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Father Photius
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El Paso, TX (Formerly Amarillo)
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Profile of Father Photius
If it will make you feel any better Kiki, I've seen the best of the top pros mess up. I saw Dai Vernon blow a shuffle and send cards flying everywhere. I saw Lance Burton have three boo boos in his LV show, and you know, he still has that multi-million dollar contract. Uncle Harry related to me quite a few of his major goofs over the years, many very hillarious, unless , of course, like he was, ur the world's premiere magician a the time. It happens to everyone. If you do magic, ur gonna mess up some times. The late Monk Watson once told me that the first step to professionalism is learning to recover from a goof. I've blown my opener,closer, and everything in between. I've gotten up and "lost" a selected card in the deck for real, and had no clue of what it was. I've dropped gimmicks, flashed so bad a blind man could see it, and even forgotten what trick I was doing half way through it. We all blow it from time to time. We all recover. Learning comes from mistakes. With no mistakes you don't learn much.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
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Profile of troller
Yep, reality sets in. Your not perfect. Perhaps music is the thing to do. But what if you hit the wrong notes? What if you get onstage and people start to leave? Well, what are you gonna do then? Give up again? Sounds like you need a better magical effect!! Impress them once and they will be back. Impress them twice and they will talk about you to their friends. Fumble once and no one will remember your name. Fumble twice and people will remember your name. So the secret is to impress them twice and move on!!!!

It first started off bad, by doing mental magic without a mic, to an audience that probably thought they were getting a microphoned magician. Well, next time, it would be best if you learned magic tricks that cater to different events and situations. No mic, do other stuff that doesn't need a mic.

There is street type magic that also does well in restraunts, going from table to table. If you don't have a mic then, don't do any talking and do a lot of sleigh-of-hand stuff. Got no stage, then stick to small in their face type magic. Got a stage, bring out the levitators, sawing in half type effects - grandious!!!

Every situation warrants a particular type trick. Learn by example.. go out and watch a few of the pros do it. Then gain back your confidence and walk right back onto that stage and fumble again, but this time make it into a joke and make people laugh. Could become part of your act. Jerry Lewis never had a problem looking the fool.

There is nothing more embarassing then to fumble and people don't laugh. If they did, it might turn your fumble into a enjoyable time. Make people laugh if you can and it will ease your tension too. Learn some quick jokes and watch what others do to get over the quiet times!!!

Above all, stick to it learning as much magic techniques and tricks as possible so that you can be ready for any situation. Only through experience will it get you through the tuff times.

And if it continues to happen to you, like I said above, it could be a new career move, fumbling magician!
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Don't give up
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Profile of phaddad2
The only way to avoid bombing is to never perform. What a boring life that would be.
even the funniest comics bomb from time to time. I often wonder when I perform two shows exactly the same why does one go over well and the other not. I have come to the conclusion that contrary to popular belief there is such a thing as a bad audiance.
Pete H.
P.S. although sometimes I just stunk.
Lee Darrow
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Chicago, IL USA
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Kiki, Jay Marshall, one of the funniest and most entertaining performers in history passed away earlier this year. On his closed coffin were two signs: "Lefty On Board" (for his partner, the glove puppet with the attitude) and the one that says it all: "This isn't the first time I've died."

Both were on the coffin at Jay's request.

Truer words...

No one in this business, and I mean this from the bottom of my worst bombed-out show, EVER goes through this business without flopping at some point.

Anyone who tells you differently is either a liar or has never performed for a real, live audience.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Alex Linian
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Inner circle
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Profile of Alex Linian
I would recommend that you never perform... the same way again.

Examine what you did wrong,
were you not prepared technique wise?
presentation wise?
did you work on a presentation at all?
maybe you had hecklers that you did not know how to handle?

The only real way to learn is to perform... after you've practiced. But you MUST examine EVERY performance. You can't just perform the same way again and expect it to go better.

A magicians should be able to take risks an expect success and if you wanna quit everytime you don't like the reactions you get, maybe performing is not for you...If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Good Luck
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Profile of malaki
Dying is easy - comedy <and magic> is hard.

The gods all know that I have had my share of bombed effects, especially when I first started.

I was doing a birthday party, once, and performed my Sword Thru Balloon. Three destroyed balloons in a row. I simply made some comment about how the stars were apparently not in their rightful places at this time.
I could not imagine what had gone wrong, for I try to be pretty meticulous about the working condition of my props (learning from experience). When I got home and carefully examined the sword, the tip had a hook on it that could only be felt - enough to pop every balloon presented to it. What had happened was that I was using a piece of aquarium tubing as a sheath for the blade, so that it would self lubricate. In transport, the tip had gone through the tubing and bumped into a hard object. After several minutes with some emery cloth, the blade was renewed, but how to keep this from happening again? The solution was a rigid sheath that would protect both the tubing and the blade. Looks much more classy and works a treat!

Speaking of the Sword Thru Balloon, here is a friendly word of advise:
NEVER use a balloon from the party!
I had thought that by using one of their balloons, it would prove that I was not using a special balloon, tape or anything of that ilk. I had not counted upon the birthday child thinking of that as a personal assault upon their party. I reached into my bag, asked what color she liked and produced a replacement of her favorite color.(ALWAYS carry extra balloons!).

Learning from yours, and other people's mistakes, is the mark of a true wizard ("wiz"=wise, "ard"=supposedly).

I was not aware of the sticker on Jay Marshall's coffin. That is hilarious. I grok in fullness.
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