Right now we’re deep into the corporate holiday party performing season. Tomorrow being the second Saturday of December which is the most requested day for holiday parties. That means if you aren’t working tomorrow you should be.
The number one question I get from magicians starting out is, “How do I get shows?” The answer for me was giving to me when I saw Rudy Coby lecture in the late 1990’s was to constantly be working.
So how do you do that if you don’t have any work? Simple, look for it and then take it. Don’t worry about the money, just take the gig.
I know this flies in the face of what every magician in facebook groups tell you when they say things like, “you must charge at least $xxx.xx”. You need stage time to get good before you can charge money.
For me when I was about 19 or 20 I started performing in these late night “after hours” shows. These would be after the bars closed. You would work for maybe 10 bucks, however I was honing my craft, developing my style, and most importantly failing!
As a performing, especially when starting out, you need to take risks, you need to push some boundries and you need to fall flat on your face. This is really hard to do at a $2,000 gig, but it’s easy to do for ten bucks.
Another venue I started performing at when I was first starting out was retirement communities. I learned that they had a monthly budget for entertainment. These shows didn’t pay a ton, but there were a lot of them!
I eventually wrote a book on doing shows at retirement communities. This book covers how to contact them, how to book them and even some tips on doing the gig. You can get more info on this at www.perform4seniors.com.
The key is to simply get out and perform. When I was starting out the internet didn’t really exist. Now it’s easier than ever to find an open mic. A quick search on Craigslist shows several listings looking for performers.
Go out and do perform!