I had once an enlightening conversation with a waiter of a large catering service.
He said he had served many birthday parties and seen many magicians perform. His question: “Sir, bakit ang ibang magician tuloy-tuloy lang mag-magic at walang pakialam sa audience?” (“Sir, why do some magicians rush through their performance, seemingly oblivious of the audience?”)
It was not a trick question, but it took me a while to gather my thoughts before I came up with the following musing.
As magicians in the Philippines, we often become so engrossed in the details of the performance we sometimes forget we have an audience.
The waiter’s observation is spot on. I’ve watched other magicians mind so much their blocking, stage movement, choreography and sleight-of-hand that they space out. They become like zombies, seemingly unaware they have an audience to entertain.