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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The Society of American Magicians! » » Is there a generation gap in SAM? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Lothar
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I noticed at the SAM convention in Vegas that there wasn't as much to do for middle-aged magicians as there was for SYM members and seasoned professionals. I felt like I kinda fell through the gaps in the age range.

Anyone else get that feeling?
weidhaas
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The convention committee is listening. Tell us what the middle-age magician wants to see at a convention?
Jim Sparx
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Is there a generation gap in SAM?

I joined SAM and another like organization in New Orleans in the 1960s. The SAM group was made up of blue collar workers and we had a lot of parties, did school shows, hospital shows and had a grand old time in meetings. There was about 20 to 30 people attending monthly meetings and up to a hundred family members and friends at our Cajun crawfish parties, with a show no less.
The other group was a little bit more sedate, never had parties and was made up of mostly white collar people. After the show and tell monthly meetings, attended at most by 10 people, they would go out to a restaurant and drinks. I was never invited, even though I was 22 plus above the drinking age in NO.
I was also the only SAM member who attended every month, although there was other SAM members that was a part of this group, they hardly ever went to meetings.
For lack of a better word, they were cliquish. Even though none of them, with the exception of one, was a working magician, they seemed to have a disdain for young people. And I was doing fill in work on Bourbon street, and doing a heck of a lot more magic than anyone of them.
Perhaps the problem the OP is complaining about is that older, more "experienced" magicians tend to hangout together, and in doing so, tend to ignore those of us who want to be included as equals. We have a right to be included in all of the activity's, and that includes being welcomed as part of a cohesive community.
The newcomer to magic may not know everything that us old timers know, but that does not mean we can look down our nose at them, they are just as important as we are.
And I want them to feel like they are a part of magic, and not avoid old farts who think they know everything.
We are only as good as the people who are going to replace us someday, and I think they should have a head start, and not feel like they don't belong.
So, if the older "professional" people are being cliquish, stop it. Let's have fun.
magic4545
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Jimmy Fingers
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I feel that in the current economy, and with the pricing structure of conventions, mostly hobbyists who make a lot of money in their 'day jobs' can afford to attend a convention. Like the widening gap between upper and lower class, the middle class is vanishing. This occurs with the conventions, too.

It's just become about the money. You're not getting the greatest artists in attendance. You're getting the guys who make the most money elsewhere. And, if you look at the attendees in the picture of the convention, it's a bunch of the older folks.

Another problem is that professionals (attorneys, doctors, accountants, etc.) want to watch other professionals, or at least people who dress like them and act like them. They don't know the difference between someone being amazingly creative and someone who looks professional when he does standard stuff. In fact, they seem to prefer to see the bowl-o-rama, snowstorms and modern art boxes performed over and over, without any clue that there are other, new, cutting edge things out there.

Like everywhere, artists are at the mercy of the money grabbers. If you see a discrepancy within the attendees' ages, just follow the money trail.

Jimmy Fingers
Comped into SAM Vegas, because I was helping fix the sound system
Keith Brock
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I find myself personally having a hard time managing my hobby as a magician and my professional career. Eventually things might become a little bit easier for me but I know that I fall into the middle aged group.

My intentions are in the very near future to start attending my local SAM meetings but my current schedule finds it nearly impossible. I have been a member of the SAM for awhile now, just like my father before me and I can't wait til the day my hectic schedule subsides so that I can become a better asset to the magic community.

I'm sure I will be nervous attending my first meeting though, lots of people and personailities to meet.
bigcheese
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It's not always easy to marry the eagerness of young (or new) performers with the 'seen it all, done it all' experienced magician, but there is so much scope for inspiration here, right? Society changes and sometimes groups struggle to find a new identity, but reading this makes me feel I should be open to meeting more people of all ages, and help create something new. (End of sappy post!)
billmarq
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Appealing to the young is a problem for many organizations due to several reasons. My astronomy clubs are dealing with this also. The world is simply not the same as it was when we were younger. My granddaughter likes to see me do a little magic but it is really hard to get her away from her computer and tablet.
Honi soit quit mal y pense.
Peter Pitchford
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Just throwing in my few cents, I believe there is a generational gap. When one is young, he or she has the time to attend clubs, conventions, etc. If one becomes a full-time performer, he or she is his (her) own secretary, manager, and agent (as well as performer - and throw in practice, rehearsal, creative jams, etc.). Or, if he or she does not, he or she has a career in another field that he is involved in. Marriage and kids happen and that is very time consuming. To step back into this as a serious hobby, it seems that one would wait until retirement.

It seems to me that is one reason why most meetings and conventions are made up of young kids and retired people.
SIX
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I too felt that..Though Im a professional magician, I am 23..I felt there wasnt as much for me to do. I sessioned some, but just spent time hanging with some friends and made sure I was there to recieve an award on behalf of Tom Verner and Magicians Without Borders.. I was at IBM (I think I just sinned lol ) my schedule was packed, every lecture, every moment was full of something.

It may have been scheduling, or that it was my last stop after two months of travel. I just look back and don't remember much. I was also dissapointed at the amount of people who showed up to the awards ceromony. I think that's a big deal, at least I always imagined it to be, and there was maybe a quarter of attendees there.
Ba Ba Booey
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In my Assembly, every member was retired when I first joined. I was the youngest at 45. Now we have a lot of members who have day jobs, or they are professional magicians. However, just about everybody is in their 40s or older. We get a few people in their 20s who show up for a couple of meetings, but they disappear.

At least we have seen growth. Our club went from 5 or 6 members attending meetings to an average of about 15 (with a membership of about 25). I guess when I retire, the "young guys" will be in their 40s and 50s, too.

Most of us who work also work in the summertime, so unfortunately, it is almost impossible to attend the national conventions when they are held in July. If there is ever a convention in August or early September, I'll be there!

-Mark
JardiniMagic
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I guess there is a generation gap I am in my 60's it seems to me that a lot of youg magicians today want to take the easy way of doing effects and presto they claim to be magicians! you buy the DVD's and go right out and do the effect. Not saying all but I know the guy who was a magician that taught me made me read and read and learn. How many of the young ones have read showmanship for magicians? The Trick Brain,Magic and Misdirection, The Tarbel books not for just the effects they have but the history and backgrounds of magic where they would learn the principals of magic if you learned these you would in theroy understand how most effects worked first time you saw them.to take the time to make an effect yours! not an imitation Michael Ammar doing cups and balls or a Danial Garcia clone. I think some of you young ones think effects like the Squared Circle are out dated seems funny though they have been around for a loonng time! How many buy an effect and it is being done in public 5 minutes later? What happened to Pratice and really breaking it down to really learn what principal is behind it or how you can apply ii differently? I believe a lot of us older magicians would rather us pratice and with the fast pace of DVD our magic is sufferring, becomming clones without the understanding of what is really behind the effect. I think a great many young magicians are missing out a lot on presentation and other aspacts of magic. I truly don't think it is white coller vs blue coller but of the Baby Boomer mentality where things have to be done now and not taking the time to master an effect. A Magician can have many Tricks but a True Magician Masters 1
The Magical World of Jardini
Payne
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Quote:
On 2013-05-21 06:13, JardiniMagic wrote:
I guess there is a generation gap I am in my 60's it seems to me that a lot of youg magicians today want to take the easy way of doing effects and presto they claim to be magicians! you buy the DVD's and go right out and do the effect. Not saying all but I know the guy who was a magician that taught me made me read and read and learn. How many of the young ones have read showmanship for magicians? The Trick Brain,Magic and Misdirection, The Tarbel books not for just the effects they have but the history and backgrounds of magic where they would learn the principals of magic if you learned these you would in theroy understand how most effects worked first time you saw them.to take the time to make an effect yours! not an imitation Michael Ammar doing cups and balls or a Danial Garcia clone. I think some of you young ones think effects like the Squared Circle are out dated seems funny though they have been around for a loonng time! How many buy an effect and it is being done in public 5 minutes later? What happened to Pratice and really breaking it down to really learn what principal is behind it or how you can apply ii differently? I believe a lot of us older magicians would rather us pratice and with the fast pace of DVD our magic is sufferring, becomming clones without the understanding of what is really behind the effect. I think a great many young magicians are missing out a lot on presentation and other aspacts of magic. I truly don't think it is white coller vs blue coller but of the Baby Boomer mentality where things have to be done now and not taking the time to master an effect. A Magician can have many Tricks but a True Magician Masters 1


This is far from a new issue. Magic has suffered this problem for generations. Tons of tricks were sold with the label "Easy To do" and "No Skill Required" boldly blazoned on their packaging. These tricks were aimed solely at the "Instant Magician" market. sold to folk who wanted the buzz of "Fooling their Friends" without the hassle of having to learn difficult sleights or read confusing magic books.

True, back in the day the market wasn't inundated with the sheer amount of crap tricks that are being inflicted on the magic community these days. But it wasn't immune from its share of sub standard effects foisted on the uninspired to be inflicted on the unsuspecting.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
SIX
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Well for the older guys, theres the fun side of politics, a lot of people seem to enjoy that..But, IDK I tried writing to SAM ont here FB page to set up something to help them, but no answer..

I was willing to promote to our customers about there FB page, and never got a reply.

If you want to connect with the middle crowd, at least get on top of your FB stuff..if you cant handle social media, what can you?
threadman77
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A lot of season guys don't give the next generation the time of day.
Paul
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Quote:
On 2013-07-15 14:46, threadman77 wrote:
A lot of season guys don't give the next generation the time of day.


Funny, I often got the impression it was the other way around!! Weird huh?
Matthew Crabtree
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Quote:
On 2013-07-15 16:18, Paul wrote:
Quote:
On 2013-07-15 14:46, threadman77 wrote:
A lot of season guys don't give the next generation the time of day.


Funny, I often got the impression it was the other way around!! Weird huh?


Yeah what I see is the younger guys not wanting to learn from the other guys. It's like the older guys aren't cool enough to know anything.
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