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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » The Masked Magician - Has The Dust Finally Settled? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Tim Zager
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There have been a lot of bloggers this week talking about controversy and whether or not it's good for business. Social media is becoming popular as a tool to promote business. It's also causing some heated debate on how it should be used.

It reminds me a lot of the controversy the masked magician caused, starting back in 1997. I remember how mad I was and how I wanted to go after the guy. Some of my buddies held me back and instead, we worked out ways to approach new markets, restructure our shows, and try to learn from the damage he caused.

I wrote my thoughts about it today on my blog. "How To Let Controversy Suck The Life Out Of Your Business". (blog address is in my sig.)

It's 13 years later... I'm curious if the masked man had any effect on your business. Do you feel like it's over? Is he still making an impact today? It seems like the art of magic is still alive and well. Your thoughts?

Tim
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EventEntertainer
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<<Is he still making an impact today?>>

Apparently so, otherwise this post wouldn't exist Smile

Nah! If anything, it gives me more of an excuse to engage customers.
Consultant, performer, creator, and all around nice guy!
leinadnallareyem
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We all get the question "do you know how it is done" they could be referencing an illusion thsy saw on TV or live. Does it really matter. "Yes I know" is my normal responce. But most times I have a general class of magic I can put the illusion into. Mostly I am amaized because the magician put so much effort into the illusion. I personally appreciate the art of illusion I have answered the question..."Did you see the maked magician? Is that how the trick is done?" My responce is always general. "He is showing you a basic simplistic way to perform the illusion. True magicians are way beyond the simple trickery you see on Magic Revealed shows."
Not a truly related story but I like telling this one.
I performed a show at a school for the disabled. Most of the 25 or so people were Down Syndrome. I went through about a half hour show. At the end three or four members of the audience approached me and they all told me they loved David Copperfield. "Do you know how David does his tricks?" they asked. "Yes I do" I replied. Then came the question.... "On TV we watched David Copperfield make the Statue of Liberty dissapear in New Yourk City." "If I went to New York would the Statue of Liberty still be there?" I know my answer. Why don't you try to answer this one. I would be interested in knowing how you would respond.
Leinad

ps. I said "After David Copperfield made the Statue of Liberty disapear, did he not make the Statue re- appear?" "Yes" He was satisfied in the safety of the Statue of Liberty.
Leinad
jackturk
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After 25-plus years of gigs all across the US, I can honestly state I have never considered the Masked Magician or YouTube or the Library or anything of any import whatsoever to my business or act.

When I kid calls out, "I know how that's done!" I just smile and say "Great!"

Because I'm selling me, not tricks.

And making me likable, funny, enjoyable, interesting, commanding, surprising, quirky, friendly, compelling, compassionate, respectful, and a total joy to work with is my primary concern.

That's challenge enough any day.

--Jack Turk
"59 Ways To Recession Proof Your Entertainment Business -- FREE!"
http://www.GetLeadsLikeCrazy.com

"How To Make $25,000 a Year Doing Birthday Parties Part-Time"
http://www.magicmarketingcenter.com/birthdayPT
MagiUlysses
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Greetings and Salutations,

A little know fact -- not that anyone cares -- but the Masked Magician was my inspiration to take up magic. What the MM revealed was the tricks, but what I saw was that the magic was all in the presentation.

At the time, in KC, a fellow named Bob Klamm, you'll know him, Tim, lol!, was teaching a non-credit workshop class in magic through a local university, and I signed up for his class. The rest, as they say, is history.

The group I was performing with needed a new front man, I told them I had learned a few tricks, and my performing career took a whole new twist.

I recently heard a line for the "I know how that's done" shout-out: "There's no prizes for guessing how it's done."

If Blaine and Angell can attract new magicians, why not the Masked Magician?

Then again, some would note that I'm rather an odd duck!

Joe Zeman aka
The Mage Ulysses
Tim Zager
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Jack, I agree. That was my experience also and what I talked about in the article. A couple lay people commented on my FB page about watching the show, but not really remembering the methods. That confirms what my gut told me... that it really didn't matter. They watch magic for the entertainment.

Like I said in the initial post, I wrote the blog article to make the point that you can let controversy consume you and hurt your biz, or you can learn from it to make your business stronger.

Joe man!! Haven't seen you forever, you odd duck. Smile I'm itching to hit the streets again with the warm weather coming.
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fyi2
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The MM is a great conversation starter. I agree with leinad MM shows the most brute force method. Also that show was so full of fluff and internal advertising I could only site through a few.

Also know a way to do an effect and doing is so different I never worry.
gfdiamond
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Hi,

The great thing about the masked magician or any other show of its type is that people in general cannot remember what they did or saw two days ago, let alone a show they may have seen weeks or months ago.

I also have trouble remembering tricks I did for years at a stretch.

Think of professional snooker or pool players - they have to do it all the time, just to keep level.

So all the hype in the magic world about the masked magician ruining the art I think is a load of bunkum. Unless the human race develops a super power memory en masse, in a very short period of time, I don't think its worth losing sleep over.

Regards,

Geoff.
Check me out on Google. Geoff Diamond Magician.
leinadnallareyem
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Main Entry: bun•kum
Variant(s): or bun•combe - bəŋ-kəm\
Function: noun
Etymology: Buncombe county, North Carolina; from a remark made by its congressman, who defended an irrelevant speech by claiming that he was speaking to Buncombe
Date: 1845
: insincere or foolish talk : nonsense
Leinad
TonyB2009
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The Masked Magician did nothing but good for magic. We are far too precious over our secrets. We should be worried about presentation not technique. The public, even if they think they know the secret, couldn't care less. They want to be entertained.
rottenmagic
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I think he had some effect, but not a lasting one. I believe that youtube is having a much greater impact than the masked magician ever could.
griffindance
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I think it's agreed that our audiences don't really remember the show and his effect on the industry was minimal.

All theatre is "Suspension of Disbelief"
Failed Magician
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Watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8tQgHiMGGU

I really hope MM thought "Is this payback time for all of the wrongs I've been doing on TV?"

It gave me a good laugh. It happens to me once but hey, I'm only a hobbyist and I don't reveal magic tricks. It's against our unwritten code Smile

Hope this would brighten up your day Smile
Magic comes through perception. -HS
jay leslie
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Aus
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Ok my 2 cents for whats it worth.

I think people like The Mage Ulysses I feel are rather the exception then the rule, I think vary few people will convert to magic due to exposure. Someone basking in the wonderment of a well performed trick in my opinion has a lot more conversion pertenchal then some one exposing a magic secret.

That being said I think that's a rather minor point among others and I think there is something more important that needs to be said about this whole issue.

Some have said many magicians have a real pretentiousness when it comes to magic secrets and I feel in many cases that is justified. Consider for example an illusionist with a wherehouse full of illusions who had paid many thousands of dollars for the right to have them but also have the secret, not to mention the prerequisite hours in perfecting that sub truck or any other illusions that one needs to invest to make them smooth and performace worthy. It's not only an investment of money, but also in time.

Also some have said that the focus needs to be placed on the theatrical side of things and revealing the secret in many respects forces use to do just that, hence why what MM is doing is not that bad.

I think that's a very short sighted veiw and shows a complete lack of understanding of why magic works. No doubt most of us have heard that the magic happens in the minds and hearts of our spectators but that image of magic in the spectators minds can easly be distorted if you don't take control of the other things we do.

Take comedy and magic for example, comedy magicians (the good ones) stop the funny stuff or at least curtail it to a significant dagree as the climax approchs so the full appreciation of the climax can be realize. Not doing so makes for two competing emotions for which one is weakening the other.

To bring my rant back on how this all applys to the MM revealing magic secrets is simple, revealing secrets puts the spectator on a train of thought that is more attuned to problem solving and in direct conflict with what we wont our spectators to do and that is to have a sense of wounderment and disbelief and the many other emontional elements we strive for as magicians during our performaces.

It's also against one of the most common bit advice we give, "Don't tell your audience what your going to do before you do it". Not only are you telling them what your going to do before you do it, but your also telling them how your going to do it as well and to me that's's even worse.

There is a reason for the magicians code and why it's been held for so long. The best we can hope for is that time heals all wounds.

Magically

Aus
jamesbond
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Masked magician had NADA effect on my business...
Decomposed
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Quote:
On 2010-04-01 19:35, gfdiamond wrote:
Hi,

The great thing about the masked magician or any other show of its type is that people in general cannot remember what they did or saw two days ago, let alone a show they may have seen weeks or months ago.

I also have trouble remembering tricks I did for years at a stretch.

Think of professional snooker or pool players - they have to do it all the time, just to keep level.

So all the hype in the magic world about the masked magician ruining the art I think is a load of bunkum. Unless the human race develops a super power memory en masse, in a very short period of time, I don't think its worth losing sleep over.

Regards,

Geoff.


Well said indeed. Smile
Dennis Michael
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Good point, look at the massive variety of production illusions. We in the business can't keep track, and with slight modification, a new illusion (to the lay-people) is born.

The Masked Magician wasn't entertaining. He did keep magic in the forefront. People just wanted to know how tricks were done, or "The Secret" is being revealed is a tease. Remembering them, that is the difficult part.
Dennis Michael
Jay Mahon
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The funny thing about all these secrets that amateurs are protecting so loyally is that they rarely have their own secrets to truly protect.

The Masked Magician didn't make much of a splash. He didn't hurt my tricks or my business and quite frankly those that really were affected negatively need to step up their game. Your magic must have been terrible if you were really taken down a notch by his terrible attempts.

In fact, at the time performing effects that DO NOT use his methods but are the same effect could easily be presented and gave you AN ADVANTAGE as a magician because your audience is thinking a particular way, or might even have given up on guessing how things are done because they think they know! It's strong psychology, I'd wager that anyone who has truly read and studied Jarrett's magic would appreciate the positive effect of having an audience full of people who feel they know how all the effects were done...

J
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