In my roving magic shows in Arizona, my set was essentially two parts. The first part coin magic, which is about one third of the close up set. The second part is my card set which in the remaining two thirds of it.
Here’s a little highlight reel of my close up roving magic set:
Sometimes I will another part to this, and that is the shell game. I don’t do the shell game for every group as it really needs to be the right group for it to play how I want it to play.
Also, I’m really digging Craig Petty’s Apparition coin set! One thing with it is I’m trying to use the purse less. Right now the coin set I’m doing with it has four parts and only the first two use the purse. I’ll probably write a bit more about what I’m doing with the Apparition coin set and why I’m doing it the way I am.
I’ve been working on a thing that I used to do, which is a three phase card revelation. The premise is that I’m going to find their card three times. The first uses two hands, the second uses one hand and third uses no hands.
It begins with the Piet Forton Pop Out, then Daryl’s Hotshot Cut and the final revelation is Haunted 2.0. When I did this previously I was having trouble with the transition between the last two phases. Essentially there was a strange moment after the hot shot cut where I had to find the gimmicked card for the Haunted 2.0. I hit on the solution, which was for me to use the Hot Shot Cut to throw the card to the person. Them catching the card, or it landing in their lap gives me the few seconds I need to find the gimmick.
Here’s the three phase routine that was recorded by someone by this family:
That was recorded at the end of the life of the Haunted 2.0 gimmick and it needed to rebuilt, so it didn’t have as much action in it as I’d like, however the seemed to like it!
Also in the video is the first half of my main card set.
On this podcast we welcome in the troubadour himself Eric Haines. We discuss all the disciplines Eric implements into his show, how he came to be so good at all of them and how he found his calling with the One Man Band. We learn why someone would want to play so many instruments at once and all the great opportunities it has granted him. A really great conversation over Zoom with a one man Moisture Fest.
Today I was playing with doing the vanishing birdcage with my sleeves rolled up like Tommy Wonder.
I’m using my Take Up Reel, but I’m not using a double action pull like Tommy Wonder used. The double action pull would reduce arm movement a little bit, however I have a lot of stuff happening on my back and I’m worried that adding another line and the bulk associated with that would be asking for trouble!
Honestly, I’m fine doing the vanishing birdcage with my sleeves down, it was fun to play with it today to see if I could!
When I was making the sizzle reel for the Incredible Idiom show, I was was realizing that this is a show that I would like to do for a long time. I’m a fan of this show, it was something that I created to create and when I was writing it, I never thought I was going to do it. For me this was “art” and not creating something to make money.
Years ago I did an anti bully school assembly and it was created to make money that’s it. I hated doing the show. My heart wasn’t in it, but it did make a lot of money! I stopped doing it when I realized that I got no joy of performing the show.
The Incredible Idioms is different and I really enjoy the concept of the show. I decided I should protect my idea, so the first step I did was file the federal trademark for the show’s title.
I honestly don’t know why more magicians don’t trademark the titles of their shows when they have a cool one. It cost $250 to file and I did the paper work in about 10 minutes. Now I have to wait about a year for it to get processed, but it’s worth it to me to protect my idea!
Somethings surprise me, like the success of my Incredible Idioms show. This is a school assembly / library show that I’ve done about 125 times since January of this year and I’ve done all those shows with zero promo! All I had one a one paragraph description that I’ve sent out.
I finally sat down and made a sizzle reel for it.
It’s cool that I was able to do the show that many times based only on my reputation!
Last week when I was performing in Grand Island, Nebraska I met up with Nate Myers who is magician who lives there. We met up at the Perkins, and while I love jamming with magicians I prefer doing it at bars over restaurants. The main reason is that bars have a more casual feel and it’s less intrusive if someone has an idea they want to try on someone. Walking up to and chatting with random people is more common in a bar than in a restaurant.
That said, I’ll take jamming in a restaurant over not jamming any day!
As we were leaving the waitress asked to show her a magic trick. I grabbed 4 pennies out of the “need an penny” dish and did a quick trick:
I learned this trick as a kid from the Klutz Book of Magic. It’s a great impromptu coins across that can be done with pretty much any for small items that look the same. If you don’t know the trick, it’s totally worth tracking down that book and learning it, it’s a great trick to have in your brain for an impromptu situation.
In the past I had made a 25ish minute emergency magic show that fits into a little pouch about the size of a sandwich bag. I keep this in my car and it’s come in handy several times since I made it.
In reading Doc Dixon’s book The Show is the Mother of Invention, it got me thinking of expanding this emergency pouch into a small show, not an emergency show. The emergency show was had tricks that I can do, but don’t do and were selected for the size of the trick, not necessarily if the trick was a good fit for my personality.
While I was killing time in a town the other day, I was walking through a junk shop and found a small doctor’s bag.
This bag was cheap at $20 and it’s still really small and won’t take up much room in the trunk of my car, but will allow me turn that 25 minute emergency show into a better show. I have a lot more space to play with and can put things that fit me better into it and things that will play for a larger audience.
Something that the larger size of the case will let me do that the pouch won’t is to put a couple of audio cables into it so the show will have music. This will add production value to the show.
I’m starting to put the show together, but I’m still on the road performing for another month and a half, so it probably won’t be done until I’m home and can add a few more props to it.
The other day I posted about an act leaving their backdrop onstage during my show. Besides it being clutter on stage I did voice a concern about it in the wind.
They blew off my suggestions
Well, the next day it got windy and the backdrop started swaying and I took this picture as it blew onto another act on the stage!
The sound guy and I jumped onto the stage, pulled it off of the other act and laid the backdrop flat on the ground. I then went to the backdrop’s owner’s trailer and of course they weren’t onsite. I told them about it when they returned and they blew me off again.
I have a mindset onstage that’s “Your convenience is not my inconvenience“. What that means is that if something makes your show easier to set up, but makes my show harder to do, then I say NO and am firm about it.
Before my next show the act that had the back drop was trying to tether it and I told them it could not be up during my show. They said they’d tether it better and I told them it couldn’t be up onstage during my shows. It’s a safety issue for me, my props and anyone from the audience onstage.
They told me that the event said they could leave it onstage, so I sent the picture of it falling on the other act to our boss along with me voicing my safety concern. Included in the message was that I wanted a record of my safety concern for their backdrop onstage incase something happened during my show to reduce my liability.
They had to take it down during other peoples shows. I’ve watched them set it up and take it down after their shows and it literally takes a few minutes. The only reason to leave it up is laziness.
Don’t let someone else’s laziness affect your show. Working with a band that wants to leave guitars in your performing area, tell them to move them. It’s your stage during your set, if you need 10 X 10 feet or whatever to perform in, tell them that and they need to move their stuff.
Now your show is a success or failure on your terms, not because you have to deal with a backdrop smashing your stuff or shrinking your show because a band won’t move a guitar.