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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Catch this if you can! » » Combining Juggling with Magic (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

magicguy88
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I have been doing magic and juggling both for some time. My juggling has really improved lately and I really want to include it in my act. The kicker is...it seems like such a drastic segue from the magic in my show. It also requires high ceilings which don't always come with bookings.
I would like to create some type of manipulation routine that combines magic with juggling. Either with vanishing, reappearing balls, etc. (that may transform to silks, whatever) or with flaming torches and fire effects. Any suggestions or resources out there that I should know about?

Ryan Smile
Missing_Link
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There are a few comments elsewhere on this board about this which you may find handy. Contact juggling could be good (do a search for this and you'll find some useful hints). Juggling provides perfect opportunities for misdirection, so there is plenty you could do.

And you don't always need a high ceiling to juggle. Three clubs/balls can be done below shoulder level easily. Unless you're juggling beach balls...

Cheers

ML
Paul Jester
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mmm... someone should make gimmicked juggling balls... for ball to silk etc... shouldn't be too difficult either...
And I still want to make a juggling ball float!!!
Jester Smile
The Village Idiots
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Jester,

Swap a juggling ball out for a styrofoam ball. They of course need to look similar so you would probably have to customize a juggling ball to look like a painted styrofoam ball.

Anywho, have a small squirrel cage blower in a table, or a case, or a box. You can wave your hands around the ball and depending on how you do it, the ball will lower, raise or stay in the same place, making it look like you have control. It looks very magical.

You will have to make a tubed flange to go over the square out-take on the blower. It keeps the air in a tight shape. You can even make it jump way up in the air by cutting off the air and then letting it go.

I remember as a kid being fascinated by the beach ball on a fan at the state fair.

Or how about reading and trying a ping pong ball on a blow dryer? Same idea but you can play with it.

Have fun breaking the laws of gravity. Remember, do the crime, serve the time.

Sillily, Will
Some are born idiots.

Some are made idiots.

Some have idiocy thrust upon them.
Jeb Sherrill
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Elsewhere
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What style show do you do, (dramatic, comedy, stage, parlor, manipulation, illusions, etc.) It would affect my response quite a bit. I've wondered the same thing by the way, and come to several different conclusions. Give me an idea of what you do and I'll do my best.

Sable

Smile Smile Smile Smile Smile
:clownjuggling:
I don't believe in reincarnation, but I may have in another life.
ReTurner
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Mixing the arts CAN cause some problems. After I did a couple of magic tricks, and THEN went onto the devil stick, kids would shout out 'it's magnets' or 'it's Velcro' as though there was a secret apart from skill.

There ARE a few old-fashioned juggling tricks which are *cheats*, but generally the two forms are so different it can be difficult to blend them. I guess the world of 'flourishes' is where they combine best.

PS:

I seem to remember that a Swedish magician called Topper Martin used to do a juggling routine in which the balls appeared, multiplied, got juggled, changed colour and size, and then disappeared...
Paul Jester
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I was thinking about this last night...
Now take the classic illusion of sawing a lady in half, shrink it down a bit and replace the lady with a glass bottle (like a wine bottle). You can see the top and the bottom of the bottle sticking out the box (wooden cylinder?) Pick up your three trusty hatchets/meat cleavers. Begin to juggle.

Then use chops to hack the bottle in half. Show it clearly halved, then put it back together, and pull out a whole bottle.

Now I've been thinking about the method for this all day and can't come up with anything feasible. It also seems like a high level of waste (hacked up box... how re-usable?) I put the problem to the Triple Dare and see what people come up with.

Is it possible; how much compromise is needed?

Paul Smile
Stick Man
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How about this, not as good as the wine bottle idea, but similar.

Borrow a £note/$bill from the audience and insert it into one of three envolopes, mix these up behind your back then hand them to the spectator so he/she can mix them up too.

Now place the envolopes on a block of wood and pull out your knives. Look like you haven't got a clue which one it is and start to juggle.

Suddenly throw a (double) and ram the other two knives through the envelopes into the block of wood behind, catch the last knife and reveal that the one without the knife in it contains the money!

What do you think Smile
Missing_Link
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Nice idea - another is to do a version of the "smashing a borrowed watch" trick. Borrow a watch and put it in a bag and then let rip while juggling hammers or whatever.

Cheers

ML
danryb
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I added juggling into my show at a very early stage and about the same time that I read in a book that somewhere near the end of your show (2 or 3 tricks before the finale) you should change the scene of magic to give the show a sense of continuity. Too true - magic, magic and more magic could become tiresome for some even if the patter is funny or the music is dramatic.

I started with a 3 ball routine then I adapted a very short juggling lesson where I would involve the whole audience as to pretend they were actually throwing/catching something which really gets them awake.

Nowadays I have added a fourth ball for those that have seen me perform regularly. This is a very welcoming addition to them, but in one of my shows I do the 3 ball stunt with one of the balls being a mini zombie - I then place the 3 on stands zombie in center and cover the balls with cloth saying the middle (zombie) will vanish. 2 or 3 times with no success and then unbeknown to me it's gone but the audience sees it rising up and down, etc., and they go nuts. It's one of those tricks where as they'd seen me use the ball for juggling always come and ask me about afterwards.

I have another idea - I juggle and then use an Axtel board to draw out to the audience my formula for achieving these stunts. I turn the 3 drawn balls into a smiling face, erase the lot and then draw a hat and ask the crowd to assist me in achieving the all- time most popular magic trick of a rabbit out of hat. Excellent for kids of all ages, both the juggling and the board!
philipi56
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Try doing a cups and balls routine and produce juggling balls at the end.
tkuhns
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Philipi's suggestion is good -- I do that myself. It makes a good segue to another trick.

Another idea, if you juggle scarves, is to produce them ala TT or dye tube or something, toss them up in the air and go. Even if you can't sustain it for very long (like me), it adds a little extra entertainment to the routine and adds to the "skilled manipulator" air.
Jewls
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The Stratosphere, and Crystal silk cylinder both offer a good opportunity for juggling.
Once you're juggling balls you should be able to segue to other juggling items easily enough. My show is billed as a comedy magic and juggling show.

Square Circle is a good juggling opportunity too, my clubs are just a few inches too long but you can produce other juggling items. I am a torch juggler but I never juggle fire in someone's home. Other indoor venues usually require a fire permit. Smile Smile
circus_freak17
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I remember a juggler/magician that performed at the All Star Show at magi-fest, and he juggled an egg, a frying pan, and a fire torch. At the end he caught the egg in the pan and held the torch underneath the pan like he was cooking the egg. It was a great act! I believe his name was Joel Brook or something like that.

Charles
Charles Watson
magicgeorge
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If I was to incorporate juggling into a magic routine I would probably do it at the start or the end of the trick to stop the sequence of the trick being broken up too much.

If I was to juggle during a trick I probably would do it as a quick throw away gag or for a reason. (i.e to mix up three objects?) Smile
Bill Hallahan
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I also have considered trying to add juggling to my show. I am not a professional, but I perform shows for children, especially my son, nieces, nephews, and friends. Adults seem bored by more than about 30 seconds of 3 ball juggling unless you can do tricks, but some very small children, about 3 or 4 years old, really like to watch it a lot. They get really excited if you let them hold the juggling balls. If you do this and then let them throw the juggling balls, then make sure there are no breakables about!

I like the idea of producing the balls magically, juggling, and then vanishing them magically. I am still trying to figure out a practical way to do this.

I really like juggling almost as much as performing magic tricks. On some days I like it more. There is a zen-like quality to it that is difficult to explain. I am working on learning 4 balls now, but it is much harder than 3. I am amazed by people who juggle 5 or more items.

I once saw a young woman named "Gena Schvartsman" (*) juggle 8 balls, and while juggling them all, she changed the pattern, threw them all high in the air, and then did a forward handspring (on her hands, feet over in front, and landing on her feet), and then she caught all 8 balls. Here's the part that really amazes me. She made it look easy. It was fluid and not awkward at all.

She did numerous other seemingly 'impossible' things. If you are ever up north in New Hampshire, U.S.A. She performs with her family at a place called Clarks Trading Post every summer (check their website first). She didn't do the 8 ball routine last time I saw her, but she did many juggling tricks with clubs. Her show is short, but it is spectacular.

Since I saw her juggle, juggling has amazed me. I learned 3 balls as quickly as I could, which was not particularly fast since I could only practice about 20 minutes a day. I am now working on doing 4 balls. I also am working on learning to juggle clubs.

I highly recommend learning to juggle. Almost anyone can do three balls with practice, and it is a fantastic stress reliever.

(*) I actually first saw Gena Schvartsman in the Ringling Brother's Barnum and Bailey Circus when she was only 13 years old. At that time, she was juggling 5 clubs while twirling multiple hula hoops around her waist. She also balanced one on her head while continuing to juggle 4, while STILL twirling the hula hoops. Again, she made it look easy. It was just amazing!
Humans make life so interesting. Do you know that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to create boredom. Quite astonishing.
- The character of ‘Death’ in the movie "Hogswatch"
Arkadia
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Sweden, Sundsvall
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Check out the book Charley Dansey's Encyclopedia of Ball Juggling, the trick Abracadabra. That works for me.

/Arkadia
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fingerflinger
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I am both a magician and a juggler. I always went on the belief that as long as my audience is being entertained and having fun, I have succeeded. Juggling, magic, lots of flourishes...it's all good...

While I do combine both magic and juggling in the same show, so far, their interaction has been fairly limited to a few juggling prop productions, and magic prop to juggling prop transformations. I see lots of potential here for some original routines combinig the two art forms. I can't think of many performers who have taken both magic and juggling to a fairly high skill level. Most are way more proficient at one or the other. I started with magic, then focused mostly on juggling for many years, and am now having fun learning more magic techniques once again (and more juggling too).

I met Topper Martyn at the 1985 FISM in Madrid, and really enjoyed his act. Shortly after at another magic conventin in Belgium, I got to see Burt Garden, who also combines comedy magic with his juggling. His act was a huge hit...
fingerflinger
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Here is a link to a video of Bert Garden. It is just a short part of his act.

http://juggling.tv/1516
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