I've lost the true value of performing.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by VagueTheory, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. Hey guys. I am terribly sorry if there was already another post like this. I did use the search engine, but didn't really know what I could've look up.

    I'm almost 100% positive that ALL of us magicians have a similar goal/purpose/desire for their performance of magic: and that's to entertain LAYMEN, am I correct?

    However, I find myself trying to create sophisticated methods and combine unnecessary techniques to create tricks/routines that fool magicians.

    I remember my magic mentor telling me that the simpler you keep your tricks/routines, the better it is for your audience. However, I try so hard to make my performances foolproof that it might actually look weird to laymen. The main purpose of this art is to entertain laymen, rather than magicians, am I correct?

    I hope you guys understand what I'm talking about. It's kind of hard to explain through typing...

    But have you guys ever ran into a similar problem before?
  2. It is a balance you can learn to maintain. I have seen great magicians like Tamariz and Weber devastate lay and magic audiences with the exact same material. Construct your methods to deceive the smartest person in the room but make sure your presentations are clear enough so even the most distracted of observers can still follow them. At the end of the day, though, I always try to ask "why should they care?" Ultimately I think this is where a lot of magic fails - it fails to appeal to people who aren't interested in the thing for the thing's sake. Make your audiences care and everything will fall into place.
  3. This is the problem that young magician faces these days. They are trying to be better at the art, so they're uses difficult sleight and technique. That is not the point of magic. Magic is not about I can do more advance technique than you can. Magic is all about entertaining and putting smiles on your audience faces. So, don't hesitate to use the classic color change over clipshift. Just keep it simple stupid (KISS).
  4. Complicated tricks with complicated sleights doesn't always fool magicians ... What fools magicians most of the time is the simplicity of a trick ...

    An example would be Mr Derren Brown, he takes simple mentalism effects, uses the concept in a different way and with it fool many magicians out there ... Sometimes you would be like WTF, did he influence his decision, did he read his mind, is he reading his body language etc.... when the very method is some simple trickery he is using .... NOT saying he does this all the time, most of what he does is genuine. I'm just using him as an example because after i found out how some of his effects work, i was completely astonished... i was trying hard to spot the "trick" when it was right under my nose ....
  5. I think this is a phase we all sort of go through, and come out of.

    I feel that whether the technique is complicated or not really isnt an issue, so long as it looks natural. What we have to make sure we do is that the presentation makes it feel simple though.

    I feel that we should try to use the simplest method of achieving the effect, while keeping it as natural as possible. Sometimes, this requires a complicated method to keep it natural, however, this is still the simplest method.

    I think we all like to do magician foolers because magicians respect complex, weird methods, while laymen respect good effects. Its the difference between us an lay audiences, and the reason youll find a lot of magician foolers dont kill laymen as much.

    I feel that there's a time for each of them, and that creating both is a good way to keep yourself broad and open.

    Also, read Ortiz's Strong Magic. He talks about this a little bit when he talks about what circumstances and stuff are important, etc. Not to mention reading the book will dramatically help your magic.

  6. Tommy Wonder had an excellent essay in his books of wonder on the circular nature magicians take when it comes to their tools and use there of. So very true.

    Read Books of Wonder.

    If they don't inspire you, I'm not sure anything will.
  7. Man, hang in there. Grow through this (growth is always painful).

    Spend lots of time studying the classics. Learn why they are classics. This will help you become deeper and broader in your abilities and it will help you understand what makes a great routine great.

    You will come through this a better magician.
  8. My mentor Bill Goodwin gave me good advice that I agree with

    Simplicity is best however fellow magicians, the great ones don't care about being fooled. When you get to a level of skill and knowledge where it is hard to be fooled it all comes down to performance. PERFORMANCE is the real key in magic. I have impressed magicians with crazy man's handcuffs because of my performance. If you want to fool them, good luck, it will most likely be hard. If you want to impress laymen and magicians work on performance. The layman will smile at the slight of hand, the magician will smile at the performance, it is win win.

    Good luck, PM me if I helped or if you need me to elaborate more.

    :) Can't go wrong with a smile at the end of a post. ;) or a wink.
  9. Ah...I'm somewhat relieved that this is just somewhat of a "phase..."

    And I will definitely follow you guys' advice. Thank you all very much!

  10. I just want to say that if you ever find yourself in the position of realizing you have a behavior you don't like, all you have to do is change that behavior. It really is (usually) that easy. Just decide what you want to do, and do it. Or, if you're not really able to pin it down exactly, just try something and work from there.
  11. Please go and buy Darwin Ortiz book designing miracles, he has a chapter on this that will point you in the right direction and help you see the problem clearly.

    Remember that lay people are not trained in sleight of hand so if you do the classic pass or the Super underground master secret dragon of the dark magic lord pass does not matter or make the effect more fooling.

    And then again, how often do you meet a magician? And if you like to fool them why not just keep some effects for them that you dont performe for lay people?

    But buy the Ortiz book.
  12. Sometimes, I do have a weird tendancy to believe that my spectators are aware of the sleights that I use though...

    I know they don't, but I always have a fear that they'll be like, "oh you're doing a PASS!" or something like that...

    That is a major psychological demon that's been affecting me, I guess.

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