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Topic: Fisrt time very timid busk attemp..impression and request for help
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 05:47AM)
Hi,

I will make the story very short...it's a painful story :)

I will come to my strong impression but having a very small attempt with a small sample size please correct me if I'm wrong.

1:The main factor to make people stop is curiosity to make them look and than voice to make them stop.
2:Effect transition could be a pain.

Just in order to let things clear I did not make any money and I was able to perform just the first trick...and once.
It was a short attempt due to time limit...

...and the main goal of the day was to overcome the fear and try it.

I have no table and no cartel.

I have come to the conclusion...that could be wrong...that working with a table and doing Cups and Balls could be the best approach to get experience for a total beginner like me.

Here is why:
1:How to make them stop? Curiosity first right? What's best than a table with a cartel with written on "oldest job (job cancelled) trick in the world" and with on top cups and balls? and a wand in the hand...I can use voice to stop...sounds of the cups...some cups and balls gags/flourish...
2:How to make them stay? Having only one solid routine with beginning middle and ultra strong ending time tested that offer a lot of potential audience engagement (depending of me of course) look a good idea...It seems practical to engage audience, interact and develop personality with that king of a routine.
3:How to make them pay? After they had fun good funny hat line a ultra strong surprise ending.

My little supposed show (never done to strangers from start to finish) now have 2 main problems...one is that I'm weak to make them stop to begin with...
I thought to use Kozmo strategy...It works of course but...I end doing the coin stuff (my routine not his own) only to people that walk very near to me and look interested...moreover even if it potentially works most of the time I could face rejection...that's a little stressful strategy for me..

The structure of my ipotetical act was:
1:One coin routine (I love It because is mine) ending with a ring production
2:Ring and string
3:Professor nightmare
4:Rope throught neck.

Do you suggest that I insist trying without a table with that structure or your experience suggest too that doing just a table Cups and Balls (and eventually adding something at the beginning) is a way better idea?
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 07:02AM)
I have another option in mind...but has different challenges...

Always without a table...starting with something like manipulation or balloon swallowing and than a coin on the ground to get people closer...basically Jimmytalksalot strategy...but I will have to 2 problems there...first learning a good manipulation routine and than finding a strong finale without a table...I don't think rope through body part is not even close to cups and balls and bill in lemon routine require to much set up...
Message: Posted by: RiffRaff (Jan 9, 2015 08:09AM)
Having a large, visual 'prop' helps generate curiosity.
That large prop can be a table, a sign (cartel), a unicycle, and/ or a well-defined costume.
People will notice you if you look and sound different than the rest of your environment.
Let's take this one step at a time.
Figure out what you're going to do to get their curiosity (bring a large sign), then go out there and do it again.
Try these two methods of stopping them, and figure out which one works best for you:
1) Talk to groups of people as they walk by and tell them that you're doing a show, etc.
2) Don't talk to people; DON'T EVEN LOOK AT THEM. Just set up your props, or do some manipulations, or something that engages their CURIOSITY.
Go out there and do that (with YOUR show) and then report back.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 08:16AM)
Hi Riffraff,

point 1 sucks big time and point 2 works...

Still my main points remains...I'm reading about busking tables...but I yet have to find someone easy to travel with...or a way to make it on the spot...
Message: Posted by: RiffRaff (Jan 9, 2015 08:30AM)
You don't NEED a table to attract a crowd.
Don't compromise your original vision to become a generic clone. We don't need any more cup and ball workers.
(There are almost as many cup and ball workers on the street as there are pretend buskers on the internet.)
Figure out how to make YOUR show work. You won't figure it out on the computer. You have to go out there again.
Based on your very limited experience you can't say that point 1 sucks. Every pitch is different and every performer is different.
I've seen plenty of performers succeed big time with point 1.
If you want to be good, if you want a show that you can be proud of, if you want to be a performer then take my original advice and go out there with a sign and try it again.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 09:16AM)
I would prefer to do without table...but I have to:

1:At least use a sign
2:Change Opener
3:Structure the show in a way to facilitate transition and give more a unit structure...a theme...

However is also true that a beginner should first copy to have less hard start...than after experience start modelling the act in more original way...

And by the way I have never seen a street act with a better finale than chop cup or cups and balls...it has heavy structural advantages...

If I find a way to have a travelling light easy to carry table I'll go cups and balls..
I'll buy "Four Of A Kind DVD Set for the Sidewalk Performer" in order inspiration and ideas to work without a table..
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 09:23AM)
About this: "If you want to be good, if you want a show that you can be proud of, if you want to be a performer then take my original advice and go out there with a sign and try it again."

At the moment it is not the priority to be great, or original, or proud of myself...at the moment the priority is being able to do a little sidewalk show and grow from there...
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 9, 2015 09:23AM)
I remember being embarrassed to do the cups on the street because my hometown already had a guy who did that. Times have changed, in oh so many ways.

Cellini would say that color, motion and sound are the keys to getting people to stop and watch, but it can seem a bit overly-simplistic if you don't already have a strategy.

My first time out, it took me three hours to get anyone to stop, and all they did was try to break my balls when they finally did. The only thing that saved me was that I was already good at magic. I sucked at busking, though. I think I made a whole three dollars before finally giving up for the day.

You went out and tried it. That's a start. It's a good start, because at least you did it. Now do it 10,000 more times, and you'll be fine.

Some would say that it doesn't matter which effects you perform, but I believe that to be both true and false, depending on a lot of things that are specific to the individual.

Passing a rope through your body requires a strong engagement of the audience, or they'll walk away before you're halfway through. You need fun and cooperative spectator volunteers for that.

I'd say use eye-candy at first, because they can simply watch you do it, and when you're just starting out it's harder to really engage people and get them to interact with you without being jerks. As you get more experience, and notice they're starting to like you more, try engaging them more, and doing more audience participation.

Even people who won't give strangers the time of day will stop sometimes and watch something cool, and even toss a buck in the hat. But it takes time to learn how to really engage them without them feeling uncomfortable or forced into it sometimes.

There's no worse feeling than being new to this and being in the middle of something and having them walk away. It's really discouraging, and you want to keep it happy for yourself, and stay enthusiastic.

Experience will be your best teacher, and you're already starting to get some. Just keep doing it, don't let anything discourage you from going out and doing it again, and always look towards improving.

That's the best advice I can really give you. I've been busking for the better part of 20 years, and that's how it worked out for me. Your mileage may vary.
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 9, 2015 09:38AM)
Get yourself a good pick a card and find it trick.

Get a small table. I use an InStand http://www.instand.com/CR3/cr3.shtml

Go back out there. Stop a person or two and ask them if they want to see a card trick. (Teens and teen couples are the easiest to stop. They seem to have lots of free time.)

Have them pick a card and sign it. Now go into the rest of the trick BUT, as you see more people interested the trick, interrupt what you're doing, call them over, tell them what just happened, did the card out of the deck and have THEM sign the card too.

Explain that you are going to do something amazing in a few seconds. As they are signing the card talk to them. Ask where they are from. Comment on that. Comment on where you are from. Go back to the first person and ask them where THEY are from. Keep the conversation lively. Imagine you're interviewing these people for TV, not just having a chat with them at a backyard picnic.

Oh look, more people are coming over and you just shuffled the card back into the deck. Recap the trick. You had a card selected by this person. They signed it and you had this person sign it to. As you're doing that run thru the cards and find the signed card and as you do tell them that you're going to find their card in an amazing way. Here's the card, but that's not the amazing way. Have the third person sign it too. Have them put the card back into the deck.

At this point you have a selected card with 3 signatures on it. By the end of the trick, you should have at least 3 people still watching you, even in you, because they have a vested interest in the trick...their signature on the card.

If you see more interested people, call them in, reassuring them you don't need any more volunteers. This puts people at ease. Recap the selection process and then do the end of the card trick.

If you can make that work, you'll learn how to stop people, talk to people, gain interest in what you do, and how to keep a steady dialogue going with the crowds so that you maintain interest.

It might take a while, but you'll learn fast.

By the way, what you do after that card trick is up to you. You should have a nice little crowd by then.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 09:58AM)
Hi Evildan,

I think that trying to stop people asking them if they want to see a card trick is not a good strategy.

the tip for that table is very good if I choose to use a table just for stage presence and put on it a deck of card.

Another problem with cards is that sometimes with cold hands doing TL and pass could be a problem...

Using a table with a cartel a doing card trick could be a great experience especially for getting used to engage people but does not seem to me a good way to stop people neither a good tool to do a finale (if you are thinking of TOD I think it's strong but require huge showmanship to keep the ball rolling also considering the fact that does not have a punch line, if you are thinking of card to mouth that's great but for a finale too?, if you are thinking of Homing card plus it's wonderful and in fact I thought of it thinking of a complete card act but no matter how good you are palming 50 cards is a little bit flashy if recorded on IPhone and analyzed second for second).

If you are thinking for example of Gazzo opening with cards I have seen him spending like 9 minutes before actually doing a trick with them just engaging people...that's his opening...and he has a table with cups on top to have stage presence and build expetactions...
Message: Posted by: ROBERT BLAKE (Jan 9, 2015 10:26AM)
DEADMONEY, first I like to say that you did very well in trying out and be there on the street. that is the spirit. and even after that experience you still want to go back and do better. very good.

second, you are to much hung up on the "I need a table". it is NOT the Table IT IS YOU. the hardest thing to learn is to be free and don't bee afraid. this is a proces that you have to go trough. sorry everyone has to. feel comfortable and not be afraid of what people might think or how they would react. you are there to have fun. if they don't want that YOU ARE THERE TO HAVE FUN!!!!

here is my cowboy magic show. I end with lasso's. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s2436dG8m2w
i do now a medieval magic show. in that I close with or the eggbag - or thumb tie - or fisch sticks (my china sticks) or 3 linking rings
you can close with every trick if you understand the street. go and see on youtube NON magic street shows.

here an easy routine to start with. a misers dream with spongeballs. take a paperbag and a spongsball 3" and porduce that ball from thin air. put it in the paperbag the produce another one and another one. produce the behind a child ear. make two balls and do the classic ball in hand to your hand. or have abig ball in the paperbag and after productions turn over paperbag and show the very big ball.

BE FREE AND NOT AFRAID AND HAVE FUN.
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 9, 2015 10:43AM)
DeadMoney - what I told you to do is exactly what I do to build my crowd. I usually do a sidewalk or a half circle show. It works either way. It also works when I'm strolling at festivals. I have a card selected, signed by a number of people and it winds up overturned in the deck. I then tear the card in pieces giving each person the part with their name.

Not sure what type of show you are trying to do. But if you don't think it will work for you, it won't.

"Whether you think you can, or think you can't...you're right." - Not sure who said this.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 9, 2015 10:45AM)
Remember that a strategy like that described by EVILDAN isn't bad, it just might not be as good or comfortable for you at first.

What works for some people might not work for you, but it doesn't mean it isn't any good.

And if you try it a few times, you might find it grows on you.

When you're just starting out (heck, for the duration of your career), you should always be willing to try new things, especially if you feel resistance within yourself towards them at first. Sometimes we break through and things work for us that we never thought would work. Sometimes things just don't work for us. It's all part of the process.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Be brave, take heart, and as Lenny Bruce would say, try anything at least twice.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 11:07AM)
Thank you all for the help.

It's not that I want the table...is that I want cups and balls because its structure could easily solve all the "problems" I have.

I have also an all rope act in the back of my head but it requires a lot of time to develop and I don't even know if I could bring it to life.

It's just I'm a little tired of having headache when with a table I could focus mainly on one time tested routine and have fun and grow experience from there.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 11:16AM)
[quote]On Jan 9, 2015, EVILDAN wrote:
DeadMoney - what I told you to do is exactly what I do to build my crowd. I usually do a sidewalk or a half circle show. It works either way. It also works when I'm strolling at festivals. I have a card selected, signed by a number of people and it winds up overturned in the deck. I then tear the card in pieces giving each person the part with their name.

Not sure what type of show you are trying to do. But if you don't think it will work for you, it won't.

"Whether you think you can, or think you can't...you're right." - Not sure who said this. [/quote]


From what I read from your other posts on the café, you end with cups and balls using a table, do you?
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 9, 2015 11:30AM)
I will warn against absorbing yourself in a complex routine while starting out. I used to focus so hard on the cups that anyone walking past saw only the top of my head, and not my face. It's really easy to sink into introversion in front of people, and retreat into the comfortable routine of a complex thing like the cups and balls.

Not saying you should avoid the effect, just saying to beware of using it as a crutch. Always be aware of the audience, and always engage them. Never forget that. Be fearless and look at the people, or they will walk all over you.

If you don't keep looking up at them, they'll treat you like a TV set and not a person. That's why busking often works so much better with things like in-the-hands card tricks and so forth. It's harder to fall into the trap of staring downward all the time if you work at chest level, up and off the table.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 9, 2015 11:39AM)
I love cups and balls because they offer a lot of potential for audience interaction...they amplify the personality of the performer...
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 9, 2015 11:47AM)
It's your potential. And it's up to you to amplify your personality. It isn't in things, it's in you.

If you enjoy performing the effect, and it helps you engage and come out of the box, then hey, no problem. But just remember it all really comes from you, not the effects you perform.

I've done stunning cup routines and people walked by without even bothering to look. And I've goofed off with a silver dollar or a hanky, and wound up with 300 people crowding around to watch.

Whatever works for you works. But it's not the tricks, it's the guy doing them. If you're having fun, they'll have fun, as long as you're having fun [i]together[/i].
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 9, 2015 12:10PM)
If I'm performing myself, I end with cups and balls or ch*p cup.
If my wife and I are performing, cups and balls will be in the middle. We end with our whip act.
Message: Posted by: MagicofDesperado (Jan 9, 2015 01:32PM)
I will offer two simple suggestions.

1. Never ask if someone wants to see something. Say "Watch"
2. Start thinking about who you are out there. Your character. This will evolve but start thinking about this in relation to the tricks you do.
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 9, 2015 02:06PM)
Saying "Watch" doesn't work for me. Maybe because I'm in the Northeast and if a stranger tells you to do something, well tell them where to go.

So, asking, "Would you like to see some magic," or "Would you like to see a cool card trick" tends to work more for me. I can usually get someone to stop within three attempts.
Message: Posted by: gallagher (Jan 9, 2015 03:19PM)
Hey buddy,
nothing personal,
...and just between you and me:
Why are you performing?

Do you have anything (you find) worth showing anybody?
Seriously.
.
Is there anything you have to 'say' to anybody?

Do you have this deep inner need to be 'noticed'?
A psychlogist would be the answer.

Do you desparately need the 'easy' Lire?
Get a job.,.. there's no shame involved.

All of your questions,.. ".. a table.". ",.. no table.". ",.. what tricks.". ",.. what dvd's."...
I get the feeling,..
I'm not really allowed to say what I feel,..
,but like I said, "Nothing personal."

Honesty, to one's self, is the essential of a good Life.
,..ironically,
also for a good Show.
I think the answers you need, are inside of yourself.
Don't be scared to look.
I've my fingers crossed for you buddy.
gallagher.
Message: Posted by: MagiCol (Jan 9, 2015 10:01PM)
"Do you suggest that I insist trying without a table with that structure or your experience suggest too that doing just a table Cups and Balls (and eventually adding something at the beginning) is a way better idea?"
The most versitile way to perform is using tricks without a table being required.Ever tried sitting in a public bus with a folding table? Or walking 1/4 or 1/2 mile with a table hung from your shoulder, or dragged behind you on a suitcase trolley or the like? Using a table is o.k. if you can easily get to your pitch with it. But being free of needing a table is a decided bonus, I reckon.
A performer doesn't NEED to do Cups and Balls.
I'll use your comment DeadMoney " I love cups and balls because they offer a lot of potential for audience interaction...they amplify the personality of the performer..." not to critque you personally, but in a generic way.
The comment can,with street experience, be applied to any prop or act.
All of my current 'Draw" items and Street Show tricks - spirit knot, knot off silk, card find, card trick called Do As I Do, Professor's Nightmare, Classic cut and restored rope are made to involve physical participation of some of the people gathered around me.

Such things as giving a prop for examination, getting the helper to drop the nut on the pavement to check that it is a real nut, stretching ropes to check them, handling and shuffling cards, "receiving the scissors and cutting the rope, waving the hand over a prop and saying "Abracadabra" - These are physical things I get spectators to do.
I also want them to be mentally involved. When I get a helper to tie the knot over my wrist to secure the spirit nut I ask them, What's a magic trick you could do, now?" At least some of the helpers will say, "Make it disappear.' And that's just what they seem to have done when I open both my hands to show that the nut has indeed done what they suggested.

"To amplify the personality of the performer" WEll,this should develop this as time is spent out on the street working whatever trick/illusion you work with.

In my earlier performing days I read of the idea of picking a personality and then using the appropriate tricks for that. I read about it, had a limp try at it, but I think it's better to develop boldness, cheekiness, mannerisms, friendliness, your own ways - physical moves, comments/patter, moving around on your pitch and the like WHILE you are out performing on the streets. I don't mean that you ignore other people's advice or refuse to watch other people performing, but adapt, invent etc. in ways that work for you. You can tell how well your approach is going by the reactions of the audience to what and how you say and do things.
I recall, after performing on the streets part-time for a couple of years, after one busking show, driving home and suddenly I realized {I'd read about it beforehand but but the reality hadn't sunk in] I AM MY SHOW! My show is me. Me. Not particular tricks, but the personality I develop and display on the street.

Going out in public to perform for the first several times can be very embarassing. So many things that you don't know or do. Getting over being scared of people watching you, and the like. After several outings on the street - maybe 10 or 20? - this scared-ness fades and is replaced with the desire to be seen, to be performing to be laughing along with the spectators, seeing the actuality of I AM MY SHOW.
Message: Posted by: sjbrundage (Jan 9, 2015 11:28PM)
[quote]On Jan 9, 2015, MagiCol wrote:
"Going out in public to perform for the first several times can be very embarassing. So many things that you don't know or do. Getting over being scared of people watching you, and the like. After several outings on the street - maybe 10 or 20? - this scared-ness fades and is replaced with the desire to be seen, to be performing to be laughing along with the spectators, seeing the actuality of I AM MY SHOW. [/quote]

This has been a super interesting thread. I think most of his fear's and problems will be resolved by actually performing multiple times. The first time I ever went out and street performing I was wicked nervious it took me nearly 2 hours of sitting on a bench to set up and perform. Overtime the nervousness will lessen and your show will get better. Expect the first year that your hats will be mediocre to okay. If you a good beginer busker you might even have some great days where you pull in a good amount.. but consitensy will probably not be there. Over time you show will fine tune, your hat lines will get tighter, routines will become more scripted, off the cuff responses and quick witt answers will get better, you will start to think on your feet, Everything will start coming together and you will start having some serious fun and making some serious bucks.
Message: Posted by: Yellowcustard (Jan 10, 2015 01:25AM)
First up deadmoney well done for getting out there and doing it.

When I first busked in 2007 I sucked big ti,e and basically stayed at home and planed should I say bottled it. I then slowly built up my never and hit the streets again. 2010 I notched it up a bit and said iam going to do this and I busted my balls just sticking with the same thing and cracking it hard. Since then things have got better and better for me as a busker and feel almost in control.

Id say get out there again and go for it keep pushing it.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 10, 2015 05:20AM)
Hi Gallagher,

you are welcome.

I can assure that I could not care less of attention of people. Nor I need self validation...I have already proved myself in life and I know where I stand...about my "desperate" need for money I hope you have more than me but it will surprise me if you have.


Feel free to talk and say whatever you want you are supposed to be a grown man.
You can also PM me if you want :)

About this:"
Do you have anything (you find) worth showing anybody?"
That's the problem I think I had...but now I have some doubts about it that's why I'm rethinking my act.
But even if I'm not confident in that just for sake of growing I went out today and tried again with the goal of interact with people and explore reality for what it is.

I'm just learning putting myself on the line.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 10, 2015 05:46AM)
If you do it all the time, you'll learn it all a lot faster, and the more shows you do, the better you'll get. I used to go out and stay from sunup to sundown, even working under awnings during the rain. You might be surprised how much some people like a little entertainment when they're stuck under an awning waiting for the rain to slow down or stop.

Go out and do it every day if you can, for as long as you can.

Good job! Keep it up!
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 10, 2015 06:29AM)
I'm thinking I made a mistake today...

I went out...I was able to do all the act for a person only...and I was at easy trying stopping people...the mistake was that feeling it was an improvement over the first day, because I actually did all the act even if was only for one person, my mind was a little ok for the day and found out false reasoning to not keep going but to go away to the hotel...I should have keep going...

I also got cut in an handling of the coin routine from another person so now I change it...

I don't try to stop people that don't look at the rope and walk near...

Another thing that I don't know if it is wrong is that I don't try to go for a big crowd...I try to start will really just two people and keep it small because I would like to perform for few people only to not have big pressure...
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 10, 2015 06:30AM)
I'm abroad...I have to find a place in my country to perform in loop...
Message: Posted by: sjbrundage (Jan 10, 2015 07:01AM)
[quote]On Jan 10, 2015, DeadMoney wrote:
I'm thinking I made a mistake today...

I went out...I was able to do all the act for a person only...and I was at easy trying stopping people...the mistake was that feeling it was an improvement over the first day, because I actually did all the act even if was only for one person, my mind was a little ok for the day and found out false reasoning to not keep going but to go away to the hotel...I should have keep going...

I also got cut in an handling of the coin routine from another person so now I change it...

I don't try to stop people that don't look at the rope and walk near...

Another thing that I don't know if it is wrong is that I don't try to go for a big crowd...I try to start will really just two people and keep it small because I would like to perform for few people only to not have big pressure... [/quote]

That really depends what type of show you are doing. If you are doing up close card magic it will be harder to build a large crowd. If you decided to go large and linking rings or a routine with large objects your chance of buildign a large crowd would increase.

Naturally the more you do it.. you wil notice your crowd starts to grow. Afte a while you need to learn crowd building techniques. So when a new group comes up but is not a part of the circle.. You need to temporary stop the show and invite them to step closer so they can also watch the magic.
Message: Posted by: MagiCol (Jan 10, 2015 02:22PM)
DeadMoney, it's great to see a newbie to street performing getting under way and I wish you all the best. There's lots of advice in the Sidewalk Performers threads, lots of encouragement. You're under way, having done more than getting out for the very first time.

A reminder especially for any performers starting out: Keep those props and moves, as much as possible, up around chest height so people can see what's going on. And be sure to swing the props/cards etc around to the whole semicircle so everybody gets to see what's happening. It's very important that all people get to see what's going on. And that they hear your voice [volume and direction].
If practical in the setting, when you start up make sure the bulk of the people are not blinded by the sun shining into their eyes. Where practical, I like both myself and the audience to be in shadows of trees or the like.
If you can, set up so the breeze will blow your voice out from you to your spectators. Speaking against a wind/breeze isn't sensible.

Henry Hay said that your trick should move at a speed that the slowest person in the group can take in what is going on. That's why some coin moves are not the usuaul way of handling coins. For example, the magician taking the coin in the French Drop is artificial in the sense that very few laymen take a coin in that fashion from one hand to another.
Sponge ball transfer is similar. Who, in real life, holds a ball up at shoulder height and places it into the opposite held-up palm? But to a magician showing off clearly what [seems to] happen it's very important that the public get to see the action.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 11, 2015 02:35AM)
I just want to thank you all again...I don't respond directly at every post but I really read it all carefully and I'm very glad that there are pro here using their time and experience to encourage me and point me in the right direction.
Message: Posted by: sjbrundage (Jan 11, 2015 03:11AM)
[quote]On Jan 11, 2015, DeadMoney wrote:
I just want to thank you all again...I don't respond directly at every post but I really read it all carefully and I'm very glad that there are pro here using their time and experience to encourage me and point me in the right direction. [/quote]

If you want even better advice I would recommend having someone take a video of your performance on the street and post it here. Some of the advice will seem harsh... but people will honestly want to help. Take everything witha grain of salt, because what works for someone might not work for you. Take the advice that means the most to you and stick with it.

Over time you will develop into having your own original character, persona, and performing style. Stick with and you should develop fast in no time.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 11, 2015 10:00AM)
[quote]On Jan 11, 2015, sjbrundage wrote:
If you want even better advice I would recommend having someone take a video of your performance on the street and post it here. Some of the advice will seem harsh... but people will honestly want to help. Take everything witha grain of salt, because what works for someone might not work for you. Take the advice that means the most to you and stick with it.
[/quote]

This is excellent advice, and I second it. The camera doesn't lie or flatter.

Recording a performance on video can greatly improve things for you, not only because you can see everything that's wrong, but also because you can see what's right. The parts that look right help with confidence, and the parts that look wrong give you something to work on improving.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 11, 2015 10:20AM)
I'm reworking the act from scratch...

Just a piece of rope on the ground and no cartel with a coin routine as an opener does not work for me...I think there are better way...and I have no confidence in my finale...

Now I'm stuck abroad until 13 at least so if I come up with something meaningful I'll try instantly, I have zero inhibition at this stage and this is a good thing...

I was thinking a new act on the fly considering I have only a rope to set my stage:
1: Balloon Swallowing
2:Professior Nightmare
3:Pressure

But I'm having huge problem with Balloon Swallowing...never done before and putting it down smoothly, with an invented clean up that I'm developing on the fly, it's difficult...I have tried for hours but perhaps it's not a thing I can learn on the fly..

So or I come up with a strong visual opener considering my low level skill and only prop that I can buy on the fly here or I will just regroup at easy as soon I'm back Italy and try again...now I think I know how to get the job done...hopefully :)
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 11, 2015 10:20AM)
I'm reworking the act from scratch...

Just a piece of rope on the ground and no cartel with a coin routine as an opener does not work for me...I think there are better way...and I have no confidence in my finale...

Now I'm stuck abroad until 13 at least so if I come up with something meaningful I'll try instantly, I have zero inhibition at this stage and this is a good thing...

I was thinking a new act on the fly considering I have only a rope to set my stage:
1: Balloon Swallowing
2:Professior Nightmare
3:Pressure

But I'm having huge problem with Balloon Swallowing...never done before and putting it down smoothly, with an invented clean up that I'm developing on the fly, it's difficult...I have tried for hours but perhaps it's not a thing I can learn on the fly..

So or I come up with a strong visual opener considering my low level skill and only prop that I can buy on the fly here or I will just regroup at easy as soon I'm back Italy and try again...now I think I know how to get the job done...hopefully :)
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 11, 2015 10:21AM)
Of course things should not be done this way with time constriction but here I'm :)
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 11, 2015 11:03AM)
I "swallowed" a balloon on Bourbon Street once, just to make a balloon clown friend of mine laugh, and someone walked up and handed me seven dollars out of nowhere. I wasn't even trying.

The whole thing with that effect is to play it for all it's worth, and make people react. It's really easy to do, and you can focus on making people laugh and respond.

As for clean-up, don't worry about it. Wipe your mouth with a hanky or something, and don't overthink it all.

Try to focus more on the entertainment part when doing simple effects. That's what simple effects are for.
Message: Posted by: DeadMoney (Jan 11, 2015 11:13AM)
That is a great tip!!!

I'll PM you in a minute for just having an opinion on something in particular about it.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 11, 2015 11:42AM)
Replied to your PM. Hope it helps.
Message: Posted by: MagicofDesperado (Jan 11, 2015 12:49PM)
That's weird evil Dan that "watch" has never worked for you. What pitch is your regular daily pitch?

Dartagnan
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 12, 2015 08:47AM)
I didn't say never.
Message: Posted by: MagicofDesperado (Jan 12, 2015 01:00PM)
Which pitch again?
Message: Posted by: EVILDAN (Jan 12, 2015 05:45PM)
I like to keep my pitches to myself.
Message: Posted by: Nick W (Jan 12, 2015 05:53PM)
You will see results after 1000 shows.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Jan 17, 2015 06:16AM)
I saw results after only 999 shows, but [i]good[/i] results took me a few extra tries.

After about 10,000 shows, I knew I was good. It took me that long to stop wanting to show magic to my friends for free, and think of it as a real job.

Now I just kinda don't care any more. I do stuff for people when I can, they usually enjoy it, and they pay me for it without me having to beg them to. It's good enough for me.

Other days, it just rains.
Message: Posted by: Magician Shaun (Jan 18, 2015 07:37AM)
Good Morning!

When I busk, I do it in what is considered one of the most difficult cities for street performers in the USA, Atlanta Georgia. When I first started street performing my routine consisted of the following:

1) Silk Vanish - Draw

2) Sponge Ball Routine - Build (Close-up, great reactions, makes them come closer to see what is going on).


Show

3) Invisible Deck (Sometimes performed as a mind reading effect others as a comedy bit with the original "Invisible" premise).

4) Linking Ring 4 Ring routine (Pop Hayden Teaching Act)

5) Rope Routine - No Scissors - Fiber Optics style routine.


I used (and still do use) a blue and white rope to create "my space" on the sidewalk. I would lay my props neatly on the ground inside my circle. I dressed nice, you know, like a Magician....and I made a special magic wand. This wand is a piece of hardwood dowel rod that is 3/4" it has copper pipe caps glued to the ends. You can bang this stick really hard on the concrete and you will only ding up the copper some. I will bang the stick a few times like a judge banging a gavel and then yell "MAGIC SHOW!" I will repeat this in a few different directions, shouting towards the largest concentrations of people nearby. This method also works well at festivals.

I eventually added the cups and balls to my show, necessitating that I also add a table. Do I make more money now? Yes. Is it because I added the cups and balls? I don't think so. I think it is because I have learned how to better work a crowd. In fact I did some experimenting and found that if I do a 3 effect show, not including the draw and build, so really 5 I guess, but found that 3 effects and about 15 minutes is best. It maximizes turnover but still gives your audience a show that is worth $5s and up!