David's article in this month's Genii column is one of the best things I've read in a long time.
Having been involved with kid and family shows my entire life, it was always disheartening when a performer, usually in a different area of entertainment, would say, "Hey, I heard that you work with the ****** organization? I thought it would be easy to throw together some simple tricks and pick up some kid's shows through them. Can you put me in touch with your main contact there?"
My simple answer: "No."
First, there is nothing easy about performing for kids, unless you really love kids and are "investing" in their quality of life (or their appreciation of magic). The person mentioned above doesn't deserve to perform for kids if the reason he wants to do it is to merely pick up a few extra bucks, doing "simple magic tricks". Humbug. Kids are smart and see right through that demeaning attitude.
Second, having been involved with magic as a career for 30 years now, I've played in just about all aspects of magic, ranging from illusions, to parlor, to comedy, silent and even mentalism. David nailed it on the head when he said that so many performers, especially the newbies to the art, think that when they buy a Mental Epic, some pencils, an Add-A-No Pad and print their own "professional" business cards, that they've made it. Bullcrap Napoleon!
Whatever happened to beginning at the beginning, learning step by step through the art of magic, and then, using your personality, or lack of it, ONLY THEN deciding IF, and WHICH direction to take in magic?
David Kaye, I have a newly re-found respect for you and your writings. Even though you are primarily focused on kid's entertainment, you've not allowed ANYONE to think you are beneath them. And with your articles, you prove it over and over again.
Make 'em laugh,