One thing that I often hear magicians say is that they never perform for people unless they are paid. That’s bunk. Personally I usually have a deck of cards in my pocket, not because I want to show people tricks, but it allows me to practice when I have unexpected downtime.
Stuck in the drive thru line at the bank…I can bang out a few practice false shuffles.
Recently I was picking my agent up at the airport in Billings, MT and her checked luggage as well as about 30 other people’s luggage were left behind in Seattle. That meant a long wait (over 2 hours!) to file their baggage claims.
She had taken my banner as “carry on” to the plane. So I popped up the banner and did a show for the people waiting!
It really made a difference in the people’s day! Also the trick that I’m doing in the above video was published in an issue of Vanish Magazine from a couple of months ago.
In addition to a deck of cards that’s usually in my pocket, I have an impromptu show that lives in my wallet. This show is short at about 15 mins, but it’s got a beginning, middle and end. This isn’t just a series of tricks, it’s a show. I highly recommend you have show you can do from you wallet. It doesn’t need to play for 500 people, but a good, solid 10-15 mins of close up. The book The Impromptu Mystifier is what got me to put this show together and in it the author gives a great frame work for how to structure the show.
I’m not saying you should force your magic on anyone, but you also never know when you’ll be in a position to perform.