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bishthemagish
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I posted my 11 minute act at my web site and because of magicians that have PM’ed me and e-mailed me I feel that I should say this. I think that there are some magicians in magic that MISS the point.

First of all this act is the basic act that I do for money. I will get into it more as I write. But the point of me putting video of this up at my web site was not to get e-mail and PM's from magicians that want to talk about the methods. This is an act I have been doing for around 30 years and I am very happy with my methods because for me they work.

The loads are not seen by the audience or picked up by the camera and if fact the audience doesn't even know that the loads are coming. The effects fool them and the audience is pleased with the entertainment. The point is that the audience does not care about the methods and is only interested in the entertainment.

I find it odd that magicians over think and over analyze and are over critical of other magicians work. They don't see the forest for the trees. In other words the magicians seem to be wrapped up in questioning my methods rather than enjoying the entertainment and learning from the video.

In the Bruce Lee movie "Enter the dragon" Bruce Lee said. "It is like a finger pointing toward the moon, don't concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory".

Or in magic don't concentrate on the methods or you will miss the enjoyment of the effects that they had on the audience and the real lesson and why I put the video up at my web site in the first place.

That is the other reason I posted this video. It is to show a close up act STRUCTURE.

That is I open with the chop cup. I pass it around and draw them in. They look at it and because they do they become interested in what I am about to do. Then a short routine - bam climax with the load then a second load.

I have had magicians question the 2 loads and the way I load. I also remember they used to make fun of Don Alan and how he hit the cup on the table before a load. many said that the hitting of the cup caused them to look at the cup because of the noise. Don Alan laughed at this because his method worked for him as my method works for me.

Then two take a card tricks. Picking a card draws them in. I may do other routines and change the card routine at times to make it longer or shorter depending on my needs. But I often do two card effects.

Then matrix changing the mood from cards to coins after matrix the cards are put away. I use one or two big coins in the matrix routine. It is an amazing routine with a strong climax. It also is a changing point from the humor lines to the more serious act of amazement.

That is now I have entertained them with humor and situation comedy and now I want to amaze them. So the next effect is the shell routine. This fools them, amazes them and I can get good situation comedy from them.

(From the shells If I need to I add the poker routines and my punch deck routine and then close this segment with three card monte. This is not in my 11 minute act because it wasn't required for this show. but if it was required I would add that in here. Please note: That there is the basic act that I add and then take away depending on my performance needs).

Then I close with the cups and balls.

Please note: I load the dice cup from my right hand coat pocket. The cups from my left hand coat pocket. The matrix coins are in a coin purse and I get the load when I put the coin purse in my pocket to get it out of the way to start the effect.

With this I can do this act just about anywhere. And I have done it and it works well in most performing situations and I do not have to worry about the angles to much. That is I have done this act at tables in restaurants. Note: that it just takes a second to re-set the act then I can go to the next table right away.

Please note: that I end clean. Nothing to get rid of as I end clean and just re-pocket the magic and head to the next table.

Please note: I can change the act while doing it by adding and taking away effects and it won't effect the structure of the act as a whole at all.

Please note: To make the act bigger I can add larger tricks like the hydrostatic glass and the chain escape or the linking rings and I can do it for larger audiences. Notice the structure of the act and the fact that I move from humor to amazement then end the act with a strong climax of the loads in the cups and balls.

There was a lesson in all this and the biggest lesson I can say is to don't over think the methods, don't be over critical, don't forget that the audience doesn't care about the methods. They only want to have fun and be entertained. Find what works for you and use it just as I have found what works for me.

And don't forget that there is an audience out there and that is the reason I do what I do. It is to please them - not magicians that over analyze, are way to over critical and often over think the methods.

Enjoy!
Glenn Bishop Cardician

Producer of the DVD Punch Deal Pro

Publisher of Glenn Bishop's Ace Cutting And Block Transfer Triumphs
Dave V
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Hi Glenn,
I'm hardly accused of "over thinking", in fact most of the time I'm accused of the exact opposite!

But when a non-magician points out something they saw, (and apparently others as well, judging by your comment about emails and PMs) I thought it would be only fair to bring it to your attention.

If I had known you didn't want input from magicians, I would have saved myself the trouble. It would have helped a lot if we had known what you wanted us to look for (structure vs. technique) when you posted this.

What bothers me more is some people's attitudes (not necessarily yours) of being "good enough" and stopping there.

On the one point I brought up privately, the loads aren't "visible" on camera, but the action certainly is, to the point of distraction even with your back to the camera. Even non magician viewers saw it on a single viewing, so it's hardly what you'd consider "over critical" or "over analyzing."

I'm not being argumentative, just some "food for thought."

Regards,
David
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bishthemagish
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Hi Dave thanks for posting and thanks for the PM. My posting this way has nothing to do with what you talked about in your PM. If you would like to talk about it please bring the other Café up to speed about what you talked about because I do not like to post the subject of PM's.

Having said that I would like to add this to my over all comments.

I look at learning and performing magic as a step education.

First we learn the effects.

Then Practice the effects.

Then we are suppose to perform the effects for audiences.

It is the performance of the effects that hone and put a shine to the act. Performing the effects in front of people is the most important part of the magic education. Because it is where the method and the entertainment and the effect get honed and sharp. No amount of practice can take the place of this.

Part two The practice of magic.

When I used to lecture I used to get magicians that would come up after the lecture and want to tell me stuff that they would do. If I were them so to speak. I remember doing a lecture in the back of Magic INC. Of Chicago. Jay Marshall was in the audience.

A magician came up and mentioned several things that he read about the cups and balls and said I should do that in my routine. One guy could not accept a cups and ball routine without a magic wand.

I told him that I have a cups and balls routine and it works. If YOU want to do that in YOUR routine - great - rock on. But I have a cups and balls routine that has been audience tested in over 1000 shows. I know what I am about to say might up-set a few magicians but I get this attitude from growing up around some of the Chicago Pro's. Often I feel I would get along better IF they would AUDIENCE TEST their ideas at least 200 times by doing at least 200 shows.

My attitude toward my own magic and magic routines is 200 shows. That is that I feel that I really do not know that much about a routine until I perform in in front of an audience 200 times. Or 200 times in front of different audiences.

That is when I came up with the shell game. Even though I came up with a lot of my own moves and a routine. I did not KNOW the shell game UNTIL I did it in 200 different shows in front of 200 live audiences.

That is the difference for me.

It is like knowing the routine and KNOWING the routine.

If I were to compare it to music I would describe it like humming the tune or playing the music with an instrument in a live band in front of an audience.

Just some thoughts.
Glenn Bishop Cardician

Producer of the DVD Punch Deal Pro

Publisher of Glenn Bishop's Ace Cutting And Block Transfer Triumphs
Dave V
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Glenn,
I like your music analogy. I can't carry a tune in a bucket, but as a music lover I can certainly hear if a performer is playing out of tune or hits a wrong note.

I covered my observation of your routine well enough in PMs already, but since you are opening this up for discussion, it was simply that there was a noticeable change in pace from a smooth presentation to a very rapid and unnatural "back and forth" move to the pocket to get the loads, both with dice and balls. I merely brought up that others (non-magicians, not versed in technique) had noticed it and I brought it to his attention. I offered up the suggestion politely and privately, and wouldn't have said anything more about it until Glenn brought it out into the open by seeming to criticize his critics. As this is a discussion forum, I felt that his post is now fair game for discussion just like any other.

You see old men coaching young women in ice skating. You see obviously out of shape men coaching 7 ft. tall athletes on the basketball court. I think there's even a woman coaching a major basketball team! There's no way she could ever do what they do, nor does she need to. Movie critics who don't act still have valid opinions on what makes a movie worth watching. I don't see the players, actors, etc., complaining "Let's see you do better!" It's their job to give their best performance and listen to the people who are there to help.

I believe someone don't have to necessarily "walk a mile in your shoes" to see something is out of place and offer suggestions to correct it. (Of course, knowing who to listen to is a big part of it too. Smile )

I'd like to hear from others as well, not necessarily "Bish bashing" (sorry, couldn't resist) but a general, well reasoned, discussion of techniques, presentations, and show structure for the betterment of all of us. Since Glenn has graciously offered up his show for the world to see, if he's up to it we can start there. Or pick something else that you feel needs work, it doesn't matter to me.

David
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bishthemagish
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I have to ask you a a few questions. Does your wife do magic? Or does your wife watch you do magic? Or is your wife in on knowing about loads in cups and balls and where they come from? And is your wife in the know that if a magician does a trick with a cup there might be a load under it at one point?

The reason I asked is because you mentioned that your wife knew about the loads. Please explain this to me.
Glenn Bishop Cardician

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Dave V
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No, she enjoys magic immensely. She is a (retired) dancer and knows a lot about theatrics, timing, choreography, things like that. Yes, she watches me and is as entertained as if it's the first time. She knows I bought a Gazzo pouch as I had to explain why I spent that much money on something so simple looking, and she knows the loads go there, but knowing this she can still be entertained by it, assuming of course I do my job properly.

It was just visually obvious to her where (and when) you were stealing the loads and it was enough for her to mention it to me. The conversation went something like this:

"Why is it that I can tell exactly when Glenn does his loads? I shouldn't be able to notice it, should I? Other magicians don't do that, do they?"

"No dear, I don't think so. I'll ask Glenn and see what he says."
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Josh Riel
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Well, I believe that structuring a magic show is very important. I, from recent experience, can attest. I started with some balloon animals to keep the kids occupied, then I did a C&B routine lime lemon kiwi and lastly a large cabbage from under my hat, then an Ambitious Card, them Fork Bending then Ring & Rope. I did the stuff well, at least that's what they tell me. Aside from the balloons the structure was awful, I started with a closer, ended with a end-of-middler, middled with a warm-up-er. Afterwards, even I felt confused. A bunch of tricks done well, but out of order is worse than a routine with hiccups. However, my goal is a routine (Or several) well ordered, and flawless.

I haven't had time to watch the video. I don't suppose a green magician such as myself would have much of value too add (At least that would be listened to). I have talked severally with Dave over PMs and even a chat room in another site, this makes me believe that he would have only offered criticism with good intentions. I have found him to be one of the friendlier folk here. Maybe there were others who were not so friendly?

My wife would cut me in my sleep if I bought a Gazzo Pouch now. I'm still trying to get a set of big cups.
Magic is doing improbable things with odd items that, under normal circumstances, would be unnessecary and quite often undesirable.
vinsmagic
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I Haven't seen Glens Routine, But I can tell you this, Glen is a very acomplished magician...and performer .What Glen says makes sense his magic works for him .I as being a magician can see through any effect because I am aware of what is going on and am trained to do so.. A non magician would not be aware of misdirection.
Dave I also hear What you are saying and your wife although not magician has a well trained eye because she is married to a magician. My wife knows every thing I do I can not fool her either...if I do it is a miracle lol
Glen's routine is wll thought out it flows and he is all set to go to the next table with out any set up[.. this is what table hopping is suppose be. I have magicians go into the bathroom to reset before they can pereform again , Glen does not have to do that .......
I do not do cups and balls because every one and ther mother does them.....But I do like watching a good routine, now the shell game I do like and Glen has a beautuful load he calls the Bishop load this is one of the most deceptive loads I have ever seen an I have never seen anyone else do this move///

Getting back on tract Glen talks about what works for him this is the most important thing ,sure there are MANY WAYS TO SKIN A CAT .
one last thing the godfather never has explain or get permission from any one including my wife about magic or magic purchases this is my thing, not anyone elses /////
vinny
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http://www.vinnymarini.com
Dave V
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Thanks Vinnie, and Josh,

Yes, my wife's aware of misdirection and a lot of what happens, but still enjoys a good performance regardless of knowing some of the inner workings.

If Glenn's routine works for him, that's fine. It was just an observation of a very minor part of the entire show. The rest was fine, and now that we're talking about structure I can see he's put a lot of effort into making things transition smoothly from one effect to the next. I travel with Tamara to various dance rehearsals and concerts and the hardest thing choreographers struggle with is the transition between pieces. More time is spent on the few seconds between pieces than on the pieces themselves.

Back to magic:

Each venue has its own requirements too. What Glenn demonstrated may not work on the street as a bonafide "Busker" as their show structure is different, starting from zero, to a few, to a few more, and hopefully to a large crowd. Each trick has to be selected specifically to build the show. A "dinner show" or party like Glenn's has an audience already seated and once he starts, they're not likely to leave. Trade Shows are more like the opener of a street show, and due to the constant flow, and depending on the product or your pitch style, you may never build a crowd. Plus, if they see you're there to entertain, they have certain expectations so you don't really have to convince them to stop. They're there with a common interest or they wouldn't be attending. Most make time to pause at each exhibit. Sometimes just a second of eye contact is all that's necessary and you're off and running again. That's how it was at my last mortgage broker's conference. About five thousand attendees trickled through and I wasn't in a position to stop any of them for more than a few minutes. My structure was pretty much defined for me by the environment and I only had to do one or two tricks, over and over,... and over again, throughout the day. If we get better positioning on the trade show floor next time, it might be different. I'm thinking about setting out a "Next Show At:" clock, and break out a bigger routine but still do the one on one trickle show between the "Big Events."

How about the rest of you? What factors do you take into account when you "choreograph" your shows? How do you handle the transitions from one effect to another?

Oh, and Vinnie,
Once she saw the pouch, she knew the quality was worth whatever I paid for it. I "softened" the blow a bit with some bartering so it wasn't all that bad. I typically don't ask permission either, but I also don't go nuts with it. I sell about as much magic as I buy and any money earned on magic goes back into buying magic so the household budget is never touched.

Bottom line: If we can afford it, and it makes me happy then she's happy. I guess I'm lucky that way.
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bishthemagish
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One thing that I have noticed in magic is that family members often are the hardest people to fool. I have a brother that used to work in my Dads magic shop with me. He could do some magic as a demonstrator. But never took it up as a hobby or a profession.

I am married and my wife used to work as my assistant. Being around magic although not a magician makes her as with other wives harder to fool. This is also true of my kids who I teach magic.

I have also worked in restaurants for long periods of time where the wait staff and owners become hip to some of the loads and principals just because they have seen the routines for so long over years.

Now having said that I want to point out the angle of the video of the 11 minute act. It is from my left side and it burns my left side yet the cup loads are not seen. This was to show magicians that loading under extreme conditions can work.

The table and the action on the table or the misdirection that happens on the table that covers the loads in this video is SECONDARY. I suggest that magicians also download the magic castle video to see the routine from the front and then the movements of the loads makes more sense. I think that Dave and a few others were fooled by the angle of the camera in the 11 minute act video because it makes the loads seem move jerky because of the close up of the shot and the camera angle.

The magic castle footage is shown from the front and the moves flow.

Just as the whole act flows from beginning to end one effect after another and the audience is entertained.


Posted: Apr 5, 2006 11:28am
-------------------------------------------------------
Quote:
On 2006-04-05 02:36, vinsmagic wrote:
Glen's routine is wll thought out it flows and he is all set to go to the next table with out any set up[.. this is what table hopping is suppose be. I have magicians go into the bathroom to reset before they can pereform again , Glen does not have to do that .......

Thanks for the kind words Vinny. Part of the reason I posted the video was because magicians have asked over and over again about doing routines like the chop cup, cups and balls, the shell game in a restaurant situation.

My point is that most effects you can do anywhere as long as you get them down and work out the problems. I have done that act on a low coffee table and still do the loads. I have done it in trade shows as well as hospitality rooms.

Street magic, formal close up shows and restaurants.

Another point about structure of an act. I think an act should have texture. That is that there should be different kinds of magic performed at different parts of the act. Note I move from humor to mystery. This is easy because I get laughs with he classic force and then move to a fooler with coins in matrix.

Note: How I get a laugh at the start of the trick when I have someone toss me a coin and then I miss catching it. Then note the silence at the end because they are really fooled and in fact stunned into silence. Magicians that are new to performing magic are often worried about the stunned silence that they get from some effects. I like this in an act because I get laughs form the humor and then the texture of the stunned silence of the fooler effect.

Then I move on to the shells as I said I get laughs - mystery and a lot of good situation comedy from this. Then the kicker end of the cups and balls. Bam - Like Don Alan used to say. Hit them right between the eyes with strong socko magic for the finish.

Just some thoughts.
Glenn Bishop Cardician

Producer of the DVD Punch Deal Pro

Publisher of Glenn Bishop's Ace Cutting And Block Transfer Triumphs
The One
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So I don't get it... what was the point of your original post?
To ask people not to critize you because you know what you are doing?
Or to tell people they should watch and learn from your video because you know what you are doing?

Please take no offense... but it kinda seems as if the post is meant to boost your ego... Kinda like this post will probably boost mine Smile

Now I do agree that most magicians only care about methods... and forget about entertainment value...
However, the problem I found in the video was not the methods you used, but your rythm and timing which seemed a little rushed. Because of this, the audience seemed more confused than amazed as the performance went on (specially during the cups and balls routine). The performance at the castle was better.

And even though you said you wanted to show how to structure an act, because of the rushing, I almost felt like just "here's a bunch of things I do".

I'm also not to fond of the theory that Lay people don't care about the method because they're entertained. I'm starting to think that if people don't care about the method, they must also not care about the effect. And if you're only there to entertain and not amaze... you might as well be a clown.

Just a couple thoughts,

The One
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I came here...
To tell you how this is going to begin.
bishthemagish
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Quote:
On 2006-04-05 13:27, The One wrote:
I'm also not to fond of the theory that Lay people don't care about the method because they're entertained. I'm starting to think that if people don't care about the method, they must also not care about the effect. And if you're only there to entertain and not amaze... you might as well be a clown.

I never said it was my "best" performance it was video that had things in it that I wanted to talk about. I also never said I was the "best" entertainer or "best" magician out there performing.

There is more to magic than the method. The method or the secrets are just one of many building blocks a magician must use to build a magic act. Magicians seem to care about the secrets and the methods building block much more than the other blocks that are just as important to build the house or the over all act.

The audience must Have an investment in the act and they start by investing there interest that is created by the performer. First there is interest - then if the performer is good more interest through humor and then your on your way.

Many of the good performers continue to try to get an emotion response from the audience and that is laughter and surprise - stunned silence. These are things that should be in a magic act or show.

I have a lot of other video that is better quality and much more entertaining from the audience point of view but did not have the angle that generates what I want to talk about. That is magic texture and structure of an act to get a good response from the audience. So the theory of me posting this for ego is a little silly. Because I have a lot of better video that can be posted for my own personal ego if I wanted to.

I posted it because it is NOT my best performance and because it shows a point that I wanted to talk about. I wanted to focus on the over all act not the tricks and the methods. And talk about routining - structure and texture.

Just a few more thoughts.
Glenn Bishop Cardician

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Publisher of Glenn Bishop's Ace Cutting And Block Transfer Triumphs
Chris Becker
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The only thing I'm qualified to say in this context:

Is the video really "staring Glen Bishop" or shouldn't it say "starring Glen Bishop". An 11-minute-act of Glen Bishop "staring" would be weird ... so this I would change in the video ;-)

Best, Christof
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bishthemagish
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Quote:
On 2006-04-05 22:11, Christof wrote:
The only thing I'm qualified to say in this context:

Is the video really "staring Glen Bishop" or shouldn't it say "starring Glen Bishop". An 11-minute-act of Glen Bishop "staring" would be weird ... so this I would change in the video ;-)

Best, Christof


I spell Glenn with 2 n's. To change staring to starring would take a re-edit and a re-upload. Both are not worth my time to do for a magician/magic hobby web site.

And I suppose life will still go on even though magicians seem to just want to nit-pick about small unimportant things instead of talking about texture, structure and flow of an act.
Glenn Bishop Cardician

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Publisher of Glenn Bishop's Ace Cutting And Block Transfer Triumphs
Kihei
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Thanks for posting your videos Glenn. They are valuable pieces of education and entertainment.
vinsmagic
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Glenn remember there are movers and then there are shakers.....I would rather see you teach your material this is more important than reading someones theory about table hopping....
I would like to state ,, there are not many Glen Bishops in the world today who are willing to help others with magic and wisdome of magic ,and yet there are thoes who try to elvate them selfs by puting others down like saying something negitive like a mispelling word.....
I do not wish to come down on anyone but Glenn probably has more magic knowledge than most on the Café so I respect what he says...
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Quote:
On 2006-04-05 22:20, bishthemagish wrote:
Quote:
On 2006-04-05 22:11, Christof wrote:
The only thing I'm qualified to say in this context:

Is the video really "staring Glen Bishop" or shouldn't it say "starring Glen Bishop". An 11-minute-act of Glen Bishop "staring" would be weird ... so this I would change in the video ;-)

Best, Christof


I spell Glenn with 2 n's. To change staring to starring would take a re-edit and a re-upload. Both are not worth my time to do for a magician/magic hobby web site.

And I suppose life will still go on even though magicians seem to just want to nit-pick about small unimportant things instead of talking about texture, structure and flow of an act.


I think he was just trying to add some comic relief to a depressing forum... so he wouldn't get a lecture on how great "someone" is, and how the rest of us should just listen... At least that's what it feels this thread is about.

Before Texture, structure and flow I like to worry about emotional hook, theme, engagement, character (among others) first... Then I worry about what I can fit in my pockets, make money with, and get on tape to teach others.
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magicalaurie
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Attention to detail- every detail- is important for a professional presentation, I'd say. Don't want to lose credibility over something as basic as spelling. Like it or not, it does matter here.
bishthemagish
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Quote:
On 2006-04-06 08:11, magicalaurie wrote:
Attention to detail- every detail- is important for a professional presentation, I'd say. Don't want to lose credibility over something as basic as spelling. Like it or not, it does matter here.

Here? What matters here in the Café is talking magic. This is a magic forum and the point of this thread was to talk about texture, routine, structure.

But for the moment spelling seems to be an important issue to some. But to me spelling is not that big of a deal to me in the Café. Or at my hobby magicians web site video's. The reason is that I a 50 years old and I have made peace with my reading disability called dyslexia.

I have talked a lot about dyslexia here in the Café. And many members know that I have this disability. If you think I am kidding you should type dyslexia into the search engine.

Now to spelling this important magic subject. Spelling is only important to a magicians advertising and marketing. Houdini could not spell, Jack Gwynne could not spell, many more magicians have a hard time spelling yet they became very successful.

As I said spelling is important in advertising but in advertising there is often miss-spelled words used by big corporations to attract attention. In fact there are big companies that miss-spell their own company name just to get attention. I can imagine the spelling police and pompous children of the Café contacting them at this very moment because spelling is a BIG issue in the professional world.

Yet in all these years I have never had a client make me take a spelling test before a show.

As I said I have dyslexia and for magicians I do not consider spelling a problem so for me the pompous children that don't like the fact that I miss-spelled "staring" or find it amusing to try to run me down for something so silly are the one's that HAVE the problem. But we could also talk about people that are members of the Café that are from different countries that have a hard time writing in English here in the Café. Some people from other countries often miss-spell words. I do not think it is wrong for them to be members and write the way that they write. I think it is hard to talk a different language and then write what they are trying to say in English. And they have a right to be members of this forum and give their own point of view of magic.

And that brings me to my next point.

Ed Marlo once said, "When magicians can't insult your technique they find other things to pick on".

Well here we are once again, it doesn't look like we can have a grown up adult conversation about magic and the other important building blocks that make up a magic act, besides magic secrets and methods. I guess this could be another reason why there are some bad magicians in the world. And I am not talking about magicians doing a magic act.

Nuff said!
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Profile of bsears
Bish - why not strive to be the best you can be? Don't be satisfied with mistakes on your promo material or with your routines. Keep growing.

I'll also add that I would never put this much promo video up for clients to watch. Personally, I would (will) have a few smaller clips showcasing the highlights.

Just my opinion!
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