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Alan Munro
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When you find out that a trick doesn't work for you, that's a part of the growth process. You have a better idea what works for you, after that.

I agree, some amateurs are excellent. I've seen some great ones over the years.
Dick Oslund
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"Amateur" comes from the Latin participle: "Loved".

REAL amateurs LOVE magic. --great performing ability is definitely not limited to "top professionals"! ("professional" refers as much, or more, to ATTITUDE, as it does to whether a performer is "rewarded" FINANCIALLY!) Note: an amateur is "rewarded" by his audience "paying" him with its time.

I'm sorry to say that I have seen too many "professionals" do a lousy job. --and in so performing, they "burn territory". Thankfully, they don't usually "survive" too long! I have been sent into a school by the assembly bureau, a number of times, to "square the beef",for a bad magic program, or to replace a magic program that couldn't "cut it", and was being terminated. Bureau managers have called on me to recommend a magician to replace a "magician" that couldn't meet the standards.

BTW...the last time I've put a new trick in the show was 1992. (The Mutilated Parasol) I got an idea for an up to date routine for the MP from my friend, DON LAWTON.

(Whenever "you" put a new trick in, it should be placed BETWEEN two strong tricks.) The MP, with Don's concept,was an INSTANT SUCCESS! However, over the years,I've tried a number of "good" tricks that didn't "work" for me. They didn't BOMB! --They just didn't play strong enough, even after a number of "tries" and a lot of "tweaking'.

When a performer only works occasional "forty miler" dates, it is difficult to break in new material. When I was doing 13 (or more) programs per week, it was relatively easy.

Jay Marshall and I shared a philosophy, --When you want to add a new trick, you must:

LEARN HOW IT IS DONE. Then, you must LEARN HOW TO DO IT. FINALLY, you must learn how to DO IT, so that it ENTERTAINS an AUDIENCE!
Ray Haining
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Hot Springs, AR
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I also agree that taking risks can produce some great magic. For instance, I've done card on ceiling with a thumbtack. If you take a deck and place a thumbtack on top and throw that deck at the ceiling and a card remains thumbtacked to the ceiling, that in itself is amazing. But to have not only a card thumbtacked to the ceiling, but a selected card at that--that is a minor miracle. Yet there is risk involved. I failed once, and there was no reason I failed that I could detect. It was just the way I threw the deck. I was off by just the right amount. But the effect is worth the risk.

But mostly when I perform I want NO chance of failure. I practice all sorts of double lifts, but when I perform, I only use one where there is NO chance of the cards separating.
Bill Palmer
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Eternal Order
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I suspect that timing might have been a factor. Pause before you reveal your loads. You can pause before the first one, produce the next ones with shorter pauses, then a slightly longer pause before the last one. Whatever you do, DON'T RUSH THE REVELATION OF THE FINAL LOADS!!!!!

As Pete mentions, do something to indicate that magic is happening -- a word, a gesture, a noise.

Watch how Gazzo times and points his loads. Same with Don Alan. Same with Vernon. Don't copy them, just see what they do, and analyze why it works.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."
Dick Oslund
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Amen, Bill! (TIMING, TIMING, TIMING!)--and the KEY to TIMING is the PAUSE!

JACK BENNY (egad! remember him?--I grew up listening to Jack, and I'm still learning!)

Does anyone remember the "episode" with Benny and the Mugger? (Your money or your life!!!) T I M I N G (THE PAUSE!)

How about Jay Marshall, LEFTY, and LEFTY'S BELCH?!
Dick Oslund
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BTW!!! In my comment on MARCH 10 (above) I mentioned Howard THURSTON, IASIA", and the lack of response to that illusion. I LEFT OUT THE IMPORTANT PART!!! (OY!!!)

The cabinet was hoisted to the dome of the theater. When Howard fired his pistol (Howard is said to have fired his pistol a lot!) the curtains fell open, and the cabinet wss empty! The girl ("IASIA") WAS GONE. There was virtually NO RESPONSE.

The backstage "council of war", that I mentioned, on March 10, solved the problem. ONE SENTENCE, the next night, brought a big laugh and APPLAUSE.

It was decided that the audience was so amazed, that they had just sat there, open mouthed. The next night, Thurston fired the pistol(!!!) paused (three seconds!) and then exclaimed: "IASIA is gone--I don't know where she goes, but she always comes back on payday!"

Years ago, when I was doing the vanish of the doves in the tear apart box, I would steal Thurston's line: (3 second pause) then: "Punch and Judy are gone! I don't know where! But, they always come back at supper time!"

TEMPO-TIMING-TIME are critical factors in the success of a performance!
Motley Mage
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>Dick Oslund, re: Benny

Dick Oslund
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Thank you Motley!!!

Ireally appreciated hearing that again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Jack was talking about comedy, and he said, "It's not important that the audience laughs at every joke. What is important is that when you leave the stage, they still like you!

I'm writing a couple of pages about TEMPO, TIMING, AND TIME, plus TALENT, AND TOPICAL IN THE BOOK.

Thanks, again!

Jonathan Townsend
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Ossining, NY
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On Mar 9, 2014, Nate The Magician wrote:
So a very odd thing happened when I was performing recently- I was doing the cups and balls for a local crowd and they were applauding and just astonished throughout a good amount of the routine- then I got to the final loads- where I have some billiard balls under the cups.
No applause, no smiles- just vacant stares.
Then one kid says "Hey, can you go back to the little balls?"...

Show me that routine - I'd like to see how you make that happen and learn how to make the small ball passes more engaging for audiences. all the coins I've dropped here
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Hey Rocky watch me pull a Rabbit outta my hat...oops wrong hat!
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Mr Oslund
I am anxiously awaiting the release of your book.When do you think it will be released? I am looking forward to the insights it may offer.

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