IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

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Q. Kumber
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IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Q. Kumber » September 28th, 2014, 6:07 am


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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Tom Moore » September 28th, 2014, 3:18 pm

Was there anyone there under 50 or actively performing for a living (excluding the acts and dealers?) there this year?
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Richard Kaufman
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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 28th, 2014, 3:24 pm

I did see some people under 50 in the clip!
I can't decide if it makes us, as a group, look geeky or not.
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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby mrgoat » September 28th, 2014, 4:16 pm

It makes us look just how the public perceive us. Sad. Especially Paul Gordon's awful ace trick. "Haha aren't I clever you didn't see me do that"

Shame on us.

And thank god for zabrecky and others doing something different v

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Q. Kumber
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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Q. Kumber » September 28th, 2014, 4:33 pm

The British Ring Convention used be one of the world's, not just the UK's leading conventions, generally getting at least 1,300 registrants when held in the north of England and at least 1,500 when held in the south. It's 50th anniversary, held in 1986 had about 2,500.

After the war, it became an annual social and magical week for many couples. While the convention started on a Wednesday and finished Sunday lunchtime, many would go from Sunday to Sunday, making it their annual holiday as well.

Most dealers manufactured and sold their own tricks and routines, with Edwin of Supreme generally having 80-100 new items released at this annual convention.

Most professionals went, having money to spend after a busy summer season. Children's entertainers looking for new routines for their winter and Christmas shows. Club and cabaret magicians also looked for 'what's new.

Wednesday evening saw the annual ritual of greeting the overseas guests who marched out behind their national flag.

In my opinion, a few things have led to its demise. I understand there were just over 300 registrants this year.

First is that the pros don't go. Summer seasons have virtually disappeared and club and cabaret work, as it used be is long gone.

Those who do go are those who have gone for years making it their annual holiday. As the years go by, they are getting older, a lot older and many have passed on or are no longer physically able to go. Dealers will tell you that these delegates will come up, ask for a dem and then politely say, "That's very good and if I were still performing I'd buy one."

The British Ring convention was never able to attract many younger magicians because they were back at school or college. Nor could those in the teaching profession attend for the same reason. So hundreds of potential future attendees never got the habit of going to the IBM.

In the meantime Derek Lever transformed the Blackpool Convention from a one-day event -over time - into a three day event which, amazingly attracts well over 3.000 magicians from all over the world every year without advertising or even announcing who is on. The Blackpool convention now coincides with British schools' mid-term break, meaning that lots of students turn up and it is a relatively low cost weekend for them.

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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby MManchester » September 28th, 2014, 4:57 pm

So this was a regional broadcast and not the national BBC? If so, that would be a good thing for magic. Everything about this suggests that magic is boring, from the interviewees, to the attendees and even the venue. Dreadful.

I think Shawn Farquhar has repeated the exact same line in every interview I've ever heard him give: "The doctor slapped me and I said pick a card."
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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Max Maven » September 28th, 2014, 11:25 pm

Shouldn't the order be, "I said pick a card, and the doctor slapped me"?

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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 28th, 2014, 11:26 pm

I don't know about you, but I got slapped by the nurse.
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Re: IBM British Ring Convention, Bournemouth

Postby Tom Moore » September 29th, 2014, 6:46 am

The decline of the IBM convention has nothing to do with the demise of "the summer season" and everything to do with the organisation and structure of the event itself. In terms of events / timetable the convention this year is IDENTICAL to one 30 years ago (and it was out-dated then!) there's simply nothing at all to make it worth while going. All efforts to update the convention and make it relevant / accessible to actual working magicians have been fairly conclusively shot-down every time by an increasingly geriatric committee and membership who seem determined to retain the status quo rather than do anything to further or advance the art of magic, with a program that actively boasts its "ladies event" "dinner and dancing" and hugely condescending "international parade" and "gala of youth" with star's who would be 5th or 6th on the bill anywhere else it's no wonder no-one actually attends. With the 80th anniversary immanent it's quite depressing to see something that could be amazing so systematically destroyed by people who don't even seem to appreciate what the problem is.
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