Laypeople

All beginners in magic should address their questions here.
performer
Posts: 3192
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby performer » November 22nd, 2019, 6:23 am

I wouldn't know where to start to fool magicians. I also think it is a bad habit to try. Once in a great while it is OK to do it but there is a danger that you can get into the habit of it and if you do too much of it, it can affect your thinking when planning and performing for laymen and make it less effective. Magicians react in a completely different way from laymen and the things that impress them usually don't mean a light when you work for laymen. They will react in the wrong place--that is if they even react at all. They might like your work but refuse to show it openly.

I still remember to this day decades ago a famous Scandinavian magician named Toreno criticising Fred Kaps by saying, "He doesn't know if he is performing for laymen or for magicians. He tries to please both. He gets less work because of it" I have no idea if this was true or not and neither do I care. I thought Fred Kaps was quite good especially when he did the Chinese Sticks and possibly he knew how to entertain both laymen and magicians equally. However, I still say that it is a bad habit to get into as ten to one it is very liable to affect your work. The psychology is entirely different and there is a strong danger that you will mix up the two. You will plan and invent things that you are subconsciously aiming at magicians even though you don't realise it and it will affect your work for laymen. Effects get overly complicated and so called "clever" (and unnecessary) methods get used.

MagicbyAlfred
Posts: 1114
Joined: June 7th, 2015, 12:48 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC

Re: Laypeople

Postby MagicbyAlfred » November 22nd, 2019, 1:39 pm

In my experience, most (not all) magicians, unlike most laymen, are not looking to be entertained, but rather to be "impressed" by a move or sleight, or a trick that baffles them. Although even when baffled, they are likely to get upset or frustrated. So my style of comedic entertainment is not generally well suited to magicians.

I can't say I get any kind of a real charge out of "fooling" a magician or impressing them. I separated from the perceived need for that kind of what boils down to ego-gratification years ago. To me, it is tantamount to winning a game of chess (another game I gave up years ago). "Aha, I won, you lost. See how clever I am..."

All magicians are involved in magic for their own personal reasons. Personally, I am looking to entertain my audience, to make them laugh, to involve them and to give them great respect, to be a catalyst for making them feel joyful or uplifted. Do I want to astonish them? Well yes, of course - it's part of the job description and the expectation. But I want them to have fun. That way, I encounter very few spectators who feel a sense of frustration or or defensive when I perform for them.

performer
Posts: 3192
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby performer » November 22nd, 2019, 2:26 pm

One problem with trying to entertain magicians is that it is a lose-lose proposition. They will either criticise you (either openly or behind your back) or they will steal your material. Or sometimes both. I still remember George Kovari years and years ago telling me that he could always spot when a group of magicians were in the theatre when he performed. That part of the audience had muted responses.

That is why I have trouble with the concept of the Penn and Teller TV show. It is wonderful television and I fully understand why they do it but the concept of basing an entire show trying to fool two magicians instead of the millions of people that are watching is anathema to me. It is a good show apart from that, except that the awful, too obvious, rehearsed scripting makes me cringe. I hate to see magicians acting as if they are reciting Hamlet instead of doing the cut and restored rope. Still, that is another topic for another time.

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 25113
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Laypeople

Postby Richard Kaufman » November 22nd, 2019, 3:08 pm

The only way to get magic on TV, for the most part, is in a contest type show like AGT or P&T. That's what networks want.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

performer
Posts: 3192
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby performer » November 22nd, 2019, 3:36 pm

Probably over here in North America. I was on TV several times in the UK and Ireland in a more normal format. Perhaps times have changed over there now---I have no idea.
That reminds me. I wish to announce that you have a historical figure in your midst. Me of course. I was the very first magician to appear on colour television in the United Kingdom. Not that I am the bragging type of course................

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 25113
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Laypeople

Postby Richard Kaufman » November 22nd, 2019, 9:49 pm

Yes, times have changed.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

User avatar
chetday
Posts: 81
Joined: March 13th, 2008, 1:45 pm
Favorite Magician: Jon Racherbaumer

Re: Laypeople

Postby chetday » November 23rd, 2019, 3:23 pm

I'll say times have changed.

I have a good friend in Canada whose pre-teen son recently got very interested in magic, much to my wonderful surprise since I never was able to get my now-grown sons when they were young to appreciate (or even much like) my own obsession with the pasteboards.

To get my friend's son off to a good start, I offered to purchase for him a subscription to Genii as well as the Royal Road to Card Magic and Bobo's Modern Coin Magic -- the two classic texts I found most useful more than sixty years ago when the magic bug bite left me infected for life.

My friend is a courteous and kind man, and I hoped he would allow me to gift his son this way. But, to my surprise, he asked me to save the money on the purchases because his son had been using his 30 allowed minutes a day media time to learn magic tricks on Youtube. I told my friend his son would be much better served to study Royal Road and Modern Coin Magic, but like a layman (there I go being mean and judgmental because my feelings were hurt) my buddy insisted that I not spend the money.

Well, in a fit of spite, and a muttered, "I'll get even with him," I renewed my own subscription to Genii, which had lapsed and which in my dotage I had been forgetting to renew.

Anyway, Richard, even though times have indeed changed (and not for the better, I might add), you got a subscription renewal; and Mark, if you ever stop writing long enough on the forum to put the finishing touches on your annotated version of Royal Road, you can be sure I'll be one of the first to order your book.

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 25113
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Laypeople

Postby Richard Kaufman » November 23rd, 2019, 3:53 pm

Thanks for renewing!
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

McKitterick
Posts: 41
Joined: July 26th, 2008, 10:07 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby McKitterick » November 23rd, 2019, 5:52 pm

performer wrote:Perhaps times have changed ...

Richard Kaufman wrote:Yes, times have changed.

chetday wrote:I'll say times have changed.

Indeed ...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlPV4wtZ6HE

Leonard Hevia
Posts: 1894
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Dai Vernon, Frank Garcia, Slydini, Houdini,
Location: Gaithersburg, Md.

Re: Laypeople

Postby Leonard Hevia » November 23rd, 2019, 7:12 pm

Beginners learning magic from YouTube instead of the classic beginners texts:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=KU7_G2grxJE

performer
Posts: 3192
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby performer » November 23rd, 2019, 7:59 pm

I don't like the way magic is going. I am glad I'll be dead soon. As for Chet's mention of the Royal Road to Card Magic I have finally got around to the boring job of proofreading and I am pretty sure that will be done by tomorrow. It turns out that there are going to be around 50 or so extra added illustrations because of my annotations and I shall occupy my time taking photos of the hands in the correct position. Once that is done I will find someone or other to do the drawing. I think it will be done by the end of the year. I shall attempt to stay alive until then.

performer
Posts: 3192
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: Laypeople

Postby performer » November 24th, 2019, 7:08 am

chetday wrote:Mark, if you ever stop writing long enough on the forum to put the finishing touches on your annotated version of Royal Road, you can be sure I'll be one of the first to order your book.


I have nearly finished the proofreading and while doing so I have just realised with awe and my usual modest disposition that the whole thing is going to be terrific! My added information plus the appendix is going to add a lot to the book. I feel great pride in the effort and I have received approval from both Hugard and Braue via the spirit world. I realise now that I had better get the book out to the multitude before I drop dead. I had to do this because I felt that I owed the book.

I just have to deal with the illustrations then that will be it. It will first come out as an ebook then much, much later as a hard backed publication. I know it is usually done the other way round but I march to the beat of my own drum.

User avatar
chetday
Posts: 81
Joined: March 13th, 2008, 1:45 pm
Favorite Magician: Jon Racherbaumer

Re: Laypeople

Postby chetday » November 24th, 2019, 11:04 am

Mark, I'm no spring chicken either, so I'm glad to hear you're grinding away on finishing your book. I want to read it in this life, not the next one! :)


Return to “General”