If you’re a member of the Society of American Magicians you automatically get MUM, their magazine with all the reports from the different chapters, as well advertising, tricks that are taught, featured artists (magicians), reviews on books, DVD’s and tricks on the market, and magician columnists with advice and stories etc, and all that jazz! Michael Close is the editor and writes a column as well. It carries a great deal of diversity and I’m sure the members look forward to it each month.
As I went through the January 2012 issue, I came across 2 things I would like to share, in case you are not a member of the organization.
George Schindler, an old friend, magician, and Dean of the American Society of Magicians, has a monthly column called the Dean’s Diary. His topic this month was rising cards, more specifically, the Devano Rising Cards. In the last paragraph of his column he writes that in 1977 he was honored at the magic Circle in London and was chatting with a fellow there who was interested in rising cards. The fellow asked him which he preferred, and George said the Arne Rising Card, the person he was talking to preferred the Devano. They discussed the pros and cons of each, and each was left with their original opinion. As the guy turned to leave, George asked him his name. He laughed and said Mitch Devano.
The other article was about the audience you are performing for. Rod Danilewicz writes a column called Confessions of a Paid Amateur. While he agrees that the magic and presentation are important, the most important part of the equation is sometimes forgotten – the Audience.
He recommends 2 books. The first is In A Class By Himself (which is an older book, but is still available), Jon Racherbaumer’s book about Don Alan. The second is Al Schneider Magic. Rod says that many people get the books and only bother with the tricks contained in them. He says what’s more important is why, where and how he uses them. He says that information alone, without the tricks, is worth the price of the books. Something to think about! If you have those books, take another look. If not, they are still available and will surely improve your performance!