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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Can you be a magician and mentalist?? (127 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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reese
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Can you mix magic & mentalism? No. Can I mix magic & mentalism ? Yes. But that's me.
JassTan
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I just got into magic but the reason I got into it because of a mentalism effect someone showed me. so for me they can be the same
NotThatLarson
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I still find it amazing this discussion still going on...
IAIN
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Quote:
On Apr 2, 2019, NotThatLarson wrote:
I still find it amazing this discussion still going on...

Thanks for sharing...

I guess a different question is, why would anyone want to mix the two? Why isn't the magic or mentalism enough on its own?
Chris K
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On Apr 2, 2019, IAIN wrote:
...
I guess a different question is, why would anyone want to mix the two? Why isn't the magic or mentalism enough on its own?


Exactly, and we all know the answer, or at least the most common answer. Why would a magician add a "mentalism" trick? Why would a mentalist add a "magic" trick? Obviously because there is something missing in their performance.

"Yes, yes, I can turn one sponge ball into 50 sponge balls but I want to prove I can read their mind too!"
IAIN
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Yeah, I guess that's an unrealistic extreme to prove a point..

Maybe there's some more valid examples out there...

Maybe not!

Would genuinely like to hear them...

I think when people cite very popular and successful people as examples, the failing is that thos who quote them aren't on the same level and never will be... And 99% of us are included in that, me, you, the rest that talk a good game... We can't do it for many reasons...
Woodfield
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Ok, I'm not going to read 20 pages of this thread.
But my answer is, yes.

Irv Weiner (Mr. Fingers) from Needham, Massachusetts did college shows in the 80's.
His concerts, as he called them, consisted of 1 hour of Sleight of Hand Magic and
1 hour of Mentalism and East Indian Yogi effects.

It was clear by the college paper write-ups of his performances, that he was 100 percent believable

He was a great showman.
Sudo Nimh
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Well,...

Historically speaking, Magi were capable of all manner of miracles from "raising the dead", to mind-reading - to even being able to take away a man's strength. There was no division going back through history. They were people who were to be greatly respected - and feared. It's only after the whole spiritualist movement came about that Mentalism became a "thing" - supposedly unto it's own. While it's true that this was the genesis of the big boom, the fact is, there were Magi doing feats of "mind-reading" or demonstrating supposed supernatural "mind powers" much earlier - though not to the same highly defined degree as it is now. They were one and the same. Had there not been the invention of the darn printing press and the inquisition, we Magi could have prevented you "mudbloods" a long time ago and it would have saved us a lot of a grief. You're nothing but a nuisance. Smile

(Kidding on that last statement, of course. But I do actually feel that you're born with the natural predisposition - or not. In which case, it doesn't come as naturally as it does to some others.)
I'm frequently hit with enlightening in the middle of a brain storm.
Chris K
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Quote:
On Apr 2, 2019, IAIN wrote:
...I think when people cite very popular and successful people as examples, the failing is that thos who quote them aren't on the same level and never will be... And 99% of us are included in that, me, you, the rest that talk a good game... We can't do it for many reasons...


Another good point. It's like a child saying he wants to quit school and just become a professional video game player. In fact, let me write out this possible interaction below, then I'll substitute with magic/mentalism words but leave the "adult" responses exactly the same. Then we can see how similar (and similarly silly) it is for amateurs to use successful people as examples.

Child: I can quit school and become a professional video game player
Adult: While you "can" indeed do that, there are multiple reasons why that is not a very good idea.
Child: Well Kuro Takhasomi is a millionaire, so obviously I can do it.
Adult: <Sigh> Dealing with children...

Magician: I can add mentalism effects to my balloon and sponge ball routine.
Adult: While you "can" indeed do that, there are multiple reasons why that is not a very good idea.
Magician: Well, Osterlind does it and even says he doesn't concern himself with the difference so obviously I can do it.
Adult: <Sigh> Dealing with children...
Mindpro
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The difference is eventually the child will grow up and become a wiser adult, the magician stays a magician.
Chris K
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On Apr 3, 2019, Mindpro wrote:
The difference is eventually the child will grow up and become a wiser adult, the magician stays a magician.


Ha ha ha ha ha! I realized I left the possibility of jokes of that nature after I read my post.

Yours was way better than any I considered.
Mindpro
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You set me up, how could I resist?
countrymaven
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YES, Sudo, from a historical perspective, this is what has been done forever. Until recent extreme views on MC. It is a free country. You can be many things you shouldn't be. But since this has historically been true, it is hard to argue against it, even if present peccadillos persist.
Sudo Nimh
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"Peccadillos"...LOL. I'm gonna have to remember that one. Love it.

Despite the historical note I mentioned, I don't advocate either/or. I simply advocate being entertaining no matter what you're doing. Period. I really could care less one way or the other what people are doing or how they want to label it - as long as it's entertaining.

Shortly before his death, an interviewer asked Johnny Cash whether he had a favorite genre of music because he'd influenced people in so many different musical genres and even recorded a cover of a Nine Inch Nails song himself. He thought about it for a moment and replied:

"There's good music and bad music... and I like good music."

The same thing applies in the Mystery Arts. And before Iain starts projecting his own shortcomings on others again - including those that supposedly "talk a good game" (it's pretty obvious he is aiming at me with that), I have several newspaper articles written about me that prove otherwise. I'm even the front page headline of one of them. The publisher and editor of another had this to say in his article:

"Since that moment in early November, John has been entertaining locals in bars and clubs with his special brand of Magic. He is a gifted entertainer and adds a splash of welcome colour to our community."

Should he wish to continue with such statements, I'd be more than happy to provide further examples. Smile

Some of us can actually do more than just "talk a good game".
I'm frequently hit with enlightening in the middle of a brain storm.
Philemon Vanderbeck
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"I didn't like magic shows, until I saw yours."

That's an actual quote from an actual audience member attending one of my actual shows . . . which is mostly mentalism, but is book-ended with "conventional" magic effects. Since the theme of the shows is autobiographical, it makes sense to explain how I got interested in magic before I started my exploration of the darker arts. Audiences accept that I can do "tricks" and "real" magic.

Consider Sam Neill's performance as the titular "Merlin" from the 1998 TV mini-series, where he performs both "tricks" and "real" magic, and the other characters are aware he does both.

Magic is what magic does.
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
That Creepy Magician
"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
Sudo Nimh
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That's a great compliment to be given Philemon. I've only seen tidbits of your performing, but what I have seen, was quite enjoyable.

Docc Hilford is commonly mentioned as an example of one who manages to mix both to good result, and while that may be the case, there are others too. For example, Borodin has some truly wonderful storytelling pieces that are firmly rooted in both the bizarre and in Mentalism. His book Sheherazade, remains among my favorite books.

It would be nice if those in the "purist" camp would stop associating all Magicians with sponge balls and balloon doggies.
I'm frequently hit with enlightening in the middle of a brain storm.
IAIN
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Jaks is a great example, and a real influence on me... His fondness for unusual things to use in his presentations...
countrymaven
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Yes, Sudo,
pec·ca·dil·lo
/ˌpekəˈdilō/
noun
plural noun: peccadilloes
a small, relatively unimportant offense or sin.

Peccadiloes can become set into a mindset,becoming a part of one's thought. They become what I term a "Pickled Peccadillo" -- a little hard to change.

Dunninger is a great example. Lots of magic and also incredible mentalism. The list could go on. We are spoiled with specialists in this modern age. So I am actually advocating for people to do what really works best for you. It is the audience who decides if your act is great or not, and if they enjoyed it or not. They may or may not be evaluating whether it is pure mentalism or magic, or what the ratio is. But in the end, HOW MUCH THEY ENJOY YOUR ACT, YOU! IS WHAT WILL MATTER. So each of us had to pick our own peccadilloes, hopefully the ones that work best. hehe.
Rhu
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My two cents..

Is that it comes down to semantics. One cannot be a Magician and a Mentalist because currently (in the English language at least) the two terms are mutually exclusive.

It is possible that one can be considered a Magician that performs mental effects, or a Mentalist that causes magical things to happen.

A Magician draws one's ability from the manipulation of the external, a Mentalist from the internal.

A Gambler can produce the same effects as either but will lay his ability at yet a different door.

At the end of the day they are all deceptive arts.

It just depends at which door one lays the root of one's ability.
Mr Salk
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On May 24, 2019, Rhu wrote:
My two cents..

Is that it comes down to semantics.


I juggle three spheres and one disappears. what am I?
.


.
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