A birthday party celebration is a live show. When something bad or unexpected happens, one can’t rewind the flow of events and start over. One can only scramble and find ways to remedy the situation. The more experienced the help one gets, the more professional the entertainer he has hired, the better are the chances of salvaging the party from a bad situation.
Dependability is one factor that a parent should consider when hiring a magician to entertain at his/her child’s birthday.
Some parents, though, get lost in the shuffle and would opt to hire the cheapest performer. Many has this romanticized notion that the one who quotes the lowest price is the one offering the best deal. The result of this romantic notion is sometimes catastrophic.
Caveat emptor is the first rule for low prices or cheap talent fees. A parent should be forewarned when a magician quotes a rock-bottom professional fee. A cheap rate should ring alarm bells.
Low professional fees tell a lot about the performer. The fee is low probably because…
a. his show sucks.
b. he is inexperienced.
c. he is doing the show to practice his act.
d. he doesn’t have eye-pleasing props.
e. his show doesn’t come with “extras” like a backdrop, sound system, etc.
f. he is doing the show to earn a quick buck.
g. he is not a professional and therefore undependable.
h. he cannot deliver what he says he is going to deliver, that is, to entertain the guests and not to embarrass the birthday parents.
i. all of the above.
Just recently, I heard a true story circulating the birthday party circuit here in Metro Manila. A Filipino magician, who performs as a clown, got booked in a party held in a popular restaurant in Makati.
The birthday mom hired this clown because he was cheap. She thought she got a good deal.
On the day of the party, the clown arrived very late. He came so late that when he arrived, the birthday mom told him to start his show right away.
The clown said he’d go fetch his stuff downstairs and would be back in a few moments.
He did not. Minutes passed. An hour. The party wound up. The visitors went home. The birthday child was disappointed. The clown did not return.
He probably got intimidated seeing the guests or the place. He might have realized he came to a party which was way out of his league. And so he left and never came back.
Let me say it again, this time with feeling: the cheapest magician is not necessary the best deal.