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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Emcee, MC, Msea? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Christopher
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Does anyone have any good resources for audience MC gags or other bits to get a crowd involved? I'm not talking magic effects, but I'm not necessarily ruling them out.
SoCalPro
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Look at books by Mike Cavney and Terry Seabrook.
Spellbinder
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Bob Orben used to be the "standard source" with his 1980 "Emcee's Handbook," but it's out of print, hard to find, and probably somewhat out of date. However, he still has an up-to-date presence on the Web: http://www.americanspeaker.com/pub/1_43/humor/3587-1.html
Professor Spellbinder

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Lee Darrow
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Join ToastMasters International. They offer quite a bit of information on how to be a good Master of Ceremonies, which involves a LOT more than just "introducing the next act," believe me!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Sam Pearce
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I was just contacted to do an event, where I would do a small performance (30-40 minute) and they are also interested as having me as the emcee.

There will be some bands and different entertainers, so they just want filler between acts/set-up time. I figure I can do thins like the McCombical Deck, Hey Buster, etc.

Does anyone have any experience doing this type of stuff?
Any ideas for one or do quick bits that would span 5-10 minutes?

Also, I'm not quite sure what to charge for this, since I will also be ding my show. MY show will be my flat fee of ****, but how should I charge for the emcee bits?

Thanks in advance!
Sam
Bad to the Balloon
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The bible: How not to suck as an emcee http://www.danrosenberg.com/
Mark Byrne
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Magic Enhancer
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Robert Haas
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Check out Aldo Colombini's book, YOUR HOST FOR TONIGHT. Geared primarily towards magic-style MCing, it is very funny and has lots of good information.

Robert Haas
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Rupert Bair
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Its a lot tougher than it looks, you have to think quick quick quick on your feet! Imagine if you've only brought one trick out with you you've just done it and you see a sign from the wings, kill 10! Big technical error Ouch, what ya gonna do? Well I've played musical sit down statues and musical bumps, I've told more jokes (mainly improv), I've do a quick game show, I've eaten a banana slowly...ah you gotta have fun. Oh and never use logic it clouds your sense of fun Smile
magic4u02
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One thing you will want to do from a technical standpoint is see if they can rig you up a red light green light on the edge of the stage. This way you can just glance down and know if the stage or act is ready for the next act to go on. There is nothing worse then seeing an MC looking at his watch or turning to look to the side of the stage. It should look seemless if the MC does his or her job correctly.

Another important MC rule is that once that green light goes on or once you know the next act is ready, you need to stop what you are doing and go into announcing that act. It is not ok to continue on for 5 minutes just because you feel you are in the middle of a joke or part of your routine. Your job is to host the show and keep the show running smoothly from one act to the next.

As Matt stated, you must also be prepared to impov. If something can go wrong it WILL go wrong. This simply means if you think you are to kill 5 minutes, chances are something will come up and you may end up having to kill 5 more. You need to be mentally prepared for this with either jokes, tricks or anything. The idea is the auience should never even realize time is being killed.

Another aspect of Mcing is to make sure you talk with each performer before the show starts. this is your chance to make sure you have their names right and can go over with them how they would like to be introduced. after all you are there to make them look good. Some folks may have a certain way they want to be introduced while others may want a shorter intro because of their set up. It is always best to find out. You do not want to be doing so many audience gags and interactions if the person is back stage with doves waiting to go on.

In regards to gags and interactive pieces for Mcs I do several from time to time that are pretty funny and easy. Some of these are old but worth sharing again:

- One out of every 3 people is ugly. Look to your right, now to your left.. if those people look fine... guess what..... you're the one.

- Ok, we have a fun show for you this evening and to show what a friendly audience we have why doesn;t everyone just turn around and shake hands with the person behind you? um yeah this is going to be a long night.

- Ok folks we need to take a quick test here before the show starts. raise your hand if you are here today? Perfect hands down. Raise your hand if you are NOT here today? Ok good so we know who not to pick. Now raise your hand if you are just tired of raising your hand. That is what I thought so we best get on with the next act.

- The people backstage asked me to host a quick contest so I hope you do not mind me doing this. It is actually cool. If your birthday is on an even day please stand up right now and hold your hands together like this. Perfect now do not move. Now the rest of you with a birthday on an odd day stand up and place your hands a litle further apart. perfect sir. Now stay right there do NOT go anywhere. (get a camera and take picture) The people back at home are never going to believe the MC got a standing ovation. Cool.

- For a easy MC trick use the optical disc wheel that Bruce Kalver puts out. It is a great way to tell the audience that in the show they have to watch very carefully. So in order to test their eye sight, you will conduct a quick test. It goes over great and gets them engaged before the next act comes out.

Hope this helps.

Kyle
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Sam Pearce
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Since this thread come back up I thought I would update everyone on how the show went.

When I got to the show there were a couple bands set up on the stage so I let the event planners know that I could not do a big show like I intended to, which was fine with them.

It was a rather informal event and I ended up not even getting the chance to do and MC bits at all. So in the end, I only did one small 30 minute standup set.

It worked out well for the situation, but for the next time I actually get to do this, I will use Kyle's ideas as they are great!

Sam
magic4u02
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Thank you Sam. I hope they are of help to you and others. These are things I have used many times over the years MCing shows in and around my area. They seem to work well and the interactive stuff the audiences generally seem to appreciate.

Kyle
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KyletheGreat
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Emceeing is a lot of fun! Even though it can be tough, it is still so much fun, and I think that is why I enjoy it so much. As an emcee, there are so many different ways that you can present yourself...which allows you to expand on how creative you want to get when announcing the oncomming act!
Kyle Jarrard
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Magicmatt1982
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Good thoughts everyone.
magic4u02
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I do think an impoortant thing to remember is some of the general rules of MCing. It might be interesting to discuss exacty what the rle of the MC is according to your own philosphy and what rules do ou need to keep in your mind when you are asked to MC a show. I think foremost you are there to keep everything flowing inbetween the acts. You are the prolice officer of sorts to make sure their is no dead time and that things run smoothly. I think it is also your job t ake the other acts look as great as possible. Any other general rules of the MC?

Kyle
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KyletheGreat
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THat's great Kyle...I'm going to add this:

As an Emcee, it is your job to bring on acts and keep the show flowing...tricks used should be quick or short routines and be done with props that can be carried and held by one person.
Kyle Jarrard
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magic4u02
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I would agree with that. You can use a table but watever you use it has to be able to be taken off long before you introduce the next act.

Kyle

PS: Nice jacket lol
Kyle Peron

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Magic Enhancer
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Robert Haas
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Since I don't want to let the "Kyles" hijack the thread, I thought I'd chime in. I think an emcee should be mostly comedy oriented. Your job is not to steal the show, but to keep it running smoothly. The moment you get the go ahead from backstage, you need to wrap up your trick right away. that's why I find short bits generally do work well. You cna do a bunch of short bits and will always have time to finish them in time.

Robert Haas
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magic4u02
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Rob: We can make you an honarary Kyle but you have to wear a colored jacket. It is part of the rules. lol

Rob is indeed right. A key here is that you are not the one who is supposed to be the star. Your goal and job is to keep the show running and to make sure the audience does not know about or feel that the show is lagging. You job is to handle problems upstage when they occur backstage and do so smoothly.

Kyle
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Magic Enhancer
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Robert Haas
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Yep. Kyle is da man!

Robert Haas
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magic4u02
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Thanks Rob. The check is in the mail. lol

Kyle
Kyle Peron

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