Please...Have A Purpose.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by emagician, Jun 9, 2015.

  1. Hey there T11 community,

    I don't post often and I hope all is well. I will make this short and sweet.

    I am reminded every time that I see an ill performance on the internet, or even in person (as I did today).

    Please have a purpose for your magic, and make sure that this purpose resonates with your audience.

    (I don't care if you are using sponge bunnies, or if you do cardistry, this still applies.)

    Discussion is appreciated.

    That's all,

  2. I think purpose can take an effect to a new level, however it would be helpful for you to clarify what you mean by purpose. It's too easy for people to just say "the purpose is to entertain" (or some other general statement). However I assume that you mean something more-care to elaborate?

    David Copperfield changed the game by adding meaning, themes, and story to his effects. It's the reason he's one of the best.
  3. I dont see how this is any less valid.
  4. Saying "my purpose is to entertain" is too vague. Just like saying "my purpose is to astonish." The real question is HOW do YOU entertain or astonish your spectators?

    My purpose is to entertain my spectators by weaving stories, humor and magic together in a way that evokes a range of emotions in my audience and makes them feel that they are part of the show.
  5. "My job as a magician is to inspire doubt in my spectator's reality."

    This is my "purpose" for doing magic, or my end goal in performing magic, if you will. This sounds like a "radical" opinion, but it's what really drives me to be a better performer. I want to perform my magic on such a level that my spectator cannot come up with any solution for the effect other than "It's magic!"

    Maybe I'm interpreting the question wrong. Maybe you mean the purpose that the spectators perceive?
  6. My purpose, as a magician, is to involve spectators and encourage them in performing magical? impossible feats in a place in which they may feel helpless (a hospital).

    My purpose in cardistry is to send a message to those who need it. And to help the cardistry community by invigorating and educating individuals in the cardistry community
  7. As David mentioned, it's too vague. We must ask ourselves "How do I want them to feel?" Do I want them to laugh, be surprised, tense, sympathetic, or moved to tears? That's all.

    I was also thinking that one doesn't have to ask this question to do a trick, but the question still has an answer even if we didn't ask it. Why not be in control of this element and make your magic far more interesting and powerful to watch?
    RealityOne likes this.
  8. I think the original post may be too vague; 'purpose' in what sense?

    In one sense, it's to earn money. In others, it's to be a creative outlet, a way to get validation from others, to be a personal challenge of dexterity, writing, and acting, etc.

    The purpose of theatre (of which magic is a subset) is entertainment - and this can take many forms. There's comedy and drama, it can be lightweight fare that entertains briefly and is soon forgotten, or can speak deeply to our humanity and make us see with new eyes - but if it's not entertaining, it's not really a success.

    So 'purpose' may not be the best way to phrase what I think the OP is asking. The purpose is to entertain, but how? What (ostensibly) motivates the performance and the performer? What is it trying to impart upon the audience? If successful, what should the audience take from the performance?

    For me, I hope to give the audience an experience of the impossible, given by a (hopefully) amusing character, and from that they have a story to tell others - "we were walking downtown, and there's a crowd gathering around this guy with a table set up with some rope, a deck of cards and these three cups, so we stop to see what's going on..."
    emagician likes this.
  9. Great thoughts, Justin and others. I do have my own opinion on what this means, but my main goal was to stimulate discussion and see what it meant to others in the magic community. Now, for what it means to me...

    The way I see it, every effect that I perform has a meaning that goes past "getting reactions" from or "fooling" the audience, even entertaining! I want to entertain, of course, but I also want to invoke a sense of inspiration and convey a useful message that those in the audience will never forget, and more importantly, take note of for the future. This doesn't ALWAYS have to be a serious message, but I almost always want some kind of moral or inspiration to shine through.

    This way magic can be seen through a different lens than just entertainment; it can be seen as a way to change lives and convey powerful messages. As magicians, we are very fortunate to have the full attention of others (especially kids) because what we do IS captivating and intriguing. * But what if we could take this attention and look at it as an opportunity to convey powerful messages/morals/motivation/inspiration that might not normally be recognized or listened to otherwise? *

    dbmagic and Justin.Morris like this.
  10. I'm in a different position to others, I only perform magic for my 5 year old niece. My purpose is twofold, selfishly my purpose is to see the look of amazement on her face when she sees a miracle or better yet when it happens in her own hands. More importantly though my purpose is to instill in her the belief that anything is possible.

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