Pick a Card

Posted on Mar 6, 2007

So a friend of mine has started to learn slight of hand and we got into an interesting discussion about magic and doing magic for people. We came to a couple of conclusions. First that there are three types of people in the world of magic. Those who like to be tricked, those that have to figure out how it is done and those who know how it is done and don’t care.

The first group, who like to be tricked, are the best people to perform for, especially if you are nervous about a new trick. They are more likely to look forward to the end of the trick then to get caught up in the mechanics of the trick. Most of these people are very content to let the magician do his trick and get caught up in the story of the trick and they allow themselves to be tricked. Luckily for magicians most people fall into this category.

The second group, while trickier to perform for, are infinitely more fun. Just make sure you know you material. They will stare at your hands, trying to catch you and when you fool them they almost get mad. They are the kind of people who will grab the cards or coin out of your hand and expose the trick if they can so beware.

The third group is performing for a fellow magician. They will offer constructive criticism in a one on one setting and have your back if someone gets out of control in a performance. They also make great plants if you need one for a trick. If you can fool the third group you are good to go with a new trick.

My friend also stated that he finds it funny the magic is just lying about what you are doing and getting away with it. This is true to an extant however, I prefer to think that I am not just lying but telling a story that both amuses and amazes the people I am performing for. This is why I have a hard time doing any of the street magic tricks in a street magic context. If I can infuse them with humor and admit that I am tricking people and dare them to catch me it becomes a game. A game that I win.