How do I get gigs?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by adriangaunt3, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. Hey guys I have been doing magic for a while but I have never knew how to get gigs
    Please help me

    Thanks!
     
  2. Hi Adrian,

    I am new to the forum myself but not new to magic.
    I would suggest getting some business cards printed and start distributing. Once you manage to get a gig you will probably find that you may get a booking from someone else at the venue for another event if they like how you perform. This is generally how it happens for me. I've also been recommended to people from family members or friends etc. This can also lead to more bookings.
    Word of mouth is priceless.
    Some people use social networks to promote...it all depends on the person but I would definitely think about business cards if you haven't already.
    Hope this helps
     
  3. Here's the step nearly everyone forgets to do before they head out to get shows -- THEY DON'T HAVE A SHOW.

    First Question should be "What Market Is Practical To Me Now?"

    We're not talking about the demographic that you want to work in but what niche is easiest for you to fill given your current age, experience level, inventory, the region or community you live in, etc.?

    For the majority of us that are first starting out there are 3 key options;

    1.) Kiddie Shows
    2.) Close-up @ a Local Eatery (usually at low pay @ a family establishment)
    3.) Busking

    If you are lucky enough to get the family dining establishment you can use it as a springboard towards other (better paying) goals like doing Kiddie Shows (initially) and ultimately the development and targeting of adult groups via organizations like the Jaycee's, Moose, Elks, IOOF, Churches, Country Clubs, etc. This will in turn lead you into local business functions which will ultimately lend to you the opportunity to move into corporate events, trade shows, etc.

    Busking is fun and educational but unless you live in an area known for tourism and have a spot with high foot traffic you will go hungry; you're better off with a pitchman's routine such as Svengali & Stripper Decks or "How To" bits with Balloon Sculpting, etc. But to do this involves a bit of an up-front investment on your part, of time and cash. But remember, people will associate you with a given persona when you do this kind of work and the job offers will rarely entail a serious level of compensation.

    AGE is a big issue; young people (under 25) will have a more difficult time when it comes to creating a niche within the adult entertainment & corporate event market unless they've taken the time to create the proper look and style that fits said niche. Because of this one must go with what is practical to your situation NOW and once established and generating an income from that persona, look at how to evolve from that platform into other things; usually over a 5 year plan of action.

    Don't Look at the Exceptions Out There. . . you will easily find 12 year old kids that are talented enough to work a Vegas show spot but look at the greater picture; these are usually kids with strong family backing, money and connections. They have been coached by people that have "an eye" as well as knowledge of the craft. You aren't likely to be working with such advantages and so, you will have to carve a niche out for yourself. This includes people & situations like David Blaine and other "buskers" in that they are the rare exception -- the very rare success tale e.g. stay in the now and within the parameters of your own situation & reality. Think about what is possible/plausible right now for you.

    You've Got to Have a Product. . . don't try to get a gig unless you have a thoroughly rehearsed & scripted program that you know like the back of your own hand. Be prepared! Don't book a gig that's coming in two weeks and then hop on the boards asking us what you need to do and what effects are best -- this is the path taken by loosers that aren't serious about their magic and more so, aren't realistic when it comes to the BUSINESS of Show Business. . . and yes, this is a rule that applies to the hobbyist just as much as it does the full time performer.

    As someone just starting out you will be doing a lot of "Free" spots just to get noticed but, do not get into the habit or create the reputation of working for free or even cheap. Start right now limiting the charity groups you'll work with and how often. I suggest that you have no more than 5 such clients, leaving room for catastrophic actions such as we saw around Hurricane Sandy a few years back. During your first year or two do as many talent contests as you can as well as regional magic competitions. If there is an annual festival or special event in your community that will give you media attention then by all means, jump in there and grab as many headlines as you can muster But, don't let them abuse you. Be gracious but after a couple of years of free or cheap contribution of time & talent, start expecting some pay. . . maybe due to a growing work schedule (one of the best excuses).

    These are the stepping stones and what you need to weigh. Make a plan just as you would any business venture and stick to it. Know that what money you may have coming in during the first couple of years IS NOT YOURS, it belongs to the show and future venture i.e. costumes, sets, props, insurance, storage, marketing, etc. your day will come to reap the benefits but not as soon as most of us project.

    Best of luck!
     

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