„Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

All beginners in magic should address their questions here.
groovemaster
Posts: 9
Joined: February 24th, 2018, 11:53 am

„Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby groovemaster » June 17th, 2018, 6:00 am

Dear experienced performers and versed magicians,
I love doing magic for some years now. Mostly I do card and coin stuff, but experimented with invisible thread also. I love to practice and I love the reactions from the people I do the magic for.

Same time these people I did the magic for are my problem. (Or what I believe and why I search for help here: I handle them wrong)
I’m pretty sure you know these people who immediately after the effect try to grab the cards or point to your other hand and loudly press for showing what’s in this hand and so on. People who try to solve the mystery with a certain amount of aggressive behavior.
I hope you understand what I mean.

Often I am so afraid of these moments that I don’t want to perform.
It is already hard for me to find a way to start something... standup situations.

After lots of these situations I come to the conclusion that it might be me, not them.
Can you share some experience with me? Some advice?

Thanks in advance and
Cheers
Ralph


Gesendet von iPad mit Tapatalk

Curtis Kam
Posts: 506
Joined: January 18th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Waikiki
Contact:

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Curtis Kam » June 17th, 2018, 7:21 am

I believe two things about this:

1. People who know you, your friends and family, are the toughest audience. They attack without hesitation because they aren’t afraid of alienating you.

2. If the only thing that you’re presenting is the trick, or the problem, itself, then the audience has nothing else to do but try to solve the problem.

So, it’s important to work clean when working a pure mystery for your friends. If you can, reframe the experience so that they succeed when they experience the impossibility, and you all fail if they figure it out.

If you perform socially, see the Jerx.com. If you’re working professionally, script so that the experience more engaging, more amusing, more memorable than the puzzle.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Bob Farmer
Posts: 2273
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Short card above selection.

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Bob Farmer » June 17th, 2018, 8:24 am

These people usually show themselves early so they have to be dealt with earlier. My goto trick is a sucker trick. Have the person pick a card or force a card. Get it to five cards from the top. Make sure everyone sees the card so the jerk can't lie later and say it isn't his card.

Tell the spectator that you will deal the cards face up one by one and you will find his card. Deal about 8 cards in a steady rhythm. He'll have seen his card and assume you missed it. Now say, "The next card I turn over will be your card."

Now do a bit of baiting. Ask him if he thinks that's possible. Point to to the face down card on top of the deck. Get him to be as much as a jerk as you can.

Now feint turning over the top card, then go to the dealt pile, pull out the selection and turn it over.

This usually works to settle the jerk down, but not always. Sometimes it backfires and the jerk is just incensed. In those cases, I think it's best to hand him the deck and say, "Here, show us what you can do."

The objective in all cases is to get the rest of the audience on your side so they encourage the jerk to calm down.

For the grabbers you have to be faster and get to the cards before they do. If it's a packet trick, use Mike Close's brilliant ploy. You say, "I bet you'd like to take these cards home and try this yourself." You pull out a stack of coin envelopes, pop the cards inside, seal the envelope and hand it to the spectator. When he opens it later all he finds are your business cards. It's a simple envelope switch.

Bob Farmer
Posts: 2273
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Short card above selection.

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Bob Farmer » June 17th, 2018, 8:36 am

Canada's Mark Twain, Stephen Leacock, had the perfect solution as described in his very short story, "The Conjurer's Revenge."

You can read it here:

http://www.online-literature.com/stephe ... lapses/20/

MagicbyAlfred
Posts: 862
Joined: June 7th, 2015, 12:48 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby MagicbyAlfred » June 17th, 2018, 9:13 am

Ralph,

The most difficult part of being a performer is learning how to present the tricks. I am not talking about the mechanics, the moves, or sleight of hand (although that is obviously important) but the showmanship. so the path to becoming a great performer involves understanding how to captivate people. This in turn requires an understanding of human psychology and finding your own true natural performing persona. Comedy can be a wonderful tool, as well as stories in which you wrap the trick. It is good to involve your audience and make the center stage and to feel good rather than trying to convey (Intentionally or unintentionally) how clever you are or how you are going to blow them away.

People who are drunk can be problematic and difficult to perform for; the same can be true of many young people whose ego won't let them kick back and just enjoy the performance, where they prefer to be the center of attention or to show off. So either avoid these types, or make them the center of attention and give them the credit for the magic.

As for worries about being caught or busted, there are many effects which start and end clean and there is nothing to "catch" before, during or after the routine. There are many excellent so-called self-working tricks. no matter what tricks/routines you are going to do, practice them over and over and over, with the patter and presentation, and videotaping with your phone.

Brad Henderson
Posts: 3794
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: austin, tx

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Brad Henderson » June 17th, 2018, 10:14 am

if you provide for your audience an experience they consider more valuable than knowing how the trick was done, they will fight to preserve that experience.

When you described the kind of marci you do you mentioned two media and one method. This suggests to me that your focus is on ‘what and how’ and not ‘why and wow’. You are fixated on the means and it not the end. How do you want your magic to make the audience feel? why should they care? start putting these two questions first and you have a chance.

second, don’t leave holes in your magic that force the audience to fill them in themselves. Ask yourself ‘how’ did this amazing thing allegedly occur? If the audience is clear on the power or reason the card changed from the point of view of the dramatic fiction (ie he snapped his fingers and the card changed OR his breathing produced a magnetic resonance that causes the bill to move) then they are less likely to turn to the method as a motivator ESPECIALLY if the dramatic fiction is more compelling.

People want to be in extraordinary experiences. they want to be able to tell their friends. This makes them inclined toward belief or at the very least complicity.

stop focusing on threads and begin pushing miracles.

Jack Shalom
Posts: 615
Joined: February 7th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Brooklyn NY

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Jack Shalom » June 17th, 2018, 11:37 am

Ralph, it would help if you gave us the context of your performing. Are these informal performances for friends? And what age are you and your audience approximately?

MagicbyAlfred
Posts: 862
Joined: June 7th, 2015, 12:48 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby MagicbyAlfred » June 17th, 2018, 12:27 pm

Brad Wrote: "second, don’t leave holes in your magic that force the audience to fill them in themselves. Ask yourself ‘how’ did this amazing thing allegedly occur? If the audience is clear on the power or reason the card changed from the point of view of the dramatic fiction (ie he snapped his fingers and the card changed OR his breathing produced a magnetic resonance that causes the bill to move) then they are less likely to turn to the method as a motivator ESPECIALLY if the dramatic fiction is more compelling."

I think this is an important point - for all of us.

Jack Wrote: "Ralph, it would help if you gave us the context of your performing. Are these informal performances for friends? And what age are you and your audience approximately?"

Yes, had those same questions, but did not want to make my earlier comment too verbose.

performer
Posts: 2833
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby performer » June 17th, 2018, 2:01 pm

I bet you are a teenager working to other teenagers! If so, in the long run it will be a blessing in disguise. I know I found it so when I was young.

I used to love it! I would let them bully and underestimate me then I would go in for the kill. I may expand on this once I see how this thread develops and get some information. You may be able to turn these people into your biggest fans.

performer
Posts: 2833
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby performer » June 17th, 2018, 10:51 pm

I have decided that it would be a terribly good idea for groovemaster to read this particular old thread. Of specific interest to him will be the second and fourth post but I think the entire thing would also be valuable to him. In fact to anyone who has the sense and astuteness to read it.

viewtopic.php?f=17&t=47807&p=322756&hilit=heckler#p322756

Tom Moore
Posts: 440
Joined: February 7th, 2012, 6:45 pm
Location: Europe
Contact:

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Tom Moore » June 18th, 2018, 6:51 am

Although responding to this particular post this is really a more general response to magicians as a whole.

It takes professional comedians many years to learn good quality, successful heckler put downs and techniques to stop trolls - most professional comedians will also tell you how much effort they put in to structuring their act so that audiences don't have the chance to make pertinent interruptions rather than attempting to deal with the situation after it's occurred. Magicians have nowhere near the skill or experience of professional comedians and I'm honestly struggling to think of a time I've seen any magician (including some big names who are supposedly experienced at this) actually deliver an effective put down that didn't ultimately make the magician look like a bit of a jerk too and at that point you've really lost the battle.

Listen to the advice others have given - you need to be choosing your performance environments so that you're not working in situations where there's a likelihood of confrontation (because frankly it's a waste of everyone's time if the people you're performing for /don't want/ to experience the magic) and scrutinise your performances carefully to ensure the structure of your performance, the persona you adopt all work together in a way that isn't confrontational and which prevents heckle opportunities from occurring. For example if you regularly get people thinking "it's trick cards" and trying to snatch the cards from your hand then a) adapt the routine to reduce unnecessary use of "trick cards" and b) structure in to your routine moments when you let spectators handle the cards earlier so that it's already clear that the cards are not trick. If a troll is spotting weakness in your performance then a lot of the silent spectators will have had similar thoughts.
"Ingenious" - Ben Brantley: New York Times

thomasmoorecreative

performer
Posts: 2833
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby performer » June 18th, 2018, 7:29 am

I am not sure it is a good idea for him to avoid situations where he might be heckled. I would still like to know a bit more about him so as to assess the situation better. However, if my assumption is correct that he is not performing professionally but performing impromptu in social situations for fun and probably, by the sound of it to younger people like himself, then it can be absolutely wonderful for him to work under challenging situations. It will test his mettle and keep him on his toes. It becomes a battle of wits and if you are smart about it you can use the obnoxiousness of people against them. You let them underestimate you and then you go in for the kill.

I would let them bully me and even allow some of them to feel sorry for me then pull a sucker trick on them. I would appear somewhat shy and incompetent and when the tables were turned the reaction was fantastic! In fact I did sucker trick after sucker trick which would seem at first sight to be foolhardy practice. All I can say is that it worked and worked very well indeed. They thought I put one over on them the first time but of course it couldn't happen again but it always did. I remember somebody said that the reason I was so effective was because I was "unsophisticated".

Alas it didn't last. As the years went by I was no longer "unsophisticated" and seemingly shy and innocent so I couldn't do that any more. However, I adapted well to the natural changes in my personality and still managed to stay effective although in a different way. However, the experience I gained in dealing with hecklers and interruptions stood me in very good stead and have done even nowadays. When you are being constantly heckled in close up impromptu situations it can be the best training in the world. The secret is that you don't fight the hecklers. I have always thought that a faulty strategy when working close up although the stage may well have different rules. So no. You don't fight the hecklers when working close up. You win them over by your cunning and skill in turning the tables on them. If you can do that they will often be your best boosters and number one fans. A far better strategy than using insult lines or trying to ignore them.

Any fool can manipulate cards, coins etc; and of course many fools in magic do. However, a good magician does not simply manipulate only props. No. He manipulates PEOPLE! And hecklers are people.

groovemaster
Posts: 9
Joined: February 24th, 2018, 11:53 am

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby groovemaster » June 19th, 2018, 4:02 am

Wow, so much qualified input for me...didn’t expect that in this short time.
Really appreciate it!

Although there is so much to learn from in the answers you all gave me, one or two wanted to learn a bit more about me, so...

performer wrote:I bet you are a teenager working to other teenagers! ...

Dear Performer, I’m sorry but...wrong guess.

I’m a 46yr old German guy, who performs informal, non-professional, just for fiends, family, colleagues, sometimes customers (I’m a consultant ... intralogistics...IT stuff).
I love doing small miracles for somebody in a relatively small context...just 2 or 3 .
I like street magic like situations ... connect-perform-amaze-disappear or simply move on.

I fight cancer for 8 years now and I think this is my way to „give back something“.

...



Gesendet von iPad mit Tapatalk

groovemaster
Posts: 9
Joined: February 24th, 2018, 11:53 am

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby groovemaster » June 19th, 2018, 4:10 am

Bob Farmer wrote:Tell the spectator that you will deal the cards face up one by one and you will find his card. Deal about 8 cards in a steady rhythm. He'll have seen his card and assume you missed it. Now say, "The next card I turn over will be your card."

Now do a bit of baiting. Ask him if he thinks that's possible. Point to to the face down card on top of the deck. Get him to be as much as a jerk as you can.

Now feint turning over the top card, then go to the dealt pile, pull out the selection and turn it over.


Bob, this trick is actually my favorite to give the „special guy“ some attention (in some variation of your script). After that there is usually a free beer for me. Then I do a trick with him where gemanagtes to sort the cards by black and red just using his psychic powers. After being amazing he is normally not the jerk anymore.


Gesendet von iPad mit Tapatalk

performer
Posts: 2833
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby performer » June 19th, 2018, 4:57 am

It seems that my psychic powers weren't working since you are not a teenager after all. However, I still maintain that the other advice I gave you still applies. I would most certainly investigate this link that I already gave you. I believe it has all you need to know. People don't often exert themselves to check links out. I know I never do. However, if you do, it has the potential of bringing great value to you. I wrote that stuff about 40 years ago and I wouldn't change a word of it even now.
viewtopic.php?f=17&t=47807&p=322756&hilit=heckler#p322756

groovemaster
Posts: 9
Joined: February 24th, 2018, 11:53 am

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby groovemaster » June 19th, 2018, 5:55 am

performer wrote:It seems that my psychic powers weren't working since you are not a teenager after all. However, I still maintain that the other advice I gave you still applies. I would most certainly investigate this link that I already gave you. I believe it has all you need to know. People don't often exert themselves to check links out. I know I never do. However, if you do, it has the potential of bringing great value to you. I wrote that stuff about 40 years ago and I wouldn't change a word of it even now.
viewtopic.php?f=17&t=47807&p=322756&hilit=heckler#p322756


Performer,
As I’m searching for advise I will check the link - promise!
Thank you for all this valuable advice.
I can see now, I have lots of work to do and there are many shadows I have to jump over...


Gesendet von iPad mit Tapatalk

Amazer
Posts: 2
Joined: June 2nd, 2018, 6:52 pm
Favorite Magician: Wow. Crazy difficult to answer. I'll go with David Williamson for now.

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Amazer » June 25th, 2018, 6:09 pm

There are some things you can do to reduce the possibility that these spectators will grab your stuff, or try to call you out on a move.

One way to avoid move call outs, is to stay one ahead of the audience as much as possible. Maybe you had a coin palmed. You can structure the routine such that the coin then gets switched to your other hand or ditched, but you may keep your hand held such that it looks to be concealing a coin palmed, or whatever. When they call you on it, you can appear disappointed in their "mistrust" of you, and slowly show the hand empty.

To avoid grabs, such as when they try to look at your gaffed cards, make sure to use effects in which you focus the suspicion on a normal card or object. Leave that object on the table, or in their hand, while pocketing the gaffs. Then, return to effect to finish clean. The time delay helps them forget about the non-suspicious cards that are no longer within their sight anyway.

Amazer
Posts: 2
Joined: June 2nd, 2018, 6:52 pm
Favorite Magician: Wow. Crazy difficult to answer. I'll go with David Williamson for now.

Re: „Troll“-behavior of the audience - my fault?

Postby Amazer » June 26th, 2018, 3:42 pm

Amazer wrote:When they call you on it, you can appear disappointed in their "mistrust" of you, and slowly show the hand empty.

Forgot to mention... if they don't call you on it, you should casually show it empty without calling attention to it, so that those who think they're catching your moves will become disarmed.


Return to “General”