In Person and Virtual Shows This Week…

This week I’ll be doing some virtual bits for the Kids’ Entertainer Fest! I think you still can register, and this is a solid line up.

During the day this week I’ll also be performing at the San Mateo County Fair in San Mateo, CA. If you’re in the area, swing by and say hi!

Magic from Taiwan!

One of the fun things about magic, is while social media magic is pretty much the same around the world, in person magic has very different trends in different places. Recently I found a couple of DVD’s of a magic convention in Taiwan.

I already had the 2010 DVD, and now have 2014 and 2016. What I love is the difference in how routines are put together, what the emphasis is on. I really enjoy watching them. If you get the chance to watch convention DVD’s from other countries, I highly recommend it!

PCAM Magic Convention…

Last weekend I attended the PCAM magic convention. It was a lot of fun, and they did a good job of keeping the day moving, it went from 10am to 8pm, then unofficially till about midnight.

When the booker approached me to perform at the convention, I decided to pitch something a little different from an act or lectures. I mentioned the little cooking demos I’ve done, and could do a cocktail for them. They like the idea and I got to do one of little mixology video for them!

It went over well! One of the fun things performing for magicians is when you do unexpected things. In that routine there are a couple of interest to magicians. There’s a production of two rats, which is interesting and the flaming jalapeno pepper. The pepper always surprises me that magicians get excited about that. there have been “flaming” objects around for years, not sure why this one makes an impression…unless it’s that it makes sense as a prop.

I’m glad that my whacky little presentation went well. I’d love to do more and more of these over zoom. It’s a different style of performing magic and I’m really enjoying it.

Magical Mixology…

In a few days I’ll be performing at the Pacific Coast Association of Magicians annual convention which will take place online. When they contacted me,I wanted to do something a little bit different. I pitched them having me teach how to make a cocktail. Basically it’s a magical mixology class.

When I sat down to write up the ingredient list and recipe for the cocktail, I decided I wanted to create that like an old magic magazine ad for a magic trick.

I think it turned out well. I worked way too hard on making this, however I think it adds some fun to the whole thing. My starting point was visiting Ask Alexander going through old magic magazines and looking at the ads. I kinda had an idea in my head as to what I was looking for, it was just a matter of finding an ad to use as a template.

Here’s the ad that was my starting point:

Sometimes the little bit extra is what makes the trick work. I’m hoping the ad gets people excited about the mixology.

Magician Foolers…

There’s a genre of magic tricks that I’m not really into and those are what are frequently called magician foolers. The main reason for this is that I don’t perform for audiences of just magicians very often. When I do perform for just magicians, I do my real world stuff. One thing to keep in mind is that just because it’s a trick for general audiences, doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t fool magicians.

Three card monte

What I’m writing about today are tricks that are specifically designed for audiences of magicians. Recently I’ve discovered an interesting principle, for doing a reverse three card monte type effect, where the audience mixes the cards and you always find the money card. I thought it was a interesting little thing and that’d be that, until I did it for a couple of magicians and it floored them! We spend the afternoon jamming with it and we added a second phase, but we’re still at it being a trick for magicians.

I think the important thing was for me to recognize what this probably is, it’s a trick for 2 am in the lobby of a magic convention. I’m going to keep playing with it and hopefully figure out something more mainstream to do it with.

No, I Won’t Use It…

When it comes to comedy, one of the things that I hate is when a variety performer doesn’t get a laugh or gets a groan and says something like, “you’ll use it”. I don’t like this for several reasons, but the main one is that it’s really only appropriate at industry events (and barely there). … Continue reading “No, I Won’t Use It…”

When it comes to comedy, one of the things that I hate is when a variety performer doesn’t get a laugh or gets a groan and says something like, “you’ll use it”. I don’t like this for several reasons, but the main one is that it’s really only appropriate at industry events (and barely there). This line is probably the ultimate hack line. It’s a stolen line about how people are going to steal bad material!

The performers recently saw do this line was doing a show for the general public, not at a magic convention. First of all without context, it means nothing and it means nothing to all of the soccer moms in the audience. Where are they going to use it…in their next show?

The other big problem I have with this line is that they imply that I’m going to steal a line from their show and a line that doesn’t get a good reaction. Why would I steal the line that doesn’t work? They are alienating me as an audience member with that line. Sure, you can argue that working for magicians is different from a normal audience, however I don’t agree with that. Magicians will like a good, tight act. A sloppy, hack act they won’t.