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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magic names and the media » » Has Michael Ammar Popularized OR Overexposed Card Magic? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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love2laugh
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With Michael Ammar publishing 9 volumes of Easy To Master Card Miracles the entire magic community has EASY access to nearly 100 of the top card effects. It seems that almost everyone here on the Magic Café owns or has seen some if not all of the ETMCM videos. Has this created too many amature magicians out there performing the exact same effects? Has Michael Ammar overexposed some of the finest card magic creations by marketing the effects as 'Easy to Master' which end up getting botched by sub-par performers? Are we all now performing the same types of effects? OR, has Michael Ammar actually helped to popularize card magic?

I'd like to hear your opinions.

After seeing how many of us on the Magic Café are performing soo many of the same effects which can be found on Ammar's ETMCM volumes I'm starting to think he has overexposed card magic. I'm afraid I'll perform a version of Reset and someone in the audience will say Oh yeah, my Uncle performed this last weekend. I don't think I would have minded as much if Ammar published his own material yet he really just shows other peoples creations. Is this fair?

What do you think?

~L2L
KidCrenshaw
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Personally, I believe that we need not to popularize magic in any way. It is it's own attraction.

Having said that, I chose not to criticize anymore the actions of others for I know not why they do what they do.
"Put your faith in Providence, but always cut the cards"
magickdabid--uk
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I'm not sure if what Mike has done is a good thing or bad, What really upset me was to see so many effects that have taken me most of my Magic life to seek out, practice, study & perform, (I always liked the saying...Put it in print, lose it forever!)the hard work I have put in can now be bought & paid for then watched over a weekend by anyone with out Paying their dues so to speak......

Now, my search for outstanding Card work has forced me to study much much older effects, from the 30's, 40's & 50's, hopefully in a few years I'll be able to go on a gig with a few others & they won't be doing MY act!.

Just a few thoughts..........


Dave
mc_magi
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Dave,
there is DEFINITE difference between who has studied magic and created routines and someone who just copied it off Dvd's and when it comes to high stake performance, I believe that difference will show up. You can never beat the hard work, no matter what.
So don't feel too bad about it. Smile
jezza
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The main problem lies in people just trying to perform the effects without good technique .I have seen supposed pro magicians peform card magic and just butcher the effects with sloppy unrehearsed bad handling.
Ross W
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Just how many magicians are you guys encountering day-to-day? I live in London and the chances of me doing a trick and someone saying "Oh yeah, I saw this last week" are as close to nil as possible. I do Red Hot Mama all the time, yes I learnt it from Ammar, and no one has EVER said they have seen it before. Perhaps this is because my presentation of it is pretty original, but I don't think so.

Most people I perform for have hardly seen a magician since they were children.
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Euangelion
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Ammar is great at teaching the process of tricks and at communicating the process.

Mike Close is great at teaching routining.

Burger is great at teaching the why of magic.

Soapy Smith is great at the art of performing.


The above are only models of what I have learned from each and are not mutually exclusive of each each other.
Bill Esborn

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magickdabid--uk
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Hey Ross,

I perform Red hot Mamma really well too with my own twist on the presentation (as well as Handling.....) & your right about the Laymen not saying they've seen that one before etc...my point was that Great EFFECTS like RHM a few years ago was only to be found in hard to find books, now any & everybody who picks up a deck has access to these GREAT effects, effect that have taken some people years of hard work to SEEK out & after much practice add to the act, now as someone else said, anyone, even some Pro's can butcher them after watching the dvd this weekend.....makes me sad, so many secrets so easy to obtain, takes all the fun out of it don't ya think?


Dave
Samuel
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I have nothing to add to the discussion, rather than a question;

Is it true that Ammar was on a convention, and was presented as Another Magicians Magic And Routines (AMMAR)?
Samuel

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JTW
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That was in Chris Kenner's Book I believe. Jamy Ian Swiss wrote an article talking about the "Ammarization" of magic. It was a scathing essay/review. I agree that watching those videos it saddens me that all the work has been removed from finding these gems. The effects are so much more rewarding when you have discovered them on your own.
evolve629
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Quote:
On 2005-08-03 09:13, Samuel wrote:
I have nothing to add to the discussion, rather than a question;

Is it true that Ammar was on a convention, and was presented as Another Magicians Magic And Routines (AMMAR)?

Gee, that's great Smile Great acronym and when I see Ammar, this is going to pop into my mind. At any rate, do you know he married a great magic empire? His wife's from a very famous magic family and Ammar himself also came from wealth.
One hundred percent of the shots you don't take don't go in - Wayne Gretzky
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preston91
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Over exposure?

ask 10 laymen who Michael Ammar is and I bet you don't get more than 1 correct answer.


paul
Alewishus
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Ammar has popularized card magic.
I don't know if he has overexposed card magic.
I have a few of his tapes, but I can only take homeopathic doses of Mr. Ammar and his insipid grin.




A.
Sack subs, ok Ross?
We miss you asper.
Euangelion
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I'm not sure about Michael coming from wealth growing up in the hills of West Virginia as I understand his story. His mother was a teacher. And he attended WVU the state university, where he majored in Psychology, not usually the alma mater or major of wealth.

He has known deep tragedy in his life as well as joys.

Hannah is Francis Willard's daughter and granddaughter of Williard the Wizard.
Bill Esborn

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Richard Shippy
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Michael Ammar is a great teacher and given that quality I'd say he has helped.

Take care,
Rich
"They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they'd make up their minds." ~ Winston Churchill
Larry Davidson
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Quote:
On 2005-08-03 09:56, JTW wrote:
That was in Chris Kenner's Book I believe. Jamy Ian Swiss wrote an article talking about the "Ammarization" of magic. It was a scathing essay/review. I agree that watching those videos it saddens me that all the work has been removed from finding these gems. The effects are so much more rewarding when you have discovered them on your own.


Yup, it's in Totally Out of Control.
Joshua Lozoff
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1 in 10? Are you kidding? Maybe 1 in 1000. I'd say 1 in 10 have heard of Penn and Teller, and 1 in 50 have heard of Lance Burton.

Magicians just aren't that famous. For better of for worse. I have never performed for anyone who has mention Ammar's name to me, and I've been a professional across 3 continents for about 8 years.

In my experience, maybe 1 in 100 audience members have seen close-up magic in person before, and 99.9% of them have no idea the name of the person they saw, nor can describe the exact trick. "He did something where he took a card and it ended up a different color. I can't remember exactly. but it was awesome..." That's how people remember magic.

Quote:
On 2005-08-03 10:22, preston91 wrote:
Over exposure?

ask 10 laymen who Michael Ammar is and I bet you don't get more than 1 correct answer.


paul
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Roger Kelly
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Michael Ammar, or rather his DVD's, are one of the main influences in my relatively new found hobby.

Like has allready been mentioned, I haven't yet been told by anyone that they have seen that effect before.

I also can't see the point of performing for magicians - unless, unbeknown to you, they happen to be in your audience. Then, hopefully, they would have the prodfessional good grace to shut up and let you get on with it.

Ammar is cool by me! As are Messrs Malone, Wilson, Green, Ortiz, Bannon et al.
Jonathan Townsend
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Quote:
On 2005-08-03 09:13, Samuel wrote:...Is it true that Ammar was on a convention, and was presented as Another Magicians Magic And Routines (AMMAR)?


no

Kenner's magazine and later the TOOC book had some magic related humor.
...to all the coins I've dropped here
JoeHohman
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There are many interesting perspectives on this thread.

I think Love2Laugh has a point about too many magicians doing a lot of the same effects. I own volumes 1 and 3 of ETMCM; until just recently, I NEVER did Red Hot Mama for anyone because of these same concerns. However, I recently have begun doing the effect in spite of my warped desire to be unique, because this effect gets GREAT reactions from people. I think that good reactions and audience enjoyment should trump your own reservations about "doing what everybody else is doing."

Joshua Lozoff is dead on -- the only household name magicians are Davids Blaine and Copperfield (but watch out for Criss Angel). The general public, even people in the "entertainment industry," have no idea who the great magicians are. And what's more, he is dead on about how they remember magic -- even if one of my audience members has actually SEEN Red Hot Mama before, odds are excellent that it will feel like the first time when they see me do it, just because my delivery is probably different. (This "magic memory" factor also eases my apprehension about being unique.)

Alewishus, while I appreciate any post that manages to work in the phrase "homeopathic doses," you should be so lucky someday to see Ammar perform live. I admit that, for some reason, he comes across a bit wooden (okay, dorky even) in his videos; but if you ever actually see him live, he is relaxed, charming, and sometimes downright hilarious.

Plus, he is a SUPER nice guy. I probably say that about too many people, but he really is.

In short: I empathize totally with the desire to be unique, and to perform effects that are not being done by everybody else. But if you find a "popular" effect that you really like and that plays well for you, don't feel guilty about keeping it in your repertoire.

(P.S. Just out of curiosity -- does anybody know in which book Red Hot Mama was first published?)
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