remember who said it but Iíve found it a terrific help when performing for couples or 400 pound guys.

It is, people donít mind being fooled by a gentleman! :wavey:
Message: Posted by: Scott F. Guinn (Dec 20, 2001 12:16PM)
"People don't mind being fooled by a gentleman." Nate Leipzig to Dai Vernon.
Message: Posted by: Prophet (Dec 20, 2001 02:29PM)
I know when I first started working at the magic shop in Florida I avoided demoing for certain people because of how they looked I believed they would either not be interested or just give me a hard time. One day my boss told me to demo for everyone because you never know what you might miss. Well oddly enough alot of the types of people I avoided ended up being decent customers. Basically I now perform for everyone with the simple philosophy that I canít judge them by their outer appearance, and if theyíre trouble I just apologize for taking up their time and move on. I know the way I dress sometimes people veer away from me and I have even had security follow me a few times, it sucks to be judged by your outer apperance. In my opinion give everyone a fair shot.

What do you really have to lose? :fruity:


Yours In Magic

Message: Posted by: Peter Marucci (Dec 20, 2001 07:07PM)
Mike asks: "What do you really have to lose?"

How about body parts? :bg:

Seriously, I was waiting for someone to come up with the line that "you can't judge a book by its cover."

Well, no. But you can pretty well tell it's a book!

There's another old saying:

If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck, then chances are it's a duck.

In other words, if you want respect (or anything else) you have to give it.

And, like it or not, people judge how much respect you have for yourself by what you look like (or, at least, those things over which you have control).

You don't have to wear designer clothes but you do have to wear clean clothes, for example.

If your appearance is such that you say you are "making a statement", then don't be surprised when people accept that -- and "make a statement" right back.


Peter Marucci

Message: Posted by: Michael Peterson (Dec 21, 2001 08:53AM)

On 2001-12-19 19:39, Gonzolo the mediocre wrote:

Supposing you see a 400lb chap with several dozen peircings and black eye shadow?

Do you approach him?

No fear?



I would really prefer that you didnít talk about my Dad!


But seriously, being that I make small children cry & women clutch their purses in fear, I always love proving people wrong.





"May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house."

Message: Posted by: Mya Angel (Dec 22, 2001 09:30PM)
But... Ichazod, little doggie's love you!

:lol: :goof: :lol:
Message: Posted by: Michael Peterson (Dec 22, 2001 11:19PM)

Message: Posted by: Paul (Dec 23, 2001 07:17AM)
I don't judge anyone by their appearance and you shouldn't either. People transform when you do good magic no matter what they look like. Some of the best reactions can come from the most unexpected sources.

However, when not being paid, I wouldn't approach ANY stranger to perform. How many other occupations would do their work for free? It's my living, I need to eat, it's dumb doing free shows.

Don't forget, Blaine may entertain people in the street at no cost to them, but he is being paid - for the TV show!!!! :):)
Message: Posted by: Andy Charlton (Dec 24, 2001 05:54AM)
I have a simple philosophy. Hit every table.

As soon as you start picking and choosing based on your assumptions and past experiences you are vastly cutting down your audience.

As others have said, very often, the most unlikely looking people will be great audiences. One of my best audiences ever was a football team out on an end of season booze up. As soon as the team captain started to shuffle the invisible deck, the rest of the team (and him as well,) were laughing. As soon as the chosen card was revealed, and they realised they hadn't got a clue, they were amazed and really Into it. Great Audience, but i was initially worried before I approached, but finished up with all of us having a great Time. Of course. had they been Drunken A**holes, I would have done one effect and gone on to the next lot. I might be crazy, but I'm not Stupid!

Re couples. Make the guy the centre of attention very early on. I usually start with Invisible deck, and my closing line is, "Don't clap me, that only works because of Mike's great Imagination." That by the way, is said sincerely. If Mike doesn't play along with the shuffling etc at the start, the trick goes nowhere. So when I thank him, I mean it! After being the centre of attention in the first effect, he is far less likely to mind if his date helps with the next effect, and so on.


Message: Posted by: Stephen Long (Dec 24, 2001 07:00AM)

On 2001-12-23 08:17, Paul Hallas wrote:

I don't judge anyone by their appearance and you shouldn't either.


However, when not being paid, I wouldn't approach ANY stranger to perform. How many other occupations would do their work for free? It's my living, I need to eat, it's dumb doing free shows.


You don't judge ANYONE by their appearance?

It's easy to say that; I would love to be able to say it, and indeed I could.

But I would be lying.

You look at a man with an uzi in his belt and a knife in his teeth in the same way you look at a 10-year-old school boy carrying his books home?

Your a far better man than I.

I do not believe it's "dumb" doing free shows.

I do them all the time because I ENJOY MAGIC.

I'm not going to NOT perform an effect for someone just because I won't get any money out of it.

A good reaction or a "moment of astonishment" is payment enough for me.

You have a talent.

One that most people enjoy seeing.

In my opinion it is a bad thing not to share it simply because no one is going to pay you.

Message: Posted by: Dorian Rhodell (Dec 25, 2001 01:05AM)
Ok, just a bit of simple logic here. If you encounter a 400 lb. guy who looks like he can slap you back to your homeland, chances are he's an ok guy. Why you ask? More than likely he was always the biggest guy around so he never had a chip on his shoulders. He's probably loving life because nobody messes with him. Therefore he has nothing to be cranky about.

Take care,

Dorian Rhodell
Message: Posted by: Stephen Long (Dec 25, 2001 08:44PM)
I was simply using it as an example.

The question I was trying to get across was: are there certain types of people you avoid performing for and, if so, why?

I was trying to use the example of a stereotype to add imagery to my question thus making it easier to understand.

Point taken, though.

Although I never stated my views on what kind of a (fictional) person this large chap was.

I simply gave a physical description and asked if you would appraoch him.

I would.

I just wanted some more opinions, which I would like to thank everyone for.

Any more for any more?

Message: Posted by: tctahoe (Dec 26, 2001 03:35AM)
Gonzolo, If you charged, even a nominal fee for your services, you might be able to make it out of Marquette, Kansas :bigsmile:
Message: Posted by: tctahoe (Dec 26, 2001 03:38AM)
To you answer you question, no, there is no individual or group I would to approach. Oh, sure, maybe a group of magicians.
Message: Posted by: BroDavid (Dec 29, 2001 08:10PM)
I often perform in front of some pretty scarey folks - and they dont always want to hear what I have to say. And If I am out to show them up, then I may as well start checking to make sure my medical coverage is up to date.

But when I am out to entertain - then I look for ways to put the most unlikely one(s) in the group into Hero Position. I have them become my "cohert" of the moment, get them involved, make them an Insider, and even let them take the applause and Glory. And a good time is had by all - except my Doctor who has to wait a little longer, until my next ego trip because he has to put me back together again.. :rolleyes:

And afterwards, the ones I was most fearful of, are often the ones who bring their friends around, and say "you should see this guy, he is great." (whether I was or not...)

But there certainly are some folks that I have to pass by more than once, before I am up to taking it to them. So I just keep reminding myself why I am doing all this in the first place... (acquire effects, practice, go out, etc) It is about entertaining and talking to people.

Message: Posted by: JaymesR (Jan 2, 2002 10:30PM)
Tom thank-you for the advice. Though I do try to challenge the "audience" I'm sure that on occasion I may have come across that way (purely unintentional). I'll have to keep a closer eye on my ability as a "entertainer" first and not so much on doing magic. Thank-you :nod:
Message: Posted by: clunk_71 (Jan 3, 2002 01:29PM)
i think the 400lb guy with all the metal and his girly make-up was at the last blackpool convention so he`s probably seen it already....then again it might just be best to keep away anyway.

BUT on the otherhand he may feel left out and socialy downtrodden, so he might appreaciate it more than half the drunken morons that try to make our lifes hell out there. sooooooooo give it a go. :dance:



p.s. i cant help myself when i`m out and not workin i leap on anyone who wants to see something cool !!
Message: Posted by: N14 (Jan 4, 2002 07:00AM)
I use to have a green/red, 20cm high, mohawk or 15cm high, blue spikes. My ears are pierced about 21 times, my nose 3 times. I have a piercing in my tongue, and one in each nipple. And have a tattooed snake crawling up my leg.

Sorry I don't wear make-up.

But I love magic.


I hope you got my point
Message: Posted by: MagicJuanson (Jan 9, 2002 05:37PM)
In response to the couples "dilema", I understand that some men may feel that you are "hitting" on there girlfriend or making an approach to them. I have found that if you approach the man first, it shows respect for him, and that you really have no interest in his girl. As Tom said, you are not there to challenge, but too "share the marvels of the world around us."

Message: Posted by: korneille (Jan 10, 2002 04:09PM)
Great topic!

First of all, I use to be a punk

and perform for them (an opening act for punk and heavy metal bands).

I use to have a prejudice toward people wearing suits !!! :wow: I use to think that if satan was on this earth he probably wear a suit!

But I was wrong! Lots of nice people sport different cloting, earings, color, etc.

It is like racism! It is wrong!!! Don't Judge a person by his looks but by talking with them.This is the best way to see if they are the right participant for your magic!

This is just my 2 cents :pirate: