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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Never Again! (2 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Brian Lehr
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Inner circle
Edmonton, Canada
1600 Posts

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Have any of you ever done an effect for children, and afterwards said "I will never ever do that for children again!"?

One in particular that I can recall is the bitten and restored coin. After the show, I saw a little guy putting a penny in his mouth to try and bite it in half!

Live and learn.

Brian
Mago Mai
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Venezuela
485 Posts

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Brian:

I got a call on the phone from a kid that watched me performing the Dove pan on a T.V. special. He told me that he couldn't remember which magic words I used to make, from the pieces of paper on fire, a nice Dove.

He told me he had set the papers on fire once and he couldn't make the magic trick to work. I had to explain him that he wasn't going to be able to do that effect.

The fire pan to appear a Dove is out of my act.

I will never do it again.

Mago Mai
I invite all of you to share some of my magic on videos.Please, CLICK HERE
Brian Lehr
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Edmonton, Canada
1600 Posts

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If it wasn't so scary, it would be funny! Smile

I've been pondering whether or not to use my razor blade swallowing trick at my next birthday party. Smile

Brian
Jewls
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Michigan-USA
360 Posts

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Yep, just before you swallow a balloon!

Smile
leonard
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North Carolina
141 Posts

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I was absent-mindedly practicing "rope through the neck," when a visiting toddler saw me. I will never make that mistake again. His mother will never let me live it down.
Jim Tighe
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West Virginia
360 Posts

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One time I was doing a 6 year old birthday party around Halloween and thought it would be thematic to perform Down for the Count (a paddle trick by Mike Close). At the conclusion to the trick one child started crying with fright and the birthday child ran and jumped on his mother's lap.

Fortunately they made a quick recovery and the rest of the show went well but I felt absolutely awful at the time. The parents were apologizing for their child, saying "he scares easily" but I knew I had exercised bad judgment.

Jim T.
SimplyMagic
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I did the plunger on the head routine and the child cried. Doc Hilford told me in a conversation that magic that embarrasses the participant makes Magicians look bad.

I will never again do that for children or adults. Our society has lost some notches in the respect for others area and I think we should all work in getting that back!!
gocall911
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Salem, VA
246 Posts

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I was doing stuff with sponge balls for a 2 year old and did the bit where you eat one of the balls. Well the next time I handed the ball to him he shoved it in his mouth! I wouldn't have been doing magic for a 2 year old any way except he is in the family so I decided I would (and was asked to as well). The rest of the magic he loved by the way!
"Use your head." ~Dai Vernon~
Frank Tougas
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Minneapolis, MN
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This did not happen as a magician but in my work as a therapist. I was doing some grief work in a children's group in the day treatment center I was working in at the time.

My client was a young man who had lost his father. As a way of closure (psychobabble word for ending) I had him write a letter to his father, which I then carefully transferred to a sheet of flash paper.

In a ceremony I, the child and the rest of the group went outside and "sent" the letter.

The moment was touching and full of positive metaphor. The next day another child who had witnesed the ceremony stated he had tried several times to ignite one of those dryer sheets like me, but he couldn't get it to burn!

I learned a lot and gave thanks dryer sheets were not flamable.
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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Many years ago while serving in the Royal Navy I was posted to Bermuda, ~(oops sorry I've dropped a name) I did the vanishing a coin in your arm trick to the kids that lived there. It wasn't during a show, this was before I became a magician. The upshot was that I nearly got lynched by all the mum's as the kids went home and spent hours rubbing coins on there arms to try and make them disappear. The end result was a load of kids with long friction burns up their arms.
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.
Shadow Dancer
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Melbourne, Australia
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Never do tricks which are better versions of tricks you get from toy shops. I now have to be carefull as toy shops are getting way cool tricks nowadays!
'The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious.'
<br> AlbertEinstein
m.ruetz
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Peoria Arizona, USA
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With respect to use of fire, I often do the dove pan with a safety warning stating I am an adult and only adults can use matches. Not sure what other think about this if the proper warnings are given. I also used to do the Soo Fire Cracker, maybe not a good idea as it would often make the mom for the kid's party extremely nervous wondering why I decided to light an explosive device in her living room. Even though I think they knew it is isn't real I've often seen a bit of panic on their faces.
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magicgeorge
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Belfast
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As Shadow quite rightly points out there are a lot of cheaper versions of tricks now sold in toy shops. I have even seen a (shock horror) tt presented as a toy style magic trick.
I don't think you should worry about the kids having a toy version of your trick. There are so many out there a lot of the principles of magic are covered in these toy tricks. The thing is if a kid has bought a trick such as this they will either have learned to do the trick in which case they will probably have read the " don't give out secrets" bit and you can subtly point out that they won't want to spoil the trick for themselves. Or they haven't learned it at all and you'll fool them with it anyhow. Quite often a child has come up after a show to show me a trick they have and you can usually completely flumex them with their own apparatus.
JamesinLA
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Los Angeles
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Okay, here's a story from my past: I'm a 14 year old magician doing a birthday party. Houdini was my hero as a kid. I wanted to put on good shows using the best magic possible. So who represents the best magic in my 14 year old mind? Houdini. I had in my act at that time, for that reason, the swallowing needle trick.
Can you believe I did that at a kid's b-day party? Of course, I was a kid myself and it was quite a while ago. I pulled the needles out of my mouth, magically threaded, ta-da! The mother, I could tell, didn't like it and didn't like that I had put my hands in my mouth. Which I agree with.
At least I didn't do the threaded razor blades!

Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
oagwood
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Pleasant Hill, CA
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Lets see, I thought that since I got a great reaction from adults that kids would dig paper balls over the head. I highly recomend trying this if you haven't already. Nature's little truthsayers will not tolerate such idiotic behavior, and they will let you know. So paper balls over the head is out.

Oh, one other great story is when I had the birthday kids father come on up to help with the french arm chopper. Kids like chopped arms right? And fire? And razors? Of course they do, so I have little juniors dad up there and when I chop off his arm, little junior bursts into tears. Not some little wimper either, burst into tears. Tough one to difuse, but I managed and still got paid.

Never again
oliver
Jeff Haas
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For dove pans, I dropped fire years ago. Call what you're doing "magic cooking" and put a bunch of silly ingredients into the pan, cover it, wave a wand and have them transform into edible goodies. No fire required.

Examples...

- Packet of sugar (unopened!) + aluminum foil = Hershey's Kisses
- Packet of sugar + colored ribbons (green, blue, orange, etc.) = gummy worms
- For Christmas, sugar + red and white ribbons = candy canes.

Jeff
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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In the 70's and 80's I used to "eat" fire in my festival shows.

I thought about bringing it back to the Nearly Normal Programs when a friend told me to visit the burn unit first. She is a nurse.

Although some use fire with great effect and caveats and hopefully lots of insurance,
I choose not to even use my fire coin purse or flash paper any more.

Harris Deutsch
Laughologist and
2002 Jackson County, Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist of the Year
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
Bill Palmer
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Eternal Order
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Quote:
On 2003-06-06 10:05, m.ruetz wrote:
With respect to use of fire, I often do the dove pan with a safety warning stating I am an adult and only adults can use matches. Not sure what other think about this if the proper warnings are given. I also used to do the Soo Fire Cracker, maybe not a good idea as it would often make the mom for the kid's party extremely nervous wondering why I decided to light an explosive device in her living room. Even though I think they knew it is isn't real I've often seen a bit of panic on their faces.


I started to do the Ching Soo firecracker at a kid's show once. Before the show, I explained to the child that he was to take the firecracker and put it in the tube. He said that he wouldn't do it. I explained that it wasn't a real firecracker. He still refused. So I said, "You know, you are right. It's a stupid trick, anyway. Kids shouldn't play with firecrackers."

I sold it to a collector. Now all three of us are happy!
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Rob Johnston
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Utah
2060 Posts

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I have had the same situation with my folding quarter. I have withheld performing that trick for younger children. I don't want some kid perishing trying to be like me.

Good post.
"Genius is another word for magic, and the whole point of magic is that it is inexplicable." - Margot Fonteyn
Peter Marucci
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5389 Posts

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I open every kids' show with the Miser's Dream.
And for a long time, I always talked of "pulling a coin out of your ear" until another magician mentioned that, by saying that, it implies the coin was there in the first place and that might lead even just one child to attempt the trick by jamming a coin in his or her ear.
Bad!
So now, while I still do the trick, I refer to "pulling a coin from BEHIND your ear".

This is a very valuable thread to those who heed the advice given in the variety of posts here.

Trouble is, probably, that the very people who need the help of this thread are the ones who think they are doing everything perfectly, while those who ARE doing everything right are reading or posting here!

BTW, SimplyMagic is dead accurate: It's just as damaging to embarrass a child as it is to physically harm one (or create an atmosphere where that can happen).

When you do a show, you should be in control and the audience should be treated like guests in your home (the performing area). That means never, ever embarrass, humiliate, or insult an audience member.
Ever.
For any reason.
Period.
(Not an opinion; a fact!)
Smile
cheers,
Peter Marucci
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