Well shoot, I slept in and work up at 11am, a solid three hours too late and missed the stage contest. After a quick shower and running out the door, I realized that I couldn’t get off the block my hotel was on, it was barricaded. With a little bit of hangover, I figured one of the breakfast spots on my block would be just what the doctor ordered. Little do I know that I would be eating my eggs benedict while the pope drove by!
This led to my second disappointment of the week, and that he was in a Fiat, not the famous Pope-Mobile. I’m giving FISM a pass on this as the Pope’s choice of car was beyond their control.
I was able to catch the close up contest in the afternoon and it feels like as the week goes on, the competitors in both contests are getting stronger and stronger. I don’t know if it’s designed that way, or if it was just a coincidence.
After the contest, I snuck down to the dealer room to make my first purchase. I had seen a lot of the different smoke devices that were being offered by different dealers and I’ve had an idea for one, but the technology really hadn’t been there until recently to do what I wanted. These devices that create smoke have come a long way in the last few years. During all of the contests, smoke was frequently used to enhance the vanishing or appearances.
The show tonight was the close up show hosted by Rob Zabrecky. It was set like a late night talk show. Aside from some camera issues, the show was great. Tickets to these evening shows are sold to the general public and I always wonder what they think after seeing something like this. There are soo many inside jokes that non magician’s wouldn’t get. Then in the show both Paul Gertner and Michael Ammar did the cups and balls. If I wasn’t a magician, I’d wonder why at a huge show in an international magic championship that two people would do the same trick?
After the show it was down to the dealer’s room for the late night jam. A quick word about the layout of the convention. The stage and close up competition rooms were upstairs and almost everything else was two floors down. They had escalators to take you up and down two the two floors. These escalators were constantly breaking. At first the hotel thought it was too much weight on them and would only allow a few people on them at a time, but that didn’t solve the problem and as the week went on they were frequently closed. I’m not complaining about walking up the stairs, but I know for some magicians with mobility issues, this was really inconvenient and painful.
Tonight in the back of the dealer room Olmac from France was showing off some of his card color changes. He has a very unique take on this, it’s all with a “single card” and he has many different techniques for achieving the change which range from amazing to impossible!
When the finally closed down the dealer room jam at 1:30am, it was back to the Ninkasi bar, but this time to the upstairs floor (I’ve been going there all week and didn’t know it had an upstairs) for some super late night beers!
At 3am when the bar closed, we all moved out into the street and kept the magic flowing until way too late. I don’t know what time I crawled back to my hotel as my phone had run out of battery power long ago!
Last week at the Moisture Festival, one of the acts was Just Felice. She’s a street performer out of the Boston area. We did some magic jamming back stage at the festival. Here she is doing an in the hands three card monte routine for one of the stage crew:
We also did some BSing with the second deal, which is a move neither of us really use, but can do. We both have decent technique, but still kill our wrists a lot to hide the move. I think if I ever had a need to use the second deal in a routine, I’d put in the extra time to be able to do it without turning my wrist. For me, the second deal is an emergency move that’s in my tool box. -Louie
Whenever I’m out doing shows, I always try to spend time any magicians that are in the audience. Sometimes I don’t know who is a magician, so I apologize in advance if I don’t hang after the show.
I am still very passionate about magic and really enjoy watching and learning it. If you come out to one of my shows and be sure to mention you are a magician. Sometimes I don’t have time to hang after the show…but if I am available, I always love to jam for a little bit!
Today started with a walk down to Abbott’s shop where there was some vintage racist art on some props:
I think it’s time to pull these props off of display. I’m not necessarily saying to throw them away, but not having them on display for an asian family to see when they walk into the shop wouldn’t hurt.
That afternoon, I went on the graveyard tour which was hosted by Al The Only.
The tour was a lot of fun, and I highly recommend it!
We did the spaghetti dinner at the church:
The highlights of the dinner were Bill Cook playing the piano and Fielding West telling dirty jokes while Lance Burton scolded him for telling them in a church!
The evening show was great!
and then I finished the night at the American Legion hall with some late night jamming:
I’m cleaning out the computer and found a video of a magic jam from a while ago when my state was briefly open for people to hang out before closing again. Jamming in person is the way to go, you can creatively play off of each other a lot more efferently than over Zoom.
In the video there are a couple of cool tricks. The trick with the arrow drawn on a card and it makes the coin move was interesting to figure out. Then the ketchup packet to ketchup filled portion cup looked great!
If you don’t jam with other magicians, you are really missing out on fun, and working on your creativity!
Recently I was jamming with some magicians, and the one tip I want to give younger magicians is that they shouldn’t “hog the jam“. What I mean by that it is to share the time by passing it along, not just showing off the whole time. When you’re younger, I think it’s hard to pass it along if you’re getting positive feedback. However that’s what builds a jam is the sharing.
For me the fun thing about jamming is the sharing and seeing what other people are doing, or working on, not the showing off. I think the difference is that I have regular audiences to get my showing off fix, where not everyone does. People who don’t get a chance to show off their stuff often need a place, I get that, but honestly they don’t need to hog the jam, spread it out!