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victorkent
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Narnia
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How do you handle "grabbers"? Kids who grab things you may drop(accidentally or purposefully) to the floor (even running across the room to get it) or even grabbing right out of your hand? (A birthday party or similar setting.)
I mean besides kicking, punching, slapping, stungunning, high pressure hosing, prodding, or otherwise maming the runt!(Not that I am fully opposed to any of these. Just most kids here in Narnia have Lawyers for parents.)
John 3:16
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Tim Zager
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Kansas City
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Don't know if there is a method that works in every case...but I've learned that the more attention that is drawn to the "grabber", the more the other kids will want to get in on the "fun".

Tim
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Emazdad
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I make a large multi balloon balloon model before the show, at the start I introduce it to the children and say it will go home with the bestest behaved child, If a child crosses the magic line, and grabs for stuff etc I point at the model and remind him he's being watched and wont get to take it home.

It works quite well, but not against the really nasty spoilt sugar hyper kids. For those I use a cattle prod, powered from the mains.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
p.b.jones
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HI,
Strangely this does not really happen to me very often - perhaps only 2 or 3 times a year, if that.

Near the beginning of the show I point out that "I will be looking for more people like ....... to come up and help me on stage. I will be looking for people who are sitting on their bottoms behind the line with there hands quietly in the air. I will not be picking people who are taking while I am talking, being rude, being silly or going ME ME ME! Those who come up get a reward and I am going to make ..... something now from one of these big long balloons, etc."

I reinforce this policy throughout the show. It seems to work well for me. The way I deliver the line the kids find it funny and from an NLP standpoint it motivates both move toward and move away from children.

Phillip
Cheshire Cat
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Wilmslow, UK
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I go with Phillip on this one. Although 'grabbing' is just another one of those childish idiosyncracies that is part of the business like boys fighting or girls constantly seeking eye contact. As long as they don't grab any 'grabbable' parts of my anatomy then it doesn't trouble me!
Smile
Emazdad
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Quote:
As long as they don't grab any 'grabbable' parts of my anatomy then it doesn't trouble me!


I've had that happen. A tiny tot that was let loose to roam during the show walked in front of me and before I could stop him he took a firm grip on the family jewels. oooooooooooooooooooooh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
p.b.jones
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Hi,
I had an incident like that with adults.

I was performing close up at a function one Christmas and was performing the linking rings at the table (I do not normally perform the LR at tables but the hotel manager had seen my cabaret and he really wanted it in).

Anyway I said to a lady at a table of nurses "can you grab the ring that's hanging down " she grabbed my .......

Phillip
Dennis Michael
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There are three good ways that I know of to handle grabbers.

One, if they sit with their parents at Blue and Gold (Cub Scouts) Banquets, they tend to behave themselves more.

Two, through bribery. Eric Paul's (Ed Harris) Big Bucks with magic tricks on the back or Million Dollar Bills or anything they perceive as valuable, works.

In the beginning let it be known that you need several assistants thoroughout the shows and the only ones I will pick are those that stay put in their seats. All helpers receive a special magical surprise. If they come up and grab items, state you know they are trying to be helpful, but please stay in your seats. (And, stick to it.) If is a small party and they all stay seated, praise them and see they get a small reward, something with your name on it. (Goody-bags work, and they didn't need to know they were all going to get one anyway.)

Third, if they do sit in front on the floor, use a masking tape line, state the above assistant rule, and make sure they sit similar to a yoga style with legs crossed. (But don't say Indian style because this is politically incorrect.) This way, it is difficult for them to uncross and get up quickly. Those on their knees can move quicker than you can "vanish a cane." Silly Billy taught me this one and it really works.

I am sure there are more, but if you haven't tried these, then give it a shot.
Dennis Michael
WR
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I take some masking tape and put a line on the floor about 5 feet in front of me. I explain to the kids that I need them to stay behind the line or my Hippogriff, Fred, will get them. I do this smiling. I also tell them that I have some special friends that they can pet AFTER the show if the are good. They are a card duck, Roxie, a skunk (not real) and a stuffed bunny.

Most magically yours,
WR Smile
"Tell Em WR sent Ya."
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
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I use the magic line as well, but sometimes it's a bit rude to stick the tape to someone's living room carpet, and the room is so small the kids are only 3ft away.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Cheshire Cat
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Wilmslow, UK
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There is an entertainer whilst working for Pontins Holidays in the 1970s instructed his bluecoats to turn a row of chairs upside down with the metal legs facing the kids and said "that will keep the little (insert slang word for illegitimate people) at bay". Smile Smile Smile

PS: I'd not tell little girls to sit 'yoga-style' these days as this could be misinterpreted by parents (I know it's sad to say this - but an awful sign of the times).
Rupert Bair
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I have exactly the same problem with grabbers. If I'm in a large hall I get the kids back quite a distance. I will use the Silly Billy idea in the future but one of the worst grabbers was when I did the crystal silk tube and the silks (joined by elastic bands) were grabbed as a draft blew the silks away when I was about to catch them and 10 kids all run after the silks, pulling them apart.

Matt
Emazdad
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I had the worse type of grabber the other week, I was standing close to the front row, and this little 2-3yr old ******* jumped up and grabbed me right in the family jewels.

He'd been jumping up a few times and was becoming a big distraction. He was enjoying the show but was too young to understand he had to stay sat down, I'd kept dropping hints for mum to come and get him and put him safetly on her lap, which were as usual ignored by mum. This time I made sure she got the message. (in a slightly higher tone )

The hardest bit was it hurt like hell, and when your in front of a group of kids you can't go cradling the sore area and just have to grit your teeth and carry on.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Rupert Bair
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Have you got Silly Billy's lecture notes?
They help in this sort of situation.
Sometimes you just want to hit them!
Mercury52
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Kevin Reylek
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I like to keep a small container of pepper spray handy for whoever can't keep their mitts off my stuff.

I perform more for adults and teenagers. While they're not as grabby, it still happens. Aside from setting physical boundaries, such as a rope to establish "your space", I find that attitude goes a long way. I'm not saying to be snotty with your audience, just project a feeling that you're in charge and people may touch things when you let them. Don't be a jerk, just use your audience management skills. If you've been nice and still have audience members grabbing every last thing, it's time to bring out Sparky, your trusty personal stun gun.

Kevin
Kevin Reylek
Rupert Bair
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Stun guns 'n spray! Wow! I want to see your show!!

'i will now make this 5yr old boy paralyzed and his eyes red' magic with sparky the stun-gun!
Mercury52
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Kevin Reylek
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Yes, everybody in the audience must sign a personal injury waiver before I perform...

Kevin
Kevin Reylek
Leo B. Domapias
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Quote:
On 2004-05-31 12:31, magic_matt wrote:
Have you got silly bills lecture notes?
they help in this sort of situation.
Sometimes you just want to hit them!


Your audience is lucky that you only use Silly Billy's lecture notes to hit the kids. I use the microphone to give them a "thunk" on the head.

OK, just kidding. Before the program, I tell the curious who wander behind my roll-on box that my props use a form of static energy. I warn them not to touch anything without my permission, or they'll get a nasty electric shock.

Works most of the time, even for the older kids.

Leo
Manila, Philippines
James Fortune
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Phillip,

What does ....

Quote:
and from an NLP standpoint it motivates both move toward and move away from children.


... mean?
Warmest regards
James

James Fortune MIMC
www.comedymagiciansurrey.co.uk
www.bestweddingmagician.co.uk
Rupert Bair
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I like the electric roll-on idea!

Hmmm - have to go into the act soon!
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