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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Another first-timer (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Bluebird
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Poland
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Hi all,

so yesterday was my first time doing street magic. And it was also my first time performing magic for strangers, except for a few times I tried my ACR the hit-and-run style.

First I have to thank all the magicians sharing their advice on this forum, on their blogs and on a Polish website 3kubki.pl. Especially Jimmy Talksalot, Gr8gorilla and Piotr Denisiuk, a Polish street magician who is very eager to share his experience and wisdom learned on the street (unfortunately, I don't know his nickname on The Magic Café).

I described my experience in my newly created blog: https://wojciechbaranowski.wordpress.com/category/street-magic/. That description lacks any details, though, since it is written mosly for my non-magical friends.

My set is this:
* Vanishing hanky (to build edge or get attention)
* ACR
* Professor's Nightmare with my original patter
* Number prediction using NW

Unfortunately, I have to admit I'm guilty of some exposure. I overdid vanishing hanky and some people had a chance to see it so many times that they discovered the secret. Now I don't do it that much.

Also, one time (that I know of) I wasn't aware enough of the angles and someone saw me use the NW. Also, when performing for a bigger audience I get quite anxious and my handwriting is really poor. When that's the case I make sure to take back the prediction, not to give the spectator chance to see it afterwards. I wish I could tell when they were genuinly fooled and when they simply weren't saying anything out of politeness.

I have already limited the number of digits I predict and that helped a bit.

I'm really surprised how deceptive my ACR and PN are, even though sometimes my handling is not as smooth as I would hope due to the anxiety. I had some hecklers watch me perform it from very, very close and they couldn't see anything suspicious. The PN kills every single time and so does the pop-up finale of the ACR.

I'm using the 'Mexican Turn-over Top Change Second Deal' as taught by Daryl on his ACR DVD in the middle of my routine. Sometimes some people can see it but I think it's not that bad - I saw through it the very first time I saw it performed, so I guess it's inevitable. If someone falls for it - good. If someone sees it through - they can enjoy thinking how smart they are, and there is not much secret behind it, so no harm is done.

There is a bit of storytelling during the PN and that's when I loose some of the spectators. But I want to keep it that way for now and see if I can improve it without giving up on the storytelling part.

Apparently, the number prediction is the weakest of all my effects but I want to keep it my finale and learn how to turn that prediction into a stronger effect.

And now some highlights I didn't mention in the blog:

There is this lady in the audience who is not a heckler but is clearly not going to make it easy for me. We are doing number prediction - another spectator is calling random digits and she is supposed to say 'stop' whenever she fancies. She does so in such a moment that makes it hard to tell whether the last digit called had been 1 or 4. So I said: 'So the last digit I believe was 1'
'No, I think it was 4'
'I think it was 1. Are you absolutely certain it was 4?'
'Pretty certain, yes'
Then I look at her as if I was irritated and say 'Thank you'.
And she gives me this look as if she had played a trick on my and says 'You are welcome'.
I was wondering whether the prediction should say 1 (and be more believable) or 4 (and be more impressive at the risk of tipping off the method). I chose the latter. The moment she read the prediction aloud, literally everyone reached for their wallets Smile

There was also a couple who came up to me. The guy was playing a good spectator until at some point he started revealing everything I had done up till now. He said he had been into magic himself. I get it, he wanted to impress his girlfriend. But here is the worst part: There were a few people watching from the distance who could clearly hear everything he said. When I realized he wasn't going to shut up, I interrupted and he apologized. Obviously, I didn't try to show him anything else.

Later he came again to show me some tricks. He showed a card self-worker that taught me a lesson: The trick itself was very simple, but in the course of it he put the cards on the table (or a sitting bench in this case) and arranged them in a specific manner. That immediatelly brought us some attention and made several people come see what we were doing.
MagiCol
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Dargaville, New Zealand
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"Unfortunately, I have to admit I'm guilty of some exposure. I overdid vanishing hanky and some people had a chance to see it so many times that they discovered the secret. Now I don't do it that much."
Bluebird, the way to get good is to work on the moves, not "Now I don't do it that much." Perhaps you need to slow down your moves rather than rush it. Or it may be your hand/finger positions that need more care.
I learnt the Professor's Nightmare moves one way and then later found a far simpler and better way to do part of the move. The more you practice properly and search out information on a topic, the more possibilities of using/handling/managing a prop you will find. Then you can use a way that suits you personally. One hint, once you're started feeding the hanky into the TT you can get a young kid up to help with a finger push or two, then thank them and send them back. The child won't mention aloud anything about the feel of the inside of the TT because the silk masks the sensation of side-wall touching.

I think you've done very well for a first time out. There are so many things to take into account performing out on the streets. Get out again soon!!
The presentation makes the magic.
Bluebird
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Poland
16 Posts

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Thanks, MagiCol.

The problem with hanky is that I was doing it over and over again, hoping that someone would stop. And some people were staring at me for very long time but refused to admit it. I don't suppose I could make my handling that bullet-proof. Although of course there is much I can improve.

The idea with asking a kid to help with loading is great! I will give it a go.

I'm very happy with how it went as well. I'm going out there again today. I have gone to another town to practice and so I want to go to the pitch every day, weather permitting. When I feel I've learned plenty or that it's time now to take a break, or maybe focus more on the magic itself, I will go back to my place.
ROBERT BLAKE
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Inner circle
1470 Posts

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Don't hope but exspect that them to stop.
Bluebird
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Poland
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Well, I've been going to the pitch every day and learning an awful lot. Today I had my first major mishap and I thought I would share. I was doing the ACR as the first routine in my set. And when I was just about to pop-up the card and said 'Just try not to blink', I dropped most of the cards. There was something wrong about the way I was holding them. I've had rehearsed that routine at least hundred times, performed it dozens of times and never had anything like that happen. Well, I know what was wrong and won't repeat that mistake again for sure.

After that there was only few people left, so I apologized and I said I would simply show them a trick to make up for that error (meaning: I won't be doing the entire show). I showed them number prediction. Didn't use the hat line, didn't even take off my hat. After that trick a guy gave me the biggest tip ever (20 zł, which is similar to getting $20 in the US). First I was speechless, then I was really happy and thanked him. Soon I felt really bad and regretted having accepted that tip. Still feel quite bad about it. To repay for my sins, and also to regain confidence, I did ACR a couple times for free later that day. I couldn't really build an edge anyway. It was nice to see how much people enjoy it.
Gary T.
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20 zl in Poland converts to like $6 in the US, still a good tip though.
Bluebird
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Poland
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But prices and wages are much lower here. Many people consider 10zł/hr a nice wage.
Gary T.
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Ah, I understand.
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