Platform Magic for an All Male Audience

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Postby Guest » 08/23/05 07:34 AM

Only once in 15 years have I ever been faced with a corporate dinner show with an all male audience. As I prepared for the show, I realized how reliant on on-stage women participants my show was: 1 on-stage man participant / 7 on-stage women participants. Some of my routines can substitute men for the women, but most demand the involvement of a woman, e.g., a cafe scene where I play the waiter entertaining her at her table. So....who has some thoughts on playing to a corporate audience of all men? Another one of these audiences is coming up in October.
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Postby Joe M. Turner » 08/23/05 11:25 AM

This situation is rare for me, too, but it happens. I have a few routines specifically designed to use guys from the audience -- a cut & restored rope routine is my favorite by far, but routines using wallets & money are natural fits for interacting with men. Gambling themes are also good, particularly if you can ensure a win on the volunteer's part.

My suggestions:

1) See if you can spin the gentleman's appearance onstage with you as more of being a "participant" than an "assistant" -- don't use the word "assistant" but rather a word like guard, inspector, partner, teammate, locksmith, warden, sidekick (possibly), etc. A descriptive, participatory role seems more manly to my ear. Then again, building a routine so the audience member is ACTIVE is probably the better approach for any audience, but especially when working with guys, I try to let them DO something rather than just stand and wait for me to do something.

2) See if you can involve two or more men at the same time, rather than just one -- more of a "team" assist rather than an individual appearance. It's even better if they get a chance to shine. Maybe they get to tie you up, verify that the locks are real, tie their boss to a chair, etc. -- I try to look for cooperative tasks or tasks that can be done by multiple people.

Those are just off the top of my head. In my shows I use more ladies onstage than men, but I tend to borrow items more frequently from men than from ladies. It does takes some thought to reframe a presentation for an all-male audience. Good topic for discussion.

JMT
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Postby Guest » 08/23/05 01:06 PM

Joe, I appreciate your input...some good ideas. My goal is to replace or rework two or three pieces of the show for October's audience (chemical engineers). Your mention of money reminded me of a bank night routine published by Steinmeyer in MAGIC a few years back. I involves five people. I'll let you know what I come up with. Let's see if anyone else offers some input.
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Postby Guest » 08/23/05 01:35 PM

Don't change routines. Just do it gay. Works for Hobson.
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Postby Brian Marks » 08/23/05 06:34 PM

copying Hobson won't do it.

Doing magic for a room full of guys only means slightly changing routines and is nothing to worry about. You may have to improv your "patter" a little which is no big deal. I hate the word "patter"
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Postby Brian Morton » 08/23/05 07:17 PM

I hate the word "patter."
Ditto. "Patter" is for birthday party tyros, slum-magic instruction sheets and non-performers.

"Scripts" is for workers and professionals.

brian :cool:
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Postby Bill Palmer » 08/29/05 05:29 PM

Originally posted by Brian Marks:
copying Hobson won't do it.

True. Doing it gay probably won't work in a roomful of chemical engineers who are pretending to be straight.

Doing magic for a room full of guys only means slightly changing routines and is nothing to worry about. You may have to improv your "patter" a little which is no big deal. I hate the word "patter"
That isn't necessarily so. Sometimes you have a routine that uses a married couple. It takes more than slightly changing a routine to work these out.

It might be better to rewrite a couple of routines completely, or to replace them with other material.
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Postby Q. Kumber » 08/30/05 12:27 AM

Consider inviting some of the female waiting staff to be onstage assistants.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 08/30/05 12:53 AM

If you consider this, please be sure to check with her manager first. She's paid to work the tables, not assist magic boy. And even if you get the okay, keep it short. The other staff will get ticked-off if they have to cover her tables.

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Postby Q. Kumber » 08/30/05 08:36 AM

Yes, you would check with both the staff and the manager beforehand. Simply explain that you normally invite a couple of ladies onstage and as there are none in the audience, you'd be obliged if they'd help out. As it is unlikely you'll be perfroming onstage while food is being distributed, you won't be taking them from other duties. A healthy tip after the show would also be appreciated.

This is a situation that won't happen very often and it's always a good plan to try and figure out everything that may not go to plan and be prepared. Audiences occasionally show rare flashes of originality and come up with something you couldn't have forseen.
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