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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Perform a routine you don't like to perform (9 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

megalya
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I was rereading "Calculated thoughts" by Doug Dyment (wonderful book btw) and the magic square part made me thinking :
I really don't like magic squares but they seems to get pretty goods reactions, so my question would be are you ok to perform an effect that you don't like to perform to please your audience ?
Joshua J
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I find if I don't enjoy it that's passed onto the audience. I won't give it as good as a performance and so those pieces get dropped. There are some effects I used to dislike where I've then found either a method or presentational angle I do enjoy. So it's a fluid progression. Equally there are effects I've loved that I've got bored of performing because I've done them so much.
Mark Timon
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Doing anything to please your audience is the best way to be a mediocre performer.
Mike Ince
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Figure out why you don't like the effect. If you can find a way to fix or minimize what you don't like, maybe the effect is worth salvaging. Until then, don't do it. Your enthusiasm should be contagious. You are not a thermometer for the room. You're a thermostat.
The secret of deception is in making the truth seem ridiculous.
John C
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On Mar 14, 2024, Mark Timon wrote:
Doing anything to please your audience is the best way to be a mediocre performer.



Agreed
George Hunter
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Not all dislikes are created equal.

One might not preform an effect because he or she cannot affirm the theme or the implied worldview--such as Astrology.

Onew might agree with Cassidy and not want to implicitly claim too many powers, and so avoid a pre-cognition effect.

One might dislike the method or prop, and so not employ it.

Then, there are probably effects that one does not dislike, but just does not like enough to perform it.

So, think and feel through the sources of your reluctance.

George
David Thiel
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A mentalism performance is as much a reflection of who the performer is much as the the effects he presents. The performer has to be 100% on everything he does, otherwise the show will acquire a derivative aspect.

Personally I would not inflict an effect to which I am not utterly committed on an audience. I need to be excited about it -- and want to share it.

To perform something just because other people are doing it -- or because it is the 'flavour of the month' is slap in the face of the integrity of your performance. I cannot imagine how it would not ring false to an audience.

A personal opinion -- but I hope it is helpful.

David
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Mike Ince
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I didn't like doing a magic square because there was no surprise. It was just a "look what I can do" effect, and no one likes a smart*ss, maybe especially one with superior math skills. I added a surprise. The person never tells me their number, never writes it, and I make the square (a "grid") before they say it aloud. "Don't say the number, but what column is it in? It isn't there? Oh. Well, are the digits that make up the number up there? No? I give up. What's the number?" Then the square is shown to only add to their thought-of number.

I have a way of revealing zodiac signs even though I don't believe in astrology. "Are you a Sagittarius? Yeah? (audience reacts) I don't believe in all that, it just sounds more mystical, more interesting than saying you were born on... December 12th. Don't worry, it's a coincidence. Just one chance in 365..." There are ways to do certain classic effects in ways that could be exciting for you and not contradict your character or personal views. Otherwise, I agree with what's been said. You can't use a parade float with only half the helium.

You received some good answers here. Except for maybe the parade float metaphor. Helium = your excitement level.
The secret of deception is in making the truth seem ridiculous.
amazingadan
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I keep trying to drum up interest in card magic. It would be so great if I liked it -- it's easy, accessible, practical, entertaining, there are ten million concepts and tricks and gimmicks to build off...

But I just do not like card magic. I've never really enjoyed watching it much, and I don't feel excited to perform it. I'm still making efforts to expand my card material, and I'm finding tidbits that I like here and there. But for me that was mainly a practical decision so that I'd be able to perform more easily in different circumstances.

I think it's fine to include a couple tricks that aren't your personal favorites, if they're worth their weight in terms of audience response. But best to center things around what appeals to you.
amazingadan
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On Mar 15, 2024, Mike Ince wrote:
I didn't like doing a magic square because there was no surprise. It was just a "look what I can do" effect, and no one likes a smart*ss, maybe especially one with superior math skills. I added a surprise. The person never tells me their number, never writes it, and I make the square (a "grid") before they say it aloud. "Don't say the number, but what column is it in? It isn't there? Oh. Well, are the digits that make up the number up there? No? I give up. What's the number?" Then the square is shown to only add to their thought-of number.

I have a way of revealing zodiac signs even though I don't believe in astrology. "Are you a Sagittarius? Yeah? (audience reacts) I don't believe in all that, it just sounds more mystical, more interesting than saying you were born on... December 12th. Don't worry, it's a coincidence. Just one chance in 365..." There are ways to do certain classic effects in ways that could be exciting for you and not contradict your character or personal views. Otherwise, I agree with what's been said. You can't use a parade float with only half the helium.

You received some good answers here. Except for maybe the parade float metaphor. Helium = your excitement level.


I like that down-the-garden-path type of pacing. And that's a cool way to get in on the fun of an astrology reveal, even as a more psychological-style performer.
IMAGINACIAN
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On Mar 14, 2024, Mike Ince wrote:
Figure out why you don't like the effect. If you can find a way to fix or minimize what you don't like, maybe the effect is worth salvaging. Until then, don't do it. Your enthusiasm should be contagious. You are not a thermometer for the room. You're a thermostat.


"You are not a thermometer for the room. You are a thermostat." Wow...this kinda made my day.
There is no better freedom than choice and no better choice than freedom.
Tom G
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Try it a couple of times, a good reaction may help you embrace it.
megalya
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To perform something just because other people are doing it -- or because it is the 'flavour of the month' is slap in the face of the integrity of your performance. I cannot imagine how it would not ring false to an audience.
David

You're right, the few times I've done this type of effect the reactions were ... absent.
AlxRosekoski
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Just look at the reason you do magic. I do it for fun/ to get to know people, so if I don’t enjoy doing an effect, I just wont do it
Slim King
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I can relate this to singing. One of our managers forced a song on us to sing at a major theme park. The song was on the poorest selling Blues Brothers album... Their last.(For good reason) I objected but the management doubled down and even brought in a choreography specialist straight from a male dance review. The entire presentation was horrid. BUT, rather than let the overlords get the best of me I decided to make this song my own. To learn every nuance in and out and gauge it's effect on the crowds. Eventually I turned the Lemon into Lemonade and it is now my favorite song to sing. Smile
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MysticJohn
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On Mar 15, 2024, David Thiel wrote:
A mentalism performance is as much a reflection of who the performer is much as the the effects he presents. The performer has to be 100% on everything he does, otherwise the show will acquire a derivative aspect.

Personally I would not inflict an effect to which I am not utterly committed on an audience. I need to be excited about it -- and want to share it.

To perform something just because other people are doing it -- or because it is the 'flavour of the month' is slap in the face of the integrity of your performance. I cannot imagine how it would not ring false to an audience.

A personal opinion -- but I hope it is helpful.

David



Well said, I really like this and agree Smile
John C
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On Apr 7, 2024, Slim King wrote:
I can relate this to singing. One of our managers forced a song on us to sing at a major theme park. The song was on the poorest selling Blues Brothers album... Their last.(For good reason) I objected but the management doubled down and even brought in a choreography specialist straight from a male dance review. The entire presentation was horrid. BUT, rather than let the overlords get the best of me I decided to make this song my own. To learn every nuance in and out and gauge it's effect on the crowds. Eventually I turned the Lemon into Lemonade and it is now my favorite song to sing. Smile



Nice!! That's good when that happens.
NeilS
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For me I think the key thing is if I was comfortable in performing the effect. If it was just not me and I felt awkward about any aspect then I would look for something else.

Neil
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