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Inner circle
Kalamazoo, Mi.
2537 Posts

Profile of Jaxon
When ever possible try to observe the arena you'll be performing in before a show. I'm not just talking about lighting conditions and angles. Those things should be examined and altered if needed but I'm more talking about the area you're performing in and the objects near by. With a little imagination you'll be surprised at the tricks you can come up with.

Let me give you some examples. Let's say your 'e performing in a room with a window near by and the window has curtains or blinds. What could you do with this? I've found myself in this situation and used the window for a sort of impromptu card through window. A had already planned on performing the card on ceiling in this show so before hand I stuck a card to the outside of the window. Now all I had to do was tell them I'll do the card on ceiling again but this time I change my mind at the last moment ands toss the deck at the window. They expected a card to be stuck to the curtain but instead I pulled it back and they see the card stuck to the outside of the window.

If you're in a restaurant look at the tables and see if there's anything there you can use. Will a playing card or bill fit inside that salt shaker? Could I use that paper place mat for a trick? Is this a smoking or non-smoking section (making it somewhat appropriate to do a trick with a cigarette)? How large are the ice cubes the restaurant uses? Can a card fit in them?

One time I was performing at someone's house for a super bowl party. They obviously have a lot of party's in this house or they where big poker players because they had a card table set up for me and there where a number of decks of cards on different shelf's in the room. So before the show I kind of his all but one of them. In other words they where all put someone but one was in easy reach and visible to everyone in the room. I reversed one card and left that deck out to be easily found. During my show I forced a duplicate then I acted like I couldn't find my other deck of cards I needed. Someone saw the deck in the room and handed it to me. So it seemed like an impromptu trick.

I think it was in Mike Ammars where he talks about doing an outside show and there was a lemon tree near by with one lemon hanging lower then the others. So he was able to do a bill in lemon from a lemon just plucked off the tree by a spectator.

So examine your surroundings and see if it offers new possibilities.

Ron Jaxon

After regaining my ability to hear after 20 years of deafness. I learned that there is magic all around you. The simplest sounds that amazed me you probably ignore. Look and listen around you right now. You'll find something you didn't notice before.
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Loyal user
San Antonio, Texas
234 Posts

Profile of magicman226
Good advice, Jaxon!

Josh the Superfluous
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Inner circle
The man of
1881 Posts

Profile of Josh the Superfluous
Jaxon, I do a fairly regular gig in a children's activity room. It has never occurred to me to use the toys or craft supplies (their's or planted) in my effects. Thanks for the eye opener!

What do you want in a site? "Honesty, integrity and decency." -Mike Doogan
"I hate it, I hate my ironic lovechild. I didn't even have anything to do with it" Josh #2
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Inner circle
Ontario, Canada
2905 Posts

Profile of magicalaurie
Observe. Always. For sure, Ron. Another very relevant thread.
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Inner circle
In my day, I have driven
1594 Posts

Profile of airship
Thanks, Jaxon.
I've always been a big fan of impromptu magic, especially table magic that can be performed with the napkins, glasses, silver, etc., that come with the territory. I think audiences are always more impressed with an effect that uses a found object (even if you secretly do a switch) than they are with something that looks 'magical'.
Your 'found deck' idea is perfect.
And I really, really like the lemon tree story! Smile
'The central secret of conjuring is a manipulation of interest.' - Henry Hay
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New user
54 Posts

Profile of magicdave777
On 2006-04-15 17:06, airship wrote:
I think audiences are always more impressed with an effect that uses a found object (even if you secretly do a switch) than they are with something that looks 'magical'.

I agree. This has always held true when I perform.
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