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Profile of jgazmen
Many years ago I brought up that problem with the great Al Cohen of Al's Magic in Washington, DC. He told me to just tell them a story about the fact that you just got off the plane from Alaska, and that you are still recovering..........

Mr. Mystoffelees
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Inner circle
I haven't changed anyone's opinion in
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Profile of Mr. Mystoffelees
If it fits, maybe a "Don Knotts" routine could work...
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
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Southern Louisiana
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Profile of guitarmagic
Lawrence O . . . thanks for the useful and great ideas of interjecting the Parkinson scenario for those moments of involuntary shakes secondary to passing nervousness.
Why is it that on one side of the world a person looks at a picture of the Grand Canyon and says, "it looks so real." At the same time on the other side of the world a person looks at the Grand Canyon and says, "it looks like a picture."
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Youngstown, Ohio
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Profile of crochow
I agree that it was just a tense/emotional moment with your sister.'ll be fine! Actually, a little nervousness is good as it will give you an 'edge' to perform better. Little is the key word there.

Chris Rochow
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Profile of aaronharp88
Being nervous is always best.... If your real calm on stage and comfortable that's when your known to mess up..... I hate performing in front of my uncle because he was my mentor. so when I perform infront of him I feel that I have to be amazing and blow him away and the entire show I'm worried about what he thinks when I should be worrying about the audiences views
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Profile of Stonewick
Strangers only know us through the characters we present.
It's almost like a mask.
With friends and family the mask is off.
They know who the man (or woman) behind the curtain is.
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Eternal Order
Look mom! I've got
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Profile of daffydoug
Oh what memories! I remember very vividly the first payed show I did. My hands were shaking like a proverbial leaf! I made Don Knots look calm and cool.
But it went away. Shaking is a thing of the past, now.
The difficult must become easy, the easy beautiful and the beautiful magical.
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The New Orleans area
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Profile of wizardpa
Golly, I'm glad you posted this. I have done hundreds of shows and I swear, I'm not nervous especially the several tricks that make it look like I am. I do a diminishing card trick that's super easy to do. It's mostly a funny trick as opposed to being; "How does he do that?" When I get to the last couple of small card packets my hand is slightly shaking, and a few times I have trouble holding the smallest packet because of this.
Other tricks I notice my shaking are 2 of the easiest tricks in the world to do, In the News, and The Water Suspension Trick, as I'm pouring the liquid, I notice my hand shaking. What the heck, is this, I wonder to myself.
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Instead of practicing, I made
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Profile of MaxfieldsMagic
Try drinking a few shots before you perform. No shakes, and you won't care or even realize that you're probably messing up every trick.
Now appearing nightly in my basement.
Jim Sparx
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Far Out, Texas
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Profile of Jim Sparx
Wives are the easiest to fool. I know, I've had a bunch of them.
Instead of putting a negative spin on shaking (ie it's bad) think of it as excitement (therefore positive). Trying to think yourself to relax just makes you more nervous because it does not always work.
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Profile of startingout
Like to put my experience forward, for what its worth, sorry I know its long winded but .... Performing in front of friends family no issues, strangers. felt that never picked up a pack of cards or coins etc. But I love magic, wife convinced me try join a local Magicians group. Reluctantly I did, had a visit from a member see what my handling is like, honestly was a nervous wreck, but he seen I had the techniques. Taken me on to the magicians academy mind I am (47). I was in my element totally buzzing. Had to perform in front of 2 magicians 3 month now passed since joined 2.5 hr each session, With a fortnightly visit from one of my mentors. Rely on as a real friend now. Within this short time only one issue still could not get over the nerves when performing in front of the other magician. As I taken it they seen it all done it all. Which brought on more nerves. Also trying to research in to different effects as friends already seen what I can do. What my mentors turned round and said was, we may seen and done it all, but you are learning to perform in front of people, laymen who never have. Don't find new material, find new audience. This is where these magic shops make a fortune. Taken this in account. Said to wife if can get passed this 1 magician with my nerves then I have cracked it. £ effects I went in with, rehearsed, for weks till could do blind fold. Went in hot the nail on the head. The fact is that not only did I nail it as love the art taken chop cup and 2 others 2 other a different angle, the mentor I was petrified off, at end of my session said, how simple yet totally original, brilliant 15 yrs never seen the load done that way, I may pinch it. what a confidence boost. it is a total different story doing in front of friends and colleagues, as found you get in a comfort zone. No matter where I go always take cards or coins, have one or 2 impromptu effects, mc donalds, local pub etc., If can find an opportunity to do an effect raises 1`s confidence. As my mentors said new audience, never been wrong, only after 3 months now don't get the shakes but strangely after, possibly that's the adrenalin kicking in. Yes messed up once or twice who hasn't? then that's the next step. You will notice it but as the audience, Drop a coin " gravity check in place, yup all working" pretend to pick up coin but place under the foot, do a simple vanish, show appeared under foot, carry on. Select a force card miss pick use ur force card as the key card to locate theirs. We thought this was all fun lol...
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Profile of JasperLee
I use to think that practice makes perfect, and the shaking would probably stop in time when you've enough flight time.

That said, I when was watching "The Illusionist" on stage one, world class close up magician had his hands shaking infront of a live audience.

He still pulled off the effect wonderfully.

I've no doubt that they spent thousand of hours on their effects, yet it still happens.

At the end of the day, nerves are there to keep us in check. Which isn't entirely a bad thing.
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Profile of AndreOng1
I use to have shaky hands when performing but I keep going and eventually it went away.

tip is..practice doesn't make perfect... just try to get comfortable doing magic in front of strangers
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Profile of malaki
Pre-show jitters are a part of performing.
One thing that no one has mentioned, though, is the possibility of low blood sugar. Symptoms are shaking hands, light headedness and spots before your eyes.

Seeing your sister and showing her a trick, if it was before you ate, could have been the problem. Never shop for groceries or perform magic when hungry. It will not be your best show.

I have suffered from hypoglycemia for years. Pay attention to what your body may be telling you, and take care of yourself. You aren't going to be very entertaining if you have passed out onto the floor. After all, the goal is to continue to entertain for as many decades as you can. ; )
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Minneapolis, MN
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Profile of paulalpha
I find that I get the shakes after I have performed a trick well for a group. It must be adrenaline kicking in. And in the case of performing for your sister, it no doubt was the emotional aspect of it. Just practice well so its muscle memory and you will do fine.
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Profile of deanr201
On Apr 10, 2018, paulalpha wrote:
I find that I get the shakes after I have performed a trick well for a group. It must be adrenaline kicking in. And in the case of performing for your sister, it no doubt was the emotional aspect of it. Just practice well so its muscle memory and you will do fine.

*edit* Sorry for the bit of a ramble, had a indecent just like this so thought it was best to get it off my chest! *end edit*

I find the same, quite often I find I'm worse after I have nailed the first effect or two and the spectators are invested and impressed suddenly a wave of nervous and shakeyness and doubt seems to fill me. Generally I push on and this does go away.

But I am inclined to agree with previous comments family and friends know the real you, strangers know the character your present which you can always use to your advantage.

I'm just a hobbyist and never performed professionally, but have often shown been asked at family events to show certain members of family a few things and then suddenly you have nearly every one at the event. First time this happened I went to pieces, stumbled through possible the worst ambitions card routine ever and honestly was disappointment with my self! But then the reactions were all positive and way better than they should have been for what I just performed. But then the nerves we gone, the doubt was gone. I proceeded to do possibly the best magic I have ever done (all simple things but) It as many have said before its as much the tricks/effects as it is the performance.

But what happens when I meet these people again...the nerves come back now matter how hard I tell my self its ok. and what happens, first trick/effect feels rocky and sloppy, but I always find I get feedback which suggests its even better than the lats time they saw me. I often find once I alter my perception things don't seem so bad and the shaky hands are gone too.
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