"Just Cut to the Chase!"

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by James Smith, Aug 25, 2009.

  1. #1 James Smith, Aug 25, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 25, 2009
    I spent my summer practicing not only my sleights, but my presentation. So that when I go back to school, I would be ready to astonish. I worked very hard on scripts for effects I often use at school like the Biddle Trick, Two-Card Monte, and a transpo I came up with.

    My first day of high school was yesterday, and if you understand basic math you probably know what today was. I've mainly been doing those three effects, but I also did Redline and the Crazy Man's Handcuffs a couple of times. In the last two days I've probably done about fifteen performances, in almost all of them, during my patter, I heard the same thing, "Just do the f*****g trick!"

    Today during the Biddle Trick at lunch I was talking about the visible and invisible ways controlling cards. I had my break, and the guy said, "Who cares? Just pull out my f*****g card." I did a Herman shift and revealed it on top and said, (in a funny way) "There's your f*****g card."

    After school today I was doing a transpo, I was about how Jokers can be used as wild cards, so I want you to imagine that the Joker is your card. I heard from behind me "Just cut to the chase!"

    Yesterday morning before class I was doing the Crazy Man's Handcuffs, and talking about how they don't make good handcuffs and heard, "Can you just show me the trick?"

    Now, there are two possible reasons this could be happy, the first one is what you all will say, "Just work on your patter, it probably sux." Now, this is my theory, they don't care. They don't want to see me put on a show, they want to see a trick.

    Slightly disappointed, I began walking home, on the way, I saw the "Cut to the chase" guy. I decided to show him two-card Monte, but this time, I was different. I was more commanding, and to be honest, a David Blaine copy. Although I didn't like stealing his character, it worked out a lot better. He was amazed, and never got bored during the effect.

    I will continue to work on my presentation, I understand that teens are a lot different than most spectators. I would like to hear your guys' thoughts on this.

    Good bye, I've got homework to do...

    -Dave out

    Edit: I would like to point out that these people asked me to perform magic for them, I started magic back in middle school, and I've built up a reputation for it. Also, the people were not in a rush, it was during lunch, before school, during long passing, and after school.
  2. I haven't got the courage to perform at school. But yeah we teens are so impaticence and just want to see a trick. I also have homework, butttttttttt I hold on to it.
  3. And this is why the most simple patter is the best.
    Use simple rules, to create something extra-ordinary. Search up EchoChrome PSN.
  4. Oh and to impatient people I just glimpse a card, force it, and say it out loud after staring them down.
    Then they shut up.
  5. This entire year, my reputation has held itself up. Which is AWESOME.

    But every class, someone requests that I get up in front of the class (which actually has turned into a sorta informal Psychology assignment) and perform. It ROCKS.

    But I have NEVER had that happen, and my patter isn't that good.

    I think that the only time you will get that "JUST FIND MY CARD" thing is if someone is REALLY impatient or in a BIG hurry, and either way, you shouldn't be performing for that person. Simple.

    You kinda have to set up a "formal" show style to get away with doing actual presentation. If someone wants to just see a quick trick and get back to schoolwork, then... You know, show them a quick trick and get back to schoolwork... lol

    Actually, this is a GREAT thread and should become a Cerca Trova (or BAWIs Socka Trova, but I digress). I just feel that you have to be commanding, and entertaining, but don't keep them there too long.

    Comedians have this thing called Laughs Per Minute. That is, if you don't get a certain amount, people get bored. The same happens with magic. It doesn't matter if you are finishing by ACTUALLY levitating a table and slamming it across the head of someone, people won't be entertained by it if they are asleep because you took to long.

    So, in a sense, yeah, cut to the chase. If you feel like presenting something, set up something semi-formal. Get up in front of the class. Get people involved.

    Most importantly, perform as who you are. ;)
  6. You should try it. Nothing is better practice than a hundred rowdy teenagers trying to spoil the trick!

    It really gets you thinking, and you can REALLY build a reputation with it.


    Best of luck, to you, and to the person who made this thread.
  7. Thats true. I just need a bit more tricks in my aresnal, then bang.
  8. What Kind of trick do you perform in front of a whole class? are they all in front of you or on different sides? because if your 3/4 surrounded, most tricks are hard to do.
  9. One question:

    When do you perform during the school day?
  10. This is a three part problem you're trying to deal with here, and unless you are able to address all three parts of it, you're not going to get the exact results you desire. This is one part audience control, one part presentation, and one part character.

    Here's the breakdown. Your patter needs to be involving. If you are not activly doing something "magical" then your set up needs to have motivation and meaning. Without knowing your presentation I can't say that you aren't already doing this, but it certainly is something that you should stay focused on.

    Audience control is also a must. Don't be afraid to flat out tell people, "Lets stick to what we're good at. I'll do the magic, and you just watch." Don't be afraid to slow the show down, slow the audience down and take it at a managble pace. If they don't want to do that then simply stop the performance. The one thing worse than a poorly done trick that exposes the method is a well done trick which is rushed and the meaning and magic is lost to instant gratisfication.

    Lastly is character. You have to give them a reason to invest in you. Give them a reason to want to engage you. If you are doing a trick for the sake of doing a trick then you are openly challenging them to watch and try to figure out a puzzle. Give them something to connect to you on and you will find that they'll follow you to just about anywhere.
  11. I am most of the time fully surrounded, sometimes 3/4ths.

    All I have to say is that MOST any trick CAN be done surrounded, contrary to popular belief. I don't have many in my arsenal that can't...

    Pressure by Daniel Garcia has played VERY well recently in front of the crowds. They LOVE it, it plays big, and is NEARLY angleproof if you do it right. Another good one is 3 Card Monte. Once again, plays large enough for a whole class, and it has some great comedy moments.

    The key to performing in school is to say nice things about the class, and the teacher. You will be able to keep performing in there.

    And too the thing about the angles, misdirection is your best friend! ;)
  12. These people, personally, I think are people who don't want to see a trick... They aren't interested in being fooled and just want to see something.

    I'm not going to say work on your patter. You already have and that's good. You've worked on it and worked on a character, which, I think, is most important. Work on what you feel comfortable with and what you think is the best way for you to perform. If certain people just want you to "Cut to the chase", either find a comeback to shut them up, or ignore it. I know, magic is interactive, but it's most important, to me, to remember to keep them as well as yourself in control. You dictate where the show goes, not them.

    But it's great that you're out there and working on it. You can practice in a mirror all you want, but doing it for people will help you grow leaps and bounds.
  13. You should try it, it is a lot of fun.

    I would agree with that statement for street magic, but stage, and more formal close-up performances I would disagree.

    That's cool man, and thanks for the advice. The thing is, these were at lunch, before school, or after school, when no one was rushed. Most of them came up to me to see a trick. (Including, "Just pull out my f*****g card!"

    Before school, long passing period, lunch, and after school.

    I see what you're saying here, a very informative post. The only thing I didn't work on over the summer was audience control. I performed some street magic, but they were mostly adults, so they were nice to a kid.

    I've decided to use a different character at school. I mainly use a slightly more confident version of myself as my character, but I think that just doesn't work for school. I'm definitely going to adopt a more "Blaine" character, but with more jokes, and faster paced.

    Once again thanks, very informative post.

    Well said, I did street magic this Summer, which definitely helped with audience control, but they were all nice to a kid.

    Thanks for all of the replies, I really appreciate it. I hope this thread can be of help to others who perform at school.
  14. Performing or doing my Homework. LOL
  15. Performing, ha ha. Homework is fun, :( :rolleyes: :p ok, I just couldn't keep a straight face with that one.
  16. Well I think some people just (get ready this will be a shocker) ...don't like magic!!!!!!!!!!!

    That was a bit over-dramatic but really though, magic has been set such a bad reputation that many just don't enjoy it anymore.

    My advice is that if you're going to show someone a trick, make sure they ACTUALLY wanna see a trick and they're not just trying to be nice. If you have a feeling they're just being nice, just do something quick and visual to set your reputation. If they don't want to see more then leave but you may find that they're so amazed that they want to see more which is where you would go into a longer trick like the biddle trick.

    Hope this helps,
  17. Maybe I should've mentioned that these people asked to see some magic, I started magic back in middle school, so I have a reputation for it.
  18. You made a huge mistake!!! I´m telling you because that´s the same mistake I did when I was starting...
    I burned my magic very easily, I used to jump when anybody asked me to see a trick, fifteen performances in just 2 days is a bit too much, because you don´t have a very large arsenal and maybe everybody already saw most of them.
    I always try to make every performance special, by caring about my reputation and my magic, I respect my magic that´s why I don´t go around telling people "do you wanna see a trick?" or flourishing so everybody can see me... maybe that´s why keep telling you to "just cut to the chase" because they don´t respect you and that´s because you don´t respect your magic, I know is exciting to do magic and the rush feel that It brings while performing, but you have a talent and that talent must me used wisely and carefully.

    that doesn´t happen to me anymore since I changed my way of performing, now I perform 3-4 times a week, but 2 of those performances are serious performances (someone hired me or I´m in a club etc) and the other one is casual and the last one is especially for testing new tricks or patter, I have never get a "just cut to the chase" or anything since I started to respect my magic.

    Maybe it could be your patter is not good, I read around this forums about a patter in static using Tom And Jerry, which I didn´t like because it was too long and didn´t make any sense to me and I repeat TO ME, maybe t works for ther people, but if your patter is boring or you beat around the bush too long people usually get tired or have something else to do.

    that´what I have to say about this topic
  19. You started back in middle school and you have a reputation for it? Maybe that reputation is you perform bad magic and thats why their reactions initially are the way they are. It makes sense now. Anyhow I'm not trying to down on you I actually commend you for realizing it now and asking questions and trying to understand why your approach isn't working. William broke it down for you enough so I won't touch on the topic in hand except for one piece of advice Davey; I hear what everyones saying but there's one thing that is a major thing thats been forgotten here. That's suspense. One of the biggest problems with certain performers is they believe long, thought out dialogue builds interest in their tricks, the only problem is it couldn't be further from the truth unless what your doing is relevent to the dialogue in a suspensful manner. I'm not talking about the redundant BS you hear from youtube zombies but rather that moment in time where timing, delivery, practicality, and reason all come together to build legit interest in what your doing and you stop performing for yourself but rather perform for your audience.
  20. Hey, here's my advice- and it's completely credible, since 1- I am in high school (Grade 11), and have a good reputation for performing. Here's my story.

    When I first started, I did extremely simple things- the two card monte for instance, or just a simple force and a mind read- performing after I'd only started magic for about two months. People loved it. BUT, and a big one- they expected magic. They'd see me in the halls and command me to do a trick, like a slave- and I would.

    Over the past two high school years, I've figured this- the less you perform, the more valuable you are. Tomorrow, when you go into school, and are asked to see a trick, stop- and say, "I've got to get to class; but I'm working on something awesome, I'll show you guys later." You've got them hooked. Just perform less and when you DO perform, absolutely floor them.

    If they tell you to cut to the chase, just flat out tell them, hey, do you want to see magic or not? It doesn't happen this easily, punk.

    For your problem of just making your magic more interesting, you need an emotional hook- something that absolutely grabs their attention. Here's a really good one. Try this one time and see the reaction, and if it's bad, you can discredit all my advice. Force a card on a spectator. Have them shuffle it in. Ask them a PERSONAL QUESTION- their birthday, their middle name, and do false mental calculations, as if it matters. Slowly reveal their card, then pull it out of a sealed envelope/pocket/library book, etc. Just make sure you ask them a personal question.

    I found I performed less, but when I finally pulled a pack of cards out in the hall, a crowd would form, because they rarely ever see me perform.

    Hope this helps, feel free to pm me for any more advice (if you liked this advice... lol)

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