One thing I hate when performing is forgetting or mispronouncing an act’s name if I have to introduce them. Recently a show I was performing on had an performer whose stage name wasn’t the name I knew them by, and the stage name was unusual.
To make it easy, I put a cheat sheet on my table:
You’ll notice the name is spelled out phonetically. That helps me read it at a glance. It really makes a difference, rather than seeing how they spell it and trying to figure it out.
Many years ago I started adding rules to what I do in my show. Sometimes I break these rule, but when I do it’s intentional. Usually these come about by me seeing something I don’t like in someone else’s show and want to make sure I don’t do it in my show.
One of the rules I have is that I don’t use the names of other magicians in my show. There’s a simple reason for that, I don’t want people thinking of other shows they could be seeing. Why would I talk about David Blaine in my show, the audience will immediately compare me to him.
Also when you mention another magician, you run the risk of people not knowing who the person is. I recently watched a show where someone mentioned Jeff McBride and I’m guessing most of the people had no idea who Jeff is. That just confuses people, unless you then explain who the person is, which in most cases.
Not too long ago I was in a variety show and provided an introduction to an MC. They didn’t use what I provided and used a “stock joke” intro that went something like, “you’ve heard of David Copperfield, David Blaine, Doug Henning…well so has he…” This is a bad intro. First of all it’s selfish for the MC to not use the provided intro without asking me. Second, that joke doesn’t move the show forward or provide any info on the act they are about to see. The intro I provided does.
What you do in your show is up to you, but is it really necessary to mention Houdini’s name or are you just being lazy?