Today I thought I’d take a break from my usual ramblings and write a blog specifically aimed at magicians and the magic fraternity.
Over the last few months I have become more and more incensed by a certain green magic forum. Not the place itself necessarily but some of the people who frequent it. Let me step back a little for context.
I started magic about 20 years ago. When I first ventured into this dark mysterious world there were only a few ways one could learn about magic. You could go to the library and pick a few childrens books on the subject, spend a few hours pouring over the information in the hope of extracting a few basic ideas and principles which you could develop. You could join a magic society (although the entrance requirement to such societies was that you already had some degree of knowledge) and coerce an experienced magician to teach you one to one. You could, of course, buy books, video’s and tricks direct from a magic shop. What you couldn’t do was get magic spoon fed to you.
One of the problems of buying magic from the dealers was that all you ever had to go on was the blurb regarding the product. No promotional videos, just a photograph and description of the effect (what the audience saw). The reality was you had to BUY THE SECRET. This often meant that what you got was decidedly disappointing. Let me clarify: The product, be it a book or video, wasn’t necessarily bad. More often than not it was just that you as a performer were not yet ready for it, or even if you were it might not fit your performance persona. Nevertheless, you had to buy the secret to know! My good friend and exceptional magician Gary Jones recounts buying a book by magician Larry Jennings when he first started in magic. Paid a small fortune to discover he was unable to do any of it. The book was shelved until such time that he was skilled enough to find it of benefit.
Some items of magic that find there way into ‘the magic drawer’ never saw the light of day again. Others are revisited and looked at with fresh eyes maybe years later before their true possibilities appreciated.
My point with all this is that everything has changes with the current generation of magician… especially those on certain forums. The want EVERYTHING and they want it right now BEFORE they pay a penny. When any new product comes out they expect full unedited performance videos for them to scrutinise over and over again whilst they post how they think it was done. They expect all questions to be answered. Is it this? Is it that? Worst of all they expect it to be effortless! The very idea that you might have to work at it or develop some performance skills!
What they seem to forget in all this is that you are paying for a secret… Don’t expect the secret to be free.
Spleen vented for today
Till next time…