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Kondini
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OK I will stick my own head in the noose here, based on the viewing of the video.
Plus points Great set / Great girls / Great backing track / Great Idea for an escape / A good job done for which I hope Santini got a good fee / The heavies as stage or crew hands I just loved.

Minus points (My personal opinion only and what the hell do I know anyway) I felt the fire was not showey enough, a few more powerful jets to really encase the box would have made it more for me. Also if Steve had set himself on fire as he made his exit this would have made it a sensation (I learnt that the on fire bit added a lot to my exploding cage escape and required little extra work to execute), His outfit showed no signs of heat exposure not even a smoulder.

Haveing put my mouth on this thread a one off escape such as this should be worked on, with work this could be a sensation, also image is important like me Steve should lose a few pounds (Personal maybe but no offence ment) Constructive critique which I am sure Santini would offer me and I would accept it.

The finale could have been improved with flash pots and marroons going off as he burst into view, also a medic rushing in with an extiguisher would have added to the rush.
To sum up I have done many far worse escapes over the years and got paid as well,,we all require more than one show a year, I wish him luck and a full date book.

OK

Ken.
Mtripp
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Well, there are really four things at issue here:

1. What "sells" at an event like this New Year's gathering.

2. How one gets ready, and what you do, when you get the kind of break this is.

3. What was done that night.

4. What fans and foes think about what happened.

The best way I can begin this, is to say that it is sad that Bigelow is remembered for a "door of death" that closed slower than the creeky door on the inner scantum. BUT, that is what happened on the network special he was on, and it looked very bad. When the break comes, we have to be ready and we must be who we say we are. Nothing less than perfect will do. People will remember the one bad thing no matter how many good ones follow, it is human nature.

As such, as HELP for all in this body of work. I will go over those points, as kindly, but as clearly as I can. So, #1.

Long before every theme park did it, Paul Osborne came up with the idea of having Halloween weekends to make more money for the parks. Most closed by then, and this was a way to extend their profit. This was simply an update of the old spook show ideas, which begat the Rocky Horror Show.

There was ONE bitter truth we learned early on. Magic talent was NOT important. The look was. My skills were far better than anyone who ever worked for Paul. BUT, I did NOT have the look needed, and was not effective in the role. For those shows, and that audience, you needed to look "Dangerous". We defined that as someone who EVERY parent would look at and say "He will have sex with my daughter", and the daughters would think it was a good idea. We found a David Bowie look alike, and he killed! No question I had more "talent" in every area than he did. BUT, he had the look, I did not, and he got those gigs. Those people on the daytime soaps are not there for their acting skills.

Now, looking at all the rock stars, young hosts, and the age of the crowd, I can see this New Years venue needs the same kind of thing. Simply put, I would not do well there, I do not have that look. I am too old and too fat and to square. I accept that. I could write and direct, and produce such an event, but I could not star. Simply stated, if Santini wants to be a "dark master" then he needs a great deal of work in the gym, as would I.

That is the director/producer speaking, and there are those here who know just how many people have used me in that manner.

Next post, I will discuss the production itself.....
Richard Sherry
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The biggest problem I had with the escape was the lack of real danger. The stage crew did not convey any sort of worry or excitement.The door should have appeared hot!!!!!! They closed the door without any protective clothing. Propane fueled tiger torches do not create a lot of heat and when the safe door opened there should have been a huge cloud of steam gush out. He should have been sweaty etc. People in the crowd were not convinced it was hot. A medic should have been added also . Maybe a thermometer could have been put on the safe. It was such a good venue and such a great opportunity.It could have been spectacular!!!!!!!!!!!
Mtripp
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Now, lets talk about the error we ALL make.

Flashback a VERY long time folks....

A very young man was sitting in Fox Fun and Magic, talking to one of the giants behind the creation of Karrell Fox, Roy Kissel.

I was entering a magic contest, I said...

"Mr. Kissel, I need a new trick to knock their socks off at the contest."

What he said next needs to be learned by all.

"Mark, I know you are not stupid and I know you are a good magician. However, right now you are not thinking right. Do NOT go there with something new. Go there with something old, something you have done a hundred times and done it perfect. THAT is what you do at that contest. You will be nervous enough without worrying about a new trick."

There it is. Now, let each and every one of us be honest. If we got the chance to perform in the venue that Mr. Santini did, would you have gone with something old and perfect? Or would you have let the size of the gig cause you to attempt a giant effect you had never done before?

How many people have "sold" a giant effect to get a gig, having NEVER done it before?

How many of you have had a professional producer and director look at you and your act and tell you the truth? Not just about the act itself, but about you and how you look when doing it?

I can give you the names of many people who would have been HUGE in this business, if they could see themselves as they are, rather than what they wish they were.

Showmanship For Magicians is a MUST read. Strong Magic is back in print and you need to read that too.

Finally, while I am sure Mr. Santini thinks this thread is a blast against him, in truth, we all should thank him. For we are learning a great deal from the discussion.

I hope he is too.
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