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Topic: Need Advice Quick
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 9, 2009 10:37AM)
My Son, Nic,(13) has been asked to work at a local restaurant in Hamilton, Ontario, doing table side magic on "kids eat free days", It's only once a week for two hours, and the problem is we have no idea how much to charge them, this is his first paying gig, and he is only 13. I am afraid that the owner of the restaurant doesn't understand that entertainer's don't make $8/hr like the dishwasher in the back. What should he be charging? Thanks to anyone who helps us out here!
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Sep 9, 2009 11:46AM)
First ask them what their budget is, then mention that experienced pro's make XXX per hour, but he's willing to do this for XX and the experience. (If it costs transportation money to get there that should be covered.

For my thinking the money isn't the important part, it is getting the experience.
Message: Posted by: gdw (Sep 9, 2009 12:50PM)
I believe when I started around that age doing restaurants, I was making 20-25 and hour.

As Mr. Biro says, it is important how you present it to them. Also, the experience is important.
Message: Posted by: Christopher Lyle (Sep 9, 2009 03:06PM)
Pete is spot on! At his age, getting EXPERIENCE vs. money is PRICELESS! My first restaurant I ever did I was about 8 years old. I wasn't paid. I performed in a fast food chicked restaurant. The owner was a friend of my dads and every Saturday, he let me come in and do magic.

Those poor people had to endure an 8 year olds magic...yikes!

Still...it got me experience that helped pave the road to success. Follow Pete's advice...I couldn't add anything more w/o repeating him.
Message: Posted by: montymagi (Sep 9, 2009 04:54PM)
How are the tips in your area?
Message: Posted by: Futureal (Sep 9, 2009 08:14PM)
He's 13 and it's his first gig?

Gee, I wouldn't charge them anything.

Give them a free week, see if he's any good and then talk about money.
Message: Posted by: montymagi (Sep 9, 2009 09:32PM)
I know the laws are different there but can he work at 13?
Message: Posted by: Michael Baker (Sep 9, 2009 11:15PM)
[quote]
On 2009-09-09 22:32, montymagi wrote:
I know the laws are different there but can he work at 13?
[/quote]

I don't know the law, but would any such law not apply to a kid that starts up his own business? He'd be an independant contractor, and not an employee.

He should earn something for his time and effort, but it should probably be nominal. As mentioned above, the experience is the best compensation for someone at this age.
Message: Posted by: abc (Sep 10, 2009 09:10AM)
He would probablyalso get tipped depending on what tyoe of place it is. The experience is important.
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 10, 2009 09:15AM)
The Only problem with tips is, you are taking away from the servers tips, which they may not like at all. The owner has agreed to pay him, just how much is the question, and I do completely understand that the experience is very crucial and most important.
Message: Posted by: Eddie Torres (Sep 10, 2009 09:48AM)
I think that for his first gig of this type your son should be making his transportation costs, the amount for any used props (cards, sponges, etc.), the cost of something to eat and mabe a couple of extra bucks for this and that back. So if everyday that he's going in there he takes a five dollar bus ride round trip, a three dollar deck of cards, five dollar spongeballs and a ten dollar lunch or dinner, which totals $23, Maybe he should charge around 25 to 40 bucks for the whole thing. Experience is the most important yes, but he shouldn't have to be losing any money on the gig. Obviously he's not going to need new props every time he does a show, but I think that's a good way of looking at it, and he'll have some extra spending money which is great.

Btw, tipping magicians doesn't take from the server, it usually does the opposite. Unless you're performing at a place where people aren't prepared to spend any money at all like a little diner or something. If someone offers him a tip, and if it's fine with the management he should feel fine about accepting them. He just shouldn't go around asking for them.

Eddie
Message: Posted by: slyhand (Sep 10, 2009 09:52AM)
I have never believed one is taking away tips from the servers.

If the patron is going to leave a 15-20% gratuity they are still going to do that regardless whether or not they tip the entertainment.

Anyway, ask for however much you think you can deliver and see what happens.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Sep 10, 2009 11:35AM)
Let us know what works out.
Message: Posted by: Christopher Lyle (Sep 10, 2009 12:21PM)
[quote]
On 2009-09-10 10:48, Eddie Torres wrote:
I think that for his first gig of this type your son should be making his transportation costs, the amount for any used props (cards, sponges, etc.), the cost of something to eat and mabe a couple of extra bucks for this and that back. So if everyday that he's going in there he takes a five dollar bus ride round trip, a three dollar deck of cards, five dollar spongeballs and a ten dollar lunch or dinner, which totals $23, Maybe he should charge around 25 to 40 bucks for the whole thing. Experience is the most important yes, but he shouldn't have to be losing any money on the gig. Obviously he's not going to need new props every time he does a show, but I think that's a good way of looking at it, and he'll have some extra spending money which is great.
[/quote]

SPOT ON!!!! Great post!

[quote]

Btw, tipping magicians doesn't take from the server, it usually does the opposite. Unless you're performing at a place where people aren't prepared to spend any money at all like a little diner or something. If someone offers him a tip, and if it's fine with the management he should feel fine about accepting them. He just shouldn't go around asking for them.

[/quote]

Eddy is correct. The key is getting your servers to work WITH YOU. You're not taking a servers tip, you're accepting your own and in turn your server makes more money. Monday Night, I got a $10 tip from a table. No big deal right? Later that night, the server came up to me and told me that the table thanked her for telling them about me and asking if she could have me come over to entertain them while they waited for their meal. She got a $20 tip from them (ontop of her 20% from the meal) just for having me come over and spend a little time with them.

Christopher
Message: Posted by: BCaldwell (Sep 10, 2009 04:22PM)
Great advice, everyone!

Please let us know how it works out.
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 15, 2009 09:51AM)
Well, My son's first night at the restaurant, as an experience, was amazing, he performed for two hours and people were truly amazed, he was really good, he had a boost of confidence that we'd never seen before, couldn't have asked for a better response from the customers!!! The owners were happy. Although, they had planned to pay him 20 bucks for the two hours, they noticed he had made some tips, so they asked how much he made, my wife told them 12 bucks, so they dished 8 dollars out of the till, to equal a total of 20! He had actually made more than double that, but us knowing the owners of this restaurant knew they would try to pay as little as possible for his work! I understand it's the experience that counts, but 8 bucks??? come on!
Update you on next week!!
Message: Posted by: Barry Donovan (Sep 15, 2009 09:58AM)
That is cheeky of the establishment to do that

if they agreed $20 then that is what they should of payed out, regardless of tips made, but brilliant his confidence was up and he was enjoying himself, but say he got $30 overall that's a lot for a 13year old plus he can only become better
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 15, 2009 10:10AM)
Yes the experience was great, we had never seen him so confident, he had people asking waiters to have him go to their table next, He had a blast! He made close to 30 in actual tips, but considering the owner dropped him change, and not even a 10, that was really cheeky, but we will continue, see what happens next week!
Message: Posted by: Barry Donovan (Sep 15, 2009 10:15AM)
At his age he would do well if he had a regular gig

what I would personally do, is do a few weeks, get everyone to tell the manager how great the magician was and it makes it a better establishment and they will return because of him, after 3 weeks tell the manager it will be $25 a night plus any tips he makes, will be in a better position to barter if they whole place has been nagging the managers ear
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Sep 15, 2009 12:19PM)
You shouldn't have LIED about the tips... what kind of lesson is that?

Then you should have told the manager to live up to his agreement of paying him $20.00.
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 15, 2009 12:24PM)
Pete, Your probably right...lesson learned... that's forsure,
Message: Posted by: Christopher Lyle (Sep 15, 2009 12:57PM)
The restaurant shouldn't have lied. I would have told them to "do the right thing and pay my son for his HARD WORK entertaining their guests and to honor the agreement."

I think that just sucks that your kid got screwed. I said at the beginning of this thread that money is npot what matters here but experience. However, if a fee was agreed upon it should have been honored.

This makes me SOOOO angry!!!
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 15, 2009 01:07PM)
I have thought about this long and hard and chosen not say anything to the owner until next week when we go back and see how Nic has performed for a second time, I have tried to chalk this down to experience, a learning lesson, I want to see what the owner does a second time,
My question is, what kind of person takes advantage of a 13 year old boy?
Message: Posted by: BCaldwell (Sep 15, 2009 01:16PM)
The problem now is the precident has been set. If you had told the truth would the owner wanted $10 from your son? Probably not, but that is what happened. They took $12 out of his pocket. I know this is a learning experience for him magically, but it should also be learning experience for the business side as well if he plans to continue working.Great job with the magic side though! Hope he keeps it up! Just my opinion, btw!
Message: Posted by: Goodburn (Sep 15, 2009 01:41PM)
I agree BCaldwell, your right, and it absolutely is a learning experience from the business side of entertaining. The lesson is, to not be pushed around by people, and stick up for what you deserve. keep the advice coming, everyone, constructive criticism, is good too.
Message: Posted by: Christopher Lyle (Sep 15, 2009 02:05PM)
[quote]
On 2009-09-15 14:41, Goodburn wrote:
The lesson is, to not be pushed around by people, and stick up for what you deserve.
[/quote]

This is one of the MANY reasons that I'm so ticked off right now...becuase now the restaurant knows that you'll take less! Why would they ever want to pay your son the full $20 when they know that they can push you guys around and pay less. Is $20 for TWO HOURS of entertainment really that much of a hit off their bottom line.

My advice...

Go back to the restaurant PRIOR to next weeks gig and talk to the GM. Explain that you're upset with the outcome of the first visit becuase they did not stick to the agreement and tell them that for next week (and future weeks if this gig will continue) that the fee is $20 for the two hour shift...NO MATTER WHAT TIPS HE MAKES!!!

Personally...I would say "!@#$ EM'" and I'd never let my kid perform in there ever again. If that's how their going to treat you and your son, then you're better off without them.

You can EASILY find a restaurant that will gladly pay your son $20 (that's nothing to any restaurant) to perform. Screw this other place...

My 2 cents...

Christopher