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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The April 2004 entrée: Wesley James » » Videos » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Yves Tourigny
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Although videos are not the best way to encounter an artist they are often the only way we can see a legend perform. Are there any videos of Wesley James coming up?
Wesley James
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Yves,
There are discussions about videos of Wesley James ongoing. I have for a number of years wanted to offer instructional performance videos but have not been happy with the way most magic videos are shot. I have investigated what it would take in terms of equipment to allow video to be shot the way I feel it should but, until recently, the equipment was unavailable at any price or was to prohibitively expensive to be used. That is no longer the case and, therefore, I have begun discussions with a DVD producer on the possibility of producing as many as seven discs. I have very exacting requirements for how the material is to be shot and they may not be willing to meet my requirements but if they do so, videos should become available, hopefully within a year. That's as much as I'll say for now.

Wesley James
Yves Tourigny
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Thanks Wesley, this is very good news indeed. Let's hope everything goes as you wish.

Yves
vwc06
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That is the best news I've heard in a while.
Yves Tourigny
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Wesley,

You may not want to discuss your approach to doing a good dvd but a small question is nagging me. Are you going to have a section on technique on your dvds like you had in your book Enchantments?

Yves
Wesley James
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Yves,
Probably not in the sense you mean it. I will have more detailed discussions of the techniques I use in the material I perform than is typical of most video offerings but I don't expect to have a pure technique section. Such undertakings are better pursued through workshops, where I can watch an individual perform a technique and correct those elements that are less than optimal. I've been trying, of late, to set up more opportunities to present such workshops but thus far only one has actually occured. Nevertheless, the guys that meet with me on Saturday afternoons are accustomed to the kind of interaction I hope to be able to make available to a wider audience. If I ever get to your side of the pond or you to mine, I'm sure we could both enjoy such and exchange.

Wesley James
Yves Tourigny
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Thanks Wesley,

And yes we shall try to make you come to my side of the pond someday. We'll see what I can do to make that happen.

Yves
vwc06
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Would you ever be interested in coming out to San Francisco? We have a great magic shop here (Misdirections). Many have lectured here (Aaron Fisher, Doc Eason, Daryl, Mark Strivings, David Regal, etc.).
Wesley James
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Vwc06,
Thank you for your interest. I had been planning a short tour of the West Coast, at least including San Francisco and LA, after the PCAM convention in August of this year, as I had been discusssing lecturing there. It appears that the booker for PCAM, Kirk Charles I believe, has decided not to book me, probably due to the distance from NY to Seattle. As a result, I'm not sure when I'll get out to the West Coast but the SF area would certainly be on my agenda when I do. If and when the pieces fall together I'm sure you'll hear about it through the usual sources.

Wesely James
Lee Darrow
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Maestro James, firstly, welcome to our little corner of the net! I have been perusing your posts before taking a long nap and then doing a 12 hour drive to a show in South Dakota this evening (from Chicago, it's about 12 hours - gotta love these easy-to-get-to gigs!).

My question is about the contents of your possible DVD series:
will you be including some of the nuts and bolts aspects of booking work in the trade show and/or collegiate markets? I ask because, what little that is out there, from people who work these venues for a full time living, is either very rare, incomplete or woefully out of date with respect to how trade shows are done today.

That information, alone, would be well worth the price, whatever it may be, of such a project for any working magician, myself most emphatically included!

Thanks again for your contribution this month. It is deeply appreciated.

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.
http://www.leedarrow.com
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Steven Leung
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Dear Sir,

Greetings from Hong Kong!

It is my honour to write and get answers to a legendary magician.

There is a question in my mind and want your share in opinion. Is there any reason of current magic industry that make you hold back to release your powerful effect? That is... the easy access to magic materials when compare with decades ago. Another issue will be some download magic tricks arise from internet.

A magician that I know for a while really concern such issue and his only solution is to release his material in written form, yes, a book. He explains that this will let his materials only to those who put effort into them and those readers will perform his magic in their own style.

Thank you for your sharing and looking for your insights about such issue.
Most memorable moment - with Maestro Juan Tamariz & Consuelo Lorgia in FISM Busan 2018.

"Being fooled by a trick doesn't always mean they are having a good time" - Homer Liwag

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Wesley James
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Lee,
I have no intentions toward writing a book on the business side of magic. Some of my experience is dated and the techniques I used, while highly successful financially, led to a career that kept me on the road six to eight months of most years, performing three different types of shows. In addition I created custom illusions shows for some of my clients and mounted a full evening show with my own touring bus & truck company.

One can only sell what one can deliver and each performer needs to evaluate what they have to offer, develop a marketing plan, and implement it. During the college booking season, for example, I would hire people to help me with mailings and telephone solicitations. I'm not sure that would still work nor that they could negotiate the kinds of deals I did.

I never found a successful way of marketing to the trade show market. Except for my first trade show client, all my others came from prospective clients seeing the crowds I drew for other clients at shows and hearing the 'buzz" I created with my hospitality suites. I couldn't teach those skills in a book. Thus, to answer your question directly, there won't be a DVD fromme on the business side of magic. It is an essential part of the profession but not one I feel well suited to addressing.

Wesley James
Wesley James
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Freak,
I'm not terribly concerned about others copying my style. It would be hard for most individuals to do so and I strongly suspect they would recognize that to be the case after watching me perform. As a working professional my concern was that others would steal my material. The vast majority of the material I performed were my own effects and/or treatments. I feared looking across a trade show aisle and seeing someone else performing my material but not imitating my style. No one can be me as well as me. Theft of my material would have affected my uniqueness, which was part of what set me apart from others in the field.

Now that I'm retired, I no longer fear seeing someone across the aisle performing my material; I would never be found on the aisle. I still don't think others could pull off my performance style. Thus, if, as a result of seeing me perform on video, others attempt to imitate me, they are likely to fail badly. If such an individual has any sense at all, they will quickly recognize that they can't make my style work for them and abandon the effort. I will certainly warn against the attempt and offer suggestions for how to find ones own style, as I have in my writings.

I can't effectively speak to the concern of others in this regard. Those that feel they have duplicatable styles have good cause for concern. Such plagiarism is common in magic. The number of clone performers that rise to "success" by copying is very small but the practice is wide spread. Each must address the issue as they see fit.

Wesley James
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