We have heard often of magicians who can neither perform magic nor entertain audiences with it.
Such inability has caused phobia among Filipino magic entertainers. It’s an affliction that drives some Pinoy magicians to the other extreme. They build entertaining routines that lack the core ingredient of a magic show, namely, magic.
As a result, their shows have magical contents so tenuous people watching it often fail to recognize the magic. There’s no amazing part, no bafflement, no wonder.
Building a routine with a bias toward entertainment is an excellent goal. However, we must not forget that our type of entertainment is magic. The entertainment should flow from magic and not from balloon twisting or from mere jokes and funny bits.
Magic entertainment is not only entertainment. It is also magic. In fact magic is the core reason why parents hire us to perform at their children’s birthday party. And if we billed ourselves as magician, then our entertainment should be mainly the by-product of magic.
Without the magic part, what then would set us apart from clowns, balloon twisters, pranksters, jokers, jugglers, acrobats, and other performers?
A dancer who comes to a party and entertains the birthday boy with jokes is not doing his job well, no matter how entertaining or funny the jokes are.
A juggler who comes to a party and sings a Josh Groban song may entertain his audience. But if he doesn’t juggle, he he has failed to do his job according to his job description no matter how moving his songs are.
In like manner, a magician who is preoccupied with making people laugh, dishing out jokes and gags left and right but forgetting to perform magic may still be entertaining, but he is entertaining the wrong way.
It’s wrong to bill oneself as a magician and then go to the gig with packs flat, plays magic so small nobody notices it.
He can still be entertaining, but that’s not the point. The point is, he has misrepresented himself by advertising as a magician and not doing magic to entertain at the gig.
Clients who hire magicians want entertainment—-but not just any entertainment. It must be entertainment that results from magic.
So while you are still building your show, remember to add funny and entertaining bits to your act. But don’t forget to lay a magical foundation first. The funny stuff are just the icing. The magic is the meat of your show.