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Topic: Repeating tricks
Message: Posted by: Muddy (Jan 6, 2005 07:13PM)
I use magic casually at parties and family get-togethers. This is all relatively new to me. I've found that when a trick goes off well, that I am sometimes asked to repeat it either for that person or for someone else. So far I haven't complied. How much time should pass, generally, before you perform the same trick in the presence of someone who has already seen it. I asked "in general" because I am sure that the answer is different for different effects. I am just looking for some general guidelines.

Example: ID, Ambitious Card, and revealing a "cut to" card in ashes on my arm impressed my sister in law today. She insists that I show it to her boyfriend, friends, etc when we all get together for dinner tomorrow. I would essentially be repeating the same tricks in her presence ... is it too soon?

I know I could show them different things, but keep in mind that magic is new to me and my arsenal of presentable material is quite limited.
Message: Posted by: Pinto2 (Jan 6, 2005 07:47PM)
It all depends on how well you do your tricks. I would say that if you really have your stuff down, tomarrow night is not to soon. But if the trick you do can be figured out I would suggest you not do it again. Others will probably hate me, but I think that it's ok as long a you play it smart.
Message: Posted by: Pete W. (Jan 6, 2005 08:10PM)
I get this often since I perform in restaurants. If you feel comfortable doing a repeat, then do so (but only one repeat). I found that if I change the pace a little or can substitute a little extra (or less) patter depending upon the effect it helps me feel that I'm creating misdirection from the original time they saw the effect. Give a specific effect and perhaps one of us from the "cafe" has an alternate way of performing to share.
Message: Posted by: irossall (Jan 7, 2005 06:02AM)
If the effect can be done using a different method or you can change your routine like the Ambitious Card you mentioned there should be no problem doing a repeat.
Another "out" is to do something totally different or "better" than the one you just showed, that should get their minds off of a repeat performance.
You stated that "This is all relatively new to me", maybe you should wait until you have a good arsenal of effects (and maybe more skills?) before performing at a group setting. I don't know your skill level so please don't take what I said with offense, sometimes the urge to perform overpowers our will to hold back and wait until we are better able to handle a performance before a group of people. Also remember that people attending a party (especially with adult beverages) can be pretty harsh and sometimes downright rude.
Others will have better advice than I have given, I just wanted to throw in my 2 cents worth :) .
Iven :patty:
Message: Posted by: Muddy (Jan 7, 2005 06:59AM)
Thanks all,

I think I'll avoid doing anything EXACTLY the same and will probably add a mental effect I've been working on. No offense taken, Iven ... I appreciate honest advice and candor. I can't stop now though ... I'm hooked ... :) Seriously, though, Ive given the subject of when to perform and the posibble consequences (embarrassment, exposure, etc) a lot of thought ... whats right for me I think, is to do a few things very well (instead of more things not as well) ... at least for now. Did any of that make any sense? LOL

Thanks again!

This place is great!
Message: Posted by: BlackShadow (Jan 7, 2005 07:43AM)
It does depend on the effect. Some effects can be repeated immediately, but any effect which relies on misdirection (the majority) to conceal something is not a good repeat item because they will be looking at your other hand, not the ball/silk etc which is appearing.

However, people's memories are short. Give it a day, a few hours , or even an hour (eg at a restaurant) and you can generally perform it again effectively. I think the key thing is suprise. Don't say "I'll do the one again where the blue ball disappears in my right hand and the red one appears in my left." Just slot it casually into the routine. That may seem obvious but if you do it again immediately after, then you might as well be saying that.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Jan 7, 2005 10:07AM)
Even when an effect can be repeated immediately, the key issue is WHY the spectator wants to see the trick again. If a spectators says, "That was great! Can you show that trick to my Uncle Joe?". In that case, if the trick is "truly" repeatable (ie. it does not rely on the same force card or something), then by all means repeat the trick. In that case, the original spectator's intention is simply to share the magic with others. Although he may see the same effect again, his intention is not to try and figure out the secret. Even in this situation, however, if you can vary the effect or method, it would be best.

However, if the spectator simply says, "Show that to me again!" his intentions are entirely different. In that case, he has understood the trick to be a puzzle or a challenge and is trying to figure it out. There is absolutely no benefit for you in repeating the trick in that circumstance.

Instead, your long term goal should be to create a situation where you can avoid the puzzle or challenge mentality altogether by elevating the impact of your effects. This is much easier said than done, especially in a close up setting when you are performing in front of people you know. I hope that helps.

Message: Posted by: Reis O'Brien (Jan 7, 2005 05:03PM)
It's also a good idea to keep your eye out for effects that are designed to have a "repeat" in them, like Red Hot Mama.

Then again, some effects can be repeated with very little worry, like the ID.
Message: Posted by: Lynn Lee (Jan 8, 2005 12:32AM)
Similarly, I would think about trying to find effects which have similar (or more intense) impacts, like posters above me have said. If you do some kind of transpo effect, see if you know another one that achieves the same general idea (cards switch places under impossible circumstances,) but with a different kicker (i.e. two switch instead of one, etc.)

For the Ashes on Arm effect, for example, can you think of another way to reveal the selected card? Try something fire-themed, to keep things similar to the idea of using ashes--your spectators probably aren't going to be too picky about it. Not only do you avoid having to repeat an effect, but you also get the chance to engineer your [i]own[/i] personal touches to many routines, which is really a lot of fun and a great way for you to get a better feel for your own style of performance.
Message: Posted by: ClouDsss (Jan 10, 2005 07:56PM)
When the same people wanna see the trick again, I think its cos they wanna try and catch when the move was made, etc. Thus, if I were to repeat the trick, I would try to do it differently but with the same end effect.

this way, you are "repeating" the effect and not the trick I guess.

for tricks that I do not know how to repeat with a different handling, I usually tell them that they have seen nothing and that I have a better one and with that I switch to another trick. By the end of that, they might have already forgotten abt the first one.

Message: Posted by: calexa (Jan 10, 2005 08:06PM)
I always try to avoid repeating tricks. And I tell the people why: When I first show a trick, they enjoy the performance (well I hope). When they see the trick for a second time, the performance is old, so they only want to focus on the trick. But I want to keep the secret, so that I can amaze them on an other day. Most of them accept this explanation.

Message: Posted by: Josh Riel (Jan 10, 2005 08:41PM)
If its been a little while I'll repeat a trick. Peoples attention span seems so short as to only remeber something magical happened. When I was shown my first T.T. trick about five times I almost became emotionally unstable. every time I saw it I understood less.
Message: Posted by: magicsarge (Jan 11, 2005 12:05AM)
I agree with the other guys on this topic. A repeat must be done with caution, and if someone says 'show me that again' I take it as a compliment, because the effect/trick must have had the desired result.
A time delay and the advantage of suprise is a good idea, and don't be tempted to be riding on the crest of your success and show it again without care.
I often have to find myself saying...'if you liked that, then look at this' or 'let me show you something a little different'.
Message: Posted by: Parson Smith (Mar 24, 2005 08:56PM)
I rarely repeat tricks, but I love repeating tricks... 6 card repeat, lotus bowl, etc.
Message: Posted by: Brad Burt (Mar 24, 2005 10:51PM)
The simplest rule of thumb is to have at least 24 hours go by before repeating a routine for someone who has seen it before. Oddly, the ones most likely to be able to adhere to this rule are those not working professionally and the ones that are most likely to need to follow the rule. That's not a jab at the non pro. Generally speaking the people I hate to work for are family and friends. Why? Because, you are much more likely to be treating badly! Odd, but true. Familiarity in this case does breed a kind of contempt for the proformer that is almost never seen in professional venues.

Just follow the rules:

#1- Never tell how it's done

#2- Never repeat a trick (generally) for the same audience during the same immediate time frame.

#3- Never tell your audience what you are going to do before you do it, which is a corrollary of #2.

Message: Posted by: Mitchum (Mar 25, 2005 04:12PM)
Great advice, magicsarge. I usually avoid repeating the same trick by showing them a different trick. This usually satisfies their desire to see the first trick again.
Message: Posted by: Brad Burt (Mar 28, 2005 11:17AM)
If you get into the situation of constantly being asked to "Do it again", a great way to deal with that is to have an alternate method of producing the same result. This can actually strengthen the original presentation, etc. Most major effects have numerous methods of achieving the same goal and a little work can give you some fine alternate presentations.

In thinking back another method that I have used is more semantic in nature. Every once in a while when working professionally I would get asked to repeat some presentation. Depending on the situation...and assuming that for whatever reason I just don't want to repeat that effect and have no alternate method...I would say the following, "No problem...watch, I'll do it this way." From there I would proceed to do a compeletely different effect! In almost every case the audience would forget that I was asked to repeat the trick before. Here is one little twist that helps: If at all possible start the second effect the same way as the first. This is easier if it is something like a 'pick a card' routine, but there are other possiblities also. Best,
Message: Posted by: Will Gordon (May 16, 2005 02:26AM)
[quote] But if the trick you do can be figured out I would suggest you not do it again.[/quote]

There's always someone who yells...do it again!, do it again! ;-)
Message: Posted by: Alchimest (Oct 28, 2007 03:41PM)
Obviously it's been a while since this thread was posted, and I have no idea how many topics have addressed this issue since then, but:

I do a lot of walk around, close up magic, so I get this a lot.

My favorite response is, "I have something better", and you go on to your next routine. This is sort of staged, because I start with things that are quick and easy like rubber band magic or coins across, then lead into my stronger material.

It works great.
Message: Posted by: ghostpianist (Oct 29, 2007 11:19AM)
If the tricks are carefully constructed into a full set of routine or series of routines, the problem of spectators requesting for repeats maybe effectively solved as the heats are off on one particular trick. Also, if a trick utilises enough misdirections then it should be safe to perform to audiences who has seen it previously, provided it is not an immediate repetition.
Message: Posted by: mrsmiles (Oct 30, 2007 01:10PM)
Another tip - whether you are repeating the trick the same night or a week later, ask the spectators who've seen it before not to say what happens to everyone else at the climax of the trick (eg 'the card appeared in ashes on his arm')... explain that this is because its like knowing the punchline to a joke... the joke/trick are better enjoyed if you don't know what's coming.
Message: Posted by: BIGmagiclV (Nov 23, 2007 01:47AM)
The only time I repeat a trick is with children. When they say do it again, they are not trying to figure it out. They just want to be amazed again. THe same principle applies to their tv viewing habits. Any parent will tell you that little bobby has seen the movie "Cars" 200 times. They just like repetition. It makes them feel safe.
Message: Posted by: Loopback (Nov 23, 2007 10:56AM)
I nearly spit out my coffee when I read the "Cars" thing. I just got done spending 20 minutes looking for my 2 year olds "Lightning Mcqueen" car.
Message: Posted by: Larry Bean (Nov 23, 2007 07:15PM)
First, when someone asks you to do it again - take the complement - you did fool them! Then the answer as to repeat a trick or not is usually dependent upon the trick - any "multiple out" trick is out of the question. Many are repeatable without any real damage. I do agree with the above posters - either let some time elapse or do the trick using a different method.
Message: Posted by: vincentmusician (Jun 4, 2021 08:05AM)
Luckily, there are Magic routines that can be repeated more than once without any problem. For example, The Invisible Deck. However, if you get someone asking to do that again and it is not repeatable, just tell them sure, but let me show you this first and do something different. If some one says can you show that to my friend or Relative, if it is repeatable say yes. If not, then give the previous answer. This works for me. Cheers!
Message: Posted by: Nikodemus (Jun 5, 2021 06:14PM)
When you go to see a rock band, there is [b] always [/b] an encore at the end. We expect it. It's become a ritual. Do you think the band are all backstage scratching their heads, trying to figure out what to play? Of course not! They have already planned for it. In fact very often they will hold back some of their best material.
My advice, would be to think the same way - always expect to be asked to do another one.
If someone wants you to show the same trick to someone else, take it as a compliment - it's because they are really impressed (not the same thing as asking you to do it again for themselves). BUT you don't have to do the same effect twice - it's your decision. So you could show their friend something else (maybe similar). Because you don't really want the original person to see it again (they will inevitably notice details you don't wan't them to).
I think this is how professional "table hoppers" work. They have several short "sets", so they can circulate never obviously repeating the same tricks.

Ultimately I think the crucial thing is to always perform on your own terms. Keep 'em wanting more. And don't risk exposure. I think they will appreciate you more.
I hope this helps!
(I am a hobbyist who spends much more time learning & practicing than performing at the moment.)
Message: Posted by: funsway (Jun 5, 2021 06:34PM)
I always liked the approach:

“Do it again, why?
If it wasn’t magic I’ll do something else.
If it was magic for you, I can do something better.”
the Godfather (Vinnie)

which is why I disagree with the rock band analogy above. In a show, my object is to have my audience have a real experience of magic.
That is orchestrated with some effects more powerful than others, some providing acquitment for others,
and some seemingly in response to the audience enthusiasm. Often my routines have several branching options of later effects
based on what I learn of this audience along the way. So there is no possibility of a "encore."

When table hopping it is different. You may do another effect based on the group's appreciation of magic as much as any request.
But then I would never do the same or similar effect. If they want more, the get more. A repeat is never "more."

A third case is where the guy paying the bill (or his wife) request a certain magic effect. Then you might agree, but use a different Sleight or timing for the "remembered effect."

For me, the "more" they want and get is stronger magic. Any repeat is going the wrong direction. (so is doing "cover" tricks)
Message: Posted by: michaelpenkul (Jun 6, 2021 01:32AM)
I simply state - "the first time you're impressed; the second time you're just trying to figure out how it's done" and I move on to something else
Message: Posted by: mightytimbo (Jul 13, 2021 07:29PM)
The best advice I've been given on this point was to respond as though they are asking for more magic and show them another, different trick. This usually takes care of the "do it again" because if you do a few, the crowd is entertained. They may have moved on from their hang up on that initial trick (unless you just completely blew their minds and they can't get over it) and after spending a few more extra minutes with them, you can move on gracefully because you have done more with them. At some point they recognize it's rude to ask for more when you have already given several more minutes worth of presentation per their prompting.
Message: Posted by: Julie (Jul 13, 2021 11:48PM)
"...the Magicians Union, local # 666, only permits me to perform a miracle like this once every 24 hours...".

With a smile, of course. :)

Message: Posted by: funsway (Jul 14, 2021 02:54AM)
“Do it again, why?
If it wasn’t magic I’ll do something else.
If it was magic for you, I can do something better.”
the Godfather
Message: Posted by: Russo (Jul 14, 2021 08:51AM)
'Do it again - do a trick(again)' - I've found when I ask for a 'coin' to do a 'trick' - then do the trick, I put the coin in MY pocket. They ask why-or for it. Then I tell them, 'this is how I support my Family' - usually they ask no more. LOL Ralph
Message: Posted by: Merodach (Aug 3, 2021 07:10AM)
[quote]On Jul 13, 2021, Julie wrote:
"...the Magicians Union, local # 666, only permits me to perform a miracle like this once every 24 hours...".

With a smile, of course. :)

Julie [/quote]

I also agree with most of the other magacians here regarding the "rinse and repeat" request. There are however exceptions, I have no reservations in repeating some close-up effects like the Crazy Man's Handcuffs. I'm sure there are other effects that fall into this category.
Message: Posted by: Wravyn (Aug 3, 2021 07:19PM)
Do it again?
I would love to but I can only do it once in a row.
Message: Posted by: Andrew Aspen (Aug 14, 2021 01:06PM)
What I usually say is “that would be boring. I already did that. Let me show you something else.” If someone is really pushy about it I just say “a magician never repeats the same trick” and they get the point.