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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » What are the pro's and con's of joining different Magic organizations (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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sadrac_noel
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I am relatively new to magic and I see that there are quite a bit of different Magic organizations to join. My question is how important is this, and which organizations should I join, what are the benefits and are there any negative aspects of joining an organization? I am really interested in hearing as much feedback from both experienced and inexperienced magicians. I would really appreciate your responses, and suggestions. In addition I live in Orlando, Florida so I would really would appreciate any guidance, or suggestions from anyone that lives in the Orlando area. That said I humbly await your responses on this subject.
djurmann
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thinks time to practice and stop writing
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It really depends on the organisation and you will find people from all camps here. Personally I am a member of two magic clubs (where I have found the people to be really supportive) but am a member of neither IBM nor the Magic Circle, though hope to join when I am ready as this adds some kudos to a business card. There may be other benefits but since I am not ready I haven't checked!
DWRackley
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I’d say it’s the best thing you could do for your magic advancement. You will learn things from other members, be able to show your new effects to people who can give sound advice, and most likely have opportunities to attend lectures and teaching sessions that you’d never find out about otherwise. And you’ll probably make a few new friends as well.

Most clubs also do some kind of “benefit” show at least once a year. When you’re good enough, and the others recognize that fact, you can get some great experience performing on stage. If you’ve never done a show before, working with others who have is a great way to see how it’s done.

What it won’t do (in my experience) is help you market yourself, at least not directly. You might get some ideas, and maybe even some referrals, but many people seem to think that putting the initials I.B.M. or S.A.M. on a business card will somehow impress potential clients. It doesn’t. Lay people don’t know what they mean, and other magicians could become rivals.

With that single caveat, I wouldn’t trade my club experience for anything else in the magic world, period. Well worth the cost of joining!

I’m pretty sure the Orlando I.B.M. group is the Bev Bergeron ring, a very active group with a lot of very talented (and somewhat famous) members (think Disney!)

You are gonna have SO much fun!
...what if I could read your mind?

Chattanooga's Premier Mentalist

Donatelli and Company at ChattanoogaPerformers.com

also on FaceBook
Leland
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I just recently started attending the IBM in St Louis. It’s nice to join a group that has the same interest that I do. They welcomed me in and always say hi to me when I walk in. Hope your group takes you in the same way. As an outsider it’s important to be felt welcomed.

Best decision I’ve made in a long time.
Life of Magic!
55Hudson
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Go to a couple meetings and see how you like the group. Most clubs slow you to attend two or three meetings as a guest without joining.

I belong to both SAM and IBM - I attend meetings with the club that is closest

For me, the contact and idea exchange with other magicians has been very valuable, not to mention the information in the magazines that come with membership.

Hudson
djurmann
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Take the point about initials. I think SAM is either a name or a surface to air missile and when I first joined the Café I thought IBM was something to do with computers ;o)
Mike Maturen
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I am a member of three major associations: SAM, IBM and KIDabra (Association of Kidshow and Family Performers). I live in a very rural and remote area, so the nearest club is two hours away...so I don't necessarily get the benefit of the others members' experience. However, the monthly journals are vry helpful to me, as is having access to the websites, etc.

That being said, I travel on a regular basis to that city where the IBM Ring is located (two hours away). They meet on a day when I am frequently in town. It was the Ring I attended once or twice as a kid. I am going to pop in to the July meeting and see about joining the local Ring.

A huge benefit (besides the seasoned members) is that Gene Anderson (of the famous Torn and Restored Newspaper) is a member and regular attendee of that Ring. If I need advice on that trick...who better to ask?
Mike Maturen
World of Wonder Entertainment
The Magic and Mayhem of Mike Maturen
989-335-1661
mikematuren@gmail.com

AUTHOR OF "A NEW DAWN--Weekly Wisdom From Everyday Life"

member: International Magician's Society
KungFuMagic
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National Associations on your marketing literature and business cards give some basic credibility and legitimacy to your act (as long as you don't use just the initials as they mean nothing to laymen). To me personally, I expect to have access to more and more philosophies, experience levels and practices of magic. I got to network and hobnob with all sorts of like-minded people who will challenge my "knowledge" and expand my concept of possibilities. And, it's just cool to hang out with other people who do what I do.
Nick Sasso
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Dynamike
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If you join one they should be interested in supporting you like we are on The Magic Café. The best way to find out is to stop by an organization's meeting and think about how you like it. If you feel comfortable join it.
DWRackley
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Edit (Prequel)
On reading this (my own post) I decided a caveat was needed. Every group is different, a collection of individuals with different skill sets, experience and goals. Your mileage may vary, but I know of several groups who are even more active than mine. I’d go for it!

-----

I just got home from the local IBM meeting (Ring 112). Among other things discussed was making various types of contracts available online (password protected) for our members, so we’ll have them available for whatever opportunities present themselves.

We made plans for our next club event. We have an agreement with the hotel where we meet to do a certain number of walk-arounds each year, which is great practice (and a lot of fun) for everyone involved.

One of the members taught a class on the Elmsley count, different ways of handling it, how it reflects the Jordan count, what is an “underground Elmsley”, and about a dozen very different effects that could be done with these two sleights.

Every member present received a commercial packet trick (from a famous name in magic - they’re on sale right now!) and live instruction on the best ways to perform it.

In addition, after the meeting, while we’re all just standing around talking, we gave each other very valuable advice and support for our individual careers; I got a couple leads for mentalist stuff, together with an idea that I’m planning on putting into my very next show.

And this is not a particularly large group; one of the oldest in America; not large but very active.

Should you join a group? Only if you want to grow as a magician!
...what if I could read your mind?

Chattanooga's Premier Mentalist

Donatelli and Company at ChattanoogaPerformers.com

also on FaceBook
Chris Lina
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I always wanted to become an IBM member...
I guess I have to refine my skills first

anyway, I have to agree that its essential for improvement in the art. an org can help you improve.
lets face it, its different when you are performing to a bunch of laymen than when you perform in from of hecklers...

I think of magicians as hecklers, but in a good way, they point the things that needs improvement and can see what effect it should be. that is why I joined a magic community here in the Philippines. They help you find tricks that suit you, even exchange ideas and stuff...
also, it kinda feels nice when you fool fellow magicians:)
kennewhitson
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Are there advantages to one over the other? I don't want this to turn into "Who's got the better club" just curious as to the differences/benefts.
kennewhitson
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I should also mention that therre are no local clubs, so maybe the one with the best online resources?
DWRackley
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IMO, a live, face to face meeting with just about anybody of any skill level (well, maybe not ANY level) is better than anything available online, including Skype.

Online you can only get so much detail, I don’t care how many times you replay the video.

Live, you can see what they’re doing, stop them at any point, they can see what you’re doing and offer personal advice and correction, etc. You can see and hear and be aware of dozens of things that a camera just can’t focus on.

Even if there are no clubs around, you should be on the lookout for someone else in your area who wants to meet for coffee and magic. You can both digest all the magazines, videos, and forums you want, and then when you get together, teach each other what you’ve found.
...what if I could read your mind?

Chattanooga's Premier Mentalist

Donatelli and Company at ChattanoogaPerformers.com

also on FaceBook
Mike Maturen
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Quote:
On 2011-07-20 12:10, funkilnxebec wrote:
I always wanted to become an IBM member...
I guess I have to refine my skills first

anyway, I have to agree that its essential for improvement in the art. an org can help you improve.
lets face it, its different when you are performing to a bunch of laymen than when you perform in from of hecklers...

I think of magicians as hecklers, but in a good way, they point the things that needs improvement and can see what effect it should be. that is why I joined a magic community here in the Philippines. They help you find tricks that suit you, even exchange ideas and stuff...
also, it kinda feels nice when you fool fellow magicians:)


You don't have to refine your skills...join now! There is no better way to refine those skills than to learn from old veterans!
Mike Maturen
World of Wonder Entertainment
The Magic and Mayhem of Mike Maturen
989-335-1661
mikematuren@gmail.com

AUTHOR OF "A NEW DAWN--Weekly Wisdom From Everyday Life"

member: International Magician's Society
Al Angello
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I belong to two magic clubs (SAM & IBM), and the only advantages I see to belonging to them is networking, and lecturs. You also don't want to share too much of your act with your competition. If you intend to compete don't expect anyone to laugh, or clap for any of your routines. A magic club audience is absolutely nothing like performing for real people. On line I am very willing to share my secrets with magicians who live far away, the magic Café, magic books, and performing is where I got practly all of my chops from.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
themagiciansapprentice
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Good - lectures and talking/practising with other magicians face-to-face

Bad - expensive as you'll spend more (at the lectures - every lecture) and you find yourself using the same tricks and patter as the other club-members. I work hard to guard against this.
Have wand will travel! Performing children's magic in the UK for Winter 2014 and Spring 2015.
55Hudson
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Quote:
On 2011-07-23 10:36, Al Angello wrote:
I belong to two magic clubs (SAM & IBM), and the only advantages I see to belonging to them is networking, and lecturs. You also don't want to share too much of your act with your competition. If you intend to compete don't expect anyone to laugh, or clap for any of your routines. A magic club audience is absolutely nothing like performing for real people. On line I am very willing to share my secrets with magicians who live far away, the magic Café, magic books, and performing is where I got practly all of my chops from.


Al,
Agree with your comments about sharing your prime material and expectations about response, but for beginners, I doubt there is anything better than spending time working with other magicians. I've yet to find an experienced magician who wasn't willing to provide tips to a novice on how to do/improve a false shuffle, cut or control. Or how to take a routing they've learned from a DVD or book and improve it.

For example, I was working on a CCK routine and shared with local club members got several great suggestions, "when you reach into your pocket to reveal you had a 'dupe' make a quarter turn and 'inadvertently' flash the other side using the master move to dismiss a possible (and true) explanation of the method". A simple suggestion that has made my routine much more powerful.

Another thing that should come from clubs are guidelines on how to operate, like "don't poach someone else's material without their permission".

Hudson
Al Angello
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Hudson
Before I could get any respect at the local magic clubs I had to win a couple contests first, and volunteer to perform at their fund raiser. Most of the members are non performers, and you have to prove yourself to get any respect.

When I was a newbee nobody talked to me. It is also very funny that after making 8,700 posts at the magic Café magicians that I did not know locally come up to talk to me now.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
sadrac_noel
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Quote:
On 2011-07-23 12:53, Al Angello wrote:
Hudson
Before I could get any respect at the local magic clubs I had to win a couple contests first, and volunteer to perform at their fund raiser. Most of the members are non performers, and you have to prove yourself to get any respect.

When I was a newbee nobody talked to me. It is also very funny that after making 8,700 posts at the magic Café magicians that I did not know locally come up to talk to me now.

I am probably what you would consider an extreme newbie, I have always since childhood loved magic what got me started was when I saw the reaction I got from my daughter when I did an effect with an old royal brand stripper deck. That said it would be nice to be around other magicians, for me to have them critique my work and to get feed back, I am an extremely social person so being ignored is not something I do well, so should I initiate the conversations with the other members or is this a bad idea?
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