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Topic: How does this act sound?
Message: Posted by: Munskin (Oct 20, 2014 04:53AM)
Hi guys,

I've been a long time lurker on these boards and I'm trying to develop a show that would work on the street; probably more doorway act at first, but I would like to develop something that would play bigger when I have a few more shows under my belt.

The trouble I have is that I feel that my close up act (I'm a professional close up magician - whatever that is) feels very small and somehow, not good enough as a finale, if that makes any sense? I think I'm probably comparing my act to a straightjacket escape, or Gazzo producing six fruit and a whopping melon, but I'm struggling to come up with a finale for my show.

Presently, my close up act ibnvolves card tricks and a chop cup as a finale. Now, I like my chop cup routine, as it has lots of moments of comedy and interaction, but I'm just wondering if two final loads is a good enough "tada" for the streets, and whether it'll be enough to get the money. Do I need more?

Initially I thought about getting someone to sign a card, do a trick, have someone else sign it, do another trick....continue until the card is full of names and then vanish it. Then move on to something else and, as a finale, produce the signed card from a nest of boxes or whatever. I could use the chop cup as an intermediary effect, as it's modular enough to take breaks during it and remind the audience about the vanished card.

Or am I overthinking it? Could I just do card tricks to build the crowd and then perform the chop cup as a finale?

I'd love to know your thoughts on this guys. Many tanks.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (Oct 20, 2014 12:46PM)
It depends how entertaining you are

and are you planning on working in Blackpool or somewhere with more ready cash?
Message: Posted by: Munskin (Oct 20, 2014 05:47PM)
Themagiciansapprecntice, I forgot that it still says Blackpool on my profile. I'm actually based in Chester now, so there's a bit more cash there!

Hopefully, I'm quite entertaining, though I've probably got a lot to learn. I'd like to know that I had a decent structure in place before heading out and filling in the blanks though, so I'd love to hear your thought on my ideas.
Message: Posted by: MagiCol (Oct 20, 2014 07:20PM)
Munskin, I'm a street performer with six years part-time experience. Here's some of my suggestions:
I think you're getting too far ahead of yourself to be planning for a big show. Get out on the street and there you will learn how to get tricks across and what works and what doesn't.
Your Street show needs only four or so tricks in it, which should not need setting up specially each time. First you have to get a few folk to stop and stay. You already do close-up. So use one or two simple card tricks, or whatever, to get the first couple of people to stop. "Come over here and watch this magic!" you tell them. Show them one or two close-up tricks.
Then tell them you are going to do a Magic Show, to hang around to watch. Tell them, "Step back a bit, maybe three metres/yard."
Now you perform a couple of close-up tricks can be displayed to people a reasonable distance away. Then warn them of the coming finale trick. Build up their expectation. Do that to close. Any trick can be a finale once you master the way to advertise and build anticipation. Then you hat them.

There's a saying, "A crowd builds a crowd." People will join in if you sound and look interesting enough to get a small group/crowd going.
Street work isn't so much about the tricks as it is about interacting with and controlling people.
Street work isn't so much about the tricks as it is about interacting with and controlling people.
Street work isn't so much about the tricks as it is about interacting with and controlling people.

There, I've said it three times!

A major way to learn this is just to get out on the street with a few tricks, work them so people a few metres away can see and follow what's happening and do what you know and you'll learn from the people.

There are lots of threads in this section that give lots of information on working magic on the street. Go through old ones. Look at videos on You Tube on Street Magic and watch how magicians work their show.
And when you do get out and get some experience, you could come back to this thread and share how things are going with your Show.
Message: Posted by: ROBERT BLAKE (Oct 21, 2014 11:22AM)
If you want to work on the street then learn how to work the street. asking for tricks is the wrong way, sorry. you should be concerned with YOU as a person on the street and how YOU can get the audience and entertain them. if YOu know how to make a crowd curious about YOU then YOu can do anything you want on the street.

Big show is by now means big tricks. look at paul daniels chop cup https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cSMppfXpDmg I have seen him do it for and audience of 1000 people. so what makes this then so good. look at his handling, how he plays with the audience/spectator. asking questions , interacting, communicating with the audience.
Message: Posted by: Munskin (Oct 21, 2014 06:12PM)
Robert and MagiCol,

Thank you so much for your help. You're right of course, it's about me. I shall take your advice and go do and see what happens. Thank you for taking the time to reply and help me; it's much appreciated.

Message: Posted by: Yellowcustard (Oct 22, 2014 03:52AM)
Multiplying bananas, Sponge balls, Egg bag and a single rope trick based on Fiber optics which end with rope through neck which leads in to my hat line. that's my street show.

All your performing experience will help but the streets thing can play different. I had to re work my egg bag routine due to it playing different on the street compared to stage. So your need to get use to performing on the streets I would suggest taking something you know well and works well and just do it 20 odd times and then work up from there.

Go out there, give it a go and keep going.
Message: Posted by: mike bonfield (Oct 22, 2014 10:40AM)
Robert Blake is so right ...its not the tricks its you ..I work thumb tip vanish ,,card trick..rope .. cups that's it but lots and lots of patter
Message: Posted by: ROBERT BLAKE (Oct 22, 2014 12:12PM)
A street concist of three parts:

1) stop the crowd = create an edge big enough to start the show.
2) keep the crowd = the show / entertain them get them involved entertain them.
3) collect your money

Message: Posted by: Mormo Zine (Oct 22, 2014 06:10PM)
I think the best thing to do is just go out and do it. I dreamed about busking most my life and when I finally did it it felt great and I was pretty successful.
Message: Posted by: MagicofDesperado (Oct 23, 2014 08:00PM)
Robert blake's advice is gold.
Message: Posted by: Munskin (Oct 28, 2014 09:15AM)
Sincerely, thank you guys so much. I really appreciate you all taking the time to give me advice - there's some great stuff here, so thank you for that!
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Oct 28, 2014 01:19PM)
Sophocles said "it" a few millenia ago! >>> "One learns by doing the thing."

You've received some very good suggestions, especially MagiCol! (detailed and specific!)

Remember that SHOW BUSINESS is really spelled: $HOW BU$INE$$!

Robert Blake gave you the old buskers' "real work": Make 'em STOP, Make 'em STAY, Make 'em PAY!

In his first post, he made the point!::: It's all about YOU! Tricks are only the vehicle for a real performer.

Message: Posted by: Munskin (Oct 30, 2014 06:51PM)

Your post in itself has given me a great deal to work from - it should be a sticky! Thank you so much!