Filipino birthday party magicians have an advantage over their foreign counterparts. Birthday parties in the Philippines are usually big affairs. Hundreds of guests comprising of friends, co-employees and relatives up to the nth degree attend with their children in tow.
Pinoy magicians performing for such large audiences get more lusty laughter, more enthusiastic applause and more gasps of amazement.
Still, such gigs don’t guarantee a successful performance. The Pinoy magician must watch out for performance killers and avoid them.
In my case, the easy way I found to avoid performance killers is to attach “Tips to Ensure a Successful Birthday Party Magic Show” to the Performance Confirmation I send to the client after she books my show. I call the document “tips”, because I don’t want the client to see me as a performer difficult to work with.
Here are the tips I send to my clients. Most of them follow the tips religiously and make my performance a breeze and enjoyable.
1. Please arrange the performing area so that no people are watching from the sides or behind the performer. People will enjoy the magic show more if they are watching from the front. If the party is held outdoor, the performer should ideally be placed in an area where there is no strong wind, as he will be using some props made of cloth (handkerchiefs and bandannas) and birds that fly away when there’s a strong gust of wind.
2. Don’t serve food while the program is going on. The performer may lose control over the children and the audience if drinks, ice cream, cakes, candies or any food is served while the magic show is going on. The best time to serve food and drinks is when the party host (not supplied in my program) pauses the show for dinner or merienda.
3. Do not give the children toys or giveaways during the show. There will be a commotion, and it’s difficult to get back the children’s attention once they are distracted.
4. Keep the pets on leash or inside the cages. Please don’t allow dogs or cats or any pet to roam into the performing area, as they can easily disrupt the program and distract the children.
5. The show should preferably be indoor and against a wall. Reserve an elbow room of about five feet square between the children and the magician, so as not to cramp the performer’s movements.
6. If possible, remove the chairs and let the children sit on the floor. The fewer obstacles between them and the show, the better is the children’s response to the program. If for some reasons you don’t want the children to be sitting on the floor, let them sit on small tools or plastic chairs. This will prevent children from falling from their chairs and hurting themselves if they become enthusiastic during the program.
7. Please turn off the TV, Karaoke machine, PlayStation and Game Boy. Their noise makes it difficult for children to focus on the show. Grown-ups and relatives who want to exchange news and pleasantries should stay in another room. Talking parents, family and friends will ruin the show as efficiently as a suicide bomber. Put the talkative adults in another room.