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Devious
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Self Denigration and Magic That Doesn't Suck

There are two kinds of magicians,

Those who say, "Here I am!" and those who gaze into someone's eye and say,
"Oh, there you are!"

I think if you went down the list of some magicians you have seen and applied
this litmus test to each of them, you would quickly place them into one of the
categories in very short order.

I aspire to be the magician who recognizes how unique and special our interaction
is about to be as it unfolds. I don't wish to be the performer who shows contempt
for the situation. Think about that last one for a moment.

I fancied myself a stage magician when I was starting out. I did manage to four
wall and work various resorts and concerts, but I became jaded and soon realized
I was not happy or fulfilled, because although I was performing in large venues
and making decent money, I felt that something was missing.

It wasn't until I discovered street theatre, that I realized I hadn't been making
real connections with folks in my audience.

They weren't participants they were spectators, until I allowed them into my world
and crazy mind as I performed street theatre with humor, I would never dare in my
stage shows.

I found myself wanting to relate to them in addition of wanting to send them home
with some positive message about magic and life itself.

"Magic That Doesn't Suck", is how I bill my act.
It always gets a laugh as they are startled, that a magician actually admits,
"Yes indeed some magic does suck!" He must be different, let's check it out.

Self denigrating humor is my presentational style. It lets my groups know,
that I'm not this cheeseball magician who takes himself so seriously or
actually believe, that I am performing genuine miracles.

It breaks the opening tension and lets the audience know that I am comfortable
to laugh at the situation or even at myself.

Like most of you, I want my magic performances to be fun, clever, and meaningful,
in that order. Some nights I get all three and some nights I only hit two of them.
My goal obviously is to hit all three.

Folks come into the presence of a magician for the very first time in my groups.
I'm certain that is the case for you as well. They might be nervous, fearful or even
have some anxiety. Humour is the best panacea for diffusing this tension. So learn to
infuse some humour into your act at the start of your presentation.

"Folks welcome to my street auditorium. Auditorium is derived from two latin words.
"Audio" means to hear and "Taurus" the bull. Get ready to listen to my bull!

This is one of my brief intros and sets the tone, that I want their attention,
but they can relax because we are going to shoot the breeze and have some fun.

It's okay to use canned jokes, but try to personalize them. When I started
busking, I was trying too hard to control everything. I wish that I had realized
sooner to open up to the experience and just let it flow, instead of worrying so
much about being clever and of course the money.

The universe and your groups will tell you what the they both want, if you will listen!
Observe the environment and your participants closely, so that you are able to give
them what they want and perhaps need, by way of your humor medicine. This is your
moment to personalize your clever lines by infusing some of those observations into
your act by way of your humor.

Not personalizing the material leaves the material detached from the performer with no
essence or life. Your lines won't have the same impact. With none of this timing and
delivery suffer immensely. Parrots mimic lines. None of us take the parrot seriously
when he utters something clever, because we don't believe the bird.

The difference between a clone and a unique act is the personalization of the material!

"Too often, folks who show up late are happier, than those of us who are already here waiting
for them, but not in this case. Welcome to the show, my name is Devious."
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
Dr_J_Ayala
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In search of Vlad Dracul and his
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Quote:
"Folks welcome to my street auditorium. Auditorium is derived from two latin words.
"Audio" means to hear and "Taurus" the bull. Get ready to listen to my bull!


:applause: Smile

This made me laugh out loud hermano. Que risa!

Beyond that, extremely well said, Sir! This is true of all performance venues, whether we are a stage performer by nature performing strolling magic, or a close-up performer delighting guests at a wedding reception or a parlour magician on the streets. We should all strive to think in the way you note above. Thanks for that bit of wisdom Devious.
solrak29
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Good stuff Dev, some points to ponder and well written.
Yet, I have some questions that two jump out at the moment...

Quote:
Those who say, "Here I am!" and those who gaze into someone's eye and say,
"Oh, there you are!"


Which one are you? What is the discerning difference or how can I tell
which one am I or if I am either?

Quote:
It's okay to use canned jokes, but try to personalize them.


Can you provide an example from your experience?
To Find Me On The Pitch, Follow me :On Twitter
Checkout my pseudo blog : The Sidewalk Performers Forum

"I intend to live forever, or die trying" - Groucho Marx
Devious
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Karlos,
Thanks so very much for taking the time to read and respond to my article.

I was an attention w***e when I was performing strictly stage magic.
I am making great strides in moving full time into, "Oh there you are!"

In response to an example, I will give you two of my oft used situational quips.

I was worried that I wasn't going to be able to make it today, but thanks to a hole
in the prosecution's case, well here I am.


After several years of therapy, my psychiatrist said something that brought tears
to my eyes, he said, "No hablo ingles."

(During my show, I make many references to my spanish as a first language upgringing.)

Now the above lines work for my personna. If someone were to use them without genuine
inflection and conviction, they would fall flat. In the second case they would be
beyond believabilty of course if you don't speak spanish, but you can substitute the
language choice with your heritage language.

A sneak peek at my TOP SECRET
Image
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
Dr_J_Ayala
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In search of Vlad Dracul and his
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I cannot wait to see more of that! Very nice look to it!
Ekuth
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Floating above my
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That screams "Time Machine!" to me... hmmmm...
"All you need is in Fitzkee."
Zombie Magic
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I went out for a beer and now have
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Quote:
On 2012-09-10 21:31, Devious wrote:
There are two kinds of magicians,

Those who say, "Here I am!" and those who gaze into someone's eye and say,
"Oh, there you are!"


I LOVE that!!!!!!!
Devious
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It doesn't just sit there and look, "purty". It actually does something.
Will share a video of it in operation here shortly along with some other gadgets.
Thanks for the remarks my people.
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
Devious
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All eyes on me in the center of the ring, just like a circus.
Don't stand there watching me follow me. I will make you a star,
but only if you got on the train when it rolled out!

I promise not to let you down. I run a tight ship so be prepared.
Looking forward to sharing some more very soon!
Devious Deceptions
"Gadol Elohai!"
L'Chaim!
ringmaster
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Memphis, Down in Dixie
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I really like that aluminum case on the waiters stand. A thing like that looks like it could win AGT all by itself.
Bally Hoo and Hullabaloo
one for me and none for you.
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