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Matt Graves
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Huntsville, Alabama (USA)
504 Posts

Profile of Matt Graves
Yesterday was the day that decided it all, whether I was going to do magic again or give it all up. I've been practicing through all my old tricks for about 3 or 4 months now, but I still wasn't sure how they would go over when shown to other people -

Especially a group of about 15 high school seniors. But my English teacher had been begging me to show her some magic all year...

I'd written about how I used to do it in some of our writing folder assignments... and yesterday was the last full day of school. I just sat at my desk and let everyone crowd around me - I let it be really casual, keeping in mind "how would Garth Brooks handle this if he was playing a few tunes for these people he was going to school with?...

"He is my top role model for showmanship; I've never seen anyone, magician or otherwise, who was his equal in that.

I just did five tricks, I realize when I think back on it. And I was shaking and dizzy and scared out of my mind the whole time, although it got less and less as it went on.

I did the two tricks that got me such a big reaction way back in 7th grade... "Three and Three" and "Easy As Spelling Your Name" - I opened up with those and they got an even bigger response than they did years ago!

Then I let everyone just talk for awhile and I talked to a few people, then they asked me to do some more so I did "Coin Through Ring" which got the biggest reaction of anything so far... still they wanted more which of course I didn't mind at all... so I did Handkerchief Through Arm to a girl sitting right beside me... bad thing was, my teacher didn't see it the first time and told me to do it over, so I did, somehow having the presence of mind to do a lot of casual talking to draw attention away from the secret maneuvers.

I thought surely someone would catch it or think they knew how it was done by the second time, but they didn't! In fact, luck must have been on my side because when I first tugged on the handkerchief it wouldn't come off and everybody started to go "Uh-oh..." and then I jerked it one more time and it came through and everyone just went nuts...

Out of a total accident came a really dramatic effect. Then finally, everybody was just talking about it a lot - and then I decided to do one more trick so I did Coin Through The Pocket which for some reason seemed to be the perfect ending.

I noticed one guy in particular that I had sort of worried about - he just happens to be the most feared football player in the school - at the end of the last trick he just started shaking his head and backing away... that was like the ultimate compliment. At least for me, when I was going in totally fearing that I couldn't get back what I had so many years ago, that I was doomed to the same darkness that had consumed most of my high school years...

I swear, I thought that at least one thing I did would bomb out, but everything worked perfectly - some of it even surprised me, like the handkerchief thing. They may not know it, but this was one performance where the magician was quite possibly more overwhelmed than the audience. It was an awesome feeling.

So now I'm back in the game. I got a lot of compliments after the little "show" - one guy who is actually one of these punk-type guys who's into heavy metal and stuff (which is the type of guy I've been the last three years or so ironically) told me he thought I could really make some money doing that stuff at parties...

My teacher came over and hugged me and said
"You're awesome!" Now, how's that for my last full day of school? I wanted one last breeze of being a magician before I graduated, and it couldn't have come at a more perfect time. Now it's time to go out into what they call "the real world".

If I can survive a high school crowd and more than that, actually get them to enjoy what I'm doing... and a tough high school crowd at that - the Homecoming Queen and the toughest football player in the school watching it and actually enjoying it just as much as everyone else - if I can do that, which I did, then I have the confirmation I've been needing...

It's time to give it a try in the "real world"... I have no idea how I'll start, but at least now I know that it's not all destined for failure. For the first time in five long years, I have a real sense of hope.
And I really want to thank all my friends on this board that have always been helpful and given advice... honest to God, this "Cafe" has the nicest bunch of magicians I have ever met, and what they have to say is usually encouraging or at least something you can learn from.

Cheers everybody,

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Inner circle
A good lecturer at your service!
4399 Posts

Profile of Paul
"If I can survive a high school crowd and more than that, actually get them to enjoy what I'm doing . . . and a tough high school crowd at that - the Homecoming Queen and the toughest football player in the school watching it and.."

Magic breaks down all barriers, never pre-judge whether people will like it or not. As long as it is done well it is pretty much universally liked.

Tough crowd? Try a few clubs in Liverpool, lol.

Good luck with your magic.

Paul Hallas.
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Inner circle
Seattle, WA
4610 Posts

Profile of Philemon Vanderbeck
Tough crowd? Try doing Tarot readings at a CSICOP gathering...


But seriously, I'm glad to hear that your "trial by fire" was successfully survived.

Now you're ready to take the next step and start learning how to book yourself professional gigs.

Great job!
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
That Creepy Magician
"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
Tony Chapparo
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Special user
Albuquerque, NM
704 Posts

Profile of Tony Chapparo
Keep going... it really sounds like you have a passion for magic!

great job!

Tony Chapparo
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Inner circle
America’s North Coast, Ohio
3176 Posts

Profile of BroDavid
Well Done!

If you can sweat and shake on the inside and still "Garth Brooks them" on the outside, then you truly have the heart of a performer!

Before you can prosper, you must first Survive! And you have well taken that step my Friend!

Congratulations! And I say again, Well Done!

If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Peter Marucci
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Inner circle
5389 Posts

Profile of Peter Marucci
Well done, indeed, Serling!
A performer performs. Period. Otherwise it's just playing. (Although there's nothing wrong with that!)
Your use of Garth Brooks for showmanship shows that you understand what you are doing: It's the magician, not the tricks, that make the show.
You are already light years ahead of many other magicians.
Keep up the good work.
Peter Marucci
Mr Nutkins
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12 Posts

Profile of Mr Nutkins
I'm welling up..*sniff*
"Bloody otters !"
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Regular user
New Jersey
110 Posts

Profile of JBmagic
Ah, welcome back to the greatest game of all Smile
Jay Buchanan
Magique Hands
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Loyal user
Lincoln, NE.
247 Posts

Profile of Magique Hands
A tip of the top hat to you Serling!!

Congrats... And Well Done!!


- - Troy
"If you go around sprinkling Woofle Dust on everything... people will think 'My... What an odd character."
Geoff Williams
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Special user
St. Pete Beach, FL
617 Posts

Profile of Geoff Williams
Tough crowd? Try doing "Card To Pocket" at a nudist colony!

Way to go, serling!
"Saját légpárnás tele van angolnák."

(Hungarian for "My hovercraft is full of eels")
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