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Pete Biro
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1933 - 2018
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Pepka: The Seven Pound Ham line had me on the floor... hahahahahahah!
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Danny Hustle
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On building confidence, I would like to simply quote Dai Vernon, "Sleep with as many beautiful woman as humanly possible."

Best,

Dan-
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"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
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Mark McDermott
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Union Mills, IN
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Gallagher,

The above post have so many life lessens learned that my 30 years in magic can't add anything more...

...except that if someone gets you feeling that you don't have the big "C", use that big hammer you carry around! ... Oh, wrong Gallagher ... LOL Smile

Get confidence by practice, and the best magicians also stay humble.

Mark
Red Shadow
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I hate scripts. I could rarely remember a line, and I honestly believe that performing all my tricks 'ad-lib' has helped me build my confidence performing effects.

I get to talk to the audience and not have to worry about forgetting a line. I let the spectators fuel my next sentence, and this means I can just relax and play with the trick, rather than be pressured to remember pages upon pages of lines.

Another tactic that helps is preparation in 'outs'. What do you do when a trick goes wrong? If you have an out prepared, it takes the pressure of you because you know whatever happens, you have an alternative solution ready.
I have several 'outs' which include everything to back-up coins, puppets and jokes.

Let me give you an example. I have a gremlin puppet in my magic box. When a trick goes wrong, I say, "That means there must be a gremlin in the routine." I then reach into the box and take out the puppet, pretending it is attacking me. This has turned the negative into a positive and got the audience laughing.

Another more crucial back-up are jokes. Memorize at least ten 'family-friendly' jokes that you can tell your audience. Nothing helps them forget a bad trick than to laugh, and even if you have to used a tired old gag to do it, you are still entertaining and that is your 'out'.

Most of my 'outs' work with any trick, and so I only need a few. But even if you have prepared 'outs' for all your tricks, it takes the edge of performing because even if it goes wrong, you know it will make the audience laugh.

True confidence is earned through performing the act over and over again. Only then will you be comfortable with a trick and your own character. I still get nervous when I perform at competitions and a little edgy when I approach the first table at a close-up gig. But for cabaret and stage, it is almost my second home since that is where I perform most often.

Steve
Bill Palmer
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 18:05, Chezaday wrote:
There is a fine line between confidence and arrogance. I think confidence only comes with years of experience on stage. There is no substitute for the time spent before and audience.

All in good time ...

Steve


The difference between confidence and arrogance is the quality of the product. If you have a bad product, but you think it is excellent, you are arrogant.

BTW, some people really hate scripts. I used to be one of these. Then I realized, even though I can ad-lib without any difficulty at all, that the best lines make the best things to say when you are working. So why not collect them and use them in a particular sequence when you perform? It really frees you. It is very easy to learn scripts, especially if you write them. They help you eliminate the "Well, now, er, um, let's see. Where is that thing? Oh, yeah." kind of dialog I hear from people who don't know how to address an audience.

Another important factor is to remember that unless you are actually IN a competition, you are not competing. You are supposed to be entertaining people by fooling them in a pleasant way. If you can make them like you, then you will be a much better entertainer.
"The Swatter"

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trickychaz
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If for some unknown reason you end up blowing your show, then you can always DISSAPPEAR QUICKLY! One of the many advantages of being a magician rather than another type of performer.
Wanlu
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Knowing you have a tried and tested act/materials will build up confidence.

I have been doing magic for 20 years, and my confidence is real high every time I perform. Smile

But I'm a newbie ventriloquist and my materials are relatively new, so I'm not as confident when I do ventriloquism... So to build up confidence, I do a lot of open mic gigs...free shows...low budget shows, etc., just to try my materials out. Since open mics are basically free gigs, I don't feel the pressure compared to a paid gig.

Ventriloquism, just like magic, is basically an attempt to make people believe something not real is real. Smile I made myself believe my characters are real...it helps me expect people to believe the same thing. Smile

My two cents worth will include "practice...after practicing, practice again," and "know your act/materials by heart." Smile

Wanlu
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Slim King
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Quote:
On 2008-12-02 18:43, Danny Hustle wrote:
On building confidence, I would like to simply quote Dai Vernon, "Sleep with as many beautiful woman as humanly possible."

Best,

Dan-


I thought that Magicians were not supposed to reveal their inner secrets... Now, everyone knows!!!! Smile
THE MAN THE SKEPTICS REFUSE TO TEST FOR ONE MILLION DOLLARS.. The Worlds Foremost Authority on Houdini's Life after Death.....
Father Photius
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Courage can mean different things in different situations and to different people. It can mean about anything from running the wrong way in a battle to a Medal given to the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz.

I think Bill Palmer and Pete Biro covered the topic pretty well from a magic performance point of view.

It is sometimes said that the conviction to carry through your intentions is courage. In other words, the intestinal fortitude to get out there and do it without worrying about the potential of failure. It is also called courage when you get back on the horse that threw you.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
Dennis Michael
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Confidence comes from experience, experience is doing. Want to feel confident, then take action, perform.

Add into the mix one's personality. Some people are introverted, and confidence is harder for them to accept, especially people who have the perfectionist trait.
Dennis Michael
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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Confidence is an interesting word. Its opposite, "Fear", has taught me many things. In fact, sometimes I feel shows where fear has taken a bite have taught me more than my A + shows. About 10 years ago, I was doing a corporate event... Though the show was probably a C to B show, it was not one I would like to have consumers remember. It started when I knocked over a glass of water (later lesson learned...use covered bottles of water, and remember bits of business when taking a drink). Use these times when fear hits you...to correct either during the show...or for your future ones......and for me, water is much better to hydrate with than ETOH/alcohol.

My nearly normal wife has, for 10 years, tried to get me to stop talking about the above gig...but I still learn from it and use it, for myself and to share with others.

Looking at my perfectionism also was helpful. Though a need to be knowledgeable and prepared is important...in live theatre, anything can happen...from a sneeze/cold...to heart attack/death...or in my case, pending deaths for people with life threatening illnesses.

When I haven't done a show for a few days or weeks, my first one back is always "interesting" (more in my head than to my consumers).

As I dance through life and shows...I find and hope to share magic and laughter...(and a few tears...as I believe all emotions can be shared with our programs).
In fact, that is in my mission statement...to bring Laughter and Magic to the World...one group at a time...

Being able to laugh at myself (most of the time) helps a lot. If you run into a clean glass sliding door...don't get mad...use it...share it with your audience and, more importantly, with yourself....

danke

Harris
still 2 old to know everything....
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
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ed rhodes
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I agree that practice and experience are the keystones. And don't worry about not having experience, nobody does who first starts.

I found that working at Wal*Mart had done one odd thing to me. Wal*Mart has what it calls a "Ten Foot Rule," which is to say that you should smile and greet any customer you are within ten feet of. I found that this gave me confidence in approaching people out of the blue and getting their attention.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
Drewmcadam
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Gallagher PM’d me and asked me to make a comment; thank you for the invite!

I have to say, there really is not much to add here other than that, for a mentalist, a little of the “fear” is taken away because if something goes wrong, we can own up that “not everything I attempt works” – which actually makes the rest of the effects stronger. Somehow, it lends a reality to everything else we do. Additionally, the audience realises that I am working hard out there... walking a tightrope without a safety net, as it were.

However, the most important thing to understand about confidence and stage fright and anxiety is that the physiological symptoms to these things… are exactly the same. Think about it.

Excitement (which comes over as confidence, really) and anxiety produce exactly the same physical responses in the body. Sweating palms, fluttering heart, etc.

The only difference is how your mind perceives what is happening!

This understanding led to me telling myself that I was “excited” and really feeling that excitement (like a kid on Christmas Eve). In a remarkably short space of time, this turned me from somebody who would be up feeling sick the night before any kind of speaking engagement into somebody who can (and has) worked live on radio and television and in front of thousands of people at corporate gigs - I come on, I’m excited, and people see that as confidence.

It really, really worked for me.

Oh, and just one other quick thing - you have to LIKE people!

Just my two pence worth.

Drew
trickychaz
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"Expect Success."
"Be Bold."
"Practice, Practice, Practice."
"Be Prepared."
"Don't State, Suggest."

I am a very introverted person, and it is very difficult for me to expect success if things that I am adding are relatively new.

I am rehearsing the set up for my show tomorrow in my living room to be prepared for when I arrive tomorrow. My new show has things that were never before used (backdrop, additional sound system, musical opener, extra side table) This is making me very nervous. My opener should last about 10-15 minutes with 2 tricks to music, introduction, music again, and then talking, and then music. The problem is I don't have anyone to run sound for me, so that will make it tough. Also, I am working with an entirely different set up than the usual one table suitcase-style magic show. I have 2 table to switch back and forth from and have to do all the moving myself.

I am sure that adding this new stuff into my show and sitting down this evening will ensure that I am comfortable with things tomorrow. Also, pre-planning like this enables you to show up and know what goes where, etc. You will not be fumbling around from here to there trying to figure out at the last moment where everything should be.

Here is a tip that has helped me!

Do NOT think about your show on the way to the show. This tends to make me feel nervous because I am thinking about the show that should require no thinking.

I like to crank up the toons on the radio and act goofy, call a friend and chat, eat, drink my favorite beverage (non alcoholic).

PRE-PLANNING, what goes where and knowing what order tricks you will be doing, and keeping the attitude that it is going to be a complete success!

Chaz
Dave V
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Quote:
On 2008-12-03 14:08, ed rhodes wrote:
I found that working at Wal*Mart had done one odd thing to me. Wal*Mart has what it calls a "Ten Foot Rule," which is to say that you should smile and greet any customer you are within ten feet of.


Wow, my Wal*Mart must have missed that memo.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Dynamike
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Confidence is a virtue,
Virtue is a grace;
Grace is a little girl,
who didn't wash her face.
Pakar Ilusi
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Everything said so far is great.

There is one other way to be confident.

Just BE Confident.

Tell yourself that this is a journey, and every step takes you closer to your intended goal, whatever that may be...

Be confident that as long as you keep on going, you'll get there.

Smile


Oh, yeah... A few shots of vodka does help. Trust me, I know. Smile
"Dreams aren't a matter of Chance but a matter of Choice." -DC-
ed rhodes
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Quote:
On 2008-12-03 17:35, Dave V wrote:
Quote:
On 2008-12-03 14:08, ed rhodes wrote:
I found that working at Wal*Mart had done one odd thing to me. Wal*Mart has what it calls a "Ten Foot Rule," which is to say that you should smile and greet any customer you are within ten feet of.


Wow, my Wal*Mart must have missed that memo.


Don't feel bad, a lot of them did! I have had people express amazement that I actually asked them if they needed help, or that I'd be willing to stop what I'm doing and try to help them find something, even if it wasn't in my department!

That, and the willingness to be a compliant Wal*Mart clone is probably why I'm still there after five years when so many others are gone!
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
gallagher
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I've received a couple of responses PMed to me. I thought it would be nice to get them up... they're quite nice.

"Confidence,---- tearless rehearsal, AND good material." (He prefers to stay anon.)

"Develop a strong solid CORE repertoire. A well from which you can dip in dry moments. Knowing you have this, calms the mind."

And lastly, a short, but sweet line from Curtis Kam. "I find truth in the old wisdom. Confidence comes from previous successes. Nervousness comes from new things. Trying new things is necessary for success."

P.S.: On a personal note, I'd like to thank everyone; not only for taking the time to Post, but for taking the time to put so much thought into the Posts! I was really surprised at the variety, at the insight... at the perspectives shared. All so different... yet, all so right!

Thanks. It won't just be read and float away.... collecting dust somewhere here in cyberspace. It will be put to use.

Thanks again,
gallagher hayes
Dynamike
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Gallagher, I am glad you are "confident" with our posts.
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