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Al Angello
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It is MHO that a serious juggler can do the Mills mess, five balls, and pass clubs. Does anyone disagree with me?

The five balls may be optional.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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One Man
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I've always said 5 balls separates the men from the boys. But a serious professional juggler should have that cold. Serious amateur I think you may be close.

<<--off to work on leaning Mills Mess.

Kevin
SeasideShowman
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Quote:
On 2007-08-10 15:57, Al Angello wrote:
It is MHO that a serious juggler can do the Mills mess, five balls, and pass clubs. Does anyone disagree with me?

The five balls may be optional.


Al,

I think I know what you're saying. However I also believe that a "serious" juggler is someone that regularly attends their local club meetings or is a dues paying member of an association like the IJA. Or perhaps they are an "instant serious" juggler having studied, read and absorbed all the websites pertaining to juggling arts and its artists.

I take my juggling very seriously and yet I have never attempted to throw Mill's Mess (although I know the man personally), I only practice 5 balls and can catch any club passed to me and get it back to ya in rhythm. Your parameters for defining a "serious" juggler has some merit and yet none of those things are necessary for one to be "entertaining". That takes something more than skill ... IMHO. I think you agree, yes?

Cap'n Mike
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Al Angello
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Mike
When I got started all the guys used the same props, and had the same goals. In most juggling clubs you aren't really an accepted member until you pass clubs, so untill I started passing clubs I felt like a junior member. The big greeting among the guys I started with was "how's your five". Mike I would like to hear how you got started in juggling.

I also want to make it clear that what it takes to be a professional juggler is a whole nother question.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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busterjuggler
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My view is this. A serious juggler should be able to;

Do mills mess yes, aswell as come up with their own tricks.....(they in the end won't be their own most of the time but what I mean is that they think up a trick/tricks themselves)

5 balls? I am not sure, I know many serious jugglers who just work on 3 balls but know so many combinations and crazy tricks you wouldn't dream of.

In the end it depends what kind of juggler you want to be, a numbers juggler, or a tricks juggler. (there are other groups but for this conversation I just use these)

I was a serious juggler, I believe, for years before I learnt 5 balls, I came up with my own tricks and contorted juggling moves.

But in the other way, if you are talking about a laymen watching then yes 5 balls is a standard to be classed as a *serious* good juggler?

I don't agree in any way with being part of a group etc like IJA. I am a member, but not a member to make myself a *serious* juggler.

Its a great thing to be a member of a group but, just paying annual fees etc to an istution/charity supporting your art doesn't make you a serious juggler.

If you are a juggler (5 balls, mills mess, passing) and are a serious juggler then if your part of an group, this doesn't make you more serious than another person not part of an group.

My honest opinion in the end is that a serious juggler is;

someone who takes juggling seriously
adapts on the art form themselves inventing new tricks etc
practices every day, second day
5 balls is a bonus but not necessary .....
passing is great if the person aims to be a group juggler, and also just for social events, but if I was to meet someone who was an amazing 3 ball juggler and couldn't pass I wouldn't be making a judgement on seriousness.

Maybe I went way to into that post but it is a personal question that everyone would have a different answer for? I honestly think the question is interesting though and every ones points of views are worthy.

These are mine, but to finish, the main key to a serious juggler isn't the amount or what they juggle, but the seriousness is the pratice, if you are serious about something you will practice, if not you only practice when *you have to* or *feel like it*

James
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fettucinibrother
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Quote:
On 2007-08-10 15:57, Al Angello wrote:
It is MHO that a serious juggler can do the Mills mess, five balls, and pass clubs. Does anyone disagree with me?

The five balls may be optional.


I think that first one needs to define "serious juggler"... it can mean so many things to so many people (obviously)
However, I think I understand what you are saying. I too have always thought that the step between 4 and 5 balls was a big one, and divided more casual jugglers from the more commited jugglers. Learning 4 is, relatively speaking, quite easy after mastering 3. Most jugglers learn this quite easy, and without a serious commitement of time. However, learning 5 is/was a whole different story all together. You have to want the 5 really bad. It requires an almost daily practice ritual. In my mind, it has always been a sign of someone who really put in the time at one point or another with their juggling (a lot like passing clubs and learning Mills Mess) There is no easy way to learn 5... you just have to work for it. Over and over and over. Back when I learned 5 there was only 1 person in our club who could do 5, and it was a girl. At the risk of sounding sexist, that was a big motivation for me. If a girl could do 5, then so could I. It took the good part of half a year, practicing every day, but I finally got it. These days I am working on 7, and that's a whole nuther story. I am also finally getting my 5 clubs after years of half hearted practice.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTQGHjBy3p4
That is another skill that takes serious discipline to learn.
We used to have a gentleman who juggled with our club named Mike Roth. Mike was one of those people living on the fringes of our society, dealing with some psychological problems and was also mentally challenged. But the guy loved juggling like nobody's business. He was such an inspiration to any who bothered to get to know him. He could juggle three balls and rings (never worked on clubs too much) But the amazing thing was, Mike could also do 4. He would stand there arms tense, face in a grimmace, and bob up and down a few times to attempt "feel the rythym" of the pattern, and suddenly launch into his four ball (async, 2 balls in each hand) pattern. He'd run it for maybe 10-14 throws, till he dropped, and then he would would pull out a wrinkled notepad where he would write down the number of throws, with 4, on that particular attempt. See, he charted, and wrote down, every time he tried 4, and how many throws he got. He was also a little obsessive compulsive. Mike was a rare bird indeed. Now Mike could not do 5, nor would he ever be able to do 5, but there was never a more "Serious Juggler" that I have ever met. Funny how this thread brought the memory of Mike Roth up in my mind. I have not thought of him in a long time. When Mike finally passed away due to some complications of his condition... Bill Giduz, myself and few others from our club made it to his funeral. There were only a few people there, Mike did not have many friends and our juggling club was the closest he had to any living family. I remember us lovingly placing 4 of his favorite juggling balls in the casket with him so he could continue to work on his 4 ball cascade in the after life. Juggle on Mike...
AL
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Al Angello
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I started this thread because I thought the answers were simple. Whoda thunk it would turn out to be so cool.
Alfonso
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SeasideShowman
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Buster wrote:
"I don't agree in any way with being part of a group etc like IJA. I am a member, but not a member to make myself a *serious* juggler."

It was after I read his post that I, too, realized that the definition of "serious" juggler was going to differ from one to another. My comment about local clubs and associations was in reference to those folks (Alfredo's friend, Mike, is a great example) who DO take their juggling very seriously without being over-the-top skilled. Buster indicates that his membership to a juggling association is not to make himself a "serious" juggler however for some others it is whether on a local level or national/international level. I'm sure that those of us who have been hanging around the scene awhile have all known people like Mike Roth who earn the title of "serious" juggler on their own terms.

Aloha-ha,
Cap'n Mike
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AntonDreaming
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I cannot do a mills mess or pass clubs. I can however juggle 5 balls, flash 7 balls, juggle 4 clubs, bounce juggle 5, juggle on unicycles, rolla bolas, slack ropes, ect.

I am learning mills mess currently, and don't have anyone to pass clubs with so I have only tried about 4 times and was horrible at it.

I am serious about juggling.

I do however think the three things you mentioned are good staples for any juggler to learn. Esp the club passing and 5 balls.

I think the thing that seperates (the men from the boys) is 7 balls. I cannot do more than flash 7 so I consider myself a boy in that respect. I feel five is a reasonable acomplishment for anyone who enjoys juggling and does it on a regular basis. 7 however is a trial that could take years. It is far more of a comitment in my opinion.

Anton (a seriously un serious juggler)
busterjuggler
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I agree with that the topic is a tricky one.

All I can say simply this time is that the judge of the seriousness is the juggler themselves, if they are serious - they are serious, if they are not-they are not.

Simple.

Everyone sets goals for themselves, and when the reach them they have achieved something.

My point about the say IJA is that it doesn't define a *serious* juggler, although many serious are members. I joined the IJA to join the community of jugglers worldwide.

James
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AntonDreaming
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Good point JAMES!
One Man
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I have met many "serious" jugglers who had no or very little entertainment presence.

Now where can we go to ask the question what makes a "serious" entertainer.

Kevin
Al Angello
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Kevin
The ability to get applause for your juggling is a seperate question.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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busterjuggler
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I agree, that's a new topic please...otherwise it gets confusing!

James
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SenseiStrange
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I guess it depends on what you juggle. I am a serious manipulator but I can not do any of these. I think a serious juggler should be able to stun a crowd with whatever is in their hands. For me performance and style is more important than number of balls and patterns. And honestly who cares if they are clubs, knives, crystal ot boxes, the prop matters little. All props are deep studies.


So I disagree with the topic sentence.
Professor Piper
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While others find this topic difficult/multi-layered/deep, I do not...

It is, for lack of a better term, conveinent to place conditions on what makes a 'serious' juggler...

For me, and me alone, a 'Serious' juggler is one who strives always to spread the Art by TEACHING it to anyone with an interest in the joy of manipulating gravity.

Sure, I can throw Mills...so what?
Sure, I can pass clubs...so what?
Sure, I WISH I had a solid 5 ball pattern (working on it)...so what?

What matters is making sure the Art lives, by passing it on to the next generation of jugglers...

And teaching Juggling does NOT mean simply teaching them the Cascade (and other patterns)...

It, most importantly, means that we impart in the neophites the IMPORTANCE of Juggling as an ages old Art that deserves the respect of the masses as an Art Form...

Not a silly hobby (as a TON of the populace see it)...

Just my 2.5 cents worth.

Prof. Piper
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SeasideShowman
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Prof. Piper,

Well said, Sir.

Cap'n Mike
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Al Angello
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James
We both know the reason why you did not need the IJA is because you had a mentor who taught you how to juggle like a pro.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
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http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
busterjuggler
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Al, I didn't think of this but that is very true! James
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Butterfly Man
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I considered myself a "serious" juggler only when I was serious about it ...let's see, that would be about a 4 or 5 years period starting around 1978. Not that impressive considering I had juggled 3 balls (and nothing else) since 1967.

When I started doing juggling shows I figured there was good reason to be serious about juggling so I made a point of it (BUT I was into the showbiz part first as it's not important to be a good juggler to hit the streets). Also, in a strange sort way, I was paid to practice. No one forced me to practice but I had all this free time and all my friends were jugglers so ...

I guess that I was "serious" back then but in retrospect it was really the most carefree time of my life (no wife no house no dogs).

I remember that soon after being a "serious" performer I realized that success had more to do with being funny than being a serious.

On that day I became a "serious" about funny.

I'm serious!


P.S. I can do all the requirements that you ask but I have never considered myself as any more than "decent" (except around 1977 when my 5 ball reverse was the talk of the town)...and I think it's about time Steve Mills learns a new trick.
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