The Magic Filter

Last week I wrote about the overwhelming amount of magic in the market today. Tomorrow there will be even more. There’s no end to it. As Albert Goshman said about the food in the Brown Derby, “There’s a lot of it and some of it is good.”

I, as a magic dealer, meet magicians at every level and in every category, from children’s parties , corporate magicians, street magicians, restaurant magicians. to hypnotists, mentalists, you name it. When they come into the shop, and know exactly what they want, that’s one thing. Do I have an Arm Chopper? Yes.

If  they don’t know what they want, and I know them, I will steer them in the right direction. If I don’t know them, I ask a lot of questions like, how do you classify yourself, beginner, intermediate or expert. People are usually honest about that.  Who is your audience? Friends and family, do you do shows,  etc. Close-up, parlour, stage,  bar, restaurant. I narrow the field for them and for me. What is the price range? No use showing a $200.00 trick when they only want to spend $20.00. Do they mind practicing or do they want instant gratification. Easy to do. No work at all. Are they readers, or visual? Do they need something with a DVD. So we spend a little time trying to understand the magician before we get down to brass tacks.

Sometimes, and here’s the problem, they see something on youtube. That’s what they want. Do I have it? Let’s say I do. I ask the above questions because I know what is involved in doing this particular trick. I could take the money and run but I don’t. Sometimes they have never even touched magic before. Could they do Paragon 3D or Nightcrawler? I don’t think so, even though they are both excellent effects. I ask, “Do you want to do the magic or just learn the secret?” If they want to do it, I will tell them its not for them, yet. Let me show you something else. Usually a Svengali Deck will do the trick, pun intended. I know a novice will never do those other tricks and will probably be turned off magic. I’m more interested in making a customer than making a sale. Everything looks so easy on youtube.

A kid came in with his mother. I don’t think he was even 12. He wanted The 100th Monkey. I said to his mother, “I don’t think its for him. It’s a great mentalist effect but not cheap (over $100.00) and I don’t know if he can carry it off. Perhaps I can show him something else.”

She said, “He wants it. Give it to him. He’s very determined.” So I did.

Next time they came in, I asked how that worked out. Fabulous. So I don’t know everything it seems. But I’m learning!

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “The Magic Filter

  1. Paul K

    It’s a very challenging task to do what you’re doing (helping a magician purchased the right product).

    It’s an art, not a science, so you can’t get it “perfect” every single time.

    Based on all the wonderful guidance that you and Phil have given to me over the years, I can say with absolutely no reservations whatsoever: YOU DO A FANTASTIC JOB! 🙂

    Like

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