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Topic: Anyone still doing lit cigarette manipulation?
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Sep 20, 2008 08:08AM)
Is anyone here still performing the lit cigarette manipulation routine in your act?

Or has the ban of cig smoking totally made this beautiful act obsolete now?
Message: Posted by: Stanyon (Sep 20, 2008 08:16AM)
I still do it!


Cheers! ;)
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Sep 20, 2008 08:19AM)
It's good to know you are still doing it, Stanyon.
Message: Posted by: magic4u02 (Sep 20, 2008 09:05AM)
I do not as I do not smoke and many places simply will not allow any fire items at all in any format. Sooo what I have done is used the techniques and adpated them to othger opbjects that are similar in shape but are not cigs. when we learn to look past the obvious, then we can start to utilize similar moves for other objects which creates greater creativity. =)

Kyle
Message: Posted by: Stanyon (Sep 20, 2008 11:39AM)
100% correct Kyle. But doing the Chavez numbers with crayons, chalk or rolled up dollar bills loses a little something compared to a burning cigarette. Not only do you have the lit cigarette, which creates a primal response, but there is also smoke management to contend with.

JMHO
Message: Posted by: hugmagic (Sep 20, 2008 07:24PM)
John Calvert opens every show with this. At 97 years old, he makes a great point of stressing how bad it is to smoke and that he does not smoke. Everyone should see one of the greatest living showmen do this routine. He can sell it like no one else.

Yes, It is dated. At one point, I remember reading (I think by Mickey O'Malley in Genii} you could do a lot of the moves with a chap stick. Of course, what is lost is the smoke which added to the effect.

Richard
Message: Posted by: David Todd (Sep 20, 2008 08:06PM)
Agreed.

I've seen Calvert do his cigarette routine and he does it very well, but even with all the "selling" in the world it doesn't make up for what is lost by manipulating [i]unlit[/i] cigarettes vs. the inherently more interesting (element of danger) manipulation of using [b]lit[/b] cigarettes . Same thing goes for using chapsticks, crayons, short pencils , etc. It's not the same.

(I don't smoke cigarettes and I don't do cig. tricks , but if I did I don't think I'd see the point of doing them unlit .)

Is it true what I've read that some who do lit cigs. use non-tobacco herbal cigarettes? (I have no idea if those are "safer" , as far as the smoke that is absorbed into one's lungs. I suppose if you don't actually inhale and you're only using the herbal cigs for manipulation then your exposure won't be too risky, but I really don't know. I'd research it before I'd consider doing it . I don't , so I'm just talking off the top of my head here ... I'm sure someone more knowledgeable about it can enlighten us .)

I think I've read that Finn Jon doesn't actually smoke off-stage, but he does (or at one time did) work with lit cigarettes and cigars for manipulation.



Wait I take that back. I do occasionally perform a vanishing cigarette with the usual utility device (you all know what I mean, and if you don't then go away , you shouldn't be reading this. ) using a borrowed cigarette . I vanish it into a handkerchief using a Ross Bertram subtly that David Ben described in a special tribute to Ross Bertram issue of Genii a few years ago. The whole point is that the cig is lit when it is pushed into the handkerchief and then moments later vanishes.

I suppose making a cigarette [b][i]disappear[/i][/b] is a politically correct approved trick to do.
Message: Posted by: Donal Chayce (Sep 21, 2008 07:34PM)
To open my stand-up act I walk on with a glass of "scotch" and a lit cigar (check out my avatar) and, being unable to find an ashtray, remove my pocket square and using a bit of manipulation (and a well-placed topit) vanish the cigar in it. But in order to comply with all of the ubiquitous "no smoking" codes, I use one of John Rogers' incredible props and create the illusion of a burning cigar by blowing out a single mouthful of smoke as I enter.

I then use the silk handkerchief and the glass (which I set on a table after making my entrance) in my next trick.
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Sep 21, 2008 11:45PM)
Check Magic Video Depot for "Smoking Frustration" by Roland Henning. This is a short, but brilliant cigarettte routine in which the cigatette is never lit.
Message: Posted by: jimmy talksalot (Sep 22, 2008 09:21AM)
I do it all day long in my street shows and when I work clubs, I simply do not ask permission I just do it....yeh iīm a street guy. this may be bad advice.

I have been trying to take it out for two years now.

I think iīm addicted!

I get my strongest reaction from it and I have made the most money with it.....as much as I donīt want it in my act any more.

I have the most requests from laymen and paying gigs.

also I have found that a cigrette routine plays better then it did for me years ago, because there is more of a sense of danger because people are not as familiar with smoking and a sense of rebellion which of course has always attracted people to the habit, and style in a sense with the vintage character street wise guy I portray adds a sense of authenticity to it or something so they have told me.

I have felt many times that it was passe and that it was offencive, but when I take it out of the act the above opinions is what I get from the public and the people who hire me.

when I leave it out everyone asks why I took out my best trick or what ever.

you see we are entertainers sometimes offencive over the top and dangerous is what we do.

I think the alternative is boredom stuffy uptight fun haters. this may be what the person that is hiring you is like, they may tell you that they donīt want you to do something thatīs over the top.....but the fact is if they knew how to entertain of if they were really fun people to be around they wouldnīt need to hire you.

I think it is a big danger to become a stuffy boring person so you can better relate with those hiring you because if you act this way they will simply hire some one more entertaining and maybe just keep you as a friend.

infact I have gotten many gigs because of this very reason. the boss saw the reaction of my crowd and wanted that in their business and the other entertainer they had working there was SAFE AND STERILE and lacking the crowd reaction.

this has been my experience from the past when I used to make my living working indoor gigs.

and it still rings true on the street and for paid festivals and the cubs I work now.

iīm not telling anybody to do it or to smoke at all, iīm just saying it has built me a reputation.

on the flip side it may have cost me some gigs, but I am unawhere of this but it is very possible. I know many bazzar acts who have lost gigs for some of their tricks or content.

I have been looking for a better trick for a long time. I simply donīt want to do this trick any more.

no really.

I WOULD STRONGLY URGE THE PERFORMER TO NEVER EVER USE FAKE CIGERETTES TO REPLACE A -LIT- CIG ROUTINE! THIS MEARLY CHEAPENS THE EFFECT ESPECIALLY IF YOU HAVE TOLD THE BOSS SO YOU WOULD BE ALLOWED TO DO IT.

thereīs nothing worse then a juggler juggling torches that are not lit, itīs better to just juggle the colored pins instead.

in my opinion it would be better to do another trick like a card trick or something.

the thing that makes a lit cig manip routine is that smoke and ember...thatīs the whole point. people know! and people can smell if itīs live. talc donīt cut it.

I like Donal Chayceīs idea of blowing a single mouth full of smoke, that seems pro and I am familiar with the cigars heīs is talking about and they are flawless, but I think that smoke is a must.


I know I have offended some, but itīs my two cents and I didnīt mean to make anyone angry.

if you donīt smoke donīt get started, the world is moving away from it any way.

your pal jimmy
Message: Posted by: trashmanf (Sep 23, 2008 11:29AM)
I don't' smoke tobacco or anything that would give you cancer, but lit cig manipulation still fascinates me. I am mostly a card guy but I will be learning this stuff eventually, using non-tobacco (herbal) rolled cigs. You can even add filters and papers and it will look exactly the same, with all the "danger" of the fire, but none of the disgusting smelling smoke.

I had to favorite this video, check out Mark Bautista's cig manipulation! This was posted very recently!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxr255LrqQo
Message: Posted by: David Todd (Sep 23, 2008 11:48AM)
[quote]
On 2008-09-23 12:29, trashmanf wrote:
I don't' smoke tobacco or anything that would give you cancer, but lit cig manipulation still fascinates me. I am mostly a card guy but I will be learning this stuff eventually, using non-tobacco (herbal) rolled cigs. You can even add filters and papers and it will look exactly the same, with all the "danger" of the fire, but none of the disgusting smelling smoke.

I had to favorite this video, check out Mark Bautista's cig manipulation! This was posted very recently!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qxr255LrqQo
[/quote]


Nice video. Is he using herbal cigs , too ?

I've done a little reading up on those and they're not exactly "safe" (as in completely non-toxic) but probably not habit forming as nicotine cigs (plus you [i]don't have to inhale[/i] into your lungs to do cigarette manipulations , unless you are doing a Mullica-style geek act where some residual inhalation kind of goes with the territory . Even Mullica says it's crazy and he doesn't do it anymore. But it was an amazing act) , and I still say if you're only doing the cigarette manipulation as part of an act and not smoking (inhaling) in real life off-stage , then your risk is probably minimal, but there definitely is some risk. It may be worth it ? It's not for me , but I realize that if done well it is a killer routine.

Agree with Jimmy Talksalot that if you don't smoke now, don't take it up, but also agree that using unlit or fake (talcum powder filled) cigs are kind of pointless. It's the heat of the glowing tip of the cigarette and the smoke that makes this play big , IMO.

I mentioned Finn Jon earlier as an example of a non-smoker in real life who does use smoke in his stage routines.

I think Teller is another non-smoker, however this routine is a classic :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qQX-jayixQ

Not sure what Teller was using . Maybe herbal cigarette? I don't know if they do this anymore.
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 25, 2008 02:56AM)
Very Good post by Jimmy

Says what it should be like!!

I don't smoke but Ive beem doing lit cig routine for years & still do in every indoor show
I do -over 100 clubs, Hotels & even college night shows we do with Hypnosis

Having a lit cig & smoke on stage adds a great touch to your act!

I never tell anyone I do it so noone ever mentions it!!

When you are a performer on stage you can add this effect as its part of a show-like a fire juggler etc

You don't have to smoke to do this effect-no harm in lighting a cig on stage-

I do the effect then realise with facial expressions etc that I shouldnt be smoking indoors & the act is actually me trying to dispose of the cig etc''Gets great comments after the show etc

If it works do the effect!!

Theres more smoke coming off the steaks out the back some nights!! so don't worry about it!!
Message: Posted by: kregg (Sep 25, 2008 08:13AM)
I used to do a cigarette act (1980's), but, Tom Mullica told me that I didn't look like I was old enough to smoke, so, I took it out of my act. Tom was right when I was 21 I looked like I was 16, plus I didn't smoke. That was funny because every time I did my act my eyes would water, so much so, once the audience thought I was crying. Still, like Jimmy mentioned, the audience response when I did cigarettes was huge
A cigarette act when done brilliantly looks impossible. The PC crowd won't hassle you if you work in the negatives in an entertaining way. However, just like a smoke machine & dry ice draw coughs, the very notice of a cigarette will do the same ... even if you were sealed up in a glass box. ;)
Message: Posted by: jimmy talksalot (Sep 25, 2008 12:24PM)
My friend and one of my teachers DANTE who works clubs and street all over the world who is adamantly against smoking (no really really itīs anoying)did a cigerette act with herbal cigs, he did it because he knows how strong it is and itīs almost mandatory in a street act cuz itīs so street like. the problem is they have twice the odor and they smell like pot or something illegal.

I would not suggest this because if the audience smells this instead of the more famuliar tabacco it may get a negative responce and you may infact get more hassle from the powers that be.

cancer is not the reason they are using to ban it in theaters, fire hazard is.

if your that uptight and terrified of cancer, donīt do it.....duh!

but I assure you thatīs not the only thing spitting out cancer and you may have to live your life in a bubble to escape it all.

tuffin up a little this is our lifes work sheesh.

once again I am not telling any one to smoke or do smoking tricks, iīm just saying if your gonna do it, do it right and donīt try and make it all sterile and safe like your so frail or something.

why? cuz theyīll probably figure you donīt know what your doing and you have no business doing it and you probably donīt.

hope I didnīt make any body mad I didnīt know how to say it any other way, then to just come out and say it and I thought it was important.
Message: Posted by: ufo (Sep 25, 2008 09:22PM)
The Café's own John Pyka (Big Daddy Cool) does a clever multiplying cigar routine in his show and there is a video on his website I do believe!
Message: Posted by: manal (Sep 25, 2008 10:28PM)
I do though not professionally.I am a full time smoker though with 30 some years experience.
My favorite resource material is from
Mullica
Keith Clark
Cellini
Message: Posted by: trashmanf (Sep 26, 2008 04:36PM)
Well, you guys have inspired me to give this a go. I have an old Cellini text from the learned pig, but I will have to check out Tom Mullicas material, it sounds like the most popular work. I just picked up a cigarette roller and a bunch of "tubes" so I can roll my own out of non-carcinogenic material... I will have to look around for where to find this stuff though. Hopefully its not too stinkey :)
Message: Posted by: manal (Sep 27, 2008 01:30AM)
[quote]
On 2008-09-26 17:36, trashmanf wrote:
Well, you guys have inspired me to give this a go. I have an old Cellini text from the learned pig, but I will have to check out Tom Mullicas material, it sounds like the most popular work. I just picked up a cigarette roller and a bunch of "tubes" so I can roll my own out of non-carcinogenic material... I will have to look around for where to find this stuff though. Hopefully its not too stinkey :)
[/quote]

That's what I do , although I use tobacco as I have found all the herbal alternatives to be even more foul than the tobacco. Afterall, tobacco is also an herb ( once used as a moist poltice directly applied to bruises on horses and cattle).
Anyway, I use the papers that come in the tobacco can to wrap the cigs rolled in the tubes. This makes them a little sturdier ,handy especialy if your tounge.
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Sep 27, 2008 02:18AM)
Keith Clark's encyclopedia of cigarette magic offers a wealth of materials for cigarette tricks.

My routine is developed from there.
Message: Posted by: jimmy talksalot (Sep 27, 2008 10:55AM)
Not gonna take our advice about using real tobacco?

yes tobacco bad but no not radioactive.

my suggestion is donīt do cigerette magic if your are that scared of cigerettes.

infact try stamp collecting it can be safe and sterile and fun for people who like safe and steril and think itīs fun.

just goofin.

seriously I think you should stay away from this trick because it doesnīt seem like it is comming natural to you, besides itīs an unhealthy habit that can be addictive.

and if you are acting this uptight to it now, iīm sure that may translate to the performance to something you are that scared of.

if I have made you angry, sorry I didnīt mean to,itīs just the way I talk and I donīt know how itīs translating to posting.

what ever you decide good luck.

your pal jimmy
Message: Posted by: jimmy talksalot (Sep 27, 2008 11:42AM)
I tried to edit that last message, because I thought it may be taken as to harsh but it told me I went over the 30 second editing time and wont let me rewrite it.

any way.

when I wrote it I didnīt mean any thing bad itīs just the way I talk in real life.

I hope we are all pals. and if anybody is mad at me iīm sorry I didnīt mean any harm.
Message: Posted by: JamesTong (Sep 27, 2008 02:30PM)
Jimmy, you are enlightening us and I really appreciate your thoughts. Many of us work in different environments and we can learn from each other.