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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » Ideas on Scripting? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Taliesin
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Virginia
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Hi everyone. I’m new here, and I was wondering if it would be possible to get some advice on scripting. I’m performing an effect this weekend that is based on a routine from Docc Hilford’s Lolita System. In it I’m playing the part of a psychic detective hired by the police to stop a killer who leaves as evidence two playing cards at the scene of every crime.

My question is this: Should I narrate the story in past tense. (i.e.- “I was in a trance, and I saw two playing cards which I wrote on paper” (spoken as I’m writing them)) or would it be better if I actually went into a trance and announced “I see two cards”? The former seems to make more sense as theatre, and has a kind of film noir flavor. I’m just worried that it will distance the spectators from the magic as if they’re not really seeing magic happen, only a dramatization (like the “true crime” type shows on television). This would especially be a problem as the murderer’s choice would have to be narrated in the past tense (“I saw the killer cut the deck three times” while the spectator playing the killer is actually cutting the deck in real time). On the other hand a present tense narration seems to make the magic stronger (it’s really happening while the spectators watch), but it makes for some awkward transitions between the phases of the effect (my prediction, the spectators choices, and the revelation). Any ideas on how to achieve a good balance? Thanks.

-Rick
Bill Ligon
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Welcome, Taliesin! I am not certain what you mean by awkward transitions between the phases of the effect, but my sense of the thing is to tell the story in present tense but indicate that it is a dramatization of an event that happened in the past. In other words, you would be recreating the event for the benefit of the spectators. Does this make sense, or am I completely off track?

Bill
Author of THE HOLY ART: Bizarre Magick From Naljorpa's Cave. NOW IN HARDCOVER! VIEW: <BR>www.lulu.com/content/1399405 ORDER: http://stores.lulu.com/naljorpa
<BR>A TASSEL ON THE LUNATIC FRINGE
scolman
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Cape Town, South Africa
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Hi Rick,
I performed a routine some time ago using the psychic detective theme.
I told my audience that I was a collector of bizarre artifacts and that I'd procured an old case file box during an auction. The auction took place after a private detective downtown had died of a heart attack His landlord, in an attempt to recoup some of the arrears rental decided to sell off everything in the office.

The case file box is then opened and I discover, along with the audience that the contents relate to an unsolved murder. So the revelations etc. take place in present time but we read from the detectives notebook and are guided through the routine (this means that although everything happened in the past, the notebook allows us to experience the routine in present tense)

Hope this helps.
Simon
The Curator
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Dave McFarland
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Taliesin
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Virginia
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Thanks for help guys. Bill, I rewrote my script from the standpoint of recreating a case solved by a famous psychic. It makes everything go much more smoothly, and gives me the ability to tell a story and give instructions to my volunteer at the same time. Thanks again.

-Rick
Mark Rough
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Hey Rick,

Where in Virginia are you?

Mark
What would Wavy do?
Bill Ligon
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Rick, I'm glad I could help.

Bill
Author of THE HOLY ART: Bizarre Magick From Naljorpa's Cave. NOW IN HARDCOVER! VIEW: <BR>www.lulu.com/content/1399405 ORDER: http://stores.lulu.com/naljorpa
<BR>A TASSEL ON THE LUNATIC FRINGE
Clifford the Red
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Hi Rick! Welcome!

Hey great questions and I hope you got it resolved. I am partial to pieces where I use language and vagueness to turn a helper into the victim. Kind of an Alfred Hitchcock, wrong person at the wrong time moment. So I will play with tense, pronouns and NLP tricks to twist the meaning from third person eventually to them, and they are not quite sure where it happened but they went along willingly. All in good fun of course. And a few even sign the contract Smile
"The universe is full of magical things, waiting for our wits to grow sharper." Eden Philpotts
constantin
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Germany
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Imho if you use first person narrator it would make the magic weaker. Your audience knows you are not the detective and you are not actually experiencing what you tell. What they know is that you are an entertainer, a storyteller in this case. So I would take the storytelling approach. Just imagine that you are not on stage or performing but that you sit in a forest at a fire and tell your friends a story.

You can definetly use present tense there...Just don't use first person narrator. E.g. "...and then he looks around the corner and tentacles disappearing in the manhole at the end of the street." and not "...and now I look around the corner and see some tentacles disappear in a manhole at the end of the street." the last one just sounds too artificial and actually brings them back to reality (i mean you are there with them and there are no tentacles or manholes around). The third person past tense would also work "..and then he looked..." . And actually you can switch between them. By using the first person you make the things more important more immediate...you can tell the story like that too: "...he ran down the street and peeked around the corner and sees tentacles disappearing in the manhole..." I believe it subtly puts more emphasis on some things...If you can grab the cpecial edition of the Puttpet Master CD by King Diamond. On the bonus DVD he tells the story behind the album and its masterfully done. I was amazed.

hope that helped Smile

greets
constantin
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Hmm I cant edit posts here somehow.

I took a look and found the Cd with the bonus DVD here http://www.cduniverse.com/search/xx/musi......ster.htm

Even if the music is not your cup of tea the storytelling part on the dvd is great I believe. maybe you have some friends though who have it and could lend it to you Smile

oh hehe this post I could edit Smile

I found a youtube link to that. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3OfDbBGMVI have fun. Actually its a pitty its online heh...Ppl should buy the stuff...But that's a different topic altogether. But the CD/DVD is a little gem in my collection hehe and the video quality is better!

greets
Taliesin
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Virginia
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Mark,

I live in the Lynchburg area. How 'bout you?

-Rick
Mark Rough
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Ivy, Virginia
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Cool, I'm up near Charlottesville. We should have a pint sometime or something.
What would Wavy do?
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