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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Contact Jugglng? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

KenRyan
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Is contact juggling a "magician thing?" I know it may sound like a strange question, but I'm kind of interested in learning how to do it, but I wasn't sure if it fit into the context of a magician's bag of tricks, or belonged more to the dance/rhythmic gymnastics arena.

Thoughts?

Thanks!

Ken
Theodore Lawton
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There is a juggling section down below where other people might better answer that question.

The only thing I've used contact juggling spheres for is final cup loads. Smile

But if you can make it work somehow; like in a manipulation routine, why not?

Theodore-
Smile
Magic is the bacon in the breakfast of life.

............................................

God bless you and have a magical day
funsway
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old things in new ways - new things in old ways
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I think your instincts are correct, Ken. If you wish to entertain a mixed audience, a bit of Contact Juggling may be very well received. Sand painting and Costume Changes are not "magic" but can be appreciated by a magic anticipating audience more than just straight conjuring.

Look at Pop Haydn's shows -- not all "magic" but the overall memory is magical.

Some magicians like flourishes -- what's the difference?

Go for it. The shift to a Zombie routine.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



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Yellowcustard
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Quote:
On May 11, 2015, funsway wrote:
I think your instincts are correct, Ken. If you wish to entertain a mixed audience, a bit of Contact Juggling may be very well received. Sand painting and Costume Changes are not "magic" but can be appreciated by a magic anticipating audience more than just straight conjuring.

Look at Pop Haydn's shows -- not all "magic" but the overall memory is magical.

Some magicians like flourishes -- what's the difference?

Go for it. The shift to a Zombie routine.


Hes spot on.
Enjoy your magic,

and let others enjoy it as well!
jimhlou
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Yep, the key to what you do is ENTERTAINMENT. Entertain the audience, make them laugh, make them wonder, and make them appreciate your skills. Lance Burton always had a juggler open his show or do a set in the middle. People like to see different things, it's not all about the magic.

Jim
magicsecure
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Magic is what you make it look at rudy coby props and more props and a few good tricks here and there
plus you can make your juggling items disappear and so on
Dick Oslund
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The COIN ROLL (sometimes called the STEEPLECHASE) is contact juggling. The FIVE COIN STAR, ditto. The MUSCLE PASS, likewise.

I "usta" spread 3 half dollars on my forearm, then toss them straight up, so that they stayed in a "vertical formation", and catch them one at a time. (I never did know if that feat had a name. I think Jay Marshall told me once that a guy in Europe did it consistently with 4 coins. I did it ONCE with 4!

The 4 coin "roll down" is also contact juggling. There is another bit in which you stack 3 -- 5 coins between your first and third fingers while supporting them with the second finger. Then the thumb "rolls" one coin at a time "up and over" the stack, from front to back, and replaces it at the side of the stack nearest the palm.

I did most of these when I was a teenager. At 83, the fingers aren't as limber.

I still do a bit of rope juggling. -- "Flipping an overhand knot (sometimes called the Will Rogers Knot, always gets a pleased response. "My" Norwegian YOYO, gets LAUGHS, plus APPLAUSE. There are several "fancy" ways to tie an overhand knot in a rope, that are considered juggling.

All of the fancy card flourishes like the Waterfall, the Cascade, the Arm Spread and Turnover, the Arm Spread, Throw Up and Catch, various one hand cuts, and finally various fans, are IMO juggling.

Ditto, a number of billiard ball or golf ball flourishes!

You can't BUY these bits on line or in a B&M shop!

I still do rope, card, and ball bits when I work. Kids of all ages, and adults, like them.
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
johnstu
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I think that the work of Michael Moschen certainly elicits the sense of wonder that we as magicians are trying to achieve.

I agree with Dick that there are many flourishes that are already staple parts of the magicians arsenal that could be considered contact juggling. So contact juggling could be used in a similar way as you might use any flourish.

There are moves in contact juggling where the balls appear to have some kind of a mind of their own, disobeying the juggler's intentions which is similar to the way some tricks are constructed. For instance it would be pretty easy to imagine a simple trick where a ball is trying to escape from the magician as he tries to put it into a box (using contact juggling techniques) then after being wrestled into the box it does manage to confound the magician and escape from the box (using magic techniques).
BeachCat
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I agree that it can add something very special to a routine. If you've ever seen Andrew Goldenhersch perform, he does a bit of contact juggling and it's hypnotic and mesmerizing. Do what you love... it will make your act your own and that is always a great thing.
Mr. Woolery
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Follow your bliss, man. Follow your bliss. If you like contact juggling, go for it. (I suggest starting with a lacrosse ball, as it won't chip or scratch when you drop it. Over and over and over.)

Dick is totally right that there are several other forms of juggling that really do fit the contact definition. I'm only going to address what most people think of, though, which is the ball rolling in impossible-looking ways on the hands and arms.

I was watching some of the bonus material on Labyrinth, the movie that introduced a lot of people to contact juggling. Jim Henson states something along the lines of "we had this man named Michael Moshen and he does something with crystal balls that is the most magical looking thing I had ever seen, so it had to be part of this movie." I have thought about this statement a lot in the two years since I saw that clip. We, as magicians, tend to define magic very precisely. Mentalists define their art even more carefully. In general, that is. But for the public, the questions I think we need to address are whether this is something we can do to actually entertain them, whether we can make it work with our acts, and whether we actually will put in the significant practice time it demands.

For a while, a cheap contact ball was marketed as the Fushigi. I once was at my kids' school and one of the 8th grade students tossed me a softball. I did a quick windshield wiper move (very basic beginner contact move) and tossed it back. Something like five kids yelled "fushigi!" Since this has been popularized with a ball I've seen for sale at Walmart, I think a lot of the "magic" is gone from it. I have to hand the ball over and have them see just how hard it is before they seem to recognize that there's any skill in it.

-Patrick
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