Magic Musings

Proper Technique in Magic

Boston Massachusetts Magician Joe Ferranti’s Magical Musings

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Proper technique for performing magic

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When you hang out with fellow magicians, many discussions take place. Sometimes opinions get a little heated. I come from the school that considers laypeople intelligent. Others argue laypeople don’t care about methods, they just want to be entertained.

Well, just for argument’s sake, let us assume we are all equally entertaining. Then the superior performer is the one who employs the best Method and technique.

Perfecting our sleights

I know magicians who stop short of perfecting their sleights. “laypeople, don’t care.”… but they are not stupid. Poor technique sticks out like a sore thumb. Good to excellent technique is invisible.

For a simple example, take Doc Daley’s Last Trick. Some magicians fumble with their double turnover technique. If you are using a poor technique, at least take the time to hide the obvious get ready.

Take Time to Practice…get it right!

If you are guilty of this, your audience will not be totally sure of the placement of the Black aces and the red aces. When you arouse suspicion, your spectators may not know what happened, but they know something happened,which is just as bad as knowing what happened. The result is a diminished reaction as the magic is missing. You simply have no effect. With flawless technique and structured routining, the sleights are invisible and you will have a “killer effect.”

Darwin Ortiz reminds us, “That before you change an apple into an orange, make sure the audience knows it’s an apple.” In Daley’s effect, you must come as close to conviction of the placement of the cards as possible. If you fumble with the cards, you won’t come close to clarity or conviction.

The Market for easy tricks or self-working.

Magicians are constantly putting out effects which are easy to do. Some of these are good, while most of them pay a price for their simplification. Sometimes you just have to put in the work. Here’s a quote from Darwin’s book Strong Magic. On the cost of taking the easy way out…

Darwin Ortiz, from Strong Magic

Sometimes, complicated methods are the best answer.

“Forget complicated magical methods and seek the easiest way to accomplish the trick.”
The problem is that very often the complicated method is the easiest way to accomplish the trick.

Sometimes you just have to put in the work.

Joe Ferranti

Boston Wedding Magician

 

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