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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Food for thought » » Why do people make fun of magic and magicians? (55 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Jonathan Townsend
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After the performer fails to connect with the audience ... it's a way for the audience to get comfortable with the performer. How to relate to something they notice which is incongruent. Maybe the pacing is too slow, using thrash metal music in a kids show, being both overdressed for the occasion and out of style by a decade... guys using hand model product showcasing gestures out of context... etc.

Kinda what would happen if a performer really meant to say "respect the chip on my shoulder!".
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George Ledo
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I agree with Jon. So many performers go on and totally ignore the audience, except possibly at the end. It's like they're up there in their own world, doing their own thing and implying "lookit what I can do." So yeah, people who are inclined to look down on those who are "different" can find some ammunition there. Not much different than in the school yard.
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Dick Oslund
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Hallelujah Jon and George!

Over 60 years, I've seen "them"" come and go, presenting "look how clever I am" acts. They never seem to realize that audiences need/want to be involved.

Communications means talking WITH, NOT talking AT or TO!)
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lynnef
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Quote:
On Dec 8, 2018, danaruns wrote:
No one does magic more seriously than Shin Lim. Is his Dream Act asking to be made fun of?

https://youtu.be/EAN-PwRfJcA



I must say Dana that this performance by Shin Lim nearly made me cry it was so beautiful. As Penn said, many card tricks are "silly", but this was "serious". The audience didn't just applaud, they gasped. Somehow I remember this routine better than his AGT routine, which was much more recent. If anyone wished to make fun, they can make fun of my near tearful response. Shin Lim makes me fall in love with magic, anew. Lynn
tommy
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No one does nonsense more seriously than Monty Python but nobody takes them seriously. One can only appreciate something as art when one knows it’s an act, a lie: all art is a lie. Shin Lim’s act is just that.

A “dream act” is a good description of our magic because magic is of the world of dreams - does not exist in reality: thus magic is literally nonsense because that which does not exist in reality cannot be perceived by the five senses. A sixth sense is required.

Why do you think scientists make fun of the belief in the existence of magic, the Loch Ness Monster, not to mention the soul?
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Dannydoyle
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Quote:
On Dec 9, 2018, lynnef wrote:
Quote:
On Dec 8, 2018, danaruns wrote:
No one does magic more seriously than Shin Lim. Is his Dream Act asking to be made fun of?

https://youtu.be/EAN-PwRfJcA



I must say Dana that this performance by Shin Lim nearly made me cry it was so beautiful. As Penn said, many card tricks are "silly", but this was "serious". The audience didn't just applaud, they gasped. Somehow I remember this routine better than his AGT routine, which was much more recent. If anyone wished to make fun, they can make fun of my near tearful response. Shin Lim makes me fall in love with magic, anew. Lynn


The audience was primed and not a normal audience.

Oddly enough I showed this to some people to see how moved they might be and indeed they made fun of it. Not tearful in the least, just poking fun at what they thought bordered on a parody because he took himself so seriously.

I have to say I am in the middle somewhere. I find that sort of magic boring, but respect his artful interpretation of things. I respect what he is trying to do even if he doesn't hit me with the routines. I personally would not make fun of him in the least, which is what shocked me when some did.

I don't know what brings that out of people. It is interesting.
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longhaired1
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On Nov 30, 2018, danaruns wrote:
Why do people make fun of magic and magicians?


I'm a magician and banjo player. Imagine how that feels.
tommy
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If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

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Mindpro
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Lol, hilarious.
critter
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I think maybe it's more important to not give power to the teasing. Eugene Burger and Doug Henning both exhibited a sense of wonder about magic. They appear as amazed as the audience, which I think invites the audience to join them on the amazing little voyage they're about to take.
By making it a partnership it's silly to make fun of them. Not that people won't, but they'll look petty and that doesn't diminish the performers. Henning's positivity probably didn't hurt either.
Then there's Cardini, who appeared confused by the magic happening to him, he's in on the joke so it has no power.

So maybe a question that might be just as helpful is "why do so many of us have such fragile egos?" Taking constructive criticism is one thing, but that doesn't mean we have to indulge insecure people who are just being jerks to try and "steal the show."
"The fool is one who doesn't know what you have just found out."
~Will Rogers


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tommy
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Well said.

Henning's involvement with the charlatan Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, however, was tragic.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
lynnef
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Quote:
On Dec 9, 2018, longhaired1 wrote:
Quote:
On Nov 30, 2018, danaruns wrote:
Why do people make fun of magic and magicians?


I'm a magician and banjo player. Imagine how that feels.



And playing at the House of Blues? Love it. Lynn
critter
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Quote:
On Dec 9, 2018, longhaired1 wrote:
Quote:
On Nov 30, 2018, danaruns wrote:
Why do people make fun of magic and magicians?


I'm a magician and banjo player. Imagine how that feels.


Bill Palmer is a banjo player. Good company to be in.
"The fool is one who doesn't know what you have just found out."
~Will Rogers


"This I offer in explanation of how it was that I found myself in my undergarments as I sat in my cell attempting to plot my escape."
~Professor Phineas Valeyard, Miskatonic University Dept.of Psychodynamic Natural History.

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critter
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Agreed about Henning's unfortunate choice regarding TM and treatment. Would have been awesome to see what else he could have accomplished with a bit more time.
"The fool is one who doesn't know what you have just found out."
~Will Rogers


"This I offer in explanation of how it was that I found myself in my undergarments as I sat in my cell attempting to plot my escape."
~Professor Phineas Valeyard, Miskatonic University Dept.of Psychodynamic Natural History.

New Facebook Page:
https://www.facebook.com/Valeyard-Magic-Stage-233226717588438/
lynnef
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Quote:
On Dec 8, 2018, danaruns wrote:
No one does magic more seriously than Shin Lim. Is his Dream Act asking to be made fun of?

https://youtu.be/EAN-PwRfJcA



Hi Dana, I didn't want to get into a back and forth with DannyDoyle; but thought you'd like to know I wrote Michael Close re. the Fool Us audience being "primed". He said no such thing, and that the audience reacts as they wish. Lynn
Dannydoyle
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I thought discussion of different experiences was what this board was all about? If all we are supposed to do is agree with everyone else and support others experience then I am sorry.

But let me define "primed" as I am using the word. They are "showing up" knowing what they are seeing. A TV taping of a magic show that is very popular. This is NOT an average audience that an average magician is EVER going to run into.

I in no way meant to imply that they have an applause sign or some such thing. I am saying that they are absolutely ready to see different magic acts and in this way nobody in their right mind would deny they are indeed "primed" to see and excited to see the stuff.

Mind you I do not say this is a bad thing in the least. It is just a thing. It is not a thing many in the real world run into on a nightly basis.

To belabor the point when people came into Schulien's quite often I would have referred to them as "primed" to see close up magic after the meal. The quite often came in WITH that intent. More often than not this was the case. Working at many other places doing close up magic the guests are not "primed" to see magic and in many cases you have to even let people know it is available. At Schulien's it was a thing and it was a big deal so the reception received when you are anticipated vs. when you are introducing yourself is night and day. I am not saying it is a bad thing, but saying that any audience that has walked into the room in order to see a particular thing will be very receptive to seeing that thing.

I wish you would write Mike back and explain the way the word was being used and see if he agrees. Because it is undeniable. In addition to being undeniable, it is not a bad thing.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
danaruns
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Quote:
On Dec 10, 2018, lynnef wrote:

Hi Dana, I didn't want to get into a back and forth with DannyDoyle; but thought you'd like to know I wrote Michael Close re. the Fool Us audience being "primed". He said no such thing, and that the audience reacts as they wish. Lynn


Yeah, I've been there, I know the audience isn't primed. I just ignored it. The audience is filled with people vacationing in Vegas, looking for something to do.

As for Danny's version of "primed," he has now dumbed that down to be almost meaningless. I suppose under his definition all movie audiences are "primed," as are all concert audiences, Broadway show audiences, TV show audiences, and just about every audience in the world. My audiences are "primed," as well, as I don't perform for people who aren't expecting to see magic.

But originally, he said they were "primed and not a normal audience. The Fool Us audience is as "normal" an audience as you can get (unless Danny wants to define normal differently, now). It's a pretty typical magic audience, imho. Perhaps Danny's "normal" audience is not expecting magic, if he does a lot of guerilla magic.
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Mindpro
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I agree it is a magic audience. There's regularly many magicians in any audience, as you can see in the audience shots and pans. To me this alone makes it primed to some extent and not what I would consider a typical audience though.
Dannydoyle
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Quote:
On Dec 10, 2018, danaruns wrote:
Quote:
On Dec 10, 2018, lynnef wrote:

Hi Dana, I didn't want to get into a back and forth with DannyDoyle; but thought you'd like to know I wrote Michael Close re. the Fool Us audience being "primed". He said no such thing, and that the audience reacts as they wish. Lynn


Yeah, I've been there, I know the audience isn't primed. I just ignored it. The audience is filled with people vacationing in Vegas, looking for something to do.

As for Danny's version of "primed," he has now dumbed that down to be almost meaningless. I suppose under his definition all movie audiences are "primed," as are all concert audiences, Broadway show audiences, TV show audiences, and just about every audience in the world. My audiences are "primed," as well, as I don't perform for people who aren't expecting to see magic.

But originally, he said they were "primed and not a normal audience. The Fool Us audience is as "normal" an audience as you can get (unless Danny wants to define normal differently, now). It's a pretty typical magic audience, imho. Perhaps Danny's "normal" audience is not expecting magic, if he does a lot of guerilla magic.

Where do you regularly perform?
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
tommy
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The audience is primed to see if the performer can fool Pen and Teller. The clue is in the name of the show “Fool Us”. This fooling concept, in my view, gives the public the wrong impression of the art. The art of magic lies in the presentation, as opposed to the magic which is science in effect. That is not to say that the performers in it do no present their magic well and on the whole, the show is a benefit.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
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