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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Street magic for kids: what works and doesn't (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Magicman01462
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I've found in performing magic for many different age groups, that kids, are both the easiest and the hardest to please. Here is what I've found.

Mentalism is a bad choice when dealing with kids on the street, they already believe in things like this.

Quick things are better than long, drawn out sleights. I have found that the simplest things to perform are the most effective for children of all ages.

More to come. I hope this helps someone.

Magicman01462
cardshark101
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I think visable card changes are good. I use them all the time when with kids. Smile
Cardshark

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davidpaul$
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My greatest responses with kids are definitely the Nerf Balls (Sponge balls), Miser's Dream-type effects. For some reason they are fascinated with coins, IMO.
I know we are talking street magic here, but obviously if the magic happens in their hands or is involving them, it's a winner....
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p.b.jones
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Street magic for kids that work......

Linking Rings
Unequal ropes
Misers Dream
Pom Pon Stick
Cut and restored rope
Flip stick

These work for adults too with slightly different presentations, so why increase the weight and size of your bags?
phillip
Logan
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Basically what works with kids are effects that seem impossible to the common sense...they are kids by the way. So like restoring a torn card or a transposition would seem impossible and thus sink in as an effect to kids.

This is the reason why colour changes works well with kids...it seems impossible.
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SpiffnikHopkins
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I recently suggested the kids coloring book to a fellow magician and he said he didn't want to do it cause it's overused. Well I've been using it at every oppertunity and have never had a bad reaction. This is perhaps the most valuable (and cheap at the same time!) trick. Its EASY to do, no re-loading needed, work great for kids AND adults! It's no doubt a "kids trick" but I get bigger laughs and smile out of adults. After all, we were all kids once right? I use it on the street and at kids parties.

20th Century Silks is also a must. Easy enough to make at home and killer with kids. Let hem hold it in their hand and open on 3...1...2....3 WOW!

Make yourself a 20th Century Bra for the older crowds. Even bigger hot on the street!!!

~Spiff
Michael J. Douglas
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My nephew's 5 and he's absolutely amazed when I do a card (color) change. It's great. I have him blowing on it, and rubbing it on his arms. Also, sponge balls are great for the kiddies! Smile
Michael J.
�Believe then, if you please, that I can do strange things.� --from Shakespeare�s �As You Like It�
Dr. Jakks
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I like to do Lubor Fielder's Daydreams for kids that are really small. Smile And then their parents kill me. On the serious topic, I do the clown coloring book. It is really visual for them.

Jakks
Peter Marucci
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It's almost impossible to say what works and what doesn't until you try it, not only with kids but with anybody.
Different crowds, different venues, different weather even -- they are all variable factors that can change the reception of any given trick. (Although P.B. Jones gives a pretty sure-fire list above.)

And don't reject something because some other magician says it's "overused". Maybe to other magicians it is -- but they aren't paying you, are they? Most audiences have never seen a live magician before and, therefore, EVERYTHING is new to them.
cheers,
Magicman01462
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Thats very true Peter, most people have never seen live magic before. And one thing that does work well, I have to agree with spiffnikHopkins on the 20th century silk... but the routine I use is horrible. Does anyone know of a good one?
thanks
magicman01462
SpiffnikHopkins
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Here's what I do with the 20th Cent Silks...
I'm the first to admit this doesn't sound like a killer routine but its the best I have and it always does better then I think it deserves to do.

I disappear the first silk (mine is yellow) using one of those hats that changes compartments. I have the kid or adult feel around and ask them if it's empty. I tell them to MAKE SURE it's empty and that it has no secret compartments or anything like that. They always go right to the bottom of the bag and miss the secret compartment which is well hidden.

Then they put the silk in the little hat thingy (I don't know what it's really called sorry!) and vanish it having them do the magical gesture/pass. Then I ask them to pull it out and wait for them to reach into the now seemingly empty bag. If they don't turn it inside out I then do that.

"My goodness! We've lost my silk! Well, that's ok. I lose things all the time being a magician and all and I've had to come up with some pretty interesting ways of getting them back".

I then start showing the 2 red silks as I tie them together. "You see if I tie these 2 red silks together like so...(as I fumble with the tie for a sec) See kids just like you guys tie your shoes (they can relate to that), and now if you could hold your hand out palm up for me...good just like that. Now I'm going to put this in your hand and you make a tight fist around it...Ok good. I'm going to count to 3 and when I do open your hand...1..2..3 ta-da. Now we have our yellow silk back!"

I then have them put that into the hat and proceed to lose the red ones and find just the (original) yellow silk in the hat. Works like a charm. Then you can move on to another trick or work with the fact that you now need to recover 2 red silks..

Hope this helps. Let me know if you think of any improvements!

Spiff
Pokie-Poke
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Quote:
On 2002-08-31 03:15, SpiffnikHopkins wrote:
I recently suggested the kids coloring book to a fellow magician and he said he didn't want to do it because it's overused. Well I've been using it at every opportunity and have never had a bad reaction. This is perhaps the most valuable (and cheap at the same time!) trick. It's EASY to do, no re-loading needed, works great for kids AND adults!
~Spiff


I went to NY, and pulled out the coloring book and EVERY KID I did it for had seen it before! Oh boy. But they would not let me go without doing it, Kids love repetition (Barney anyone?) and did not even try to guess how it was done. I did have one kid get REAL close to guessing but I fast-talked him. I have never had problems with anyone over 12 guessing how it is done. The grown ups love it!
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Squishy-Squishy
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Bunnies, people, bunnies. I forget the name of the trick but it uses foam rabbits. It's easier than trying to carry a live one with you (P.E.T.A would be all over you Smile). Kids love bunnies! Smile
Magicman01462
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Yeah, I use 3d multiplying rabbits by Goshamn magic. They are pretty durable and they look good. Kids love them, as well as everyone else. And about the color changes, I like doing them for kids, but adults seem to have a greater appreciation for card magic. Just a thought..
magicman01462
TOBIAS
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I do kid shows and the easiest thing is to do magic for like hmmm... 10 min.s and tie a ballon for the kids. Or even better for time, teach how to make a dog the most basic twist. If you don't like to blow them up then use a pump. It will save time, breath, and it will make the money. I didn't like to do them but it is way to easy to make money doing kids shows. Every perent spends money on thier kids. Why not just be that person...
Yeah Yeah sponge ball, rope tricks, paper balls over ect...
Smile
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COINAMGIC
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Yes, they like coins I have noticed that, and they like tricks where you mess up then fix yourself.
coins n' card there all good
Pokie-Poke
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Smile
Nuf said
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Peter Marucci
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Tobias hits the target, in my opinion, both with the length of a street show and with balloons.
In doing a birthday party, for example, a half an hour is about the attention span of kids.
In doing street work, 10 minutes is about the attention span (if you're lucky) in that venue.
Most working street performers do three to four shows an hour.
I do about a 10-minute show, ending with Needle Thru the Balloon, which seques into balloon hats and animals for the kids, leaving adults waiting -- and with time to put cash in the hat. It works!
Once the kids all have balloons, and I have about all I figure I'm going to get out of that crowd, I take a short break.
Then back and repeat the cycle.
It works for me, but it may not work for everybody -- or even anybody else! Smile
TOBIAS
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Oh quick point!!!

Just because you twist ballons doesn't mean you are a clown...
No ofence to clowns, A clown is a clown and a magician is a magician. Well at least that's how it's suppost to go.



I do corparate gigs very often now. Not just little ones either. Big one! The worst thing is for the owner or just one of the big wigs to come up to and ask you if you would do a trick for thier child...
What are you suppost to do? HMMMM???? If you can't keep the kids attention for a second what makes you think he will remember you.
Solution...
Twist a ballon for him/her. Bang like a gun the child is your best friend. If you think I am playing try it just once and see.
Oh by the way if you work for tips. Look for that family with that loud kid and walk up give them a ballon if they will be good for mommy & daddy. Bamm they will fill your pockets.
Remember you don't have to know more then like 3 or 4 ballon animals. You are not going to give them a choice, you are just going to fire on.

G.T.M.
GET THAT MONEY

Smile
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Pokie-Poke
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Quote:
Remember you don't have to know more then like 3 or 4 ballon animals. You are not going to give them a choice, you are just going to fire on.

G.T.M.
GET THAT MONEY

Smile


IMHO, for most twisters, 3 or 4 ballon animals is like a card guy doing only the 21 card trick. It's just not enough. If you're going to do balloons, at least respect the art enough to be proficient, offer a choice and develop a repertoire.

I do a hand full of magic in my show, I never do a trick that wont stand buy itself as a good trick, and thay are added to the show when the show is to go longer, not to lessen the amount of the show.
Balloons are fun, as a street performer I hate them as too many street huslers blackmail the parents with them and then call them selves street performers, now that I know how to twist I shut the hacks down, I can now do better than 200 different balloons, This is without trying too hard!
So I just set up and start twisting, Smile when the kids stop asking for doggie, sword, hat, and start asking for daffy, the old lady, Patric from spong bob, ect, Smile
I even had one said hustler try to have me arrested. When all was said and done I have pic's somewhere of a cop in one of my hats and you know who (the hack) got to spend the night compliments of philli's finest!

Balloons are a great ADDITION to your act, but remember it is still part of your act, treat it as such, It's your reputation on the line after all!
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The Adventure cont...
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