The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Table hoppers & party strollers » » An Unusual Job Offer (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
CurtWaltermire
View Profile
Elite user
Curtis The Mentalist
479 Posts

Profile of CurtWaltermire
I received an unusual job offer yesterday, and I'm hoping some fellow pros here could perhaps shed some light on this sort of thing.

I do quite a bit of strolling magic it seems nowadays. I was meeting with a local carnival equipment provider/fun stuff/entertainment company yesterday. After speaking with the owner/managing partner for a few minutes, he told me exactly where he could use me as a magician.

Part of what the company does is conduct mock casinos for large corporate parties, where they use play money and set up blackjack tables, roulette wheels, etc., and do everything similar to a real casino, but no real money changes hands. At the end of the whole thing, real prizes are awarded depending upon people's individual "winnings" and the prizes that the company desires to give away.

I was offered the job of "Pit Boss" (I'm a big guy with a deep voice...perhaps that's part of the reason). I would actually act as more of a go-to man for the client, and would serve as more of a master of ceremonies, explaining rules, conducting prize giveaways, and helping the dealers and people running the games. I would also be strolling around and entertaining people with my close-up and strolling magic when not doing other things. I wouldn't be really doing anything similar to a real Pit Boss. He asked me to quote him a fee for my services and we would go from there. There doesn't appear to be too much travel involved, as they seem to work mostly locally, but conduct numerous events throughout the year. They are an established business, and have been around for at least the last fifteen years. I would be an independent contractor, with the freedom to turn down any engagement that I could not do for whatever reason.

Anyone out there ever done this sort of thing?
derrick
View Profile
Inner circle
I dug holes for
1044 Posts

Profile of derrick
Never done it, but it sounds like a cool gig if the money is right. I've had the opportunity to attend a number of these events throughout the years and can see how a magician with a real knowledge of the games would be a great asset. You can not only entertain the crowd as the games go on and people are knocked out, but as an added benefit, if a dealer doesn't show, you have the ability to fill in where needed.

Good luck.
rtgreen
View Profile
Inner circle
Portland, Oregon
1322 Posts

Profile of rtgreen
I've worked a few casino themed events like this, but I just did magic. They were a lot of fun. It sounds like a good job.

Thanks,
Richard
Christopher Lyle
View Profile
Inner circle
Dallas, Texas
5698 Posts

Profile of Christopher Lyle
I guess I don't see the issue...get paid to stand around and not do anything? Hmmm....I think I'm in the wrong line of work!

Seriosuly, it sounds like a fun gig to me. Over the last couple of years, I have been doing more MC work and being hired to be the Roast Master for Roasts. It's been a lot of fun and takes me away from the norm.

I don't know what your level of skill is, but one of the things that I do for these Casino Companies, is I perform a Crooked Gambling Demo. They keep one Casino Table open for me and those not playing come over to watch me give a demonstration of how people cheat at cards.

Everything from palming cards, false deals (bottoms, 2nds, etc.), switches, false cuts and shuffles, stacking systems, marking cards, deck switches, etc. I also explain the different card games, the rules, etc. and how sleight of hand guys can cheat during differnt games...including a brief history and demo of 3 Card Monte'.

I will also provide them tips for protecting themselves so they know what to look for so they will never get cheated while playing poker.

I also do some card magic that I can throw a gambling spin on. Everything from Triumph Routines, Scarne's Aces, Invisible Palm, etc.

The only bad part about this is very quickly, my table becomes the most popular and it leaves poker tables empty. I guess that's a good problem to have.

Have you tried to sell the angle to the owner? It might prove to be very successful for you.

Christopher
In Mystery,


Christopher Lyle
Magician, Comic, Daredevil, and Balloon Twisting Genius
For a Good Time...CLICK HERE!
Michael Baker
View Profile
Eternal Order
Near a river in the Midwest
11161 Posts

Profile of Michael Baker
It's kind of funny how sometimes people mentally believe that we as magicians are in some uncatagorized group of employable people. And for that reason they also find it easy to imagine us fitting into any one of a million other uncategorizable jobs.

I've been asked to MC events, walk around as a pirate, deliver a singing telegram, a few hundred other odd things, and most recently, stand on a street corner in the rain and do a fake 3 card monte pitch while bankers handed out credit card applications (true).

I'd say, if you don't mind the temporary alteration of your job description, don't think it's beneath you, and you don't mind taking the guy's money, then what the heck... go for it. Smile
~michael baker
The Magic Company
CurtWaltermire
View Profile
Elite user
Curtis The Mentalist
479 Posts

Profile of CurtWaltermire
There doesn't really seem to be any real obvious drawbacks, however the idea kinda caught me off guard. It sounds like a fun deal for the most part, but I thought it a good thing to at least get some feedback from people that may have done it before.

Chris, what you do sounds great. Cards are not my strength, but I hardly ever perform where I'm not doing something with cards. I'm not as strong in that area as you are I don't imagine (never done Scarne's Aces, but LOVE that...).

The only possible drawback to me is that I could be taking these corporate party gigs MYSELF and putting on a show, getting paid way more in the process, but that's stretching it a bit, I think, especially since the company has been around here a lot longer than I have. Why not enjoy riding their wave for a while and gaining some exposure in the process? Besides, I've done a ton of acting and singing in live productions, so it seems fun to put on a "Pit Boss" character while still doing my thing. Michael, I don't find it beneath me in the least, I'm probably as much an actor as I am a magician.

Another thing that makes it attractive is that they have about 20 such engagements scheduled between now and the end of the year, and he says that they have a lot of things also scheduled for Jan-March 2010 (when I'm perhaps the slowest). If they don't conflict with my current gigs, then I've just added twenty more dates/engagements to my calendar where all I have to do is show up with pockets full of magic.

Anyway, thanks to all for your input. Further input is also welcome.
renricker7
View Profile
Regular user
Halle, Germany
150 Posts

Profile of renricker7
Jump on the train!

rené
funsway
View Profile
Inner circle
old things in new ways - new things in old ways
8642 Posts

Profile of funsway
Michael brings up an interesting point. Why do poeple think magicians will do wierd things and handle difficult situations. Because we can! Stage feight and taking charge without a plan are major obsticles for most people. A business executive may have difficulty getting his people to even chair a meeting, and you demonstate a 'take charge' attitude that is enviable. Most of my thousands of magical performances have been one-on-one with business owners as part of a sales process. The 'magic' was that I got in to see them and discuss their problems. I accomplished that on a cold-call basis because I am a magician: nothing throws me, no situation is too strange, no barrier too high, etc. It is because I know the 'secret' that I was successful. That secret is that I had something of value to the owner and nothing was going to interfer with my performance. During a presentaion it was easy to use a magic trick to illustrate a point or change the owner's perspective.

Magicians sell themselves short all the time. Take this gig and be prepared for a job offer sometime that has nothing to do with magic. Your job is to be good enough -- and that has little to do with tricks, but a lot to do with what magic can be.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



ShareBooks at www.eversway.com * questions at funsway@eversway.com
gaddy
View Profile
Inner circle
Agent of Chaos
3149 Posts

Profile of gaddy
I've been trying to get into this sort of gig myself ever since watching the School for Scoundrels shells DVDs. Have fun with it!
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
Futureal
View Profile
Inner circle
1588 Posts

Profile of Futureal
I've heard about these events before.

The only caveat I'd have is that to me someone who appears to be in charge of casino games (even "play" casino games) probably shouldn't be a magician who goes around tricking people with cards etc.
stijnhommes
View Profile
Special user
568 Posts

Profile of stijnhommes
The only reason not to take this job is if you didn't have a fitting set of routines to perform. Personally, I think card magic would fit the theme, though Futureal has a point, you don't want to be accused of cheating on the floor.

Do these people know what you can perform or have any particular needs in that regard?
Michael Baker
View Profile
Eternal Order
Near a river in the Midwest
11161 Posts

Profile of Michael Baker
One point that should be considered for this is that you probably will not be doing a lot of magic. You won't need to bust your dice working up new stuff, unless you just want to.

Although I have not worked in this exact capacity, casino parties are very common in my market, and I've worked plenty of parties where mock casinos were part of the fun. Believe me, those players are as serious as they are in a real casino. Interrupting them to do magic will likely not be easy, except for times when you can control a table and really get to know the people sitting there. To just walk up to a table of Blackjack or Hold 'em players to stop the action for a card trick will likely get you some looks you might not want.

My advice would be to work in a couple incidental bits of magic that are designed more to catch the eye and interest, rather than ask people to sit through any type of plot development.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
derrick
View Profile
Inner circle
I dug holes for
1044 Posts

Profile of derrick
Hey Michael, In my brief little post above I intended to get across exactly what you wrote.

I don't think interrupting a game to perform magic would be a good move, but as people are knocked out of the games waiting to see who the winners will be, or for the silent auction to start, however the game(s) may be run, one's skills as a magician and entertainer would or could become more important and help keep the atmosphere and excitement away from the games high until the end of play.

You are right. Some folks take these mock casinos very seriously, particularly when prizes are awarded or items are to be auctioned off with the winnings at a certain time.
MrPrestoHypno
View Profile
Regular user
185 Posts

Profile of MrPrestoHypno
Go For It!
ugdini13
View Profile
Loyal user
Chino,Ca
254 Posts

Profile of ugdini13
I am telling you from personal experience that this is a fun way to make some extra cash(Grad. school loans are $$$$$$$$) for a few hours of work. I have done probably a dozen casino themed events for a few local casino companies and have been well received every time.

Also, you get to meet a lot more party and event planners to network with and possible sell your services to, (on behalf of the casino company of course). At casino night events not everyone is into gambling, or they are not familiar with the games, but almost all just want to have fun and sometimes there are children present who can not gamble. I believe that a roving magician or one seated at a designated "magic table" is a perfect accesory to atmosphere of the event.

I have done/still do the pitboss thing as well as dealt everything you would find on a casino floor because I enjoy the atmosphere and people I work with and not everyone wants to pay for a magician. I think most casino companies run their operation the same way so feel free to PM if you wanna know more about what a typical night would be like.

There are not many topics posted in the Café that I would consider myself knowledgable on, but this is one of them

Best of Luck
Spades
"Perfection is in the details, but detail is no Perfection"-Dai Vernon
Michael K
View Profile
Loyal user
Hazleton, PA
251 Posts

Profile of Michael K
Quote:
On 2009-10-30 15:15, ugdini13 wrote:
There are not many topics posted in the Café that I would consider myself knowledgable on, but this is one of them


I have to agree here. While I have limited experience doing strolling magic, I used to deal blackjack and poker for two party casino companies, one in PA and one from NJ. Most were fun, but they are work. We would set up all the tables, chips, and supplies and then be focused on running a good table for a 3-4 hours straight, most time with a full table of guests. Some who have been drinking and some who are nit-pickers at the games. And then tear-down and pack everything up into the truck. Work, but again, mostly enjoyable and a decent paycheck for the hours.

I totally agree with many of the above posts that you shouldn't perform much magic while the guests are playing at the tables. There is always time before the prizes are awarded that is usually very dead and would be wonderful to perform.


As long as you are OK with being the MC and not the magician then take the gig.

Michael
CurtWaltermire
View Profile
Elite user
Curtis The Mentalist
479 Posts

Profile of CurtWaltermire
Thanks for everyone's input. I'm meeting with the big guy today to finalize everything. Looks like it will be fun.
rtgreen
View Profile
Inner circle
Portland, Oregon
1322 Posts

Profile of rtgreen
Break a thread Curt and let us know how things work out.

Thanks,
Richard
ugdini13
View Profile
Loyal user
Chino,Ca
254 Posts

Profile of ugdini13
If you get a rookie on homeplate on the craps table make sure you tell him to place the "Hard 5" for the boys

=p
"Perfection is in the details, but detail is no Perfection"-Dai Vernon
CurtWaltermire
View Profile
Elite user
Curtis The Mentalist
479 Posts

Profile of CurtWaltermire
Well, I'm in...

The guy likes me so much that he asked me to also consider a position with the company as a sales rep. I told him I like being self-employed (with a smile, of course) and he told me we could work that out. I told him I'd think about it...first things first...

Consequently, on top of my other scheduled shows, December is going to prove to be very busy for me all month long...that's a GOOD problem!
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Table hoppers & party strollers » » An Unusual Job Offer (0 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.29 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