The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » When do you stop? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Ed_Millis
View Profile
Inner circle
Yuma, AZ
2290 Posts

Profile of Ed_Millis
I'm looking at doing my first "real" performance in years (except for a friend's bday party) in about 2 weeks. I've got a few tricks & routines that are in various stages of completion. And my time between now and then is limited - a few nights after work, a few hours Saturdays and maybe Sundays.

When would you say "Stop! As of *this* point, go with what you have and don't work on anything new to put into this performance!" One day before? One week before? One month ago??

Ed
The Burnaby Kid
View Profile
Inner circle
St. John's, Canada
3138 Posts

Profile of The Burnaby Kid
My instinct tells me that you'd know when something is ready, and that's when you stop. If you've got a deadline and not enough time to go through that process, then you might be in a situation where you'd only know after that performance whether or not you were ready for that performance.
JACK, the Jolly Almanac of Card Knavery, a free card magic resource for beginners.
Josh the Superfluous
View Profile
Inner circle
The man of
1881 Posts

Profile of Josh the Superfluous
I'd go with what you have at this point. Make sure everything builds. Each trick should accomplish something unique and work together to achieve a bigger picture. Edit ruthlessly. If a trick or a phase of a trick, isn't working strongly, cut it out. You should know the tricks inside and out, focus your attention on the transitions and what you'll say at the end of the show.
What do you want in a site? "Honesty, integrity and decency." -Mike Doogan
"I hate it, I hate my ironic lovechild. I didn't even have anything to do with it" Josh #2
Wes65
View Profile
Inner circle
I've said very little in
1219 Posts

Profile of Wes65
Very good question:

I remember, a long time ago, Troy Aikman got a concussions in a game. He ran one play before anyone realized that he had a concussion. Some one asked him how that was possible, he said the play he ran after his concussion was a draw play to Emmitt Smith and he could run that play in his sleep.

Only do what you could do in your sleep.....or after getting hit in the head with a frying pan (or by a 280 pound line backer).
Wes
JamesTong
View Profile
Eternal Order
Malaysia
11213 Posts

Profile of JamesTong
Try not to do anything that require sleights that are yet to be perfected. Because of the limited amount of time left I would suggest a lot of mental rehearsals besides the actual practices. Go through your routine mentally as many times as possible. That way you would know the 'what to do' and 'when to do' and be able to focus on the presentation.
solrak29
View Profile
Special user
NY Metro
936 Posts

Profile of solrak29
2 WEEKS !!!!.

I would be freakin out right now if I was in your state...just kidding.

How long is the show? What type of show?

How many routines have you got complete already?
To Find Me On The Pitch, Follow me :On Twitter
Checkout my pseudo blog : The Sidewalk Performers Forum

"I intend to live forever, or die trying" - Groucho Marx
MMark
View Profile
New user
Edmonton, AB, Canada
39 Posts

Profile of MMark
That's my question also... how long is the show and do you have enough (well-rehearsed) material to cover that time?

Mark
Wolfenout
View Profile
New user
55 Posts

Profile of Wolfenout
Besides just the magic, are you accustomed to being in front of a group of people and maintaining your cool?
HerbLarry
View Profile
Special user
Poof!
731 Posts

Profile of HerbLarry
Hi Ed,

Of the options given I'm going with a month ago. The question is what do you have ready to perform? A few tricks & routines that are in various stages of completion don't count. Refrain from performing things you do not have down solid. Not just the moves and mechanics of a trick but everything that converts it from "going through the motions" to Magic. Which brings us back to what do you have ready to perform? If it's one trick then you have one and you are ready to move on to the next one. If it's two then you are twice as far as I was at the beginning, and ready to head to three and on and on. One solid piece of Magic is infinitely better than a handful of slapped together tricks and routines.
You know why don't act naive.
Father Photius
View Profile
Grammar Host
El Paso, TX (Formerly Amarillo)
17198 Posts

Profile of Father Photius
If you can't do it without looking at it, then don't do it. When I routine an act, it is pretty well set a good month before it ever goes live anywhere. You need that much time to rehearse it, and get comfortable with all the details and flow of the act. That last month is the time to not work on tricks, but on staging and performance. If you don't have the tricks down by then, it is too late.
Now, once I start performing an act it gets tweaked. I may move a few of the tricks around as I felt the flow was not as smooth as I thought it ought to be. I will change some of the patter if it seemed to loose the audience. Over the long run, I will begin to remove a trick and introduce a new one in its place from time to time for a bit of freshness.
My practice was always to have three acts, composed of 3 independent 20 minute sets. That is, if necessary each of the three sets could be performed as a short act independently. This gave me variety and ability to change an act a bit here and there as needed due to conditions such as angle, type of audience, etc.
Each set in a given act had no repeat tricks, but the sets in the independent acts would often have some of the same tricks as the other acts. Two tricks I did in almost every act were linking rings and cards up the sleeve (or card to pocket). I did not need a huge number of tricks, just different ways of presenting them as an act that could be varied if needed.
That way I could accomodate almost any performing schedule. I could do a 15 min set by choosing one of the sets with shorter tricks that I could compress a bit without loosing performance value. I could do 20 minutes easily, as the sets were set for 20 minutes. 25 minutes I could take some of the sets with longer tricks and stretch just a little bit. 30 min show would be one set with the middle out of another added, etc.
I played it this way for years, and never really changed the acts per se. I rehearsed them as sets and as acts. Then I could do the variations on the fly.
But you need a minimum of a good month lead to rehearse your entire routine as it will be presented. You need to have it so down you do not have to think about what you need to set up, how to set it up, timing, angle, lighting, anything. That is all so ingrained into you from rehersal it is second nature to you.
If I planned to do act II, then I didn't even have to think what to pack, what to set up, or where to place it. If I was doing act I , I knew the angles, how I needed to work the audience, and what sort of staging I would need. Same for Act I, set 3 if that is what I was doing. I booked events, and in my calendar I would put "act II" or "act I -set 1&2- act III set 3" and would know exactly what was going to be needed and done in each show.
Worked great for me, I'm sure there are other fine systems out there. I think each of us eventually finds a system that works best for us and stays with it.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
JamesTong
View Profile
Eternal Order
Malaysia
11213 Posts

Profile of JamesTong
Great post, Fr. Photius.
funsway
View Profile
Inner circle
old things in new ways - new things in old ways
9085 Posts

Profile of funsway
Similar to Fr. Photius, when I was doing "Camp Strolling" in Medieval settings I woul carry three pouches, each with six tricks, each set practice to automaticity, and each different enough they could be chained together. I prefered to use 'found objects' for my first effects and then added the correct pouch according top setting, audience mix, lighting, etc.

You could certainly do the same for any setting, perhaps using small duffle-bags or backpacks. When practicing I would only use one set at a time all the way through.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

eBooks at https://www.lybrary.com/ken-muller-m-579928.html questions at ken@eversway.com
joseph
View Profile
Eternal Order
Please ignore my
17159 Posts

Profile of joseph
Quote:
On 2009-10-23 21:10, Father Photius wrote:
If you can't do it without looking at it, then don't do it. When I routine an act, it is pretty well set a good month before it ever goes live anywhere.


2 weeks...I would start watching anything by the Buck twins or Brian Tudor...
Just kidding....I agree with Father Photius above...
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler." (Einstein)...
JamesTong
View Profile
Eternal Order
Malaysia
11213 Posts

Profile of JamesTong
Actually 2 weeks is too short to prepare an entertaining act.
DN777
View Profile
Veteran user
360 Posts

Profile of DN777
If you have your set list planned out already, start running through the act daily. Just plow through it with an imaginary audience, and remember to talk to the audience! Don't just go through the tricks!

Pack in the weak material between solid effect and you will be OK. If you have a dodgy effect but you still want to perform it, you can always communicate that to the audience. Just remember that a trick that fails is still very entertaining AS LONG AS YOU DON'T BECOME EMBARRASSED!!! If you mess up, just act like you did it on purpose. A good line could be something like "I did that on purpose, because I do everything on purpose."

Best advice I can give is plan to fail. Invest in some improvisation classes and always be ready to be thrown a curveball. Remember, you can get through any show even if you forget your line as long as you know what happens next and the five Ws. (Who, What, When, Where, Why). By evoking one of the 5 Ws you can quickly come up with a comment or response to any situation.

Cheers!
Ed_Millis
View Profile
Inner circle
Yuma, AZ
2290 Posts

Profile of Ed_Millis
Good advice all - and of course stuff that I've been told before! I'm a very-part-time hobbyist at the moment, trying to see if I'm good enough to take this to the next level.

The advice to not do anything you can't do with your eyes closed, or in your sleep, etc., is right on and good - but that takes a lot of time that needs to be taken away from other things. I've got stuff I used to do years ago when I tried to "be a pro", but much of it seems lame and rusty. Or is that just me?

So I see something that is easy enough for me to pick up with the few skills I've got and looks a lot my exciting than what I have now, and the temptation is great to say "Let me grab that, put a bit 'o time into it, and I'll have a better routine to replace ~whatever~."

I got an unexpected chance to perform a few of my new routines at a party the other night. The first went over decent, the second nothing like I expected, and the third about like it should, but not like I anticipated (wild screams and thunderous applause and etc. - yeah right!!).

The key of course is time. The question to be answered is "Can I do this well enough to justify taking time away from something else to work on it?" Or should it be relegated to the spare moments while catching my breath after mowing the lawn, because it will never entertain anyone but me? The promise is always "You can learn this in 10 minutes and kill every audience!" And so we chase the carrot, never quite getting to the promised result.

Long philisophical way of saying "I don't have anything I can do in my sleep or without great concentration while performing." But how else am I going to find out if I can entertain? Any bozo can do tricks (been there, done that!), but too many also think they can entertain.

Ed
JamesTong
View Profile
Eternal Order
Malaysia
11213 Posts

Profile of JamesTong
The beautiful thing about magic lies in the process or journey that we go through. And from it we gain all kinds of experiences. Enjoy the journey, Ed. We can only offer our opinions but you alone have to walk that journey in magic.

Sometimes we have great expectations about magic. The audiences do not see things the way we see. I would suggest that you try out different effects that you can do fairly well. From there you observe the reactions of the audiences. Sometimes the effects we don't like may just go very well with some audiences.

Experiment ... and enjoy the journey. Magic is magic for the lay audience and not for magicians. e.g we show a coin and in the process transfer it to finger palm position and we call it a retention vanish ... but to the audience it is magic ... the coin vanished right in front of their eye.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » When do you stop? (0 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.14 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL