Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Discuss general aspects of Genii.
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Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 26th, 2019, 11:40 am

My pet hate is over-accentuated magical gestures, snaps of the fingers, waving over things, etc... I personally don't think you need it in order to build tension or create a magical moment and if anything I think it cheapens the effect. What are your thoughts on this? :)

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Joe Lyons » November 26th, 2019, 11:59 am

Granted, it can appear corny. It also can set in the spectator’s mind that the magic happened after the dirty work was done, thus making an effect seem more magical.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Diego » November 26th, 2019, 12:23 pm

It depends on the performer, venue, and audience. Many have been inspired by Richiardi, who some compared his manner to a matador or Addiego dancer. But for most to try to emulate/imitate him is laughable. What could be dramatic/effective for one, is unneeded/wrong for others. To some, overt gestures suggests parody...where someone in today's world, like David Blaine, is too cool to need to show how cool he is, and lets his audience respond for him.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 26th, 2019, 12:40 pm

Diego wrote:But for most to try to emulate/imitate him is laughable. What could be dramatic/effective for one, is unneeded/wrong for others. To some, overt gestures suggests parody...


I agree with this statement, the parody aspect is very true and I think that is what ruins the effect.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby erdnasephile » November 26th, 2019, 12:58 pm

IMHO, any theatrical device can be overused and done poorly.

However, as Michael Skinner was fond of pointing out, there needs to be a magical moment. For some routines and performers, a gesture is the most effective way to indicate this. For others, it's momentary silence or even a magic word.

However, I too, wince a little, when I hear: "Just a little snap!" or when I watch a performer assume a power stance befitting someone who is 40 years younger and 40 pounds lighter.

Honestly, I think one of the big problems is, we too often settle for cliche, instead of really thinking through and being intentional about our performances.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 26th, 2019, 1:19 pm

Erdnasephile, I agree wholeheartedly in what you say. I am only saying this right now as I have noticed a barrage of people using almost the same identical gestures and movements. All I can think this is due to is people not finding their own individuality and just copying others.

None of these gestures would sit right with a true emotion of a real reaction to an effect or something that has just happened. I can understand that magic can be theatrical and certain gestures and mannerisms are needed but I have noticed it in card handling too.

Its almost like how social media spreads a subculture of talking in a certain way and abbreviating in a way we would never have dreamed of a few years ago. Everyone is now doing the same...

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 26th, 2019, 2:55 pm

First flourishes are a different thing than gestures! I have written extensively on flourishes in the past and in fact I devoted space to the subject in my upcoming annotations to the Royal Road to Card Magic. However, gestures are a different thing entirely. I agree with Diego that it all depends on the circumstances and the person doing it. Slydini for example had a ton of magical gestures! However, what suited him would not necessarily suit anyone else.

Generally speaking and depending on certain caveats it is a good thing to do rather than a bad thing. It is called SHOWMANSHIP! Of course I am not sure anyone here knows the meaning of the word so I suggest they look it up. Or if they do know they certainly don't practice it. Snapping the fingers is excellent if done correctly, particularly for misdirection as well as for the drama. I use sound effects myself by clicking the tongue. Or even whistling (I can't seem to be able to do that any more!)

As for people copying each other on you tube I certain didn't. I have been using these little touches since I was 16 years old. They work. A lot of people won't use them because they will feel that it doesn't suit their personality. Perhaps they need to exert themselves to get out of their comfort zone a trifle.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 26th, 2019, 4:30 pm

I actually meant to extend my opening question to include the second part of my heading about flourishes.

Mark, I do understand that flourishes are different. It still kind of poses the same question though as too many flourishes in an effect or routine can actually weaken the effect and even misdirect the audience to the point where they no longer understand the plot.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 26th, 2019, 8:49 pm

It depends on what you mean by "flourishes". There are THREE categories of flourishes. One is fine, one may possibly be fine and the last one is not so fine at all. I have pontificated about this in the past. In fact possibly on here. I will check it out and if so post a link to it.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jonathan Townsend » November 26th, 2019, 9:13 pm

Presuming you're doing a make-something-impossible-happen type effect you still need to account for the magic.
A buildup between the "before" and "after" condition helps the show along.
Usually something between "I will now cover the cards with an aura of mystery" (as they drape a glorpy over the deck)" and "pull my finger". :)
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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Dave Le Fevre » November 27th, 2019, 4:51 am

performer wrote:They work. A lot of people won't use them because they will feel that it doesn't suit their personality.

While I agree, I should add that omitting some gesture/patter/whatever because it doesn't suit one's personality is A Good Thing.

Far too often one sees a performer who tries to be a clone of someone else and it simply doesn't work for them, and they don't realise it.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 27th, 2019, 9:06 am

I do agree that omitting something because it doesn't suit your personality is a good thing. However, what happens if the magician has a dull or uninteresting personality as many, many, many of them have? They then seem to be reliant on the strength of the trick alone to see them through. This is not a good thing. To believe that the trick, in and of itself, will do the heavy lifting is a false premise. I learned something that Greer Marechal wrote a long time ago. He said that an interesting personality is not an optional extra if you want to be a good magician. It is PART AND PARCEL of your art. Without it you might as well not bother or if you do then at least accept your mediocrity. YOU have to be interesting in some way. More interesting than the trick, in fact.

With regard to the subject under discussion I think dull personalities have to force themselves to a degree to at least try to be a little bit interesting without relying on the trick. If by chance the trick carries him through reasonably well then it is the inventor of the trick that deserves the applause rather than the "performer". Now forcing yourself to be interesting is easier said than done but it still has to be DONE! And one way to force yourself is to incorporate a little showmanship with these gestures until they become part of yourself. Interesting gestures are such a tiny thing to incorporate into your work without too much effort. The magician has to do SOMETHING to make himself interesting. Interesting gestures, finger snapping, card snapping etc; can be a great aid to that.

What is more interesting? Putting a deck quietly on the table or dropping it down there from a few inches with a bit of a slap? A little sound? Now I am not saying that you should do this specifically. However, I am saying that the philosophy is important. If you don't want to drop a deck on the table with a bit of a flourish then you don't have to. However, you have to do SOMETHING. The magician should devote just as much time to this sort of thing as he does to his tricks. He has to get out of his comfort zone a trifle if he wants to progress. The tricks are only a peg to hang your personality on. However, if you have no personality in the first place you had better find a way to get one.

How do you get one? Read the first few pages of the presentation section in Expert Card Technique. It is all in there.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 27th, 2019, 9:37 am

I agree with mostly all that you say, Mark. When I was a kid I struggled to find that unique personality as I was (and still am) somewhat of an introvert. The hard part is that you cannot false a made-up personality just so you can put together an act and call yourself a magician. I have seen many people use magical gestures " I wave my hand over the top of the deck.....Look! your card has come to the top!"...... "All I do is snap my fingers once!" .... I think the most important thing to think of when saying these lines is - DO YOU BELIEVE IT YOURSELF - It is not just patter.

I have seen many use these lines with a deadpan face....

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Tom Gilbert » November 27th, 2019, 10:52 am

There's someone who posts on Facebook(unnamed), a lot of pictures, all are in an over dramatic pose. I had to quit following. I reach my over dramatic pose quota very early in the day.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 27th, 2019, 1:12 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:I agree with mostly all that you say, Mark. When I was a kid I struggled to find that unique personality as I was (and still am) somewhat of an introvert. The hard part is that you cannot false a made-up personality just so you can put together an act and call yourself a magician. I have seen many people use magical gestures " I wave my hand over the top of the deck.....Look! your card has come to the top!"...... "All I do is snap my fingers once!" .... I think the most important thing to think of when saying these lines is - DO YOU BELIEVE IT YOURSELF - It is not just patter.

I have seen many use these lines with a deadpan face....


Yes. But I am an introvert too! You might not believe this but it happens to be the truth! I am shy, quiet and anti social but NOT when I am performing! With regard to the gestures I am not saying you should copy the gestures of others and in fact I have never done that. However, there is nothing to stop you using your OWN gestures. Those which feel natural to you. You assume a character and live that character and over a period of time that character becomes real. Again I suggest you read the first few pages of the presentation section of Expert Card Technique. Those tiny few pages will do you far more good than the rest of the book put together. In fact I noticed some daft thread on the magic cafe where they are discussing the book. Not a single person has even mentioned these few pages let alone the entire section. All they are doing is talking about tricks. They don't seem to realise how unimportant tricks are in comparison to far more vital matters. Any bloody trick will do. However, you have to find a way to bring it to life and make it entertaining. It doesn't matter how great the trick is if people fall asleep while you are doing it.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 27th, 2019, 1:45 pm

I have never understood this whole thing of being one person and then stepping on stage and becoming someone else. Maybe that is why I loved spending hours in my bedroom as a kid trying to perfect moves but hated the thought of "entertaining" people especially when it's your own family and friends and you're supposed to adopt a fake persona in front of them.

When I got into my teens I got into Gambling demos and card cheating. I found this much more suited to my personality and enjoyed it far more... It is actually the only thing that really interests me now. It becomes more of a demonstration rather than a performance.

Saying all the things I have above does not mean for one second that I do not like watching good magic done by great performers. It actually makes me feel envious as I wish I had the confidence as a youth to not let any of that bother me.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 27th, 2019, 7:13 pm

On stage is one thing. Close up is another. On stage many entertainers seem to have different personalities to how they are in real life but there are also others who are much the same. I don't think it matters that much since members of the public don't usually see them in both scenarios. However, for close up magic the change has to be much more subtle. You are basically the same person but there is still a change but much more subtle. It would be ridiculous to suddenly become a different person when performing close up. However, you can still show an extended version of your own personality.

I still remember an older relative once exclaimed when I once started an impromptu performance for some people, "Ach------he's alive!"
Come to think of it I still remember said relative being present when I was watching myself on television but not only was she not paying attention she was chattering to one of her friends. I asked her, "Can't you be quiet? I am trying to watch myself on television" Alas the response was , "Oh, you were better when you were 12 years old!"

The moral of the tale is that the Royal Road to Card Magic was correct when it said there was no point showing your magic to close friends and family because they will either say that you are wonderful or you are not very good and neither may be the exact truth. I think that goes for showing your work to magicians also. Their opinions don't count either.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jack Shalom » November 27th, 2019, 7:58 pm


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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jack Shalom » November 27th, 2019, 8:51 pm


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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jonathan Townsend » November 27th, 2019, 10:12 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:I.. Gambling demos and card cheating. I found this much more suited to my personality and enjoyed it far more... It is actually the only thing that really interests me now. It becomes more of a demonstration rather than a performance.
Your style of presentation and the material you present don't need to be right out of one chapter of the book. You could take out a copy of "Expert" and demonstrate items - but use trickery to make it almost obvious that you could not be just doing what's in that book. So you're not lying about what's in the book but you're also not doing what's on that page of that book ;)

* not playing with a full deck... using cards as bookmarks. :D
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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 27th, 2019, 10:29 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:I have seen many people use magical gestures " I wave my hand over the top of the deck.....Look! your card has come to the top!"...... "All I do is snap my fingers once!...I have seen many use these lines with a deadpan face....


Facsinating topic and discussion. I think what can make the gestures corny is the accompanying lines which merely parrot the gesture, as in the above examples Christopher has given. Would you say to someone as you shake their hand, "I shake your hand"? As you kiss a loved one, would you say, "And now, I just give you a kiss"? Or when you wave to someone, would you say, "Look, I have waved." Granted these examples are outside a magical context, but I think they highlight the absurdity, and arguably, the insult to the intelligence of the spectator, in pointing out the obvious.

Robert-Houdin's classic line that, "A magician is an actor playing the part of a magician," always struck a chord with me." Would Merlin, or Gandalf, or Dumbledore from Harry Potter, or even Eisenheim from the Illusionist (my favorite movie) use gestures such as a wave or snap of the fingers? Sure. But would they simultaneously announce what the gesture is? I think not. Kinda takes all the air out of the magical balloon, IMHO.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 4:55 am

Actually that Robert Houdin line has always been taken out of context. You never see the rest of the quote and I can't remember what it was either. He was actually complaining about people doing card flourishes!

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jack Shalom » November 28th, 2019, 8:19 am

Andy's point in my links above is this:

By something so casual as a snap, the performer is dismissing the most interesting part of the trick for the spec: how the trick is apparently done. There's a lot more potential in that theatrical moment that can be explored: ritual, story, participation, even branding--once Sim Sala Bim! meant something.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 28th, 2019, 10:04 am

performer wrote:Actually that Robert Houdin line has always been taken out of context. You never see the rest of the quote and I can't remember what it was either. He was actually complaining about people doing card flourishes!


I believe the entire quote is: ""A conjuror is not a juggler; he is an actor playing the part of a magician; an artist whose fingers have more need to move with deftness than with speed. I may even add that where sleight-of-hand is involved, the quieter the movement of the performer, the more readily will the spectators be deceived."

I agree with the entire thing. Be that as it may, my own personal performing philosophy is that I am an actor playing the part of a magician. Of course, every actor has their own style...

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Brad Henderson » November 28th, 2019, 10:23 am

Sometimes a snap is perfect.

The issue is intention and clarity.

If all we do is snap, and the snap doesn’t seem relevant to the perceived phenomenon, then it becomes trivial. But sometimes it can be the perfect gesture - just as post it’s can be the ideal vehicle for conveying some types of messages.

What it boils down to is belief and conviction. If you don’t believe your gestures are actually causing the magic - then you can’t expect the audience to.

Of course this requires that we take the time to determine how the magic is allegedly occurring and structure our performances so that is clear to the audience. Part of that includes choosing gestures to signify the magic moment that are congruent and constant with our conception.

But the truth is, most magicians have no idea how their magic is allegedly meant to be occurring. And in many cases that’s because there is no magic in their act to begin with. They are merely demonstrators of puzzling novelties or jugglers demonstration skill with unexpected outcomes.

Magic requires intention. Magic requires conviction and belief.

Most magicians are afraid of magic. That’s why we see so little of it and are so impressed when we actually do.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 10:46 am

Snapping is fine. It is called showmanship. Of course you have to be a showman to use it. If you are a showman then you will know instinctively when to use it and how to use it. However, it has another use which nobody except myself in my obvious magnificence has even mentioned. Misdirection. I have often snapped my fingers with one hand while the other hand has been up to mischief. I can think of a couple of examples offhand but there have been many others. When I used to use a cigarette pull to vanish a lighted cigarette for example, or when I would do a one hand palm. Come to think of it I use it when I do the Ambitious card to do just that.

At one time I had no idea how to snap my fingers. I just couldn't do it. When I eventually figured it out it was a godsend.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 28th, 2019, 11:57 am

Brad wrote: "Sometimes a snap is perfect...What it boils down to is belief and conviction. If you don’t believe your gestures are actually causing the magic - then you can’t expect the audience to."

Makes sense!

To Performer's point of using snapping for misdirection, the technique is quite valuable for that purpose. If combined with making the magic happen with belief and conviction, it is an especially powerful weapon in the magician's arsenal. Also can be a great tool for subtlety. For example, it's a clever way to implicitly show the hand classic-palming a coin empty, while accounting for the magical moment of the vanish from the hand the coin was purportedly in.

I started snapping my fingers when I first started performing at age 6. Unlike a lot of other things for me in magic, that came easy - I guess you could say it was a snap...

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 28th, 2019, 1:40 pm

Some really interesting answers to my original question and thoughts!. I feel that the word 'showman' is somewhat antiquated these days. Audiences are far more intellectual and to think that all of these gestures can be used under the prefix of showmanship undermines the audience and their intellect. Obviously this depends on what you want your audience to believe. Is this just an act like a magician would do or is this something you want the audience to see as totally unexplainable...

Now, I do not perform professionally for a living and as many of you do it really isn't my place to make these assumptions. I am looking at this from a spectators viewpoint. If they are amazed at that card changing with a snap of your fingers would they still be amazed if you slowly turned the card over and made it look like both the performer and the spectator are going to share the moment of seeing the card turn over to see if the magic has happened?

I just find it more powerful to see the magic happening on its own. The magician is just there for the ride!.... As I am saying this I can only think of one performer and one effect and that is Fred Kaps and the Homing Card. His timing and misdirection is pure perfection

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Brad Henderson » November 28th, 2019, 1:51 pm

How does the magic happen on its own? When? Why?

You end up in the same place - you have to define the nature of the powers at work and ones relationship to them.

The last thing we want is for the audience not to know how the magic occurs. When they ask ‘how did you do that’ - it isn’t always a compliment.

Think about any well told story - if the audience leaves feeling confused or not knowing how things came to be, they are unsatisfied. Plot holes and inconsistencies are weaknesses.

And for every Fred Kaps there is precisely one Fred Kaps. Is it possible to create a scenario where the magic itself is a character that interacts with a hapless performer?

Yes

But as most can’t manage creating stories that are far simpler it isn’t surprising that you can so readily think of the one (of maybe two) examples of performers who were truly successful at this approach.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 28th, 2019, 2:33 pm

Maybe this is all down to preference and taste rather than what is right and what is wrong then. I suppose what I am getting at is normal and natural gestures are fine but over the top corny ones are detrimental to the effect. Maybe it is actually a mix of a person's mannerisms and gestures. Of late, I have seen much coin work done by different performers and each of them has to open their hand in a very weird way to display its emptiness. Each finger is opened. contorted and outstretched in slow motion in a very unpleasing way.

Might just be me... but I dont care for it.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby PapaG » November 28th, 2019, 2:37 pm

I for one can’t wait for Performer’s new book ‘Charisma For Magicians’

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 28th, 2019, 3:12 pm

"If they are amazed at that card changing with a snap of your fingers would they still be amazed if you slowly turned the card over and made it look like both the performer and the spectator are going to share the moment of seeing the card turn over to see if the magic has happened?"

Well yes, I believe so. But I wii beat somewhat of a dead horse that has been discussed on here in the past ad infinitum. Yet, I don't believe it can be over-emphasized. And that is the magic happening in the spectator's hands. In my experience, that is the most magical of all, just judging from spectators' reactions and comments over the years. When effects happen in the magician's hands, or even on the bar or table, spectators are far less surprised than when the effect happens in their hands. They already have the preconceived notion that we can deceive them with sleight of hand, so when we do, it can only go so far, and no further. But when a card that they see right up to the last moment is tossed or placed, apparently quite fairly, into their hand, and then they subsequently turn it over themselves to see the change, it is truly a mind blowing moment. They generally can't just chalk it up to "sleight of hand," or "He's fast with his hands." So my personal feeling is I would rather be perceived as a magician than a technician.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Brad Henderson » November 28th, 2019, 3:42 pm

Again, it comes down to intention and consistency.

Look at the moves that Dr. Strange makes. Totally not natural but people still get into the story because it makes sense for him and he is consistent and intentional.

I agree that a lot of magicians open and hold their hands in goofy ways - but why?

I contend it’s because they saw another magician who did it that way and it looked captivating enough that they tried to replicate it without understanding the intention or managing the consistency.

So, yes, some gestures look stupid when done by some people in some ways. But that’s not the fault of the gesture!

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 4:09 pm

PapaG wrote:I for one can’t wait for Performer’s new book ‘Charisma For Magicians’


Oh, it won't need a book. I think I could probably explain it all in one paragraph. Maybe later.....................

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 4:18 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:Some really interesting answers to my original question and thoughts!. I feel that the word 'showman' is somewhat antiquated these days. Audiences are far more intellectual and to think that all of these gestures can be used under the prefix of showmanship undermines the audience and their intellect. Obviously this depends on what you want your audience to believe. Is this just an act like a magician would do or is this something you want the audience to see as totally unexplainable...


I don't give a stuff if the word "showman" is antiquated or not. Showmanship is NOT an optional extra. It is an ESSENTIAL tool of your trade. If a "magician" doesn't have this necessary attribute then he might as well not bother. He is no longer a MAGICIAN but merely a layman who happens to know how the trick is done. Of course most magicians are not showmen--they either over present or under present. American magicians tend to over present for some odd reason. This astute observation was once pointed out to me by the great Murray the escapologist who muttered to me, "American magicians are SO long winded!"

As for Fred Kaps he was indeed a showman especially when he performed the Chinese Sticks. I will concede however that he did not snap his fingers while doing it since his hands were otherwise occupied.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 4:27 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:
I just find it more powerful to see the magic happening on its own. The magician is just there for the ride!.... As I am saying this I can only think of one performer and one effect and that is Fred Kaps and the Homing Card. His timing and misdirection is pure perfection


I see things differently. I believe the trick is there for the ride. The magician is far more important than the trick. A good magician does not present magic-----------he presents HIMSELF doing magic! As Joseph Dunninger once said, "That trick is of no importance. Nail Through Finger will suffice if you can find some way of magnetising and hypnotising that audience" In other words there is no point "sharing the moment" if half the audience have fallen asleep and only moment they are sharing is the boredom felt by the other half.

YOU are the magic. The trick is secondary. And gestures, finger snapping, card snapping and vocal sound effects if used properly can be a very, very useful aid in you presenting yourself presenting magic.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 28th, 2019, 8:43 pm

Amen, Mark, well said!

Even if the word "showmanship" itself is antiquated, the importance of it will never go out of date for one who aspires to be a performer, as opposed to a presenter of puzzles.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby performer » November 28th, 2019, 10:01 pm

These strange little "gestures" and other peculiarities can stick in the mind for decades. Just recently somebody on Facebook who had seen me performing around 60 years ago remarked that he remembered the "sound effects" when he saw me do the Dotty Spots trick all those decades ago. I had no idea what he was talking about until he explained. Since I am still doing the same trick 60 years later I thought I would check out if I still had the "sound effects." The main one was clucking my tongue to produce the noise in question. I still do it. In the routine I make the clucking nose 4 times, I make a whistling noise twice and of course we mustn't miss the utterly vital gesture of snapping my fingers. Some of you will be relieved to hear that I only do that once.

Now, of course I could do the routine without any of those "sound effects". However, if I did so I would estimate the effect of the trick would be diluted by about 30 to 40%. You need nonsense like this, either gestures or other silliness. If Slydini omitted the various gestures he used I believe it would have negatively affected his work. Now I am NOT saying that someone should copy my "sound effects" or Slydini's gestures as it would probably come off badly. However, I do believe that if that someone came up with their own idiosyncrasies that are natural to them and incorporated them into their work in the right way it could only enhance what they do.

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Jonathan Townsend » November 28th, 2019, 10:17 pm

Christopher1979 wrote:...over-accentuated magical gestures, snaps of the fingers, waving over things, ...
Overdone, tawdry, and getting laughs for the wrong reasons. ;) Even if the sound of that snap jolts the ink to move just-so. :roll:

This old advice applies even when the mirror is held to an imagined wizard.
Be not too tame neither, but let your own discretion be your tutor: suit the action to the word, the word to the action; with this special o'erstep not the modesty of nature: for any thing so overdone is from the purpose of playing, whose end, both at the first and now, was and is, to hold, as 'twere, the mirror up to nature; to show virtue her own feature, scorn her own image, and the very age and body of the time his form and pressure. Now this overdone, or come tardy off, though it make the unskilful laugh, cannot but make the judicious grieve; the censure of the which one must in your allowance o'erweigh a whole theatre of others.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

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Re: Magical Gestures and Flourishes

Postby Christopher1979 » November 28th, 2019, 11:57 pm

I understand what you all are saying and I am by no means trying to undermine magic or the need for a sense of theater, artistic flair or flamboyancy. I think where the trouble lies is when a magician fools himself/herself in believing that the audience sees the sincerity in their act by such moves when those actions/gestures are put on rather than being natural.


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