The dismantling of my Virtual Magic Show is continuing. Today I took apart the spinning shelf that held all of my props for the show.
As the show progressed, I simply rotated the shelf counter clockwise to get to the next set of props. From an efficiency standpoint, it was great! It was also nice to glace at the holders, and if there was an empty one, then a prop wasn’t set for the show or was missing!
I’m getting rid of the board, and keeping all the holders. If I need to recreate this, it won’t be hard to do.
When it comes to prop management, I’m not the best, but I do have a system. All of my hand held props are in a bin on my table. I don’t do any performing on the table top, it all happens in my hands, so the table simply holds my props. Here’s a peek into my table top bin:
As things get used they either go back into their space in the bin if the trick is instantly reset at the completion of the trick. If the trick doesn’t reset, it goes into my case which is to my left and holds a two larger props I use. This system works well for me when doing three shows a day at fairs. It makes it easy for me to assess what tricks need to be reset and make sure nothing gets missed.
I’m sure there are better systems. I know some two person acts have the “assistant” bring out each routine and then remove the props at the end of the routines. The advantage of that is the show is getting packed up while the show is happening. I’ve used this system in the past when I’ve performed with my daughter. It’s a really nice way to do it, but it’s not something in can do in 90% of my shows.
What’s probably the most important thing is that you have a system of some sort to try to eliminate or shorten dead time while getting or putting away props. Sometimes a joke or interesting patter can fill this time. Other instances, simply having a prop that’s easy to grab is the best option.
One of the things I’m always doing is trying to be more efficient. I’ve been having a difficult time streamlining my virtual show’s prop set up. Essentially what I had were two tables off screen and props would move from one to the other as they were used. This isn’t the worst system in the world, but it does take up a lot of space.
Last night I was playing with a different set up where I had a prop table in front of me but now in view of the camera. It was a much easier way to grab props. However I still have the challenge of having a working table in addition to the two prop tables. That’s when I got the idea of putting a shelf below my working table:
This shelf spins, so that I can rotate it to access different props easily. I’m going to cover it with felt and probably 3d print holders for my props to keep them upright, and in position. The shelf is also at a height where when my hand drops naturally, I could grab, or secretly steal something.
This shelf may be the key in eliminating both of my prop tables, and that will free up some physical performing space!
Last week I spent four days performing at a county fair and working on a new show. At the end of the week, the sound guy commented that the show had gotten a lot tighter. That was great to hear, and it felt like it was getting tighter, however it still has a long way … Continue reading “Working On It…”
Last week I spent four days performing at a county fair and working on a new show. At the end of the week, the sound guy commented that the show had gotten a lot tighter. That was great to hear, and it felt like it was getting tighter, however it still has a long way to go.
One thing that really helped was committing to the show. If something didn’t play like I wanted it to, then I shouldn’t follow it up with something from my normal show. I need to do the show in the show order that I have come up with. This will make me more confident in the show.
Show order is a huge thing, it really adds tightness to your show. It makes prop management easy. The less time you spend fumbling for props the better!