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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » I have a show and I want to tour the US. How to? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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brandonford1982
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Hey all.. I am resident of Clearwater, FL and I have over the past year been buying props to create a few differnt shows to make a marketable show. I want to take this show on the road and tour to several places thruought the US. I have taken a liking to Small town USA and using Communitty Center's with Stages for Grand Illusion. I want to basically promote the show like a month before the arrival in town. Then during the stay there do a publicity stunt and get local news (print and media) there to help with promotion. Sell tickets starting a month before the show and Performing a GREAT show. Then packing up and moving to the next town repeating the process. Can I please get some input and advice from Touring Illusionst of the process you go thru to make your tour a sucess. I really want to succeed rather than fail in this market. I figure your input and advice would be priceless. Thanks in advance your responses.
Dreams are a matter of choice, not chance. Live your Dreams. -DC
Jared Sherlock
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You will most likely get more feedback and suggestions on the buisness side of this in the Tricky Buisness Forum. I would post this there.

Just a suggestion,

Jared
The Drake
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Dan Summers sells a course on how to promote a touring show. You can read more about it a http://www.danielsummers.com

Best,

Tim
brandonford1982
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Tim did you get my PM the other day? I will also post in the business forum

I thought I would start here as most of you pros linger here most....
Dreams are a matter of choice, not chance. Live your Dreams. -DC
The Drake
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Sorry for the delay...I just replied to you PM.

Best,

Tim
muzicman
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Stan Kramien toured by doing fundraisers for local groups. He made a profitable business with this angle. I think it's possible to have a touring show but there is sooo much more to this than having a solid Illusion Show. Transportation, crew, and sales and marketing to name but a few. Personally, I would partner with a local club that needs to raise funds and split the profits with them. They can market their area a lot better than you can and their club members will sell the tickets and spread the word. If they have a cut in the action, the sky is the limit. Seat Sales, concessions, Program and BOR sales should give you and your group 4 streams of income for each show. There are so many groups out there that desperately need to raise funds for various reasons.

My thinking is that unless your a big name act, the turnout is only going to pack the house if you advertise and that's very expensive! Make it a fundraiser, or get a local business or 2 to promote you. Good Luck!
brandonford1982
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Thanks for the Advice Muzic Man.


Posted: Jan 12, 2006 5:51pm
----------------------------------------------
I emailed Mr. Summers but have not heard anything back..... I think that mabey the Fundraising Aspect will be a good angle. I will look inot that a little further. Jim Snack sell a course on Marketing. I wonder if his information will help me. I think that a good apprach would be to change the type of show I do based on the time of year. By that I mean During the winter perform Public shows and fundraiser shows for differnt groups. Then come spring and summer venture into performing short term or long term runs with Theme Parks and Cruise lines. Then come fall and winter again venture back into performing public shows for fundraising etc.. any thoughts on this approach?
Dreams are a matter of choice, not chance. Live your Dreams. -DC
Chezaday
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Question: How do you make a small fortune in Magic?

Answer: Start out with a big fortune!


Good Luck .. Steve
The Drake
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Quote:
On 2006-01-13 02:06, Chezaday wrote:
Question: How do you make a small fortune in Magic?

Answer: Start out with a big fortune!

Good Luck .. Steve


Wiser words were never spoken!

Best,

Tim
brandonford1982
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Ahh... the old prase you need money to make money right?? Makes Sense
Dreams are a matter of choice, not chance. Live your Dreams. -DC
The Drake
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Quote:
On 2006-01-13 13:47, brandonford1982 wrote:
Ahh... the old prase you need money to make money right?? Makes Sense


If you read the advice again you'll see a totally different meaning . It means.... " You start out with LOTS of money...and you end up with only a LITTLE."

This is so true.

Best,

Tim
brandonford1982
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Ahh... the old prase you need money to make money right?? Makes Sense.


Posted: Jan 13, 2006 2:45pm
---------------------------------------------
I read that the first time but didnot thik that is what you really meant...... MAN! Well then the question becomes HOW to become sucessfull. What are the true secrets. The way I see it, You have a product to sell, You need to find potential clients that would be interested in buying your product, adn then youhave to get those clients to actually book your product. The more product you book, the more money you make. I mean the biggest expense I think would be the actual show itself. props, sound lighting, and travel quiptment. Those are basically a ontime investment. So if you don the SAME show in different cities, you don't need to re invest in props, etc. The only thing you really would re invest in would be advertising, and print media like tickets, etc... I have the Props and the show equiptment. Now I think I need to learn how to spend money on Advertising, and the like....
Dreams are a matter of choice, not chance. Live your Dreams. -DC
NFox
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Don't forget the one "investment" you have to keep paying for: A good crew.

Nick Fox
"Obscuring Reality"- Gone but not forgotten...

FoxIllusions.com
Donald Dunphy
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... And don't forget all the ONGOING travel fees... meals (for all), accommodations (for all), phone calls (keeping up business on the road), medical fees, truck / van / trailer purchase, truck / van gas, truck / van repair, emergency money for vehicle rental (in case of breakdown), etc.

Some "reality" questions to ask yourself in preparation for this:

Has your show been tested?

Do you have rave reviews / lots of testimonials?

Is it ready to tour?

Have you currently built a strong customer base because of people seeing you at other shows, and referrals, and repeat bookings (real tangible evidence that people really like you and your show)?

What advice have coaches / customers given you?

Do you have a business coach / mastermind group?

Have you sat down with some experts (pros who know) and asked for their help in developing a realistic budget, so you understand all of the expenditures and tasks you'll be facing?

Are you prepared to work really, really hard?

Somewhere around here Den Dowhy once made a post about the realistic costs of putting together a good illusion show. Try this thread: Some advice on Fund Raising magic books!

- Donald

P.S. Note - I am not saying it can't be done. But I am also not saying to go in unprepared. Do the RIGHT preparation, and go get 'em!
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
David Goldrake
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Dear Brandon,

Chezaday does have a point. I do not know one single touring illusionist (at least here in Europe) who started out by making money with their tours. In fact the show represents the smallest investment. The first two to three years we have all lost money (some more, some less). People must get to know (and remember!) your name and the quality of your work first. The key words here are PR and marketing (both of which are quite expensive), a (very) good show and persistence. Have you ever wondered why David Copperfield has been so successful among audiences for decades? He has used (among others) his yearly tv specials to promote his live shows and he has used his live shows to promote his tv specials. Above all he was/is an excellent performer/artist. Let's wait and see what is going to happen with Criss Angel...

The other point(s) were made by Nick and Donald. I shall not repeat them here. Just remember that in order to sell your show to a potential client (using a promoter/agent or any other way) you must convince him that he will be able to sell enough tickets (again, why would people come to your show if they don't know who you are? Especially with so many other activities/events going on...) to pay you, the publicity, all the other expenses that he may have and (most importantly!) make some profit.

Donald said it all in his post scriptum! Be prepared (and surround yourself with the right people)!

Regards,

D
Michael Dustman
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Check with Kline when he checks in on the forum. I worked for him in the early days of his putting his tours together. He has an excellent idea for the business side of it.

Trust me...I saw all the hard work and time he put into it. It is more than just having the props and figuring out how to advertise. I remember Kline saying it before and others as well.....don't forget the second word in "Show Business."

His insight will be very valuable to you.
Chezaday
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If you do some research .. there is only a handful of magic acts that really are "On Tour." It's become too costly to stay on the road for an extended period of time. We only go out for about four days at a time .. and we keep it pretty simple. Four people in a cargo van and staying at the Red Roof Inn .. not to mention frequent stops at Burger King. We're like a band .. and by the end of the trip .. we want to kill each other.

It's all good .. Rock and Roll ..

Steve
RandyStewart
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Maybe I'm a lunatic but what's money got to do with it?

But for others, our beloved Whit Hayden reminded me that WITHOUT USURA....
Dennis Michael
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Brandon,

I would have posted sooner but it's been a busy week for me.

Do you want to do it right? You can succeed by helping others make money. When you make them happy, they will have you back again.

By now, you have clicked on the link in Donald's post above and you should have read everything in that section. It is possible, hard work, and total committment.

There are shorter versions of Kaplan's touring Program such as Night magic or Jim Snack's Ice Cream Social Fundraiser. Getting into this field is not easy, and you got to be at least a decent performer to stay in it. It is also a lot of time away from the family and friends.

Good Luck, and really study what you are about to undertake. Planning, and setting a business plan for success is extremely important.

Dennis
Dennis Michael
RandyStewart
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Quote:
On 2006-01-14 02:01, Chezaday wrote:
Four people in a cargo van and staying at the Red Roof Inn .. not to mention frequent stops at Burger King. We're like a band .. and by the end of the trip .. we want to kill each other.
It's all good .. Rock and Roll ..
Steve


Shhhhhh! no need to see how much is swept under the carpet. Hehehehe.

Hey Steve, now this is not meant to be funny but, have you considered writing about the travels? This goes for the rest of you. I say this as I've heard some very educational, triumphant, hilarious, and crazy stories of being on the road. E-books and PDF files are being downloaded all over the world ya know.

Some of you who've put a few miles on your show should consider telling those interested what it was like at least for you. No fiction there as you were there. Now and then Café member Pete Biro drops into a topic with a story about an effect or person being discussed that the world would of never known.

I just find it interesting to hear about such behind the scenes moments.
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