The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Magic lessons from a comedian-----Bob Newhart (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Greetings all,
I have been wanting to write a few articles on this topic, I posted on here first so I could maybe get some feedback and views. Since it is my first I'll try to keep it short.
Today's comedian I would like to observe is Bob Newhart. On Bob's album entitled The Bob Newhart Anthology, Bill Inglot stated, "Bob Newhart's comedy is from a world that really doesn't exist anymore."
Whether by "comedy" he means a time of possible simplicity regarding his topics, (I don't mean his time period was simple, but what he chose to speak on) or the fact that a lovable soft spoken entirely clean style has died, Bill would be correct.
However, I do not want to write this on comedy comparisons of past to modern but the comeidian, the individual, a special idea that we can learn from. For this the chosen idea to speak on was the One Man Phone Conversation sets. When I first heard these bits it basically was like "magic" to me. Bob had taken the monologue to an ENTIRELY new level.
Just to get a taste, try to imagine yourself writing this script. Possibly by writing the entire conversation between you and the man on the other side of the phone, than deleting his entire script, yet by what you say, your audience will be able to recreate and interpret your non existent partners script.
When Bob accomplishes this "effect" you realize that he has turned the entire audience into mentalists! While that may be rather extreme, it is still an interesting thing to think about.
So what can we learn from this comedian whos records outsold Elvis?! REACTION: In an interview about the Bob Newhart show, one of the workers stated that Bob gave all the funny lines to his co-stars and just "allowed the rest to happne" however, if all the funny lines supposedly did not come from Bob, why can we not remember the co-stars as distinctively, why then would be even desire to see this man. Because all the humor came from his reaction. To which, without, there would be no joke.
This knowledge can literally force one to rethink his entire act. Ask yourself, how is my reaction to the magic that I do? I have found that Rehearsal KILLS Reaction. What do I mean? Well, after doing a routine so many times, for me, it seems easier to slip into the pitfall of lack of sincerity, innocence, and suprise. It takes another step to stop focusing on the reactions of the audience when the coin vanishes, but to also think, what is MY reaction. Is there something that I can do, (smile, wink, laugh, bewildered expression) that will put yourself right in the middle of the act.
Now, instead of the audience watching the coin, they are watching you. How is your reaction with an audience member when THEY say something funny. Take the destoryed bill plot/the magician is in trouble plot. This is most likely the first time the audience has had their bill "accidentaly" destroyed or maybe its the first time they've seen a magician mess up. How much better would it be, instead of running through the "looks like I goofed" patter and truly think what it would be like, and how you would react if that mess up was the end of the trick (your really did mess up) I guarentee some of us (including me) would say things diffently, do things differently or have another approach all together.
So if anything I hope you enjoyed reading this little contribution and maybe think about this wonderful topic of REACTION!!
Thank you for reading!
Roger

If you enjoyed this please let me know, the next article will be on
Rodney Dangerfield.



Resources which I have enjoyed. (Bob doing Stand-up)
The Bob Newhart Anthology
The Button Down Mind
The Button Down Mind Strikes Back
Button Down Concert "Off the Record)
The Best of Bob Newhart
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Mike T
View Profile
Loyal user
228 Posts

Profile of Mike T
Great post, I have loved Bob's work for as long as I can remember.
In my top ten monologues he's got at least 6 places.
I look forward to your next one.

Best regards, Mike
It's times like this I wish I'd listened to what my Grandad used to say...
Scott Compton
View Profile
Special user
Hampton, VA
747 Posts

Profile of Scott Compton
Great job, Roger.
Magic is an art. I am merely a tour guide.
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Scott-Compton-Magician/160270640674735

"You are the magic" Jay Ose to Albert Goshman
coupcoupdaddy
View Profile
Inner circle
2466 Posts

Profile of coupcoupdaddy
Shelly Berman pioneered the telephone monologue form simultaneously with Mr. Newhart and we adore them both.

H D X!

--Lydia 19 end of the line
foreign correspondent, z and lt



inner being worker
God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Thanks for the encouragement
Yes Isso you are right. Shelley Berman has a very enjoyable telephone monologue regarding a hotel conversation with a desk clerk.
It can be found on Laughing Room Only and on the Norm Crosb's comedy collection DVD's entiled the Worlds Greatest Stand-up Collection.
A lot of fun to watch, Shelley also had a lot of class which was a very interesting style for a comedian but I'll save that for another article! Smile
Roger
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Tony Brent
View Profile
Regular user
Orlando, Florida
156 Posts

Profile of Tony Brent
Roger,

A fantastic essay and spot on with everything you said! I can't wait to read the next one!

Tony Brent
Outta Control Magic Show
Orlando, Florida
Gerry Walkowski
View Profile
Inner circle
1423 Posts

Profile of Gerry Walkowski
Karrel Fox used to do a running gag - ala Bob Newhart - with a telephone during some of his MC work at Abbott's Magic Conventions. It was quite funny.

Gerry
Vandy Grift
View Profile
Inner circle
Milwaukee
3504 Posts

Profile of Vandy Grift
Thanks GG. I'm a big big fan of Mr Newhart. He is a comedic genius, and that's not just hyperbole. He really is. Nice essay. I hope you've had a chance to see Bob Newhart featured on PBSs "American Masters". A very nice profile of the man.
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
Josh the Superfluous
View Profile
Inner circle
The man of
1882 Posts

Profile of Josh the Superfluous
It got me thinking. Please keep it up.
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
Trois
View Profile
Special user
Myrtle Beach
594 Posts

Profile of Trois
What happened to my post ?
Not clever enough to come up with something orginal, or did I.
God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Thanks again guys. This encourages me to keep studying.
The next will be on Rodney Dangerfield, the basic outline and setup are ready, but I just ordered some of his older specials, and would like to view them merely for reccommendation.
Trois, I do not know about your post, but if it was a personal comment you could PM me.
Thanks again,
Roger
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
fredmoore
View Profile
New user
72 Posts

Profile of fredmoore
Bob Newhart is someone who should be studied for his timing, among other things.

I'm really surprised nobody else has "run" with the telephone idea with all the cell-phones out there.
www.moorefred.com


"Find A Job You Love And You
Add 5 Days To Your Week!"
Lyndel
View Profile
Inner circle
wrote the theme to the TV show COPS!
1623 Posts

Profile of Lyndel
Newhart was/is the master of the












...pause!



Definitely a comic genius and worthy of study!



Lyndel
Image
Vandy Grift
View Profile
Inner circle
Milwaukee
3504 Posts

Profile of Vandy Grift
Quote:
On 2006-11-12 15:28, fredmoore wrote:
I'm really surprised nobody else has "run" with the telephone idea with all the cell-phones out there.



Over the years I've seen a few people do one-way phone conversations, with varying results. The biggest obstacle one would have to overcome is the fact that Bob Newhart did it so well that he practically owns the bit. Anyone trying to do it would be immediately compared to Newhart, and they would have to be pretty good to take it to the level of genius that Newhart did.

It would be like those people that copied Cardini. How sad would it be to simply be an imitator, and a poor one at that?

Lyndel. Not just the pause...but the stammer. That's where Newhart really kills.
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
llsouder
View Profile
Regular user
114 Posts

Profile of llsouder
Wow that was great, I never thought of Newhart as a mentalist, but that is sort of what he was doing...

Quote:
On 2006-08-31 18:00, God-glorified wrote:
the fact that a lovable soft spoken entirely clean style has died, Bill would be correct.

dead? http://www.bananascomedy.com is clean stand-up comedy, but you have to watch some horrible stuff and a lot of song paraodies to get to the good stuff!
I have often wondered why I don't see more magicians on this show.
cartoon cowboy
View Profile
Regular user
Lancaster, PA
104 Posts

Profile of cartoon cowboy
Quote:
On 2006-11-13 12:36, Lyndel wrote:
Newhart was/is the master of the












...pause!



Definitely a comic genius and worthy of study!



Lyndel


Part of the fear of a theatrical pause is the percieved need to keep control of a stage. I am as prone to it as anyone. But Lyndel is absolutely right. I've seen some of the biggest laughs from the masters of comedy (including Newhart) come from insanely long pauses before reaction.

I have worked mostly in kids' magic, and something I love to do is let a young assistant's reactions aid the comedy. When he/she 'breaks' the magic wand, let them squirm for a bit. Not just a dramatic beat, but for a minute or 2! the longer you let it go, the more they look at their friends, look at you, giggle... it just builds on it's self.

Thank you for pointing us back at the masters of comedy in order to reflect on own work.

- Erick
Happy Trails,
- CC Smile
Erick Hershey
magic.hersheyarts.com
God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Cartoon cowboy - its been a pleasure
llsouder - yes I am glad you mentioned Bannanas Comedy, I am a HUGE fan of the work, if anyone is looking for clean stand-up comedy I highly reccommend Darren Streblow, Jeff Allen, Ken Davis, and Bone, from the Bannanas website.
And while hes not on there, Brad Stine is another favorite
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
God-glorified
View Profile
Special user
697 Posts

Profile of God-glorified
Vandy Grift and Lyndel - lets not forget that the stammer also belongs to our beloved Jack Benny! Smile
llsouder - if the show keeps going I am actually trying to make arrangements to be on, so we shall see
Thanks again everyone.
I started a new comedy writing project and have not had time to write another magic lessons from a comedian but look forward to them and will hopefully get another out soon.
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Magic lessons from a comedian-----Bob Newhart (0 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.19 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL