The magic audience never changes. I should say the reaction of the magic audience never changes. That’s why, night after night, professional magicians do the same shows, use the same words, make the same pauses, the same expressions. It’s almost robotic. Even if the performer seems to be casual, making an off the cuff joke, there is nothing causal about it. Its his professionalism that makes it seem casual, but its not. The pros have it down to a science, to the minute, to the second. Timing IS everything.
Why don’t they change their shows? They did at the beginning, when they were starting out and tried something that didn’t work, until they found something that did work and they kept it in. They know if it works for one audience it will work for all audiences. The show evolves and when the performer gets the laughs and the applause that he or she wants, that’s their show!
That’s how I sell that wonderful classic card trick, the Svengali Decks. All these kids that watch youtube and want this and that, I just take out a Svengali Deck and ask them if they have any trick decks. No? Oh, let me show you this. My presentation is the same every time. My grand daughter, age 6, was here after school the other day. While she was here I showed it to a kid, in just that situation, who had seen all these wonderful things on youtube, and when I did the demo for the Svengali, he was as excited with it as could be and bought it without a second thought. Ten minutes later another kid came in. My grand daughter said, “Bubby, show him the trick you showed the other kid.” She knew. I did. This kid bought it too. It makes no difference if its a child or an adult. Same reaction. As I said, the audience doesn’t change.
Who comes to see a magic show? People who are fascinated by magic. They want to enjoy the show. They want to like you and they want you to mystify and entertain them. The pros learn what works, even if the people go to youtube to find out how, when you do it properly in real life, they still can’t believe it.
Why do I say the audience never changes? Because people are people. Everywhere, any language, any colour, it doesn’t matter. Ever play peek-a-boo with a baby? You’ll aways get a laugh. And it doesn’t matter how many times you do it. It’s their first intro to magic. Now you see it, now you don’t!
When Romaine, The Monarch of Manipulation did his first manipulation show it was meant to be serious. His table fell over. Everyone laughed. He kept it in the show. He built his show around all the mistakes he had that night and there were many, only the audience didn’t know that, and they thought it was hilarious. He still gets the laughs! The audience goes away not only mystified, but happy as well.
Now that’s not good for the magic business. Once they get into the groove, they stop buying magic. They have what they need, which is why I love to see the youngsters come in. They are still finding themselves. Trying out different things. Its a stage (no pun intended) that every magician goes through. They want everything at first, until they find out what gets a reaction and what they are comfortable with. Thank heavens for that discovery stage!
Note from Romaine: Before posting the blog I sent it to Romaine to ask permission to write what I wrote about him. He said to go ahead and post it and added that, and I quote,
“One of the reasons professionals always do the same thing is that they are hopefully performing for a different audience and like to go with the material that they know works and that they have spent years in perfecting.
The important thing is that they don’t do what everyone else is doing in exactly the same manner.Amateurs on the other hand have a tendency to perform for the same audiences [friends and family] so they constantly change or add new material.”
That is so true. With amateurs either they have to get new friends or get new tricks. Its easier to get new tricks. And it doesn’t hurt your magic dealer either.