The Importance of Theming Your Magic!
One of the most important components of magic coincidentally is also one of the most overlooked when it comes to magicians putting together their act. I am speaking of course about “Theming.” What does this mean exactly. Well the simple answer is giving your act a reason for people to care about it. This can mean telling a story, or using an emotional hook, nostalgia, and more! In this week’s episode, I am going to share three of the most common ways you can add that missing piece to your act!
-Give your magic an engaging story: One of the biggest problems with a lot of magic performances is the fact that they do not have a story. Your patter should not just explain what you are doing; “I will take your card and place it in the middle. I wiggle my fingers, now its on top.” This type of patter can get pretty boring after awhile. It would be better to not say anything than to narrate what you are doing over an effect. Let’s use the above example again, but this time give it a story or purpose. “Believe it or not, most magicians actually make the best card cheats. the reason is simple, they can find your card in the deck, turn it invisible, pull it out of the deck and place it on top without you seeing it… Do you believe me? Watch I will prove it.” You can then mime pulling out an invisible card and place it on top. The mechanics are identical and the trick is technically the same, HOWEVER the audience is more invested simply because you made it more fun with the bit about the invisible card and how magicians cheat at cards. This is an example of how adding a story or motivation to your magic can make it more interesting.
-Always make the more interesting choice: This seems like an obvious statement, however many magicians fail to seize the opportunity to do something creative with their props. For example, I have been performing card to pocket for years and years. The routine is visual and gets some pretty decent reactions. The card even ends up folded inside of a peppermint tin at the end. I decided to do something a bit different with the props to make the effect more appealing to children. All I did was these three things: Swap out the deck of playing cards for Pokémon Cards, swap out the mint tin for a Pokéball, and give the effect an engaging story. The effect now became very interesting and fun for children, but also added nostalgia and an emotional connection for young adults! Every time i take out the Pokémon cards, at least one person in the audience gets super excited and yells “POKÉMON CARDS!” This is now the most requested piece of magic in my set, and i didn’t even have to change the handling of the effect at all!
-Theme the magic to match your brand or look: I often see magicians performing magic “out of the box.” This could refer to both the performance and the props themselves. If you are going to perform the cups and balls, choose a set of cups and balls that make sense with your overall theme! For example, I dress like a 1920’s newsboy. My cups are old looking copper cups with small baseballs. One of my good friends’ character is a magical explorer type character, so his cups are brass with beautiful Egyptian looking designs on them. If you are a child’s performer you can use bright colorful cups and toy balls. It would look really strange if I was performing at a corporate event using plastic toy cups I clearly bought from a joke shop. Make the more interesting choice and choose something that would add more value to your performance! I even encourage you to build your own props when possible. It may serve to add more personality to your magic!
I truly hope these ideas get the creative juices flowing! It is extremely important to add an emotional hook to your performance. The more invested your audience is, the stronger your magic will become! I have seen magicians completely thrill an audience with just a simple double lift, because their story and theme was there and the performance itself was very powerful. Be sure to check out my Pokémon Card Magic Video HERE! Maybe it will help give some inspiration for you to create interesting ideas for your own magic! Thank you so much for watching and see you again soon!