Some magicians suggest that a good response to the question “How did you that?” after a magic performance is to “just smile”, or “keep quiet” or “walk away” or “tell a joke”. I agree that such strategy can work in most free performances.
However, when a magician is doing a paid show, say, a corporate show, and the event manager or the President of the company asks him the same innocent question “Where did you learn that stuff?”, walking away, smiling or keeping quiet will not be good to his business.
So to answer the question properly, let’s put the question in context. In which type of performance the question is asked—paid or FREE?
The color of the answer changes from one type of performance to another. Methinks that in a paid-performance, one just can’t brush off a question like that. Any questions coming from the organization (or daddy, mommy or uncle) who hired the magician need to be handled more diplomatically and thoughtfully.
Remember, if a magician is doing magic professionally, the name of the game is “Show Business”. He must learn how to “show” and at the same time learn how to conduct “business”. It’s just not good business acting like a smart aleck in front of the person who hires the magician.
What’s wrong with being forthright? We can point the person to the right directions—magic clubs, books, videos, in that order. I’m proud of my club (the Inner Magic Club), and you should be proud of yours. Invite the person to attend one of your Club meetings, and from there, he can choose to pursue his magic interest or drop it.
I’ve invited to my Club waiters, security guards, children, Titos, Titas, Yayas, Yoyos, Grandpas, Grandmas, managers, singers, stage actresses, writers, etc., etc. Some of them came, most did not. In which case everybody is happy, and magic as an art form and business endeavor is not hurt.
Doc Moraleta once wrote, “The real magicians with genuine interest will stay forever in our Art, while the curious ones will only pass by.”
Although magic is not Biology, Darwin’s theory of “natural selection” works in the study of magic. Only the fittest will survive the rigors of learning how to perform it.