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Steve Friedberg
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On 2003-06-29 11:46, Frankft wrote:
I think you should have let him show you the vanishing deck - it would have nicely demonstrated the respect you say you had.


Absolutely...he may have had an approach to the effect that you haven't thought of. Different minds go in different directions.
Cheers,
Steve

"A trick does not fool the eyes, but fools the brain." -- John Mulholland
Lithix
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Once again, it all comes back to presentation. Some of the simplest, easiest effects are what get people, ie Sponge Balls.


I finally understood that for the first time the other day. I was at a bar with some friends and they wanted to see some magic. I always carry a deck of cards, so I was happy to entertain them and get a chance to work on my presentation skills. I did quite a few tricks, but the simplest one got the strongest reactions.

I just let them shuffle the cards, then did a little glimpse+force action and "read their minds". I really hammed it up and put my hands to the sides of their temples coaxing them to visualize their cards... then slowly reveal their card. "It feels like a very warm card... not many marks... very intimate... The two of hearts?"

Smile

I'll never neglect presentation again.
Mr Amazeo
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One other comment on this topic that I feel compelled to bring up - even though you are fully aware of everything that another performer is doing - be a good audience.

Just last night I was at a Renewal of Vows ceremony for a couple celebrating their 55th wedding anniversary. It was held in the courtyard of an old mansion. After the ceremony and before dinner, they had a magician to entertain the kids. This poor guy barely had two square feet to work out of because it was so crowded - but he did the best that he could.

I watched the show because I always like to watch other performers acts. And even though I knew everything and every routine - I laughed, clapped, gasped, and cheered at all the right times, and anything else that I thought was appropriate in terms of audience response.

What I didn’t do was stand in the front row with a critical eye and whisper to anyone standing next to me how everything is done. Or criticize his choice of material. The only thing worse than getting beat up during your show by a bunch of 5th grade cub scouts (figuratively speaking) is having another magician critique your choice of material or presentation based on their personal bias.

Be a good audience for me, and I’ll do the same for you. If I watch your show, I will lead the pack to start the money flowing into your hat. I will be your allie and do what I can to get the audience out of curious spectator mode. What I won’t do is tell you your material is weak.
RiffClown
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I used to busk those same piers and rarely had a bad day. I was doing clowning, balloons, a bit of magic as well as sitting in with a friend's band. I've had a few "versed" magi blow me out of the water on occasion but overall it was a very good arena. The tourist to local ratio is (or at least was) far to my advantage. My friend and I exchanged tips to get the hat flowing on several occasions.

I miss the bay area sometimes.
Rob "Riff, the Magical Clown" Eubank aka RiffClown
<BR>http://www.riffclown.com
<BR>Magic is not the method, but the presentation.
Mario Morris
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Quote:
On 2003-07-01 04:44, JesseMagic wrote:
Quote:
It just amazes me how he took some simple inexpensive gimmicks to captivate these people.


Can you say...David Blaine.

I'm not another DB basher, but isn't that what he did... took simple tricks, The Raven, The Rising Deck, Bite a Coin, Invisible Deck, and got huge reactions...don't get me wrong these are all great effects, but to the laymen they are miracles...you weren't impressed because your a magician... Smile


No Blaine did not do what this young man did. Blaine went on the streets with a camera crew with him. This busker went out with his charm tricks and a tin can. Can you spot the difference? Smile
daffydoug
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Quote:
On 2003-06-29 11:46, Frank Tougas wrote:
I wonder if your not "caring for any of the tricks" is a bit like many magicians felt about David Blaine when his first special aired.

Most were annoyed that he got a T.V. special doing many of the same things as the rest of us do - maybe some do it better.

The performer you saw has that quality we all envy (or at least we should) at one time or another. (i.e.) He saw something he wanted to do, found out what he needed to do to make it happen and then went out and did it.

That is why he was performing for money and you were watching, that is why Blaine got a special and the rest of us complain about his technique, that is why Mac King works Vegas and I am sitting here typing.

It is an admirable quality and they deserve our admiration.

I think you should have let him show you the vanishing deck - it would have nicely demonstrated the respect you say you had.


Man, you hit the nail right on the head! Your post points out some truth that is so much something I am recently learning to grasp.

Maybe the word here is "Guts!?" These guys have the guts to make it happen, and the rest of us watch their smoke!

Thanks Frank for once again accentuating the truth I so badly need to hear!
The difficult must become easy, the easy beautiful and the beautiful magical.
JJDrew
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I think the fact that the guy put his deck away when you said you knew how it was done is significant. It means he valued your opinion and probably was afraid he wouldn't measure up.

I've felt this on occasion and it's nerve-wracking. That sense of, "This guy is a million times better than me, has been doing magic since before I was born, and has probably seen the same trick done so many times repeating it that there's no way I could show him something new."

About a week ago, I had something happen that has made me vow never to feel inferior again. A young guy came into the shop where I work and we struck up a conversation. He performed a card trick for me and performed it splendidly. Afterwards he asked if I knew how it had been done. When I said I did, he was ready to put down the deck and go, as if he were ashamed. I found myself for the first time on the receiving end of that "Wow, this person is way better than me" attitude. I put him at ease by describing the routine as I had learned it and complimenting him on one aspect in particular which I think added a lot to the trick as a whole.

It was a very strange feeling, particularly since I haven't been doing magic all that long. I don't believe he had ever spoken with another magician. A non-magician who knows the "secret" can be an incredibly obnoxious individual, and I think he expected me to act in the same know-it-all manner only worse. Discussing the pros and cons of various aspects of a performance with the "how" a secondary issue was clearly a brand-new experience for him.

It was unpleasant to be seen in that light and I won't ever subject another magician to it again. I may not do perfectly, but I won't be self-conscious about my inexperience. Why feel guilty about something that only time can remedy and is not a reflection of an individual failing?

Sorry, got off on a tangent... just remember that a budding magician can be very intimidated by more experienced professionals, it's important to make them feel accepted.
StevetheGreat
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Well here goes my first post. This is one thing I have not done yet. I have done some restaurant magic and bithday parties along with some nursing homes. I learned a lot of close-up doing the table-hopping. I think street performing would do the same for your stand up magic. Like keeping things fresh and with constant exposure to the public.

Steve Smile
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ed rhodes
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Quote:
On 2004-02-04 04:09, JJDrew wrote:
I think the fact that the guy put his deck away when you said you knew how it was done is significant. It means he valued your opinion and probably was afraid he wouldn't measure up.

I've felt this on occasion and it's nerve-wracking. That sense of, "This guy is a million times better than me, has been doing magic since before I was born, and has probably seen the same trick done so many times repeating it that there's no way I could show him something new."



I know this feeling. I remember [years] ago, I'd shown a few things to some people in a bar I went to on a regular occassion. (The Lost and Found). One night, the owner comes up and says; "Hey, there's this guy here who used to work here years ago. He does magic. Why don't you show him something?" So I go over and he's really good. Incredibly good. I say, "Hi, I'm Ed Rhodes." And he responds, "I'm Derek Dingle." My jaw hit the ground! They wanted me to show Derek Dingle something? Why don't I just teach Liberace how to play "Chopsticks" while I'm at it!


Smile
"He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad." - Rafael Sabatini, Scaramouche
J.Warrens
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Greetings.
Sounds like this magician was a really nice guy, too. Some people are just born performers, and need a vehicle for it, which may have very well been the case for this gentleman.
Good for him!

By the way, I've noticed there are some people on here pretending to know something while still calling a folding coin a "biting" coin.

On another note, I have a very good friend named Ken. Ken , for the majority of his life was a Svengali pitchman for a travelling carnival. He didn't do any magic except for the Svengali deck, which was just a job in his eyes. Anyways, Ken used to love when I showed him magic.

One day, I excused myself momentarily for a bathroom break. When I returned, There was Ken sitting at the table doing *perfect* one hand faro shuffles, with absolutely no effort, and while conversing with me.
I asked him "I thought you didn't do magic? You've lied to me all these years I've known you!"

Well, he looked me straight in the eye and said " I don't but when I was kid, I had a buddy named Martin Nash who showed me how to do this. It's all I can do with a deck of cards!"

He continued with "Yeah, I heard after we finished high school, that he went on to become a really well known card guy. Have you heard of him?" I tell ya', the world works in mysterious ways!
Cheers,
J.Warrens
JJDrew
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Quote:
On 2004-02-06 03:28, J.Warrens wrote:

By the way, I've noticed there are some people on here pretending to know something while still calling a folding coin a "biting" coin.



There may be something to that, but don't be deceived because people don't know the lingo. Just because someone doesn't know the official name for something doesn't mean they aren't magicians.

I'm a juggler and often meet other jugglers who have learned things on their own and have no idea what the different moves are called. Not knowing a cascade is called a cascade doesn't make them any less able to do one. They just never interacted with other jugglers enough to pick up the lingo.

I've found that a more accurate verbal measure of ability is found in the questions people ask. Still with the juggling example, when I tell people I'm a juggler,

Jugglers ask:

What do you juggle?

Non-Jugglers ask:

How many do you juggle?

A small thing, but it's neat to be able to respond to the jugglers "I juggle such-and-such, what do you juggle?" It floors them because they don't know how I could know if they juggle or not!
Mario Morris
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Just to point out - Blaine did not use a folding coin. A folding coin has a flat edge not a jagged edge. Some folks mistakedly call this a folding coin; a folding coin normally folds twice so you can slip it into bottles and so on.
This coin has been called the "Silver Snack Bitten Coin" or the "Bitten Coin" and I am sure the bitten coin as well.

From fellow Juggler.

There may be something to that, but don't be deceived because people don't know the lingo. Just because someone doesn't know the official name for something doesn't mean they aren't magicians.

It does not matter if you know the name of a trick. What matters is your performance and that your audiance remembers you; if you do a trick with no character then they will remember the trick and not you (I am sure you know this).
By the way - it is a good habit to call something by the action it does rather the intended name. For example, the disappearing hanky is a good name, because you would be daft to call it the magic thumb tip. Not only that, your crowd will say, "Did you see how he made that hanky diappear?" So by calling it that, you force what you are doing. So you must call the bitten coin the bitten coin; you'd be daft to call it any thing else.

Keep on Keeping on

Mario
JJDrew
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Quote:
On 2004-02-11 21:18, Mario Morris wrote:

By the way it is a good habit to call things by the action it does rather the intended name. For example the disapearing hanky is a good name, because you would be daft to call it the magic thumb tip.


When talking to laymen I would agree, but when talking with magicians naming something after its effect would make it virtually impossible to have an intelligible conversation. For example, there are many, MANY ways to make a handkerchief disappear.

I've been approached many times by laymen who say, "I saw this magician have someone pick a card and then shuffle it back into the deck and then he just somehow KNEW which card it was! How did he do that?" Usually I don't tell them anything anyway, but I could name any number of ways the effect was done. I'd need a lot more details to know which one was used. Describing the effect simply won't work in a technical conversation.

If you play music, you may not talk about chord progressions and what key you're in with your audience (Boy would THAT be lousy audience interaction), but you have to be able to talk about them to other musicians if you want to teach anybody the song.
Dan Monroe
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Back to the Main topic
The Magician working the pier.

It does not matter that he had only been doing magic for a short time. The fact is he was entertaining people with magic. That's what we all try to do. And from the sound of it he was doing a good job. So in my eyes this guy is a magician. Remember we all started somewhere. My regret is that I wasnt making money 6 months after I started in magic! Smile
The power is within us all...I'm just a little more full of it.
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Mario Morris
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JJDrew
Listen kid, I don't want your clap trap roles, of lets pretend we know what we are talking about, you cant set hard and fast roles in this game only fast and loose. I have been in this trade for some time and I know why there is so many diffrent names of the same trick. What matters is authenticity of the trick. I am a dealer and have accsess to 8000 items. I have got names coming out of my a%%. What is inportant is knowing the inventor of these trick and giving them credit when possible. Do you know the inventor of the folding coin? I do,(guess what it was not David Blane). Which maens I know which ones are copys in other words inventions that have been stolen. Now lets move on as Dan asked.
JJDrew
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Quote:
On 2004-02-11 21:01, Mario Morris wrote:
There may be something to that, but don't be deceived because people don't know the lingo. Just because someone doesn't know the official name for something doesn't mean they aren't magicians.

It does not matter if you know the name of a trick. What matters is your performance and that your audiance remembers you


I had intended to drop the subject as requested, but could not remain silent in the face of your less than polite message.

Please reread the sentence that you yourself took the time to quote. You'll see that my initial argument was AGAINST judging people's performing ability by their knowledge of magic jargon, and that the two phrases above actually agree.

My defense of the necessity of jargon was written from a purely linguistic point of view, NO SNOBBERY WAS INTENDED. The goal of language is to convey meaning. Magic as viewed by the audience differs from magic as viewed by the magician. It logically follows that different terms must be used when interacting with these two different groups.

You're a dealer? Well then I'm sure you're familiar with the situation where a budding magician comes to you and asks about "the card trick with the 7 of diamonds." This happened to me just a few days ago. Do you know from his description of the effect which trick he means? If one need merely describe the effect, this should be sufficient information. Personally, I needed to know a bit more before I could answer him. Through a few quick questions, I learned he was referring to a Svengali or mirage deck. He had only owned one and thought they all came with the same key card. Next time he goes to a magic shop, he'll be able to ask for a Svengali deck.

Regarding who invented the folding quarter, as a matter of fact, I DO know who invented it, and even if I didn't, I know that Blaine didn't invent any of the effects he performs. What I don't know is how that pertains to the discussion at hand.

I'm sorry if something I said got your back up, I can only assure you that you're preaching to the choir.
Mario Morris
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JJDrew
You qouting me on Feb 12 did get my back up, as I felt it was a slight slap in the face.
So I did bark back I am sorry if I over reacted.
Keep on Keeping on.
(Ouote: JJDrew: What I don't know is how that pertains to the discussion at hand.)I felt a bit of a slap from this statement as well.
I will accept that this is probally me reading into your statement.
The folding coin was invented By a British Guy Called Eddi Gibson. Why it pertains to our missdirection of chat, is because it highlights how often inventions are stolen and released with diffrent names. Which confuses the buding and long term magician and the dealer that is why it is more inportant to know the inventor of the trick rather than the trick its self, so we can nip this crime in the bud or at least exposse it. You mentioned the Svengali Deck I can not think of a trick whcih has been stolen more than any other, and realeased in diffrent names. For example you may go to one dealer and they may sell it as Short and Long. The only name that really matters is the inventor and if you where able to talk to Mr Svengali I am sure he whould agree. Including many other magic inventors that I know, some of which have been robbed of their inventions by other dealers.
Any way I think this has merit to be entry on its own and will only be fair to thoes in this entry. Look out for "Stolen Magic Inventions"
With Love and Kisses Mario
Azaziel
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I think the biggest thing we all have to think about is we as magi have an obligation to make miracles happen.. When you catch ur self saying I know how that was done.. stop and think back to the first time you seen the trick.. How would you know the answer unless it impressed you to the point were you said "I need to know".. And just cause they are simple to u, doesn't mean they are to a spec.
The greatest tick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist.
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