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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Right or Wrong? » » How come so many posts on the magic Café are about "teaching magic" ? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Cyberqat
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Sorry, I totally, absolutely disagree. The ones who get into it will go on to seek out other things to learn.

Is there anyplace in the US where any kid over the age of 10 DOESN'T know the cup and ball? At least any place that has electric power? Lets get real here.

The point isn't to "fool your friends". The point is to introduce the idea of magic and, if the instructor is any good, a bit about performance.
It is always darkest just before you are eaten by a grue.
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Cy-

I certainly respect your opinion. It would help to understand your experience and performance history. Could you give me a brief as to what type of magic you perform, and for how long you have been performing?

I have only been performing for about 5 years, having dabbled in magic all my life. I do stage (up to 80-100), parlor and busking. Just getting in to doing some pitches, mostly to try it out. I belong to SAM and hold a magician membership in the Academy of Magical Arts (Magic Castle). I have yet to compete, but plan to do so at next year's Magi Fest. Latest gig was at the Columbus Museum of Art, where I did a Chihuly show on glass magic. I am relating this only because I figure you will ask.

I would suppose most of us would not for a moment think other than "the point isn't to "fool your friends"". That is a bit of a condescending thing to say. Further I do not agree that the "point is to introduce the idea of magic" as an "instructor". I do not believe magic is something you go around inflicting people with, or have you not noticed how many people have limited tolerance for magic?

Really, I have a hard time thinking of many endeavors, hobbies, avocations, careers, etc. where the person does not come to the "mountain" rather than the other way around. So, it is hard for me to accept that it is a good idea to start "teaching" this to people who did not ask (or beg) you to do so.

As a professional educator, I also object to the concept that anyone with something they want to show to others can teach. It is not that easy, even after years of training and experience. Teaching, like most everything, only looks easy in the arms of a seasoned expert, after paying dues of study and practice.

My opinion? We all like to show off, and if we are not good enough at performing to show off, the easy way to feel superior is to "teach" our unsuspecting victims...

For me, the "point" is much more to remain faithful to the profession of magic. This requires a very strict definition of when and where I "teach". I find it unsettling that the issue seems to me to come up most frequently in the "New To Magic" section.

Yeah, we see it differently, but that's cool...

Jim
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
gaffed
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Quote:
On 2010-07-10 21:44, Dougini wrote:
Two reasons why I rarely perform any more.

Masked Magician
YouTube

The WORST offenders. All others pale in comparison.

Just my opinion,

Doug


You rarely perform anymore because of that!!
Granted, I'm not at all too happy with the YouTube thing (in more ways than one), but I can't for the life of me remember the last time I've ever seen the Masked Magician! Really....you can't be serious!
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gaddy
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Quote:
On 2010-07-11 23:18, mandarin wrote:
........Further I do not agree that the "point is to introduce the idea of magic" as an "instructor". I do not believe magic is something you go around inflicting people with, or have you not noticed how many people have limited tolerance for magic?

Really, I have a hard time thinking of many endeavors, hobbies, avocations, careers, etc. where the person does not come to the "mountain" rather than the other way around. So, it is hard for me to accept that it is a good idea to start "teaching" this to people who did not ask (or beg) you to do so...........
Jim


TOTALLY AGREE! And thank you for putting this more succinctly than I have thus far!

There is absolutely NO NEED for us to be "Evangelists" for the "cause of magic". Not one person I know came to be a magician because some boring teacher taught their entire grade school class how the Svengali deck works or a Ball and Vase trick is done.

They choose to learn magic because they SAW MAGIC PERFORMED and wanted to learn how it was done.
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
Ade2010
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An argument, on an internet message board?!

Who'da thunk it...?
funsway
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I find myself agreeing with most of what Mandarin says (usually do), but think the concept of "teaching" goes further. We teach people to appreciate good magic by only doing "good magic" (practiced and audience adaptive amongst other thing), and Teach people to regard magic as a joke by just doing tricks or invading people's privacy. When you refuse to define a word for a child and direct them to a dictionary you are teaching them. If you give a child (of any age) a simple trick to learn and master as a test of interest and voracity you are also teaching. I give away lots of "Adair's Butterfly" as a puzzle that can be performed as a magic trick to teach what magic is not -- or at least to teach that good magic is more than just acquiring tricks. Am I exposing a secret? The fact that many magic effects are based in faulty visual perceptions may be a big secret.

New members are admitted to our Magic Circle by showing up twice and performing three silly tricks -- then we open up all of our secrets. Why isn't that considered exposure? Years ago Boy's Life and Weekly Reader used to "teach" magic tricks in the beleif that knowing how to perform in public was a valuable social skill. Now days I think it is "magic" if an employee shows up on time.

Thus, in a rambling way, I think each of us should teach magic everyday to everyone we meet -- but that has nothing to do with training tricks mechanics. If you don't plan to either teach or learn, why communicate with other people at all?
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

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Dougini
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Quote:
On 2010-07-12 00:21, gaffed wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-07-10 21:44, Dougini wrote:
Two reasons why I rarely perform any more.

Masked Magician
YouTube

The WORST offenders. All others pale in comparison.

Just my opinion,

Doug


You rarely perform anymore because of that!!
Granted, I'm not at all too happy with the YouTube thing (in more ways than one), but I can't for the life of me remember the last time I've ever seen the Masked Magician! Really....you can't be serious!


In the circle of people I used to hang with (Florida), I started getting flak after a run of "Masked Magician" episodes on Fox. Several of my best effects were exposed. It seems all I heard was, "Oh, saw that on that magic secrets show." I mean, no big deal, right? Just a red face, and we continue...

Then, I buy "Prohibition", one of the best Cap In Bottle routines I've ever learned. I have to admit, I was very happy with that for a while, but guess who exposed it on NATIONAL TV??? Yup. The Masked one!

I'm not a professional. I'm old school. I have very few magic skills, and have done pretty well for what skills I have. I've practiced HOURS, every day, and when I find it's time time to show something, seems the Masked One has been there already.

I've moved recently, and don't know anyone here (Bangor). So, maybe you're right, I am being ridiculous. I can start over here...I was just SO miffed at the whole thing, I just shut down.

Maybe the move is what I needed. Still... YouTube as great a tool that it is, is outta control on exposure. Nuttin' we can do. We press on!

My $.02,

Doug
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Doug-

That you are still cruising the Café shows you are as hooked as some of the rest of us - I feel your pain! Perhaps a solution lies in the huge mountain of effects out there, no? I wonder, has anyone put together a compendium of what TMI has exposed, so that we all just avoid those effects? A thought for those of us who just can't quit...
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
Dougini
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LOL, Mandarin...yep...after a year, here I am again! Withdrawal symptoms dictated my return...

Sorry to see so much disagreement as of late. Some fascinating discussions, for sure...

Best,

Doug
gaddy
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Quote:
On 2010-07-12 09:55, mandarin wrote:
Doug-

That you are still cruising the Café shows you are as hooked as some of the rest of us - I feel your pain! Perhaps a solution lies in the huge mountain of effects out there, no? I wonder, has anyone put together a compendium of what TMI has exposed, so that we all just avoid those effects? A thought for those of us who just can't quit...


there is one on the magic Café, somewhere. Compiled during his last run on the MyNetwork series.
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Gaddy-

I will take on the task of finding it...

While we wait...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breaking_the_Magician's_Code
Also known, when doing rope magic, as "Cordini"
brangwinj
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FYI I teach magic in an elementary school. There are many after school programs,My program is the most popular with the best attendance . The student magicians respect the art, practice and keep the secrets. Please tell me again what is your problem with this ??? Because I am an old fart and go to many Conventions and lectures a year I can learn and afford to buy any trick or illusion-- no problem . but if I teach inquisitive students Chinese sticks and many others you have some noble problem with that. Get over it !!! The students have won student tallent shows, and one student promised front row seats for his Las Vegas show , oh to be young with dreams.
Cyberqat
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Brang...

I think you are doing something noble and thank you for exposing more kids to our art. (I was going to change that word 'expose' and then decided to leave it. Exposure isn't ALWAYS a bad thing. Exposure to music. Exposure to art, etc are all *good* things and that's how I use the word here.)

Arts that don't get regular new blood die, and no one appreciates (or IMO supports) magicians as much as fellow magicians. Even if most of them don.t go on to become big performers, you have taught them a new and deeper way to appreciate otehrs' performances.
It is always darkest just before you are eaten by a grue.
gaddy
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Quote:
On 2010-07-14 15:10, brangwinj wrote:
FYI I teach magic in an elementary school. There are many after school programs,My program is the most popular with the best attendance . The student magicians respect the art, practice and keep the secrets. Please tell me again what is your problem with this ??? Because I am an old fart and go to many Conventions and lectures a year I can learn and afford to buy any trick or illusion-- no problem . but if I teach inquisitive students Chinese sticks and many others you have some noble problem with that. Get over it !!! The students have won student tallent shows, and one student promised front row seats for his Las Vegas show , oh to be young with dreams.


So, if I understand correctly, these kids have elected to stay after school to learn magic? It's not thrust upon them instead of, say, the choice to play video games or soccer?

Then I have no problem with this at all! I'm glad these kids have chosen to seek out someone who will teach them magic...

Don't you folks understand what I'm saying here?
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
Cyberqat
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Well I didn't, maybe you didn't put it very well? That last post puts a whole new spin on it.

I no longer think you're a rotten person, I just think your stirring up a tempest in a very small teapot. I haven't seen ANYONE here advocate accosting kids on the street and forcing on them reveals of illusions. Nor has anyone that I've seen suggested you should try to teach magic to a bored and uninterested audience.

Most children however have a natural curiosity and eagerness to learn something about the art. And for those who don't, I don't think anyone here minds letting them go back to vegetating in front of the boob tube instead Smile
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gaddy
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Quote:
On 2010-07-14 19:50, Cyberqat wrote:
Well I didn't, maybe you didn't put it very well? That last post puts a whole new spin on it.

I no longer think you're a rotten person, I just think your stirring up a tempest in a very small teapot. I haven't seen ANYONE here advocate accosting kids on the street and forcing on them reveals of illusions. Nor has anyone that I've seen suggested you should try to teach magic to a bored and uninterested audience.

Most children however have a natural curiosity and eagerness to learn something about the art. And for those who don't, I don't think anyone here minds letting them go back to vegetating in front of the boob tube instead Smile


I don't really care what you think of me, or for that matter your straw man rebuttals ("accosting children on the street?") to this, relatively MINOR debate, but I'll print this for you in nice easy to comprehend quotations so you'll see that I have repeatedly held a consistent --->opinion<--- on this matter:
Quote:
Children are introduced to the "wonders of magic" by seeing magic performed and then thinking to themselves "how can I do that?", not by being plonked-down in front of a "teacher" who then shows them, and 25 other kids, how to do the ball-and-vase. any "teacher" who thinks otherwise certainly doesn't understand what interests children...

Brian, I fully agree that teaching magic to a serious student is okay. But the sort of posts that I'm seeing simply do not qualify.
Quote:
I'm not about to stop someone else from learning magic, but it would take a very serious student to get me to reveal my secrets -and I'm not even sure I'm qualified to teach them. There is a world of difference between knowing how a trick is done and being able to teach that method to someone else.
Quote:
Also, indirectly, I'm arguing that magic should only be taught to those who seek it out,
Quote:
They choose to learn magic because they SAW MAGIC PERFORMED and wanted to learn how it was done.
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
Mr. Mystoffelees
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Yes, I would like an answer to Gaddy's supposition- do these kids stay after school, or do anything other than "sign up" to qualify for these magic lessons?

Further, do you consider "most popular with the best attendance" to indicate the quality of the class or the value of the education?

Jim
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Cyberqat
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I see the humor intended in my post was lost, which was sad.

But this is still a tempest in a VERY small teacup and I have no wish to stir it further.
It is always darkest just before you are eaten by a grue.
gaddy
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I'm defending an unpopular position, minor though it may be.

Ergo: All sarcasm and subtlety must be followed by multiple smileys and "LOL"'s under the 2010
"Internet News Station External Control Underwriters Regulatory Entreaties" (I.N.S.E.C.U.R.E.)
Subsection 1 Paragraph 1.)A ...

Your cooperation is appreciated! Smile
*due to The Magic Cafe's editorial policies, words on this site attributed to me cannot necessarily be held to be my own.*
funsway
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I used to be much more of "qualifying" person about who I taught magic to -- and why. But today a kid can walk into his local IBM circle, perform the 21 trick learned from his had and two tricks from a box purchased (eight for a dollar" at DOllar Tree. He pays his $50 IBM fee and the Local fee of $20 or so -- and then is admitted to the secret club where veryhting is shared for the asking -- Teach-ins, Lectures.

If we as experienced magciains have lowered our standards so far, how can we judge those who teach for reasons other than our own? If I could get kids to shut off their cell phone and learn interpersonal skills on-on-one I'll use any "trick" necessary to sustain their interest. If some simple magic effects is the "linch pin" I say go for it. Of course, they only get the second class if they mastered the lessons of the first class.

there might also be the chance to teach the "magic" of a condom, or dental hygene, or moderation -- or of being an idividual rather than a "me too" clone. I see our entire culture going "to hell in ahandbasket" -- and if teaching a couple of magic tricks will help break the cycle of the entilement generations please sign me up.

the most ancient prenicleps of teahcing are "attention and retention" and you aren't going to get today's youth to retain anything if you can't retain/sustain their attention for more than three minutes.
"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
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