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37 Posts

Profile of goonerjack
Hi all, let me set the scene for you!...

I was out the other day and asked to show some magic to the son of one of my mum's friends (he is about 10). As it happened, I didn't have anything on me and told him that I would show him some magic another time. But something occured to me...

My chosen area of magic at the moment is cards. However, even if I had my cards on me at the time, I don't think that it would have been suitable to get out the deck of cards. We were outside, no surfaces, drinks about, a bit windy....

I would like to learn some magic so that I am ready to perform whenever and whereever. Now comes the question.... do you think that it would be better for me to take up another area, eg coins, or just learn a few tricks that can be performed impromptu?

I would like to keep cards as my strong point, as I feel I have put a lot of practice in with them and I very much enjoy performing with them. However, I would like to extend my repertoire, so that I am ready anytime to perform impromptu. I would be more than willing to put in the practice to learn a new genre (coins for example), but I don't want to 'spread myself too thin' so to speak.

What do you think I should do? Any advice is greatly appreciated!

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Inner circle
St. Louis, MO
1419 Posts

Profile of MacGyver
Just learn some in the hands effects. Performing in the wind without a table shouldn't be a problem.

But, you should look at On the Spot for impromtue magic, and definitely learn a coin trick or two.

But don't dismiss cards outside in the wind without a table, that can be just as strong magic as any other place.
Peter Marucci
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Inner circle
5389 Posts

Profile of Peter Marucci
You certainly won't be spreading yourself too thin if you learn another field of magic.

In fact, it will definitely make you a better card magician.

A pet peeve of mine is the performer who says something like "I can't do anything right now; I don't have anything with me."

If you were a "real" magician, would you need to have anything special with you?


So learn impromptu magic; there are many, many books, tapes, and DVDs out there on just that.

Bobo's Modern Coin Magic is a "must have" book and most of it can be done anywhere with borrowed coins, something that almost everyone has with them.

But don't just "learn an impromptu trick or two". Apparently impromptu magic needs the same depth of understanding that you have obviously brought to card magic.

In other words, just because you prefer cards, don't sell other branches of magic short!
Frank Tougas
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Inner circle
Minneapolis, MN
1712 Posts

Profile of Frank Tougas
I think it is interesting that you are searching for things to do besides the card work you have spent time on.

While there are many fine cardicians, I think that the view regarding cards can get myopic -knowing things other than cards gives you a more rounded view of the world.

In the most recent Magic magazine, a writer soundly throunced readers for suggesting that he leaned too heavily on cards in his column of close-up magic.

His is an attitude I have often seen with people who specialize in cards. (Not everyone but many). The idea is if you do closeup, which includes cards, coins, spongeball and other magic with everyday items and someone says, I don't like card tricks, you acknowledge their preference and go on to something else.

Say that to a card specialist and they will tell you that in effect you are simply wrong.

In any case there are plenty of card tricks, none of them requiring much skill that could have been done in the circumstance you describe and would have been appreciated.

This time you were caught unaware and next time you will be ready. That is what is called experience. If you decide to stay solely with cards I have no less respect for you than if you chose to generalize.

Just make sure the decision is yours and not based on a one time surprise occurence.

Enjoy yourself, you can't go wrong.

Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
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New user
79 Posts

Profile of obi-wan
You could do a lot worse than picking up either Mark Wilson's Complete Course in Magic or his smaller Cyclopedia of Magic book.

Some of the stuff is fairly basic, the card section will probably not be of much interest if you are already profficient with cards, but keep reading and you'll find some real gems covering all styles of magic.

At the very least the book will give you an introduction to a number of new areas of magic and give you an idea of which ones you would like to pursue further.

Thanks Smile
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Loyal user
Miami, FL
211 Posts

Profile of Zednanreh
Two suggestions from my "department"...

1) Rubber band magic...I carry atleast 5 bands around my wrist at all times, minimum of 2 *ALWAYS*. With that, Crazy Man's Handcuffs can be a staple plus a million (not quite, but it sounds better that way) other effects.

2) Mier Yedid's (spelling?) Finger Fantasies. Personally, I don't like it, but its very impromptu. All you need are 5 fingers! ...and while talking about Mr. Yedid, he also has a video on arm twisting.

3) Off the Cuff and On the Spot by Greg Wilson ALL have good effects especially "Recap". Powerful stuff.

Hope I helped. Any questions, pm me.

- Alex
So you want to market or sell your trick? Before you do, read this!
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Elite user
460 Posts

Profile of magicsoup
Learn some paper magic. Sponge balls may be replaced with rolled up papaer balls, or you could learn some origami.
Skinny Man
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New user
72 Posts

Profile of Skinny Man
Get a thumb tip , and you're always ready to vanish and reappear some stuff.

Plus on the rubber band front, you could do much worse than get Pinnacle - all you need to borrow is a ring and you can perform a mind blowing effect.
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Regular user
128 Posts

Profile of Jemy
Just to continue on the origami stuff, there's a really cool book called "fooling folding money" which is excellent you can make magic with bill. My best one is bunny bil;, you fold a bill into a hat and you can make a rabbit jump out Smile
Mago Mai
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Elite user
485 Posts

Profile of Mago Mai
There is a nice book that I recomend with a variety of effects. It is called Now you see it now you don't by Bill Tarr.

You will learn an array of effects that you can use whenever you need to perform in front of others.

Mago Mai
I invite all of you to share some of my magic on videos.Please, CLICK HERE
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Regular user
Oxnard, CA
124 Posts

Profile of JesseMagic
Like he said, just carry a thumb tip...when you reach into your pockets as if you were getting something you could load it on...
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Regular user
Los Angeles, California
119 Posts

Profile of desprado2
Yes, all the suggestions are great. Rubberbands, coins and TT are always there for you at a moments notice. I learned some great impromptu magic from the video series put out by Larry Anderson called "Jawdroppers." It has stuff with toothpicks, dinner rolls, sugar, etc. Try it out.
"Treat others the way you want to be treated."
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