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KingStardog
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I have the following effects and am thinking of putting together a Kids/birthday show.( A paying gig) I can see from the other posts that I will need to routine a couple different shows, based on group age.

I have no set timetable to put it together or practice so if it takes several weeks or months that's fine.

What I would like folks to do is Quote the list and add numbers to each effect 1 being the best and so on. What I am looking for is the best half hour to 45 minutes out of the effects that I already own, and then maby pick up a couple more.

Keep in mind that the effects will be Routined into a show and not "machine gunned"
On the advice here, I will probably select7-8
total effects. I do well with the group, except the puppet.(never used it yet)


Run Rabbit Run
Ghost Tube (sm genii)
Crystal casket
Milk pitcher/newspaper
Comedy funnel
Chen lee water suspension
Comedy egg can
Break away Fan
Spotted Can& silks
Wilting flower
Square Circle
Mak Rabbits
Silks on ribbon
Change bag
Patriotic ropes
Linking rings
linking ropes
silk to egg/cracks into glass
Nightmare
3 color ropes to one 3 color ring?
Needle thru baloon
Rabbit in hat puppet
egg bag
Smile
...think not that all wisdom is in your school. You may have studied other paths,but, it is important to remember that no matter who you are or where you come from, there is always more to learn.
Andy Wonder
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Auckland, New Zealand
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With what you have there you could make 3 different shows. I am not familar with every effect you have listed, but you could get 1 show for younger children (age 3-6)including the run rabbit run, rabbit in hat puppet, wilting flower, spotted can, Break away Fan, Mak Rabbits.
Then you could have a different show for older children (7-10) including; egg bag, needle thru balloon, egg can, linking rings, professors nightmare, silk to egg, Milk pitcher/newspaper.
The 3rd show could be made up for family mixed age groups by combining the 2 shows.

If you are going to be doing a few shows for older children (aged 7 or above, you might want to add a finger chopper or wrist chopper).

The other thing worth adding is a live rabbit production that can fit in with any type of show/audience. Everyone loves Bunnies.
Smile
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
Peter Marucci
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5389 Posts

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KingStardog,
You've got plenty there for three shows of varying ages.
My only concern would be that the linking rings and the linking ropes are essentially, to an audience, the same thing.
And Patriotic Ropes and ropes to three-color ring are also a bit similar in the audience's mind.
I'm not going to rank the effects because there are so many different routines for some of them that it would be pointless (Nightmare, squared circle, egg bag, etc.).

But the square circle could close each show; Run Rabbit Run could be a feature of the younger show; the rabbit in hat puppet could be a feature in the older show; needle through balloon I would only use in the older shows because a younger audience wouldn't relate to it and the balloon not popping wouldn't be magical.
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
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Personally I'd make up 3-4 shows that could be played to all age groups. then you can rotate the shows every 4-5 months so when the kids see you the second or third time they may see a different show. not that that matters to much as they watch the same videos over and over, I did a party in November for a girl and her Mum said it was the 11th time she'd seen me that year, i went to a party the following week she was there again, and she was the loudest shouter.

Everything you've listed would suit any age with the right routine, by making your shows fit across the age range if you've got 2 -3 shows to do in a day, say a 4yrs party a 6 yrs party and a 8yrs party, you only have to take the one show. also by doing this the quality of your performance will increase as you wont be constantly doing different stuff and the more you do a routine/trick the better it becomes as it will evolve around the childrens reactions. What changes for the different age groups is the way I perform, a bit gentler for the young ones, louder with more gags for the older kids, but the tricks are the same. Things like the breakaway fan, the comedy funnel and the wilting flower could be used as gags within a routine, rather than a trick.
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.
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Since you asked...

  • Wilting Flower: can be used as a great warmup routine where half of the audience competes with the other half and see if they can make the sad flow happy again, because it loves applause. This can be played up with "look don't see" comedy at the end of the applause routine. Steve Taylor has a nice routine in his Making Your Birthday Biz go Ballistic booklet

  • Linking Rings: This is a nice follow up trick after the audience warmup which establishes you as a skilled magician. Don't go wild with this trick. Do the standard routines with four nice size rings. If you want to make it funny do the Linking Hangers or Linking Ropes and this will establish your character for the rest of the show as a comedy magician.

  • Square Circle: This is a fun trick. It can be used to produce comedy items like the Rat Trap, or a rabbit, or items you are going to use for the rest of the show. Chris Carey's Do the Things That You Do- Two has a stage illusion Square Circle where you produce the Statue of Liberty and uses it as a closer powerhouse patriotic routine with giant Flag Staffs. This is a very versatile prop.

  • Run Rabbit Run: There is a lot written about this trick on this Magic Café, so I won't go into detail. It is visual, colorful, and gets a great audience response. A nice addition to a kids show with great comedy potential.

  • Patriotic Ropes: A great patriotic routine, more so now in light of the current events over the last couple of years. I do a couple of knot jokes and have the kids to blow the knots away. I than take the rope down into the audience and have a kid wrap it around their hand and stand up to show everyone, then pull him up to the stage for my next trick which would be a 20th Century Silk routine which I previous pulled from the Genii tube, or Square Circle.

  • Breakaway Fan or Breakaway Wand: These are utility props which I use as comedy props to enhance a trick. Wave over the Genii Tube "Opps it broke" bit. They are great with kids shows and you can use both in a show. The fan can be done in reverse of the standard method where the kid always get the fan to work and you can't... a great comedy bit, that really can be played up.

  • Ghost Tube or Genii Tube: Although this is most of the time used as a production it can be used as a vanish. Since it has the ability for a double load, it can be uses as an alternative for the change bag. The outside can be repainted for a theme related topic and silks with a message. I have used this to appear my silks for the 20th Century Silk routine. It is not a "Power house trick" but borders on a prop to use as a production or vanish for another trick which makes the whole routine more powerful than used as a single stand alone trick.

  • Egg Bag: This is a classic I use after the use of a kid on stage. It almost falls in the "sucker trick" routine but I don't believe it is. It is nice kids trick with great audience participation... "and it breaks itself into hundreds of pieces and flies over the heads of the boys and girls in the audience... I want all of you to help me now and make that egg appear." I use the see through mess egg bag. I've tried to take this out but I keep putting it back in because it is plays so well.

  • Hippy Hop Rabbits (Mak Rabbits): This has a variety of opinions by magicians on it's worth. Some love it (Me) and some refuse to do it because it is over exposed. Kids love it, and done right it is a great comedy effect. This is also classified as a "sucker trick" so only one of these should be done in a show.

  • Professors Nightmare: A great routine by itself but the Full Circle routine brings to life this rope trick. It won our local SAM contest. The three ropes can be uses to teach three things or can be a funny story routine. It is inexpensive and adds a nice touch to the show. A great trick. An alternative is the Professor's Dream which starts with a whole rope and has magnets.

  • Needle thru Balloon: By itself is a good illusions for kids and adults because they use expect it to break. It's a $15 trick which has "replaceables." Ken Scott uses it combined with a Rabbit appearance trick (3D TV) and I've used it with a similar cage rabbit production. Combined with another trick which appears something even a selected card it becomes a great trick.

  • Crystal Casket: It is a fabulous stage illusion and don't leave home without one, however, I don't think that is what is being asked. This can vanish or appear a silk. I use this with a card silk which appears inside the box. It is a nice middle trick that uses an audience assistant.

  • Rabbit in Hat Puppet: Is a must for the Day-Care crowd. And it can be used also in conjunction with the Metamorpho Spot Can Routine in Steve Taylor's The Magical Ventriloquist booklet. Also Dave Risley is a strong believer in this Rabbit in the Hat routine. It is his signature routine. Samual Patrick Smith also does this and writes about it in his book Kiddy Patter & Little Feet This works well for those who don't want to use a live rabbit but want to have a Rabbit in the Hat trick in their show.

  • Metamorphosis Spot Can (Spotted Can & Silks): There are several variations of this like the one stated above. It works well with a puppet. See Steve Taylor's The Magical Ventriloquist booklet for a complete routine.

  • Milk Pitcher/Newspaper/Comedy Funnel/Comedy Egg Can/Chen Lee Water Suspension: This is a triple combination trick which become a powerhouse funny routine. Eliminate the newspaper and buy a small plastic hose/tube and hook it to the funnel Pretend to pour the milk in the ear spilling a little in the tube to give it an illusion of really going in. Have the child place the tube in his hand and his hand is placed on his ear. His other hand prevents it from pouring out the other side. Where the milk go? Now do the funnel bit with his arm. This is an excellent comedy bit with multiple audience participation kids. I also use (can't be found) a Comedy Faucet which I get a milk pour from his brain which is visually funny from the kids and the audience, the Comedy Egg Can or the Chen Lee Water Suspension be use as a substitute for the Comedy Faucet or in another way with this trick, making this an even funnier routine. For many years I used this routine as a closer trick. I love it so much it is the one trick I can't leave out of my kids show.

  • Zippered Duel Change Bag: This is a utility prop that has multiple uses. There is single double and double with a zipper. The double with a zipper is the best and it can be purchased for $15.00 (That's right $15 whaen every one else sells it for $40)from Wizard Craft It can used for mismade flags, vanish/appear objects, comedy routines (Doggie bag appear fake poop) and belong in everyones magic case.

  • Silk to Egg/Cracks into Glass: The Zimmer Glass is another version of this and it play well and a nice audience participation trick. Chris Carey's Do the Things That You Do- Two has a real nice funny routine with this. I prefer one egg trick in a show this or the egg bag. Both are equal in audience participation tricks.

Well, there you have... it a 45-minute children entertainment package which packs into one case and can be used in school assembly type shows or any children party.
Dennis Michael
Billy Whizz
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Plymouth, UK
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DenDowhy has described them excelently. With all you have to choose from, I would pick out 4 or 5, include lots of gags and silly busines, and master them into a really good show before even think of using anything else. The more shows you do do, the better it will become.
All the Best, Billy
KingStardog
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GOLD!! your comments are absolute Treasure!!
Thank you all!!

DenDowhy,
Thank you for all your trouble on the play by play. I appreciate all of them!

I have used most of the items for Charity shows, but was kind of unsure about them being the quality for paying shows. I was definatly waiting for feed back on the items.
I have a lot mre stuff but these were the ones i remembered off hand.

You folks have given me some ideas here and i'm not going to waste them. I will see if I can tag along with a couple guys at the club and sit in to watch the working guys before trying to build a paying act.
...think not that all wisdom is in your school. You may have studied other paths,but, it is important to remember that no matter who you are or where you come from, there is always more to learn.
p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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HI<
May I suggest that if you use the linking rings that you take a look at Whit Haydens routine I do not use his routine (I do a five ring routine) but I do use my own handling of his method/phycology behind not embarrsasing the spectator that cannot get the rings apart. in Whits routine the spectator that fails becomes the star not the brunt of the effect...... RECCOMENDED
Phillip
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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Brilliant DenDowhy, your depth of magical information is amazing, I have enough trouble remembering my name, I'd struggle to fit all that lot in a 1-Hour show though, I've got metamorphosis spots, it's a great trick, and my routine plays for 10 minutes and suits all ages.

As for the rest I'd play with them all, then pick the best 4 tricks with the funniest routines and make up a good hours show,
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.
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Understand some items do not need to focus on a complete start to finish patter routine.

For instance the Genii Tube with Breakaway Fan is a lead-in to producing the 20th Century Silks. No need to drag this out for four minutes, then again if the fan works for the assistant and not you it is easy to increase the time. A "lively" audience which is getting a kick out your failure and frustration can be "milked". Hand the assistant the breakaway wand solid, it works for him but breaks for you. Maybe it's just me, I can visualize the humorous interaction here with kids.

The Milk Picture Routine incorporates numerous ticks and comedy props and can be as long as eight minutes or as short as four.

Some people believe since you pay a lot of money for an item you want as much time with it as possible. The Elevator is $100 bucks for a 30 second one shot bit. It is for shock value and if done in an imprompt setting and "off-the-cuff" it will have more power, as opposed to "watch this neat new trick"

The needle thur the balloon can be 3 minutes by itself with comedy bits and balloon humor or taken as a magical balloon that won't break and then it immediately displays an object like a card or rabbit.

The number of props or tricks hinges on the routines and how you intertwine a combination of tricks to produce a powerful mini-illusion.

And Yes the above items could be divided and done individually it would be much longer than 45-minutes. Seven routines average out to about 45-minues (6 minutes each) but not all routines are exactly six-minutes, nor do they need to be. Each time I keep adding to the Milk picture routine. If I keep it up it will be a 45 minute show, on milk!
Dennis Michael
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
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I understand what your saying Dennis, I don't milk a routine for as much as time as I can get, I do try however to squeeze the maximum amount of fun into every routine. each routine involves the assistant doing the trick, the silly wands and funny business arn't there to stretch the routine out, they're there to enhance it, and add the important fun aspect, they just evolve naturally into longer routines with all the extra input from the children. Sometimes i have to not use some real gems just to stop the routine going on too long. If the children are laughing and having fun they'll sit for ages.

My formula for success is that my kids shows are 70% silliness and entertainment, 30% magic. It's a formula that works well for me and gets me lots of business. In fact I had a first today, I'm used to the occasional parent coming up staight after the show and booking me for their kids party, but today I had three people book me as I was packing 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.
Zorak
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Maryland, USA
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Many years ago a customer commented to me, "Why do all (kidshow) magicians do the same tricks? It gave me food for thought.
How much resources are available? Let's just take 2 magic catalogs; Tannen's & Hank Lee's.(There are many, many more.)
There is certainly an abundance of kidshow tricks out there. Also if you are more advanced in magic you can see how some "adult" tricks can be reworked for kid audiences.
How many times have you heard magicians complain about kids shouting out, "I've seen that trick before!"? They probably have!
I think the best approach is to refurbish and personalize you props so that they are uniquely you. Than of course come up with an original presentation. If a prop is generally used to vanish an object, use it to produce or transform it.
One example in my own show is the Mutilated Parasol. Ordinarily the parasol is restored to it's original condition. In my presentation I change the parasol into two 260 balloons, tear up the newspaper and create a paper tree, form the tree comes a live dove.
Of course, this is just the bare bones of the routine. It is just to emphasis the importance of being different.
Don't have your community looking for a magician or clown...have them looking for YOU. Smile
Magic is in the hearts of children from 1 to 101
Please check out my Website: kiddiekazam.com
FREE ORIGINAL CLIPART FOR MAGICIANS & CLOWNS
PROP DESIGNS
MAGIC CARTOONS all drawn by Zorak
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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My post was not directed at any individual. I try to post for the reader. You formula is a good one. Magic is not as important as some make it out to be.

"Real Magic" is around us every day, it is our job to make those we entertain to have a much better day. The silliness is very important, for a successful performance. With kids, you got to shed that feeling of doing things that may look "stupid". Acting classes have help in removing some of those barriers.

Keep up what your doing and the business will come to you.
Dennis Michael
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
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Hi Dennis, I know your post wasn't directed at anyone in particular, you were right in what you said about how some people try to stretch a trick out to the extent that that audience loses the plot.

I learnt the importance of the silliness over the magic when I returned from a trip to south georgia in the south atlantic during Emazdad's world tour 97' (HMS Somersets falklands deployment) Before we'd left the Falklands for South Georgia I'd performed a show at the Primary school in Port Stanley, on my return there was a large brown package waiting for me full of drawings the kids had done about the show. None of the drawings showed me doing a magic trick, they all showed me doing the silly stuff. The kids naturally draw the stuff they remembered and enjoyed the most.

<<There is certainly an abundance of kidshow tricks out there. Also if you are more advanced in magic you can see how some "adult" tricks can be reworked for kid audiences.>>>>>

When I go to the conventions to look for new stuff, most kids stuff I see I wouldn't touch with a barge pole, they just would not suit my style at all, when I do find one I like the first thing I do is change it to suit the way I perform. The same with Adult stuff, with a bit of imagination anything can be performed for children.
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.
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