Covid19 performer responsibilities?

Apr 26, 2013
24
5
I hate it when a show gets canceled. But I can accept it. A required precaution. I try to be a responsible human. And this makes me wonder? As a performer should I be taking more precautions?

I have spent many hours refining presentations for close-up, to put magic in the spectator's hand. For a parlor audience I like to get them involved 'on-stage' to make a strong connection with them. During kid shows I shoot for 100% interaction. All require invading personal space and often contact. Should I now reverse the process, limit contact with audience and props? Have you had these thoughts?

A responsible member of society would take precautions. I found some presentations, by making a little adjustment I can limit space invasion. (Okay that sounds weird, but you know.) And, I can clean props after use. Oh yeah, wash my hands too.

Then I thought of the perfect effect. The Invisible Card. The audience never touches the prop, that secret thing. They don't even know about it. And the invisible deck provided by T11 is totally germ free. You don't need another reason to do this trick, cause it kills Muggles. But, there you are. I am sure there are many other examples. What you got?
 

DominusDolorum

Moderator
Jul 15, 2013
894
1,116
29
Canada
You make a great point. I think it's very important to be aware of these things considering our current situation.

I've had many good reactions to John Bannon's Ion Man. You use the premise of their imagination and your supposed predicting powers. Bonus: They don't have to handle the one props.

Free Will by Corbuzier (using their own objects) could be a contender too.
 
Jun 18, 2019
543
288
17
West Bengal, India
I hate it when a show gets canceled. But I can accept it. A required precaution. I try to be a responsible human. And this makes me wonder? As a performer should I be taking more precautions?

I have spent many hours refining presentations for close-up, to put magic in the spectator's hand. For a parlor audience I like to get them involved 'on-stage' to make a strong connection with them. During kid shows I shoot for 100% interaction. All require invading personal space and often contact. Should I now reverse the process, limit contact with audience and props? Have you had these thoughts?

A responsible member of society would take precautions. I found some presentations, by making a little adjustment I can limit space invasion. (Okay that sounds weird, but you know.) And, I can clean props after use. Oh yeah, wash my hands too.

Then I thought of the perfect effect. The Invisible Card. The audience never touches the prop, that secret thing. They don't even know about it. And the invisible deck provided by T11 is totally germ free. You don't need another reason to do this trick, cause it kills Muggles. But, there you are. I am sure there are many other examples. What you got?
Is it time to bring the white gloves back?

But in all seriousness, I think you should wait till summer really sets in, before adapting your entire performance style around the precautions. The Virus isn't really heat-resistant.

Thanks for the post by the way. It's responsible of you and reminds us to be so too :)
 
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WitchDocIsIn

Elite Member
Sep 13, 2008
5,739
2,854
No, adjust now. People are walking around with the virus now, not showing symptoms yet, but highly contagious.

As performers, whether hobbyist or professional, we choose to put ourselves in contact with the public regularly. We should be taking these sorts of precautions every year, really, but this year we have to be particularly aware.

This is not only for our own health but to protect our audiences as well.
 
Apr 26, 2013
24
5
I'm guessing Card to Mouth is out of the question?
Oh yeah, that reminds me of that geek period I went through. Pen up the nose, pen through the tongue, needle through arm with blood. I did a thing called serial biller, burn a borrowed bill and restore it from my mouth. I stopped after a couple months. It was relatively safe for me because after a switch it was my bill in my mouth. But the reaction I got when I tried to return the bill wasn't what I was hoping for. Learning from my mistakes....
 

Lyle Borders

vp of operations // theory11
Staff member
Aug 5, 2008
1,567
794
Seattle, WA
www.theory11.com
But the reaction I got when I tried to return the bill wasn't what I was hoping for.

Yep. How audiences react is critical.

Not magic related, but still applicable here - I shake hands ALL the time. Something that is very, very normal in my circles. I'd normally never bat an eye at the prospect of shaking a hand with a stranger.

Yesterday I was picking up takeout and while standing in line a friendly stranger introduced himself to me and reached out for a handshake. You see, I live in Seattle, the Covid-19 Epicenter of the US. My circumstances have recently changed regarding handshakes. By instinct, I still extended my hand, but mentally my brain threw a fit about it. It was super weird - a very foreign experience to me. I chatted with the guy, he got his food first and left. I hit the hand sanitizer that was sitting on the counter the second he was out of sight. Nothing to do with the guy, and everything to do with recent social changes.

You don't know how people are going to react to something like, say, Serial Biller, but you can certainly take an educated guess. If you tried to hand that bill to me you would not get a good reaction. We've really got to be mindful of the social distancing that is going to be pushed into our identities over the next few months. What was acceptable a couple months ago may not be acceptable anymore after all of this is done.

Just a little something to keep in mind.

// L
 

Josh Burch

Elite Member
Aug 11, 2011
2,961
1,096
Utah
I had a walk around gig last night. I didn't do any of my normal material. I thought I'd share.

My routine looked like this:
3 Fly
Super Ball
Crazy Man's Handcuffs
Mis-made Bill
Invisible Deck/Chicago Opener

3 Fly - "I've had to change the way I perform. This is how I exchange money at the moment..."

Superball by Nathan Kranzo - "This is a 50 cent piece, you can't buy much with them! This is what I would buy."

CMH - Typical presentation. I have several linking band routines and other penetrations and such as well. I usually read my audience impand justr improvise.

Mis-made - "I'd usually borrow a bill but with our current situation I hope you don't mind if I use my own. This is a great illustration of our current financial climate. Hopefully everything will come back to normal soon."

This worked great! My mis-made bill if very gimmicked, but none wanted to touch it! The line about things returning back to normal worked well to motivate the return as well. The reactions I got from this was great!

Invisible Deck - "this is a sanitary deck, you hold onto this one I'll hold onto this one you can see..."

Chicago Opener - I motivated the use of the Hindu force by saying that this is how you choose a card without actually touching a deck.

I did something different yesterday with the Chicago Opener as well. I would cut the deck at a random place and say that the face of their card had changed. This is usually a crappy hackline, but in this case it foreshadowed the change of the face of the card at the end of the trick. I would look at them and say, "You don't look impressed. Okay I will change it back but I will also change the color of the back."

Usually I place the changed card on a table or something, last night I placed it in my jacket breast pocket in full view.

Here is how I handled my pocket management. I carried four half dollars in my left outside jacket pocket as well as the Superball gimmick. In my right outside pocket I carried the Chicago opener deck and a haunted key, so that I can show people how I have been practicing doing things without using my hands. Usually, I perform the haunted key in the spectator's hand but last night I did it in mine. It plays well though I only do it for younger audiences. In my shirt breast pocket I carried the mismade bill. I placed my phone and a wallet in my inside left jacket pocket and the invisible deck in my inside right jacket pocket. In either of my front pants pockets I carried D'Lites. In my back left pocket I carried a magnet and in my back right pocket I carried my car keys. On my wrist I used four blue rainbow rubber bands.

Everything went very smoothly. Feel free to borrow or steal anything you see above :)
 
Apr 26, 2013
24
5
I had a walk around gig last night. I didn't do any of my normal material. I thought I'd share.

My routine looked like this:
3 Fly
Super Ball
Crazy Man's Handcuffs
Mis-made Bill
Invisible Deck/Chicago Opener

3 Fly - "I've had to change the way I perform. This is how I exchange money at the moment..."

Superball by Nathan Kranzo - "This is a 50 cent piece, you can't buy much with them! This is what I would buy."

CMH - Typical presentation. I have several linking band routines and other penetrations and such as well. I usually read my audience impand justr improvise.

Mis-made - "I'd usually borrow a bill but with our current situation I hope you don't mind if I use my own. This is a great illustration of our current financial climate. Hopefully everything will come back to normal soon."

This worked great! My mis-made bill if very gimmicked, but none wanted to touch it! The line about things returning back to normal worked well to motivate the return as well. The reactions I got from this was great!

Invisible Deck - "this is a sanitary deck, you hold onto this one I'll hold onto this one you can see..."

Chicago Opener - I motivated the use of the Hindu force by saying that this is how you choose a card without actually touching a deck.

I did something different yesterday with the Chicago Opener as well. I would cut the deck at a random place and say that the face of their card had changed. This is usually a crappy hackline, but in this case it foreshadowed the change of the face of the card at the end of the trick. I would look at them and say, "You don't look impressed. Okay I will change it back but I will also change the color of the back."

Usually I place the changed card on a table or something, last night I placed it in my jacket breast pocket in full view.

Here is how I handled my pocket management. I carried four half dollars in my left outside jacket pocket as well as the Superball gimmick. In my right outside pocket I carried the Chicago opener deck and a haunted key, so that I can show people how I have been practicing doing things without using my hands. Usually, I perform the haunted key in the spectator's hand but last night I did it in mine. It plays well though I only do it for younger audiences. In my shirt breast pocket I carried the mismade bill. I placed my phone and a wallet in my inside left jacket pocket and the invisible deck in my inside right jacket pocket. In either of my front pants pockets I carried D'Lites. In my back left pocket I carried a magnet and in my back right pocket I carried my car keys. On my wrist I used four blue rainbow rubber bands.

Everything went very smoothly. Feel free to borrow or steal anything you see above :)
You are inspiring. You protect yourself and your audience without loss of entertainment impact. I tip my top hat to you.
 
Apr 26, 2013
24
5
And now restaurants and bars are closed in my state. The last venue gone. I am going to rework my act like Josh has done. Please everyone stay safe.
 

Josh Burch

Elite Member
Aug 11, 2011
2,961
1,096
Utah
precautions: get with the program and stay home for a few weeks.

Of course I'm staying inside at the moment! A lot has happened over the last week, and when this thread was first posted things were different than they are now. Heck in my area schools were open Wednesday ,Thursday, and Friday.

I make 100% of my money through magic. I can't just turn down a high paying gig, without worrying about how I'm going to pay my bills.

So, when I was asked to perform at a walk around gig I did and I was as careful as I could be.

Now things have changed. The CDC have changed their recommendations for social gatherings and I will follow the recommendations as much as possible. In the future, and during flu season my post would still probably be a good resource for those of us who want to perform without spreading disease in general.
 
Apr 26, 2013
24
5
Of course I'm staying inside at the moment! A lot has happened over the last week, and when this thread was first posted things were different than they are now. Heck in my area schools were open Wednesday ,Thursday, and Friday.

I make 100% of my money through magic. I can't just turn down a high paying gig, without worrying about how I'm going to pay my bills.

So, when I was asked to perform at a walk around gig I did and I was as careful as I could be.

Now things have changed. The CDC have changed their recommendations for social gatherings and I will follow the recommendations as much as possible. In the future, and during flu season my post would still probably be a good resource for those of us who want to perform without spreading disease in general.
Josh Burch, Please comment on an ideal I am considering; In some close-up environments, a bar, a causal party or similar, during flu season or whatever is next, if I can use table space, I may place a pump jar of hand sanitizer on the table and invite audience members to use it before handling my props. "For their protection, and other audience members." I wonder how a general audience would react? It may be acceptable in the first few months when we recover from this shut down. But later? Would it just highlight the risk they might not have thought of?
It would make an unique alternative to 'Card under Salt Shaker'.
 

Josh Burch

Elite Member
Aug 11, 2011
2,961
1,096
Utah
Josh Burch, Please comment on an ideal I am considering; In some close-up environments, a bar, a causal party or similar, during flu season or whatever is next, if I can use table space, I may place a pump jar of hand sanitizer on the table and invite audience members to use it before handling my props. "For their protection, and other audience members." I wonder how a general audience would react? It may be acceptable in the first few months when we recover from this shut down. But later? Would it just highlight the risk they might not have thought of?
It would make an unique alternative to 'Card under Salt Shaker'.

I don't know how it would play but I know Paul Draper was planning on using sanitizer and rubber gloves for a show he was going to do at Disneyland this last week. The gig was cancelled but it's an interesting approach.

I feel like it's not necessary. I feel like it's similar to replacing meat with a meat substitute, when the best vegan food is just naturally vegan. It never pretends to be meat.

My approach would just be to change my material.
 
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