Last week I did a run of school assemblies that were sponsored by a library system to promote their summer reading programs. The show I was doing my my Incredible Idioms school assembly show, which I wrote for a 6 week school assembly tour in January/February of this year.
The challenge remembering the show as the last time I did the show was mid February, so about 3 months ago. What works for me to relearn a show is to listen to audio recordings of the show. This is also why it’s important to record your shows. It’s not hard to do, simply use the voice recorder on your phone.
The week before I had these shows I listened to the audio of the show while I drove in the car or on headphones as I worked around the house. For me passively listening really helps my brain bring back the “mental muscle memory” of the show. This is something that also helps for learning a new show or routine. I record myself doing the script and listen to it over and over while doing other things.
Hope you remember this tip when you need to relearn a show!
The new version of Applause Please is now available at Hocus-Pocus.com! Right now there are only five units available and they have them all, so if you want one, be sure to order one now!
I don’t know when I’ll be able to get more of these made. I probably won’t have time to make any more until after the summer.
Applause Please 2: The Encore Applause Please has been a hit of Louie Foxx’s show for about a decade! After releasing it to the magic community 8 years ago, the prop has gone through many changes based on feedback from magicians who use the trick and Louie’s pleased offer Applause Please 2: The Encore!
Louie has performed it for kids, adults and everything in between at libraries, school assemblies, comedy clubs, theaters, and on cruise ships! The basic effect is you use an applause sign that lights up when you step on the foot switch throughout your show. During your show something disappears and reappears inside the lightbulb inside of the applause sign!
The Applause Sign and base have been redesigned by MagicCrafter and built in high quality wood. The remote control units have been upgrade to be completely battery powered, so you don’t need to plug it into a wall, this makes it much more versatile than the original version!
Warm Up: You show an applause sign and light it up by stepping on a switch and the audience claps. When you look away the sign lights up on its own and the audience applauds. The applause surprises you and you look back at the sign just as it turns itself off. This comedy “look don’t see” bit is repeated until the audience is warmed up and ready for the show!
Routine 1: An applause sign is utilized throughout your show. During your show, you pour a bottle of juice into a folded up newspaper and the liquid vanishes! You step on the foot switch to turn on the applause sign and it DOESN’T light up. When you open it up the light bulb inside is FULL of the juice that just disappeared! You twist the end off the light bulb and pour the juice out!
Routine 2: An applause sign is utilized throughout your show. You show a handkerchief, and it changes color from Red to Yellow. You then teach the audience how the trick works and reveal that there are two handkerchiefs. You demonstrate the trick again, while “teaching” how the trick works and at the end the red handkerchief has vanished! You step on the foot switch to turn on the applause sign and it DOESN’T light up. When you open it up the light bulb inside is the missing red handkerchief!
Bonus effect 1: An applause sign is utilized throughout your show. At some point during your show, you make a red handkerchief disappear! You step on the foot switch to turn on the applause sign and it DOESN’T light up. When you open it up the light bulb inside is the missing red handkerchief!
Bonus effect 2: You borrow a dollar bill and have it signed, it ends up inside the lightbulb of the applause sign! You get video of a routine that Louie did for a library tour almost a decade ago. The method isn’t taught, but if you own a thumb tip, you can figure it out and is included as another example of a routine you can do where an object reappears in a lightbulb.
– Remote controlled applause sign! – Plastic lightbulb with 2 bases (one for liquid and one for the silk routines) – Flash drive with instructional video – 9v battery – Evaporation liquid vanishing trick (sports drink style bottle) – Dye tube – Yellow and red silks
You get everything you need to put Applause Please 2: The Encore into your show right away!
Yesterday I posted a video about how to use evaporation with one hand using a thumb tip with a cork on it. Here’s a tutorial on how to make the thumb tip. You’ll need a thumb tip, cork, screwdriver, screw and scissors.
I start by trimming off a little bit of the end of the thumb tip. I think that makes it easier to get your thumb into it.
Than I use the screwdriver to punch a hole in the fingernail side of the thumb tip. Just push and twist until you have a hole.
Put a screw onto the screwdriver and drive it through the thumb tip a little bit.
Recently in a Facebook group someone was asking about a way to make it look like their puppet was drinking. My Evaporation prop was mentioned and I immediately had some people ask me how to use the prop with one hand.
Yesterday I wrote about some collectible magic tricks that I had recently acquired. I was looking at the Mikame Treasure Box and thought it could be more than just a production of silks or spring flowers.
One of the things that I added and really like, but I think gets lost is that the single silk becomes tied to the chain of silks. There’s really not much to this, it’s just a couple of magnets. Then I think the trick needed a finish, besides a lot of silks, so ending with the drink production puts an end to the trick.
It was fun to brainstorm something fun with this prop!
The other day I picked up a collection of used magic. As always the collection was 90% junk, however there were a couple of collectible things in the lot. There was a Milson Worth Chinese Flame Clock and a Mikame Treasure Box.
I really think the Flame Clock looks cool and it has a pretty unique effect. Here’s some video of what it does (the version is the video appears to be a different maker):
It’s a lot of work putting out a magic trick for sale! A lot of little things go into it that aren’t trick related. Things like writing ad copy and titles are things that I personally really don’t like doing.
After some brainstorming with friends we settled on Applause Please 2: The Encore. Personally I dislike tricks that use the 2.0 in the title, and really didn’t want to use the 2 in the title, but in this case it really made sense and it’s a HUGE upgrade from the original one.
I’m still doing the video editing of the instructions and the trailer for the props. There’s a lot more here than just the liquid in lightbulb, there will be two routines and possibly a third routine if I can find useable video of it from years ago.
Keep an eye out at Hocus-Pocus.com as the first batch is only 5 units and they’re getting all 5 of them, I’ll have none.
Looking into other performer’s cases to see how they set up their gear is always interesting to me. I’m always interested in other magician’s solutions to holding props. In that spirit, here’s a peek into my table top from a recent show:
All the smaller hand held props are in the table top, then the larger props and emergency/alternate tricks are in my prop case:
I also keep a set list taped to the inside of my case.
Let’s talk a bit more about protecting your marketed magic creations. I’m amazed at how many creators and magic companies don’t take the most basic step of copyrighting the art and ad copy for the magic tricks that they release.
Before we go any further, let me say that I do understand that technically you have the copyright to whatever art/ad copy as soon as it’s created, but you can’t enforce that without registering it with the copyright office. It costs about $65 to register a copyright, so it’s not a huge hurdle.
Once you have that copyright registration number, you can actually enforce it.
It’s been a while since I’ve gone onto AliExpress to have knock off products removed. I did a search and there were five knock off products.
There’s one listing that was blatantly using my copyright protected Evaporation artwork, so I filed a claim and that was taken down the next day. That left these four knock offs of my Evaporation trick.
All four of them use “Louie Foxx” and I own the trademark to that. Trademarks are like copyrights in that you technically have a trademark when you start using it in business, however you can’t really enforce it until you have it registered with the government. This cost about $300 and took some time to be approved, but it wasn’t difficult for me to do by myself without a lawyer.
My next step was to file a trademark violation with AliExpress and they immediately took down three of the four listings, and a new one popped up.
The new one that used my Evaporation artwork was pulled the next day, but there was still one listing left.
I’m not sure why this one wasn’t taken down by AliExpress with the rest of them as it’s a clear cut infringement on my trademark. I took a peek at the listing and noticed that in the listing they show my copyright protected instruction sheet.
That let me file a copyright claim as well as the trademark claim on the listing. The next day that listing was taken down and as of this morning there were no more products on AliExpress that I could find that used my trademark or copyrights!
It’s an easy process, I had probably 30 minutes total put into getting the listings pulled. It’s not hard to do, and I’m really surprised more magicians don’t take the very basic step of copyrighting their artwork. Sure you shouldn’t have to do this, but actually doing something is better than just whining about it!