Friday, May 30, 2008

Let's do the time warp again...

Lost in time... and lost in space: Remember one of the days during our guest week when we didn't have a column? Well it turns out someone with a time sphere (Stolen from Rip Hunter, and if you know who that is you need to get out more.) went into the future and stole this post right out of my journal and then altered reality so we just THOUGHT it never existed.

Well after a climactic battle with the Flat Screen Monitor, we have recovered said post brought to you by none other than Justin Robert Young over at The best part is it kind of correlates into a post I made previously. It all makes sense now!!!!


There is a wise saying going around the internet these days: content is king.

Believe me, it’s relevant. It’s incredibly relevant. In fact, it’s tattoo-it-on-your-mouse-hand-so-you-have-to-look-at-it-before-
you-think-about-clicking-the-“publish”-button relevant.

It means that if you’re going to generate a web presence, you need to think long and hard about what your page is for and why it’s there. Who is going to read this and what would be the best experience for them.

When it comes to the web, you are not designing a house, where you can be comfortable. In reality, you’re designing an amusement park with entrances, exits, monorails, food stands and secret subterranean detention facilities all strategically placed to make sure your audience sees what you want them to, which in turn is hopefully what they want to see.

I am not going to tell you what is good content and bad, that is too big a topic. Rather, I am begging you to get out of its way.

So… does this have anything to do with magic?

Yes it does. Thanks for asking.

Too many sites for magicians try to do too much. Here are my press clippings, here is how to book me, here is my blog, here is a photo of my 4 year old punching a fish. And that’s just the home page.

Then there are sites that ask you as you enter: are you a prospective gig or a magician? At which point, both readerships are forced to go through one more step before you even BEGIN to give them content they MIGHT find relevant.

Both of these have one thing in common. They don’t know which way to tell the reader to go. Imagine if you pulled onto the highway looking for a sign to tell you how to get to an exit and when you came across one it read "I don’t know, you pick." Every second a reader doesn’t get what they want is another second they are thinking about going somewhere else to find it.

My suggestion? Compartmentalize. Your booking site should be a slick tour through your accomplishments with contact information readily available to take advantage of as soon as they are convinced and that alone. Your site for magicians should cater to magicians and them alone, look at your own online experience and think about what you like and more importantly what you hate. Build the experience around that but never stop thinking like the reader. This also means you should have separate URLs for each, to eliminate distraction as much as possible.

As for the picture of your fish-punching four year old? That scaly thug had it coming, leave it on the front.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So many words.... None of them good.

Rocks fall... everyone dies.


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Shiny captain...

So I thought it was a time for change. A time for peace, a time for... sorry, got lost in song there for a second.

With the customizations option that this site implemented about ooooh, a year+ ago, I figured it was time to take full advantage of it like yer prom date after you slipped that GHB in her drink.

To spice things up, I'm even willing to let you give me YOUR opinion... sort of. If you look to your right there is a poll I have posted so you can tell me if you like the new layout. If this is yer first time here, I even made an option for you so yah dun feel left out.

Hey this might be a good time to offer up some advice regarding magic websites. Two things. Have content and change it from time to time. The more stuff there is to see and do on yer site, the longer they will stay and the longer YOU stay in their memory. Add stuff, take away things, make light of the updates you make from time to time so people will KNOW something is going on.

You ever notice that when a band is working on a new album, they change their site to reflect that new body of work or the album art itself? Why not do that with yer magic site. If you get new promo photos done, or move in a new direction, let your site reflect that. This also falls under the category of content and ways to keep people coming back to your site.

Also, I want to add, for those do it yourself folks, learn the "Target="_Blank" tag. This will help prevent people from navigating away from your page and forgetting to come back. It opens links in a new window. Very handy for anything you link to off-site.

Remember: Your site must stay in their sight...


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Rhime of the ancient stage magician...

I doubt Iron Maiden will ever cover this, but as well you know, stage magic has taken it in the ass in the last decade. (Tho' oddly enuff, the stage performances at WMS were better than the close-up in my humble but jaded opinion.) There are still some people out there fighting the good fight.

It's rare someone offers advice on theatrical or stage magic. Much like creativity, it's something you have to do.. and do.. and do.. and do over again before you find yer groove thang. However, there is nothing with being prepared for battle by letting others who have been there before you offer up some helpful hints.

Big Daddy Cool has been around for some time out in the musical hills of Tennessee. I can't fault a guy who likes stylish suits and swing music. With that in mind, on his blog of ooey gooey-ness, he is offering up a chapter a month of his book, Theatrical Magic. Advice from someone who has been working it. The ups and downs. The ins and outs. The to and fro. The yin and yang. The Vin And the Diesel.... um.. I think I ran out of things to say.

Regardless, if you want to read more than a chapter a month, he has a way to pick up the whole shiny shebang in one handy dandy little package. So go buy.. er.. by and give your head something to chew on.

It's hungry...


Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Curses, Saran Wrapped Again!!

"I don't like my language Watered down." - Ani DiFranco

I was discussing the use of expletives in performance the other day with a friend who has developed a new act of a disgruntled birthday party performer. In the earliest incarnation, the character cussed up a storm for the sake of a fallback almost. We both agreed that they shouldn't cuss at all except every so often. It is my firm belief that a well placed explfuckitive can be very funny.


There are people who view this world as a crude place. Funny thing is, it always has been, and it's been WAY worse in the past. People are more polite now than they were back 100 years ago. Ever watch Deadwood? Yah me either. However, there are still those who have been told certain words are bad. Without researching where they come from, what they initially meant, or anything of that nature. We are told a word is bad as a kid and thus perpetuate this silly myth. As magicians we know all too well that words only have the power that we ourselvs put into them thru belief. Just as someone might be offended by the word crap (And ban you from a magic message board), you could easily be offended by someone uttering "Rutabaga". Hell there are some stupid twats who don't read this journal cuz' I say things like Asshat. In truth, I'm glad. I wouldn't wanna party with those people anyway. CLEAN CUP, CLEAN CUP!! MOVE DOWN, MOVE DOWN!!

Any performer, especially any one over the age of 40, who is worth their SALT has a mouth like sailor. You'd never know it because they are professionals and can plaster on that smile and do 5 kids shows in a day. You get them in a group of their peers, they say stuff you would never believe. This goes for the females too. I would rather spend an afternoon with a real entertainer than someone who thinks their whole life needs to be an edit.

This subject is like any other on this planet. Everyone has their opinion and they are entitled to it. There is no right or wrong answer, just groups of people who believe there is one. To end this silly tirade, just remember to be yourself and if it's how you are... don't apologize to anyone who you don't respect who gets offended. However, you should ALWAYS use professional discretion if you ant to be viewed as a professional. Just remember, we can't sugar coat the world...

we'd eventually get sick of the taste.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

Put it on my bill...

So keeping in the vein of last night's post about new effects and the plots they use, let's talk about money. I don't mean Pink Floyd tunes either.

Two effects that come to mind are all of the variations of Patrick Page's Easy Money and the 100 Dollar Bill Switch. When it comes to changing a stack of paper to a different one, I prefer the idea behind Page's initial idea. Useless pieces of paper to money. Easy to follow and it doesn't take a step backwards.

That really is my biggest problem with these two money effects. The presentation is a thinly veiled bit of silliness. "I am going to change dollar bills to something MUCH BETTER.. oh wait.. maybe not. Just kidding. I'm an asshole and yer a victim of my ass hattery. Sorry... but not really." Just makes no... damn...sense.

Lately there has be a HUGE upswing on the Easy Money/Flash Cash concept. One such is Tom Isaacson, (Whom I met at WMS, and is a real nice guy), who has a damn good change. It's only downside is that it is VERY fast. If yer movements are more geared towards fast and flashy then his is the best hands down. However, if you are more inclined to a smoother more dramatic countenance, then Heiny 500 or Extreme Burn might be more yer cup of tea. The best thing about so many variations is there is BOUND to be something for you to use. Personally.. I won't do any of them... it's not my jock strap of tea.

If I was to perform it, I would use it as a transposition from paper to money and use a switch wallet. It makes more sense, and seems more magical. Takes the heat off the props even more in my opinion. I think the BEST 100 dollar bill switch presentation I have EVER seen was done by a guy named Doug Scheer. (Who is also a nice guy) His was also a transposition but used photographs and a serial number to baffle the hell out of people. (Not gonna explain the routine here, as it might be his idea and no need for un-necessary ripping off of routines aye?)

So, all of that aside, stop doing bill changes that make no sense. For my sake if nothing else. Don't insult your audiences intelligence...

Just insult your audience. (Grin)


Friday, May 16, 2008


So as well ALL know, yes even you there... not looking at me or paying attention... we all know that levitation is the ridiculous end all, be all of magical flatulence in people's minds. However, there are a myriad of floaty shit that can be done. From something as cumbersome as the broom suspension or super-X (If you have no idea what I am talking about, you probably shouldn't be reading this journal anyway. Instead why not go peruse something more your speed?)

Where was I? Ah yes, levitation and it's variants. So you have suspensions, where the object of affliction doesn't really move.. it just kinda hangs there.. like a four hour viagra binge. There is also the bastard children of that category. The "Stuff that sticks to yer hand for NO damn reason" effects. Moving a little further down the line, we have levitations where an object comes only a few inches (if yer lucky) off of a surface. Most "Street" levitations fall under this dynamic as do many others. Then you have yer full on chubbby flotations. Usually employing some unseen form of hook up. These allow you to move the object in free space and show no visible means of support. (like some girls I know.)

Ok so yer asking, "Yes yes we know alla this. Why are you wasting my time with yer hairy vernacular?" Don't worry, it's as simple as you are. I am pimping a new effect soon to hit the shores and figure you might be interested. It comes from the mind of a man who has brought you many fine ways to float objects such as cigarettes and yourself. (Aside from many other fine things of strange allure.)

This effect would almost fall under the excel column of "suspension" due to it's nature of performance, but after you watch This Video you might disagree with that notion. Magic with a normal everyday object that seems very organic and un-obtrusive? Why the hell not? Don't like it? Screw you. Don't buy it. I'll do it and be a golden god at the dinner table. You can lick your wounds and your split spades deck.

This endorsement has NOTHING to do with the fact that Mr. Fearson is a friend of Fire Cat Studios. If the effect was merely "Enh" we just wouldn't mention it. We DO have SOME standards after all....

But not a lot.


Thursday, May 15, 2008


Piggy-backing on a post I made last month, I want to touch on some recent events and advice that might help you out as well.

Here in Dallas, we have started a weekly variety show at a bar. We set up shop on their backporch, and have free run of the place. We do an hour show and ask for tips. Right now there are four of us (Three magicians and one sideshow performer, all with our own unique styles) so we pretty much break even for food and gas after the money split. However, if we pull in enuff people, we can possibly get paid to do this and garner quite a following AND sell off merch in the long run.

Why did I bother you with the details of MY life? As an example of how easy it is to find places to perform and make a little money while you practice in front of real people WEEKLY. Nothing makes you better and field tests those new routines, than a weekly gig.

So find some friends, make some flyers, get a bar with a back porch and an open mind. You start bringing in a crowd on a usually lackluster night, they will not only appreciate you, but other live alternative acts in the long run. (Long run being the operative term. Something like this will not be a success right from the start. You have to stick it out and ride the waves of ups and down, good weather and bad.)

So get yer asses out there and become better performers by actually performing.

You'll be glad yah did.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

So guest week was an ALMOST wavering success. Aside from having to jaws of life some people into writing something and having almost NO volunteers, I enjoyed seeing other's perspectives on the biz.. as it were. Regardless, we will eventually resume your normal torrent of mind numbing magic banter when I get over the gig I did on Monday. There is a reason I am a stage magician and not some short haired commie sell out who does corporate functions to further my "I'm better than you" fund so I can live in some lofty castle and look down on people while doing cocaine off the backs of 12 year old asian prostitutes.

But enough about Todd Diamond, if you like video games and like to hear people with an accent that is NOT american, then watch THESE as they are funny as hell.

By the way just kidding Todd...



Sunday, May 11, 2008

For the end of guest week, we bring to you Della Deadgirl from the Dead Girl Circus. Word to yer mothers...


It's Mother's Day. Isn't that exciting? One of a handful of days in the year where you magic-minded folks might be shuffling a different variety of cards. Now, this is Bizzaro's rant-space normally, and a Mom's Day blog is prolly the last thing you expected. But I've taken it over for the day, and as a mom myself, I feel obligated to say at least a little something.

We're performers, and we draw inspiration from lots of places. A lot of us started when we were just kids, and not necessarily in magic. I'll try and keep it focused there, but it really encompasses all performing. Our first audience, by and large? Our parents. Magicians, especially the young ones, need at least some form of encouragement to grow enamored enough with the art to practice often. A mom's well placed "Wow" or look of surprised amazement, even if it's faked, can do much to inspire a young magic hatchling.

Houdini said "my mother was everything to me." It was her death that influenced his interest in spiritualism, and busting fake mediums. David Blaine was raised by a single mother for most of his formative years, and his mother was enough of an influence on his magic career that she's mentioned on almost every site that contains even a hint of his biography. Not many magicians do that.

Now, your situation may be different. Not too many of us led the picture perfect childhood. But in one way or another, our moms shape who we are. Good, bad, strange or otherwise, you are who you are because of them. Likewise, your magic, or whatever your performance art may be, is touched by them as well. They make you, you make magic. So, take a sec and do something nice for your old lady. And if you're one of those who's already spawned an offspring or two, do something nice for the lady who was kind enough to not make you sleep on the couch that night.

It's the least you can do for the ones that still watch your tricks, tell you when you flash something too badly, collect your memorabilia if you have it, and get drunk at your shows so they can tell people, "Hey, you see that guy on stage there? That's my son! Isn't he fuckin' amazing?!"

Keep it freaky,

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Sorry about no rant on Thursday. Not enuff people sucked it up and contributed so there are gonna be a few gaps BUT we have a nice one for Mother's Day this Sunday... until then, we're gonna force Aaron Stone to talk to you a bit. We're not giving him back his heavy deck till' he's done.


Hey everyone. I'm Aaron Stone. None of you probably have any clue who I am. For good reason -- I'm on the younger end of the scale in the performance world. I got into magic for the simple fact that I had no social life and needed a way to get out of my shell and meet people. Why do I tell you this?
That is the only bit of information I can give you to make myself credible.

Not really... here's a bit more info that might help. I've been performing for just shy of six years now. You know, learning how to swim by being thrown into the lake, that sort of thing. My junior year of high school I ranked among the top 18 most humorous students in the state of Texas. Okay, enough about me, I just want you to know I'm not making up stuff as I go along. (Even though I, in fact, am).

When you first meet someone, you judge them. No two ways about it, you judge them based on how they portray themselves and their appearance; their demeanor; their gait; their car, their zip code... subliminally you make decisions about people you don't know without even thinking about it.

So, what does this have to do with performance arts? Everything!!!
You have all but seconds to win over an audience. Sure, you can redeem yourself if you're lucky later on, but it's a nightmarish war between your intentions and the audience's perceptions.

Every performer needs an introduction. Not necessarily your traditional, "Please welcome to the stage Ben Dover and his band the Buttplugs!" but an introduction, nonetheless. Below you'll find a handy reference of different introduction types to suit your fancies and introductorial fetishes.

1. Traditional. - See Above paragraph -
2. Intermittent. You start off your show with no formal introduction, usually something set to music, and can set your character or mood easily. After a short time, an intro is then given, such as: "BLAH BLAH MUSIC AND STUFF - PAUSE - I wish to welcome you to a world of power and wonder, where gophers explode and penguins collide. Sit back and enjoy the bewildering performances of: Weirrdo!"
3. Radically Informal. As simple as it gets. Anywhere during the first few moments of your show/act, it is stated or implied: "Hello Everyone, I'm Shawty Swappin and this is the World's Ghetto Mall of Mystery!" Continue with el performance.

There are a few examples to tickle your cerebellum. Now, how do you really apply or create an intro that will do more good than harm?
Any introduction (as well as at least 98% of any performance) should be scripted. You need to know exactly what you are going to say, express, or portray and can work it in your sleep. The introduction is important enough to do it! (The whole show should be, but people judge you more strongly on the intro and the ending...). You need to have words that will work towards your goal as a performer.
For example, if you do a show that is mystical and creepy, you shouldn't have an intro that is giddy and happy, referencing cute bunnies and unicorns of giddiness. In turn, if you have a happy show, you shouldn't start your show with a brain-seeking lawyer zombie craving the blood of republicans. (Sorry Republicans. If that offends you, replace the word "Republicans" with "Democrats").

Lucky for you who don't write intros, there are lots of stock intro lines you are welcomed to use. Just don't use them more than once per intro, and it shouldn't come out like total crap.

Common intro phrases:
"We've got a great show for you tonight."
"Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, blah blah blah,"
"Over the next hour/half hour/sixty minutes we'll take you on a visual roller coaster, complete with the ups, downs, and the annoying random stops in the middle of the track."

Tweak them to fit your needs.

Putting it all together!

Things to include in an introduction:
1. Thanks for attending
2. Who you are
3. Where you are from
4. What you are doing for the show
5. Acknowledge sponsors, if any
6. Thank the venue / host
7. Wish the audience to enjoy the show.

That's it!
So, without further adieu, here is an actual intro from beginning to end.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you all for coming out to the 5th Annual Pancake Death Festival! My name is Aaron Stone, and I'll be your guide throughout this magical evening. I come from a small town you've never heard of with a population less than that of your average nightclub. Over the course of the next half hour, we'll all see some hilarious things. From death-defying card tricks to amazing sleight-of-hand publicity stunt escapes, the next thirty minutes of your life will be a jam-packed fun time. Remember, there will be no camera tricks, and no one here will die that you cared about, without further adieu, the Founder Tiger's Club proudly presents, ME!"

The lights flash, the music cranks up, and the show begins with a high energy.
Poof. Amazing.

I hope you've made sense out of all this. If you've made it this far, your reading skill has increased by 1+ point.

Remember, people are watching...and argue as you will, you have one chance for an audience to like you.

~Aaron Stone

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Guest week continues on with a rant from a long time reader, Christopher Lyle. Don't be this guy.


So when the "B" man opened up his blog to his cronies, I got excited and a plethora of different things ran thru my twisted little mind of what I wanted to piss and moan about. So many little time!

But I was inspired the other day by an event so I'm putting all my other frustrations aside and I shall rant about the events that took place.

So listen up Katz and Kittenz cause I'm only gonna say this ONCE! "Knowing how to do a few card tricks and having a couple of instructional DVDs out DOES NOT make you a Magician! Nor does working at a Magic Shop for that matter!" Any ass hat with a deck of cards and a video camera can whore themselves out on You Tube or claim greatness on liner notes to a DVD...but are we supposed to buy into their self proclaimed hype? I think not!

Just recently, I met a young man who was "CLAIMING" to be a Magician. For the sake of the story, we'll call him Ben. It's my hope that Ben reads this and figures out it's he whom I'm talking about and will work hard to change his ways. the day was sultry. I walked thru the door of one of the local magic stores and was quickly greeted by the (ahem) magi behind the counter! "Ahhh...a new face," I said to myself. I walked up to this character and stated what I needed and to introduce myself. His response was "do you want to see a trick?" Much to my surprise, I said "sure!"

The person in question could be best described as David Blaine on downers! I almost wanted to hold a spirit glass under his nose to see if it would fog up. He had no personality and I could tell from the get go that he was an incredible flake! He took me thru a few poorly executed effects that would have made Helen Keller shout "Damn...that looked like shit!"

I could see that this person had a lot of enthusiasm when it comes to at least I was able to find one good quality in the pile of kaka that was to come. However being enthusiastic can sometimes blur the boundaries of proper etiquette. Most Magicians remember the time in their life where this person is right now. We remember what it was like when the walls between us and the "secrets" start to chip away. It is a very exciting time for people who really want to learn magic. So most all magicians are eager to help and guide the "new guys" as I attempted to try...for the good of the art. So I attempted to help this person out...showing them how to make their level of performance better.

The behavior and attitude that he exhibited was embarrassing and crude and extremely unprofessional of someone who aspires to be a professional magician...and in my opinion is not a good front man for a Magic Shop...but I digress. He made the mistake that every aspiring magician makes at least once in his life when his knowledge and ability becomes threatened among people much more knowledgeable, experienced, and talented than he is. He took a defensive attitude with me.

Magicians have to have respect for each other as well as respect for the people they try to "fool." It is important for someone that receives the gift of a "secret" to be courteous to those that gave it to him. It is also important for a Magician that they not use a trick to try to belittle the person watching. We as Magicians have to keep in the back of our minds that we could be performing for surgeons and rocket scientists and even though our tricks may seem incredible at one moment in time they will matter very little when the surprise fades away. As a Magician, there are certain "dos and donts" that we all live by and this guy acted with total disregard to them all.

I could quickly see it was going to come down to me kicking the living crap out of this guy, or us seeing who had the bigger penis. I wasn't about to do either so I left. A few days pass, and I find out this guy is SELLING two DVDs of his work (or shall I say other people's work). He's been in Magic for all of 5 minutes, and since he knows a few card tricks (barely) and works the counter at a Magic Shop, he now thinks he's part of the brotherhood...the 90210 crowd? WHAT THE "F"??? I don't think so!

So the whole point of this short story long is that when you're just starting out in Magic, be receptive to criticism from your peers who have been where you're at many years before you began in magic.

Magicians in general are very similar to Masons or any other "secret brotherhood." Although we may not be as organized we do feel that our history is VERY important. We are all subject to certain inner politics and traditions. It is important that we stay humble regardless of what we feel our abilities are. If I can respectfully give this guy any advice, it would be to:

Swallow his pride, listen to what others have to offer, and then make up his mind quietly and to himself and act respectful. He will never learn anything by talking. We can only learn by staying quiet and opening our ears and our minds.

So to all the newcomers out the "X" on the corner of the E! website and quit masturbating to your Brad Christianson DVDs. Put down the shiny new hunk of crap you picked up thru the mail order catalog and read a book why don't you. How about Erdnase to start. Maybe Expert Card Technique...or Royal Road to Card Magic. Hell...pick up Tarbell for cryin' out loud!

Be able to perform one effect PERFECTLY instead of half-assing yourself thru 30 effects poorly. For the good of the art...I beg you!!!!

I'll always be watching!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Guest Week

Sorry I missed yesterday. I was distracted by something shiny... So to make up for it, I have two, count them two essays from a good friend of Fire Cat Studios, Dwayne Andrew.

"Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible" [Frank Zappa]
If one person wears outrageous clothing then he is just a freak. If a few people wear the same things then it is probably a cult. Done for a short time it becomes a fad; given enough time it then becomes fashion,(I am positive this is how neckties got their start) at what point does society stop ridiculing the unusual, when it becomes beneficial- how about when you can no longer avoid it in your daily life. Maybe I can accept diversity in private but is it OK to ridicule people if I am with my friends ,It makes me look so much cooler.
In the early seventies a Harvard professor declared that the worlds necessity for personal computers would be about four, talk about missing the mark. Why would anyone need a car phone, I have a phone at the office and one at home thats enough, besides a personal phone seems just too extravagant and ostentatious. Maybe someone should have told Michael Angelo to tone down his paintings after all some of it looks so pornographic. Well I guess I can get
used to inventions and fads that may come in handy, but I don't want to stop making fun of people that are different from me and my friends. By the way, I wonder what I would look like with a facial-piercing and a tattoo. Hey you, get a horse.


I realized something rather important, we make the points about certian character flaws in those who detract from our line of work and then say "you know who you are". Truth be told they dont know who they are.
Just as everyone who sings in the shower thinks they should win American Idol. Every schmuck who buys a stripper deck or TT thinks they have the same level of show that you do. It is just not true, and they will never get that lesson unless someone else points it out to them.
In college or at a job our professors; and sometimes our bosses will let us know when we are screwing up, ( or failing ). In magic we dont really have that.
By not pointing out a bad performers gross attrocities we are doing ourselves a big disservice.
Question is do you do it with a smile or a gun, i guess it depends wether you want them to sink or swim.
If you are an amature please dont introduce yourself as a magician. I prepare my own taxes, but I I dont call myself an accountant. You are not fooling anyone except yourself.
I came out of a different era. A time when you would apprentice to a professional to learn your craft. I know you are thinking you dont need someone to teach you about magic. WELL THINK AGAIN. If you read books or watch videos, you are accepting a teacher. By working with a professional you will learn more than just magic. You will learn marketing, and sales ( you dont think that the world is just waiting to get your business card to call you, do you ). You will learn stage presence and blocking, movement and gesturing. You will learn about dealing with the client and audience. Some of the things I learned had to be modified for me to continue working regularly. Marketing tecniques have changed and so has the way agencies hire performers. But at least I had the background knowledge to be able to adapt to current conditions.
I bring this part up because I have had a rash of young men come to me and try to tear down my act or me personally because they believe they are superior in some way. I am a grown man who used to start barfights for fun. and this punk kid thinks I will suffer him gladly because his mommy said he is special. Well guess again, I gave him the verbal spanking his dear mommy should have given him physically on his younger ass. had he approached me in a polite manner with just a bit of respect I would have given him the world. It seems that so many people believe the world spins around them personally, If you take that attitude on stage with you, your audience will abanden you and leave you floundering around wondering what happened. And unfortunately this is affecting a lot of our younger people, because no one has taken the time to teach them about reality. And unfortunately we stand to lose some great talents when they get frustrated from life continually slapping them down.
I guess what it comes down to is that we need to hold ourself to a higher standard than we have in the past. At least then maybe we can be percieved on a higher entertainment value level than mimes.

If only we could be so lucky.

Dwayne Andrew

Friday, May 02, 2008

Well I am back from my amusing week in Vegas at WMS. Saw many fine effects, met some cool people (Who I shall tell you about later), and got to show off some of stuff and basically let people know just who the hell I am. (I tend to not "hang" in the magic community much. Shocker, I know.)

So rather than regale you with stories of Richard Pryor impersonations, bowling scores, or the people I got to shake hands with, I shall instead rant and rave about the silliness of magic propaganda.

Every time I see an ad or video that shows people reacting to something AmaaaaaAAAAAAAaaaaazzzzzing and the copy promises miracles and astonishment and wonder and cheese and cantaloupe and whatnot, I laugh because magicians have been saying these things since magic catalogs were created.

Radiating lines and clip art of happy spectators and people who look like they smoke like a chimney... if it were the 1950's all over again. We pretend our little rubberband coin tricks and jiggling wads of tissue are the latest and greatest and promise they will make you look like a gawd (usually Buddha, who's not a deity per se, but you get my point).

Dunno why, but I thought I would share. Prolly had something to do with the mass amount of talk about marketing thrown at me this week. Apparently, the best trick of the convention was not for sale...

funny that.


PS: Still looking to see if anyone wants a guest spot over the next week to rant about.. well.. anything magic related. I'm gonna grab some of my friends and people I know, so we'll see how that goes.