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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » A lacking routine... (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Captain Merkle
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Oklahoma
23 Posts

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I have a bit of a dilemma, you see; I'll be performing much more in the weeks to come (parties, volunteering, gaining experience, looking for gigs, etc.) and find my routine to be a bit lacking. You see, I mostly specialize in card sleights and effects, but we all know that an entire routine of nothing but card tricks gets a bit monotonous. Even if I were to start out with a few gaffed deck tricks such as Invisible Deck or even a few Svengali effects, and switch for the real deck, it can still get stale.

I've got a neat segue where I do a few simple (and I mean simple) coin effects, leading up to a basic vanish. I then pull out the cards and after selecting a card and returning it to the deck, the volunteer finds the coin inside the deck, right on top of the card he/she's selected. This allows me to start out some card effects.

My question is, how can I improve my routine. I mean, I have virtually no experience with rope or sponge balls. Any suggestions on how I can improve my routine? I've got some cheap gimmicks (you know, the ones we all had as kids), should I incorporate those into my routine if children are involved?

Also, any ideas on what I should do for my climax? Should it be a spiffy card trick, or something completely different. I've usually been finishing by 'putting the deck in the box' and using a Snap Production to pull them back from the air, but I think that there needs to be something even better. Any suggestions?

Thanks,

-Capt. Merkle Smile
Life is but a dream...
MattWayne
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Manhattan, NY | Studio City, CA
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I know tons of 'just card' guys. I admire that you can do all those card sleights. It's also good to see that your realizing that performing an all around card routine can get boring for the spectator. It can be. However your idea of also incorporating coin magic in your routine is also an excellent idea- it enhances your presentation. By giving the spectators more than just cards you give the impression that you can do a lot more magic, than if you just worked with cards.

As for the simple tricks 'that we all had as a kid'- if they are the plastic pieces of apparatus; don't use them. I wouldn't- since your representing yourself as a performer- I'm sure you want to be represented with quality. Not only should you take pride and have a conventional look with the way you dress, but your props, and routine should fit your character. Now if your a comic magician- and want to pull out the plastic cups and balls set; go for it.

If you want a fast, quick, 'won at FISM', 'reputation maker' kinda effect- Scotch and Soda would be your best bet. Easy to do- very easy- but makes you look like you have got the 'skill'

If you are looking to get into more coin stuff purchase Bobo's Modern Coin Magic book-it's at any local big books store. PM me if you need anything else
Matt Wayne
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what
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Lehi, UT, USA
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Take a look at Mark Wilsons Complete course in Magic. There are many good tricks in there. Many of them are easily aquired and will give you a chance to work on your showmanship and presentation.

You mentioned that you have some fun beginners tricks lying around. Give some of these a presentation and see where it takes you.

By the way, what type of show are you doing?

Family Stand up, Restaurant, Walk around? It will help with advice and posts.

Mike
Magic is fun!!!
Captain Merkle
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Oklahoma
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TomaskoMagic,

Hey, thanks for the advice. The only thing is, with self-working effects and the like, I usually feel as though I'm cheating myself, you know what I mean? I know that It's all the same to the spectator, but I don't know... I guess it's just something I'll have to get used to. I mean, I'll pull out the Svengali, but you know...it's just not the same to me. I'll pick up Bobo's book so I'll have more coin routines, and I'll try to incorporate them into my card effects. I've never heard of this being regularly used by a professional Magician...have any of you? I think it would be interesting to see what I can come up with.


What,

I'm getting some mixed views on the plastic gimmicks. I guess I should give them a performance and see where it takes me, but I'll probably have to use them just for children. Hmmm...

I'll be doing family Stand Up, Walk Around, and maybe set up a stand in a park or something of that nature. I'm still wary of performing somewhere 'professional' I need much more experience working in front of groups.

Thanks for the advice, chums...

-Capt. Merkle



Smile
Life is but a dream...
ashah
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You mentioned that you haven't done rope or sponge balls, but if you have time I would highly recommend learning. Cut-and-restored rope is a very versatile trick and not hard to learn; other gimmicked sorts of rope tricks are also available. People always really enjoy sponge balls. I would say that those two things are the most worth working on at this point.

When you have kids in the audience I would recommend the coloring book trick. If presented well, it can be entertaining, and kids are more amazed by that than anything you can do with cards.
Captain Merkle
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Oklahoma
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Ashah,

Thanks for the information. I just bought some spongeballs, but have yet to practice with them. I have not source material. Any suggestions? Also, I'm not a big fan of rope magic, but I guess I could give it a chance. Smile

Thanks for the advice on the Coloring Book effect, I'll give that a whirl. Also, I was recommended the Color Changing Scarf by my local magic shop.

-Capt. Merkle Smile
Life is but a dream...
jcards01
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Inner circle
Waterloo, IL
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Captain,

Work with sponges with a cups and balls theme. Not the cups and balls routine but you will find it very easy to maneuver sponges in and out of the cups on a close-up pad and can come up with some great stuff.

This from a guy who does strictly cards!
Jimmy 'Cards' Molinari
www.jimmycards.com
Rob Johnston
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Utah
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Sponges are a great thing to start working with. Children love them...as well as adults.

You can get some sponge bunnies which provide great laughs.

I would also put something visual in there for the audiences to capture their attention.

Finish off with an effect that you know blows everyone away.
"Genius is another word for magic, and the whole point of magic is that it is inexplicable." - Margot Fonteyn
Reis O'Brien
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Inner circle
Seattle, WA
2467 Posts

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Hey Capt.
There's no shame in being a card guy. Although I know many effects, I always come back to my 52 little friends! A good way to go from cards to coins as to do a good matrix routine.

Also, if cards are what makes you happy, then bill yourself as a card guy. That way the specs know what to expect... cards! Don't feel that you have to do the other stuff, sponge balls, rope, etc. just because they're traditional. So ask yourself, "How do I really want my character to be perceived?" It's all a matter of defining your niche.

Good luck!
Homo vult decipi; decipiatur

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Captain Merkle
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Oklahoma
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Thanks, fellas

All your advice has helped me a lot; I've already grown much as a magician since first visiting the Café. I'll take your words and hold them closely to my heart. Smile


-Capt. Merkle Smile
Life is but a dream...
ashah
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Firedice is right that you can certainly stick to cards if that's what you like. But I've always been a card guy myself and recently have realized that I can be a more complete magician if I can do the other stuff. And what I like about sponge balls and cut-and-restored rope is that they can be done in any setting.

I don't know any good sources for sponge balls. I had someone teach me how to do it.

It is fine to do a bunch of card effects as long as they are not too similar. I like the Matrix idea. Also Gemini Twins is a good one. My favorite card trick to do to a small group or one person is Dr. Daley's last trick. I learned these all from the Ammar and Bill Malone tapes.
ninjaduffy
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UK
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I use cards for mentalism effects, its simple but carrys a punch, pm me for details..

In fact pm me and I will throw in a couple of tricks.......

I too am working on my first routines and find it quite hard being confident about my matierial...... I perform often to strangers in bars for practice and always get a great response yet I am still unsure about stepping out as a magi......

good luck dude
harp
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Oklahoma
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Captain,

If you are apprehensive about rope effects, check out some of the commercial routines on video. They are great and play very well. Jumping Knot of Pakistan is a great routine that children and adults both like. Plus there are moves that when learned are invaluable in applying them to other routines.

What part of Oklahoma are you from, I live in the very Southern part?

Regards,

Harp
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