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I bring more tricks than I need. Other magicians in the Philippines who see the amount of stuff I lug to one party or another may not understand the logic of travelling with excess baggage. However, I do understand, otherwise I wouldn’t be doing it.
In this “packs flat, plays big” era of magic shows, my program is a misfit. It needs several large pieces. Not only that, I have reserves and redundancies. Meaning, if I suddenly decide to change a routine in mid-show, I have reserve tricks to take out from my bag and perform. If a prop breaks, or a handkerchief gets misplaced, I have another prop or handkerchief to do the work.
The overload of stuff gives me peace of mind but breaks my back carting them around Metro Manila. I still prefer doing it that way, though. I place more value on my mind’s well-being than my back’s.
If you are as paranoid as I am, then do as I do. Bring more magic tricks than you need.
To do a 45-minute show, I bring props and equipment good for a two-hour show. Here are the advantages of bringing excess stuff:
Versatility of program. Sometimes the client books me for a children’s show. “Oh, there are about 30 children and a few adults,” she would say during the booking process. On the day of the party, I arrive at the venue and find only about eight children plus lots of adults. What then would I do? Without breaking a sweat, I then tweak my program by bringing out the extra props from my boxes of tricks and perform a magic show largely suitable for grown-ups instead of for children. I couldn’t do that if I brought only the set of props for a children’s show.
Protection from emergencies. Now and then accident happens before the show. The egg for Silk to Egg breaks, the battery for the wireless microphone was not recharged, or a prop was left. If I didn’t bring spare props and extra tricks, I would have no choice but perform an abbreviated program and upset my client.
In anticipation of bad performing conditions. If you want to perform floating effects and happen upon a performing venue where you have no control over the lighting situation, you need to ditch all IT tricks from your program. If you didn’t bring extra tricks, you have no substitute acts to perform for the ones you drop from the show. You will feel very emasculated, indeed.
And what are the disadvantages of bringing extra stuff? They are a hassle to lug around especially if you need to enter malls, hotels, condominium towers, or go through airport security.
Again, as I said earlier, whether one prefers s healthy mind or a good back will dictate the decision which tack to adopt.
- Leodini’s Sage Advice: Tell a Story with Your Magic (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)
- Disillusioned with The Magicians | Ben Marshall (guardian.co.uk)
- 5 Things Magic is NOT About (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)
- Only in Magic… (innermagicclub.wordpress.com)