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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Performance anxiety and Approach (6 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Emjeyem
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Hi, does anyone know of any books or DVDs that can help with performing magic/getting over anxiety of performing and how to approach people to do magic?

I feel like I have the skill and the personality and showmanship to do great magic but I am struggling with performance anxiety and have no clue on how to approach people.

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Many thanks,

Emjeyem
Mitchell John Melody
wulfiesmith
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Beverley, UK
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How about joining your local Magic Society, where you will get the performance experience with no pressure?
Dick Oslund
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Mitchell...

PRACTICE...PRACTICE...PRACTICE! (skills, tricks)

Do you get anxious, when you tie your shoes? NO? That's 'cuz you've done that for eons!

REHEARSE...REHEARSE...REHEARSE!

Practice a TRICK, REHEARSE the ACT. (There's a difference!)

Read, no, STUDY the TARBELL COURSE. Tarbell is available (pdf) FREE!

"There aint no such thing as FREE LUNCH! You need to EARN "people skills"!

If there's a TOASTMASTERS CLUB, near you, JOIN!

There aint no shallow end in this pool!

A few people here, might tell you to go out on the street, and "DO IT!" IGNORE THAT SORT OF ADVICE!

Also, check out the Karl Fulves books. The tricks in his books, require little manual skill, so you can concentrate on PRESENTATON!

70 years ago, my mentor put "it" this way: "It aint WHAT you do, it's HOW you do it!!!"

When your performance is like "tying your shoes", try performing it for a friend.

MAGIC IS N O T INHERENTLY ENTERTAINING, despite what Dr. Wilson said. Your PRESENTATION is what makes it entertaining!

Get Ken Weber's "Making Magic Entertaining". Study it!
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Doc Willie
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One thing that seldom gets mentioned, is the performance anxiety disappears once you start performing! You may be all nervous BEFORE the performance, but once you start you are focussed on the performance, and though you may be a bit physically shaky from the built up tension, the anxiety itself is gone. Knowing this alone may decrease the pre-performance jitters.
Some_Magical_Idiot
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I agree. After you practice, you just have to go out on that limb, fall off, and try again. Before you know it you are comfortable climbing to higher and higher limbs. Everyone falls at some point but you just have to do it to get over it.
Koolmagic114
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Don't just limit with looking at magic related stuff for performance. Check out public speaking books at your local library.
Eddy

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Co-Creator of "TAGZ" / "Iced Over" / " TelePad" / "Penigma"
www.magicianslair.com
Some_Magical_Idiot
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Good point!
Emjeyem
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Hi Everyone,

Thank you for all of your replies!

Your help is much appreciated.

However, is there any advice for approaching people to perform magic? For example, when on the streets or if I'm table hopping?

Thanks
Mitchell John Melody
Some_Magical_Idiot
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Part of this depends on where you are at. Vegas strip will respond differently that down town New York than New Orleans. Try to look for people who would be open to it and respond properly to it. Ask them very politely and do not take it personal if they ignore you or say no.
Dick Oslund
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I'm an old retired PROFESSIONAL PERFORMER. I was in $how bu$ine$$.

I NEVER walked up to ANYONE on the street (or similar situation) and asked them if I could show them a trick.

I made a LIVING performing, for 50+ years.

I never bought a new car, or an RV on "time". I paid cash! I was never "at liberty" in 50 years.

I occasionally did/do a "pro bono" for my church, or a worthy charity.

>>>I NEVER had a doctor approach me on the street, and offer to do a free appendectomy!<<<

If you want to be an amateur, fine! Perform for your friends in a social situation.

But, remember Somerset Maugham's story: It was a cocktail party. A young lady said to her friend, "See that man over there in a tuxedo! He asked if I liked card tricks. I said, 'NO'! He did six!"
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Some_Magical_Idiot
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Mr Oslund brings up and excellent point - what is the motivation and intent of what you are doing - hone your craft, meet people, make money - ? That would influence your approach as well, be in on the street or a more official setting.
funsway
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old things in new ways - new things in old ways
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Some of what you describe can be called "disruption sensitivity." You are afraid that what a person is doing is more important than what you have to offer.

Overcoming this has been a part of sales training for decades. The solution was to have such confidence in your product, company and yourself that you "know" a minute with you is more important that what they are doing.

but, this only works when you have permission to approach. This permission might be assumed in a restaurant where it is advertised that a magician is available.
It might be assumed at a party where the host has hired you. I might even be assumed on as street filled with performers.

You have no permission to approach a stranger and interrupt what they are doing (opinion). Of course, I am old and outdated.
I do not think it is proper to call a person on the phone or text them unless you "know" that your message is more important than what they are doing.
Yet, today folks have no problem calling friends at work and interrupting their task and stealing time from the employer.

So, maybe today folks will not be bothered if you approach them "out of the blue." Just make sure what you offer IS worth the invasion of privacy and task.

Practice, developed communication skills, empathy, tricks appropriate to the setting, etc. are all vital. Please add the concept of "permission" to the list.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst



ShareBooks at www.eversway.com * questions at funsway@eversway.com
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