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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Table hoppers & party strollers » » Tackiness on stage (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Dirko
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Michigan
294 Posts

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Joshua,

Yes we tipped. I have worked in resteraunts for over 15 years from busboy, dishwasher server to house magician. I feel that it is how this person asked that got my friends riled up.
snap
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New York, USA
218 Posts

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Quote:
On 2005-07-14 16:54, Skip Way wrote:
Snapster...I've seen Renaissance magicians solicit tips from their stage or platform. I don't see the stage as any different from the street...except that you're elevated a little above everyone. Set your tip bucket out there and seed it with a few bucks. Use an entertaining hat line at the tail end of your show...and make it part of your show.

If you use a sign on a tripod to identify your act, consider putting "THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIPS" with a color smiley face or something to that effect on the back. Turn it over as you make your hat pitch. You have to be brash to get the cash! If you offend someone...do you REALLY care? You just gave them a great show...and they want to be offended when you ask for a buck? Fugeddaboudit! Give it your best shot! I would!

:o) Skip




THANK YOU skip!! this is what I've been asking, I wasn't asking if I should busk or if I should ask for tips off the stage, but if I should on. thank you soooo much!! any other oppinions?
**--snap--**
lunatik
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Inner circle
2770 Posts

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Have sign on your hat that says "Tipping is not a city in China"! lol
"Don't let your Dreams become Fantasies"
magicalaurie
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Inner circle
Ontario, Canada
2914 Posts

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How about, "Tipping is not a crime UNLESS you're tipping cows."

Or maybe, "It's against the law to TIP a cow. A magician- no problem."
cheesewrestler
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Inner circle
Chicago
1147 Posts

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Quote:

actually, the way this came about was rather complicated. I at first did call her to ask her if I could do street at a fourth of july festival there, she thought it was a good idea and called someone else and asked me if I could be at this festival as well. it wasn't a matter of me offering my services for this festival, she is giving me a free booth and the privilage of NOT having to get a permit in exchange for entertainment for the kids and parents. although this is great, I also wanted to get something else out of it. when I inquired about tips, she agreed. I just thought I should clear that up. when I'm doing just the strolling kind of thing, I don't see a problem asking for tips, but I just think it would be a little tacky to do it up on stage infront of several more people than when I'm performing otherwise. do you guys think it would also be tacky if I put a bucket plainly visible that said "tips for the performer"? should I just keep my mouth shut during the show (about tips, I mean)? thanx for the help!!


Check out the "Working the Festival Market" thread in the "Tricky Business" forum.
Lee Darrow
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Chicago, IL USA
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Festival managers have, for decades, played magicians for freebies in just this kind of way, which is why I was concerned. been there, done that, got the hat, the T-shirt, the bumper sticker and almost got the tattoo.

;)

If you work a gig for free, you are advertising that you work for free. Do you really need that?

With respect to the booth, however, you could turn that into a marketing ploy for your paid shows, saying that you are doing this event in trade for the expensive booth and "other considerations" from the festival management and leave it at that. This kind of thing is done all the time. Then pass out brochures, business cards and promo packets (you DO have all of those things, right?) like mad and get cards and information from the people passing by as well.

Do the "sign up for our mailing list" cards on your table. They are a great way to build a marketing list. That way, you have a list of names and addresses that you can send a letter to, advertising your upcoming performances, advertising your availability for parties, events, etc., as well.

This way, if you book a couple of private events, you make back what you don't make at the festival.

And you can write the thing off, possibly, as an advertising cost (see your tax professional about that, to be sure!).

Hope this helps!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
keithmagic
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Snap,

You state that the festival you are working for free is charging rent on booths for other people. If they have concessions as well, they are being paid (generally) quite a bit for that too. They have an entertainment budget. Why not get your piece?

When working local fairs when I was starting out doing the fair/festival market I would occasionally BOOK a street style show. In essence, they would have to pay me a retainer, something they could afford, and I would still get to busk.

If you think just being there in a tent is going to get you publicity, I hate to be there bearer of bad news... but you will most likely be quite disappointed (unless you are dangling in a straitjacket from a burning rope, blowing yourself up, etc...)

Once you work this event for FREE the first time, you most likely will NEVER get them to pay you a dime in the future. Ask me how I learned this as a kid the hard way!!!

Also, be careful of how you "stage" your show outdoors if you have never done it before.

Keith Stickley
http://howtobookfestivals.com
Author of "The Festival Entertainer" The Professional Entertainer's Guide to Booking and Working Outdoor Fairs, Festivals, and Events.
Available at http://www.howtobookfestivals.com
Dannydoyle
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Eternal Order
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Lee is right in that festivals have been milking magicians and jugglers for that matter also in this manner. It is horrible of them, but if every magician said "NO" I won't do it for tips, then they would get compensated.

Since we know that wont happen, make the best of it. If you can find local street performers in your area watch closely. Plus if the other entertainment is busking for tips it is not that tough to do it yourself
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Eric Jones
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Director of Product Development
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My favorite line came from Eric Mead. He said," guys, you can always tip me 5 bucks so I can go back to college, OR you can tip my $50 so I don't have to..."

I've used that line in my show for years, maybe it'll work for you......
“We're two tigers away from an act in Vegas.” Greg House M.D.
<BR>
<BR>http://www.ericjonesmagic.com
snap
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New York, USA
218 Posts

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Quote:
On 2005-07-18 15:57, keithmagic wrote:
Snap,

You state that the festival you are working for free is charging rent on booths for other people. If they have concessions as well, they are being paid (generally) quite a bit for that too. They have an entertainment budget. Why not get your piece?

When working local fairs when I was starting out doing the fair/festival market I would occasionally BOOK a street style show. In essence, they would have to pay me a retainer, something they could afford, and I would still get to busk.

If you think just being there in a tent is going to get you publicity, I hate to be there bearer of bad news... but you will most likely be quite disappointed (unless you are dangling in a straitjacket from a burning rope, blowing yourself up, etc...)

Once you work this event for FREE the first time, you most likely will NEVER get them to pay you a dime in the future. Ask me how I learned this as a kid the hard way!!!

Also, be careful of how you "stage" your show outdoors if you have never done it before.

Keith Stickley
http://howtobookfestivals.com


keith,
unfortunately the nature of this festival is that if you are performing there, there is no pay. as stated above, if I was JUST to do busking, I would not get much publicity, but I am also doing several stage shows there. also, after this, the lady wants to HIRE me (as in with pay) for a library gig. thank you for you advice!!
**--snap--**
twistedace
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Inner circle
philadelphia
3772 Posts

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I think you got kinda screwed man. You really should have asked for money...tips are appreciated but not really easy to get from people at bigger festivals. They've already paid for entrance, they have to buy food, there are other things there that they will probably want to purchase...why should they give money to you when they've already paid to see you with their entrance fee?
keithmagic
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Snap,

All I am trying to warn you about is that offerings of "Free" publicity is often worth just about how much it "costs" - Nothing.

Several stage shows in exchange for some "publicity" and the hopes of a library show from said client is not neccesarily a great deal. If that is "how that festival works" I may be inclined to suggest you find another festival. In the state of New York, you have over 5-8,000 DIFFERENT festivals and events you could work for $ AND exposure.

Look at it like this...

You go to this event and work for free. You do 3 "stage shows". Then you get hired by this woman to work a library show for let's say $375 for an hour (a pretty conservative rate). Your actual pay for the library show is really only $93.75. Now I have not yet seen your show - but I am willing to bet that all of that time and effort invested by you is worth a little bit more than $93.75. And that is IF the woman follows through and books you.

I only meantion this because I see so many entertainers look at the final number they think may be impressive as opposed to what they are REALLY making per show. Now if snap spends a total of 25-30 hours properly working an prepping for these shows, he is now being paid a McDonald's salary. I don't really find that to be fair, and would like to see you better compensated for your hard work.

Keith Stickley
http://www.howtobookfestivals.com
Author of "The Festival Entertainer" The Professional Entertainer's Guide to Booking and Working Outdoor Fairs, Festivals, and Events.
Available at http://www.howtobookfestivals.com
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