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New user
Merion, Pa
78 Posts

Profile of newtomagic
I have been doing magic for about a year and I am finding my urge to perform has grown. I will continue practicing and my goal is to pick about 20 of my favorite routines and get them down pat. Once I feel I can do these routines with my eyes closed so to speak what is the next step to perform for people instead of performing for myself and practicing in my room? Any thoughts or personal experience in this matter would be greatly appreciated.

P.S. Magic has become my favorite hobby and I want to thank everybody who has helped me to this point.
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Inner circle
NJ, U.S.
6112 Posts

Profile of Jaz
20 is an awful lot to learn and really get down pat.
I'm talking routines that involve a few moves. Learn one or two at a time and work out a way to present them in a way that fit's your personality. When ready, perform them, see how they fly and if need be, rework them.
You don't need to show a lot of tricks but they should entertain.

A couple of easy, quick tricks that are easily remembered and less involved could be learned as well.
If people want to see more, tell them that those are the only one you know right now.

After that, learn one or two more routines but keep practicing the first two.
Be patient and take it slow.

Best to ya,
Father Photius
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Grammar Host
El Paso, TX (Formerly Amarillo)
17198 Posts

Profile of Father Photius
I agree with Jaz, 20 is a lot of routines, especially for a beginner. I only had a dozen effects I used in my shows during my pro years. You really don't need that many to start performing. If what you are talking about is finding a first paying gig, well you will find a lot of suggestions on such in the Table Hoppers and Party Strollers forum for restaurant work, The Sidewalk Shuffle forum for busking, The Little Darlings forum for kids shows and birthday parties, and the Tricky Business forum for general marketing and business info. We have a search function on the Café, you will find the box at the top right just under the Café logo. You should be able to find tons of information already posted on the topic of how to go about finding gigs in those forums.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
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New user
Merion, Pa
78 Posts

Profile of newtomagic
I don't just want to get paid, I just want to perform it somewhere.
Ethan Orr
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Regular user
163 Posts

Profile of Ethan Orr
I don't see the what the difference would be, whether you're getting paid or not, in the quality of your performance. Jaz and Photius are suggesting you should focus on mastering a much smaller amount of magic; if you're going to perform for people it's better to be a maven at a small amount of tricks than mediocre at a large amount.

I'd suggest first testing things out on people close to you (if you aren't already doing this), then volunteering at a hospital or assisted living home, just to get your feet wet. You can always try busking, if you really feel confident, or asking people you know to keep you in mind for children's parties, etc. Also, there's always craig's list. Really, anyway you can advertise for yourself. I'd also try hanging out at your local magic shop, getting to know the people there, finding out what resources are available to you. Sometimes these people can be a little crusty to new magicians (at least that was my experience), but once they figure out you're serious they will likely go out of their way to help you out.
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Inner circle
Pittsburgh, Pa
2971 Posts

Profile of davidpaul$
Yes, finding opportunities to perform in front of real people is important to your growth without a doubt. If you are still in school, well then that's a great place. (during lunch) Any time there is a family gathering/party creates an opportunity. If you belong to a church there are many opportunities there.

As was mentioned, check out the nursing homes/assisted living centers. They are always looking for entertainment. You could ask to perform walk-around during the community lunch or dinner times. Malls have areas where people sit and lounge. You could ask the mall manager for permission to do some stuff. ( Your age and professionalism would play a big part here)

Many times Volunteer Fire Departments, churches etc. have small carnivals to raise money. Look for fund raising events. Many times money is being raised for an operation or a family in need, whatever the event (spaghetti dinner for example) you could perform walk around magic. Just keep your eyes and ears open, there are plenty of places you can perfect your skills and more importantly your people skills.
David Paul
If you can't help worrying, remember worrying can't help you!
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