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Topic: Magic Clubs?
Message: Posted by: outsider-80 (Jun 7, 2010 09:28AM)
I'm new to magic. I've always loved it but just recently began practicing it last November and was just wondering about the necessity of joining a Magic "club" such as IBM or SAM. Is this something that all magicians who are successful have done? Can someone ever be taken seriously without joining an organization such as these. Just curious. I can see where they would be helpful but I've never really been the fraternal organization type.
Message: Posted by: Bryan Smith (Jun 7, 2010 11:06AM)
You definitely don't need to belong to any magic clubs to be successful. However, it is very good to make friends with other magicians and find people who can act as mentors. Whether you find that through a magic club or some other way doesn't matter.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (Jun 7, 2010 11:30AM)
For three years I wasn't in a country where I could join a Magic Club.

Now I'm back in the UK I've started going along to a local club and do find it strange (I'm not into the latest gimmicks or cards) but useful. I get a new idea each time how to improve one of my routines.
Message: Posted by: DWRackley (Jun 7, 2010 11:33AM)
I don’t know that “fraternity” is the best use of the word in this case. You’re not going to be pledging fealty to another’s health, home, and happiness (although there might be a party or two). Some great friendships can (and will) come from groups like this, but generally the focus is on the Magic and how to do it better.

I don’t think there’s any doubt that some potential clients will be appropriately impressed knowing that you belong to an organization of magicians (some won’t even be aware that magicians have organizations).

I have seen membership generate some leads (but wouldn’t depend on this). Many people, when looking for entertainment, will call on a local club for referrals. If you’re good enough, some of this “action” could find it’s way to you.

But the real advantage is in the things you learn by “hanging out” with other magicians. Many meetings include a short teaching session, plus a time for members to “show off” something new or favored. You’ll see some effects that you haven’t seen before, and some new handlings for stuff you forgot about.

Many clubs sponsor professional lectures, where you’ll learn MUCH more then you can possibly take home. Our local club is hosting a lecture next week. This is a “value added” event with an admission fee, but members receive a reduced rate. Even at full price, this teaching is worth much more than the cost of admission.

Also, within the club there are different levels of expertise available. You have the chance to learn from people who are more advanced than you, and others (maybe not as advanced) who have had different experiences with their particular audiences.

But it is a social situation. Don’t know if your chosen handle is a “tell”, but the more you join in to a particular group, the more you’ll get out of it. There is so much energy and encouragement that comes just from being in a room where everybody loves Magic, I’d have to say that you’d be missing something very important by not connecting with a group.
Message: Posted by: outsider-80 (Jun 7, 2010 02:32PM)
Thanks guys. You've answered my question wonderfully and though I'll certainly consider joining a group I am glad to know that it's not a must.
Message: Posted by: Julie (Jun 7, 2010 04:13PM)
PLUS the monthly magazines--The Linking Ring & M.U.M.--are certainly worth the price of membership in both The international Brotherhood of Magicians and the Society of American Magicians.

Message: Posted by: DWRackley (Jun 15, 2010 10:18PM)
Many clubs sponsor professional lectures, where you’ll learn MUCH more than you can possibly take home. Our local club is hosting a lecture next week.[/quote]

To revisit this, I just got home from the Dan Harlan lecture. It was amazing, and worth the price of a year’s membership just for the opportunity to take notes. He talked, demoed and explained for two and a half hours (minus a ten minute break) and it was Golden.

A Professor’s Nightmare version for the 21st century that is absolutely astounding even for those who know. Making a binary math trick actually entertaining. A signed mis-made bill handling that will make many people throw out their old versions. A dual reality effect that is both funny and believable. The man is a genius, funny (corny), and entertaining.

But he doesn’t just do the tricks, he explains the rationale, the reason for handling everything the way he does. Besides getting some new “magic tricks”, he will make you a better magician. And if I hadn’t had access to a club, I’d never have known about the event.
Message: Posted by: Bob Sanders (Jun 19, 2010 02:09PM)
I do believe in magic clubs and association with magicians to include The Magic Café. By all means, nothing will keep your interest in magic primed better than associations with other magicians.

It is unlikely to make you any money, get you bookings or make you famous. Agents and talent buyers could care less about how you spend your spare time and money. But they do recognize enthusiasm. This enthusiasm and confidence in yourself is priceless. That makes it a good investment if you treat it like an investment. Put yourself into it.

Enjoy your magic and association with magicians.

Bob Sanders
Magic By Sander

PS --- Aside from magic clubs, we have other magician get togethers. "So Happy Together" here on The Magic Café is a great source of information about these:


Also, you have my personal invitation to Magic Valley Magic and the Magicians' Flea Market September 10-11 at Magic Valley Ranch. (It is FREE!)

Magicians Only - Flea Market - Buy - Sell - Swap - Visit - Perform - Shows - Free Admission
Message: Posted by: Logan Five (Jun 19, 2010 05:28PM)
Take Joel Bauer's advice about magic clubs in his book Hustle Hustle.

Some magic clubs are a good thing, and other clubs..not such a good thing. I've seen and experienced VERY toxic behavior towards a newbie by some of the old-timers. If your new, you don't need to deal with these cranks.

I didn't say.." all magic clubs "..I said some magic clubs.

Message: Posted by: magicmonk (Jun 23, 2010 05:11PM)
The big organisations such as SAMS and IBM are good, particularly once you've got a bit of 'action' under your belt, but the best advice would be to aim for a local club where you can actually mix with like minded souls and ultimately 'up your game'.

of course there are clubs and there are clubs, but today you can usually find out what the club of your choice is about by visiting their website.

Here in the UK I am a member of The Modern Mystic League based in Lancshire in the north west of England, but our website has a tab (links) that will show you lots of other clubs around the country. You can find our site at http://www.memel.org.uk

Oh and by the way,- if you should be in our neck-of-the-woods anytime, be sure to drop in.
Message: Posted by: Vick (Jun 24, 2010 09:16AM)
I am the opposite, never joined SAM or IBM and have no interest.

Look to other areas and arts for ideas and inspiration

I do attend about 10 lectures a year

However there are a few select individuals I trust and admire in the industry and can go to, whom without I would not be as experienced as I am today.

Good books are a best friend
Message: Posted by: magicmonk (Jun 25, 2010 02:11PM)
I am the librarian for our magic club http://www.memel.org.uk and so of course I support the notion that books are the holy grail of magic, but our magic club has an added benifit.

Every month we have a workshop where we get together and discuss, try out effects and generaly enjoy a magical think tank.

You don't get that from a book.

Plus we have lectures and dealer dems throughout the year.

I'm sure that we're not the only magical group that offer such appealing fayre, but click on our website to see just what it is we offer to any magician,- whatever their level. http://www.memel.org.uk