"Be Prepared" Strolling Gig Review (Luis Vega Style)

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by RickEverhart, Aug 14, 2010.

  1. Friday Night 7:00 p.m. Laying out 8 effects that I will use in Saturday's festival strolling gig that goes from 12 noon to 2.
    Set 1 - Mismade bill, spongeballs, CMH with bands, and one card effect utilizing a lighter to change the wrong card into the selection
    Set 2 - Lottery ticket effect, ring thing, star gazer by Alan Wong, and Buddha Money Mystery ( vanishes money, business cards, etc. or changes them out)

    Packing my balloon apron, pump, and extra pump for my balloon twisting gig in another town from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

    Saturday Morning 9:00 a.m. Wake up and shower, eat a banana ( I don't eat much before a big gig...nerves I guess) and go upstairs to pick out what I'm wearing. Check weather on Droid X....holy crap...supposed to be 92 degrees today. Wow...and I have to look professional so shorts and a polo shirt aren't going to cut it. Decide that I'm going to be sweating my bal$% off today and suck it up. I shine my shoes and pull on cargo khakis because I won't be wearing a vest or suit coat with all the needed pockets. Put on a blue shirt and sharp red tie but decide that the sleeves will be rolled up just under my elbows.

    10:30 a.m. I know I have to meet my contact person in a crowded festival just shortly after 11. I load up my pockets, make sure I have my contract with my contact's name number, etc. and head out of town. Almost there and decide that I have to take a leak again because I pounded a can of Diet Mountain Dew just before I left. So...I hit an Arby's restroom about 2 minutes from the gig.

    11:00 a.m. I pull up to the street festival and see the mass crowd, inflatables, booths, games, rides, cop cars, clowns, etc.
    Oh boy I tell myself. Time to get myself into this mess and find my contact person. 15 minutes later after asking around a few booths I track her down and she tells me, "Oh good...I'm glad you came to check in with me because last years magicians were just kids and I don't even know if they were here because they failed to check in with me prior to the gig or after. She seems assured and happy that I am there 45 minutes early (very important fellas) and I go over any last minute details as to where she wants me strolling or located.

    11:30 - 11:45 a.m. I walk around to scope out some of the best locations where people are hanging out and where their attention is not going to be diverted from the magic. My agent reminded me that if it is hot, don't be afraid to go under a tree somewhere as long the people see you and you're still drawing a crowd.

    11:45 a.m. Well...not supposed to start for 15 more minutes but decide I might as well begin because I am bored from just looking at people. I approach a group of 3 young girls and perform mismade bill for them and crazy man's hand cuffs. They are loving it and so I decide to get out a new card effect I just bought a week ago. I force the needed card and then pull out the prediction card which is supposed to be wrong. They laugh and say, "Nope...that's not it." I act all confused and tell them to hold on. I never mess up and that I am going to burn the card because I am angry. I pull out my lighter to apply heat which then makes the pips change into the forced card...AND THEN...OH NO. The lighter won't even keep a flame lit because there is a breeze and it just blows the flame sideways. I begin to feel embarassed and the girls say..."Oh, we will stand around you to block the wind." Well..no luck I was left standing there and see that there is no way to get enough heat on the card to activate the pips. Guess I should have tested it out first. I apologize and tell them its not working but I think I can get the card if she sends it to me mentally. I call the forced card and take the easy way out. I felt dumb and decided, not using that the rest of the day.

    12:30 - 2:00 I spend the rest of the day performing for families and children using only the following due to the weather: rubber bands, spongeballs, a deck of cards which are completely warped due to heat and scratch off lottery tickets that reveal a forced card and my ring for ring thing. Hands, arms and face perspiring the entire time.

    The mismade bill, budda money mystery, and cards were all soaked in sweat and unusable. Ugh....pretty nasty.

    2:05 I find my contact to let her know how the day went, handed her a few of my business cards and tell her I look forward to working again next year.

    Head for home to get a shower and get dressed for my balloon gig. Shorts, flip flops, and golf polo for this event because I did it completely free of charge so I will not be sweating for 3 more hours.

    4:00 p.m Arrive at balloon gig on time only to see another balloon sculptor already there at the church event so I go to the other side of the park so we will not conflict with each other and can sort of separate the crowd.

    6:00 Storm comes in and EVERYONE except me packs up their booth and leaves with at least 100 people still there. I tell my crowd of 30 plus people to please move to the pavillion and I will make sure that ALL children will leave happy with a balloon sculpture. They all cheered and were excited. The event coordinator came up to me afterwards at 7:00 and said that he was very impressed with me how I went above and beyond to offer great service to his church members and that he would like to write me a check to cover all of the balloons I had purchased.

    7:20 I arrive home to my family, heat up dinner in the microwave and reflect on the day. WOW...I'm beat.
    Thought I'd share this for some of you who are looking to take that next step. You will see that it isn't always as glorious as it seems but I know deep down I made A LOT of people happy today through my skills and what I could offer.
  2. HAHAHA!! Luis Vega´s style!!

    so this is what it feels when somebody reads my journals...

    I guess no one can foresee what going to happen like the wind, the rain and the heat...well actually you did foresee the heat..aside from that you seem very confident and eager to deal with the unexpected..congrats Rick!

    Very good read!!
  3. Thanks Luis. Some how I knew you'd read this if I attached your name...ha ha. Please continue to write you journal entries when you have time. I love hearing about other guys out there my age working and going through the same things that I do.
  4. sounds like a good day.
    i knew you blew... balloons haha. actually i didnt. but it sounds like a nice day. i thnk i have that same effect. the card that changes.
    but i also have a torch lighter that would prly work with it.
  5. Thanks for sharing. I love reading stuff like this.
  6. Chris...that is what I was thinking too. Next time I may take a torch lighter in my pocket because it produces a bigger flame and maybe the wind wouldn't have affected it as much. Oh well...live and learn. Yes I do balloons, lots of them actually. I just bought one of the $200 pumps from tmyers that inflates the balloon in one pump. It is on back order though.

    No problem Justin. I figure between Luis, and some of us we probably have some great stories to share from gigs so we might as well.
    Most of the younger kids are going to take one look at how much there is to read and pass on it. Oh well, their loss.
  7. Great journal entry :)
    Damn I'm beggining to wonder why I still didn't searched for a "professional" gig...
  8. We just had this discussion at our last ring meeting. Many people do not learn some of the good info / tips / tricks from the books. A lot of it is acquired with field experience, simply just getting out there and doing the gigs and learning from each and every one. I say just go for it. You will be scared to death of failure....embarassment....but there will also be a part of you that wants go get out there and share your magic. Your adrenaline will kick in and the excitement begins. This will become addicting and you'll want to perform more and more at professional gigs.
  9. Thanks for the reading reverhart. Wonderful story!!! You and Luis are pushing to start writing my journals...just about my performances I had recently cause I haven't managed to get a gig yet.
  10. No problem Nino. Definitely write down notes, ideas, Do's and Don'ts and lessons learned from each of your gigs or performances. It doesn't necessariy have to be like Luis or mine but if you have a great story and think others can learn from it....that is what we are all here for.

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