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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » All tied up! » » A Christmas Present - 2005 (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Profile of Mtripp
My friends;

Before we begin, a word about being a professional entertainer, subset, magician/escape artist

There are two types of business leads in this job. Active, and reactive.

Reactive is the WORST place to spend your time, because it is all spent waiting. You wait for the phone to ring and hope to close the sale.

Putting ads in the phone book, and waiting for the phone to ring is the classic example.

IMHO, phone book ads are a waste of money unless you want to do birthday parties. Again, you have no idea when Billy is having a party, so you have to wait for his mom to call.

I hope you see it is far better to have an Active source of leads.

Now, MANY years ago, at Monk Watsons funeral, Bob Lewis drove Karrell Fox and myself to the grave site. To be polite, after a time Mr. Lewis said to me "..and what do you do?" I said "I just do school shows". I NEVER forgot what he said next!

"Mark, the ONLY Vaudville left is School Shows. The ONLY Vaudville there will ever be again is school shows. Do them right, and you will make a very good living, and do what you love."

I did, and I have, and so can you.

Now I really hope you did the Cub/Boy/Girl Scout stuff. Because over the next several days I will show you how to make $1000 a day, for as many days as you'd like. You will not have to pay me $300 for a silly course either.

The ONLY book you need, you can get from Sammy Smith called "How to make money performing in Schools". You can find it on the internet book sites as well.


What you need is an act that the schools NEED.

Ask Mr. Baker how many school shows I do, and the kind of money I make.

Two things, you are NOT a magician. Like it or not, they are a dime a dozen in schools. You are going down a different path....

...."The man who was HOUDINI!"

...more to come.
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Profile of Mtripp
OK, business point first.

Get a map of the area you live.

Get a compass, not the magnet Baker (although Steve is so old his is Autographed by Marco Polo), the thing that draws the circles!

Open the compass so the distance between the pencil tip and sharp pointy end is 60 miles on the map.

Stick the pointy end into your home town.

Draw a circle that makes a 60 mile radius around your house.

THAT is your market!


Because the key to this game is to be "normal". That means you sleep in your own bed at night and cook in your own kitchen. Road expenses will eat over 50% of what you get paid!

If you check any business list business you will find the number of elementary/middle schools in that circle to astound you.

Next year, I am off the road for good, and this is how I am going to do it. David Ginn gave me this advice and I share it with you!

More later...
Harley Newman
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Inner circle
5110 Posts

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Many state education departments have a book that lists all of the schools in the state, with addresses, principal names, phone numbers, etc. It's a good investment, for a few bucks.
“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus” -Mark Twain

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More than normal, lets talk money...

If you are home every night, then the money you make, except gas, pays your home bills.

On the road you have to pay Hotels and Resturants first....

Got it?
Kevin Ridgeway
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Indianapolis, IN & Phoenix, AZ
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Thanks you for the info you share here on the forums. Its always great to come home from being on the road and catch up on whats going on and being shared here.

Being home does have its advantages...but if one does want to travel or tour, they don't need to be the one footing the bill for food or hotels. The contracts that go out on our shows(regardless of size, flying or driving, etc) state that travel expenses are to be covered as well as food. The food may be built into the tavel, paid out as per diem, and/or covered by the host/promoter while in that town.

Now this will only apply to someone that wants to tour. But for those that do, you may want to look at how you book yourself and get these expenses covered.

ROUTING is the key...don't have two shows 1200 miles apart in 3 days..unless your flying. But when driving, work on the routing. If you want to go out for a month book what is called an anchor date. That is a show at your full rate, all expenses covered. Now book another anchor date and start to fill in the gap between these two shows. These dates may be your full rate or they may need to be 60-90% of your full rate, hopefully most of them with expenses covered. These will help fill the gaps between anchor dates. Some shows you will come out ahead on travel, some you will not. You can get a map with the first three numbers of zip codes on them. You can use this to look at how you will route your month.

I'll give you an real life example of what we did on our very first tour out on the road.
This tour took place in 2002 and was 23 cities in 23 days. It was a whirlwind indeed, but it was succesful financially and priceless in learning the ropes...we learned tons of things that we still use today. Most of the shows were 300 miles apart. There were two shows that were 500 miles apart and those were the hardest on us. But even in our big rig 300 miles is less than a five hour drive. Except for the 500 miler, we stayed in town after each show and drove the next morning. The 500 miler, I drove thru the most of the night while Kristen slept in one of the bunks. She took over about half way and drove the rest of the trip.

Hope that helps.

Living Illusions
Ridgeway & Johnson Entertainment Inc

Kevin Ridgeway &
Kristen Johnson aka Lady Houdini
The World's Premier Female Escape Artist


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