12 10 2011
Magic is Still Kicking in the 21st Century!
I’m a magician and also write books about magic aimed, mostly, at adult beginners. For those reasons, you’d expect that I’d be still saying that it’s going well, even if I was reduced to sharing my rabbit’s rations! It’s still extremely popular and my bunny’s biscuits are hers alone. We don’t get much magical entertainment on television here.
There’s very little live production because of the lower costs for the networks to get programs from America or England. These programs have huge budgets by our standards along with prepared promotional information and an almost guaranteed audience attracted by earlier publicity when the shows were originally sgown in the originating country. That’s reduced the potential in that area to casual spots on chat shows and similar until some clever performer focuses on the needs of that market and finds a way to break in. I’m sure that it will happen. I hope I’m still around when it does! However, the demand for magic shows for parties, conferences and special events is becoming stronger after declining in many areas after 9/11.
The heightened security requirements and inevitable minor delays when travelling won’t stop companies and other organisations attending junkets … sorry, industry information events. There’s few forms of entertainment with the broad appeal for people attending these events of a quality magic act. There’s also very strong interest in specialised magic presentations for break-out events that give conference delegates some light hearted fun between their work sessions and also programs that entertain delegates partners while those work sessions are on. The continued interest in my books, shown by the feedback from readers and distributors, tells me that there are many adults, dedicated to other activities and professions, that love to use magic tricks to break the ice at parties, promote their business activities in memorable ways or even perform occasional magic shows.
I know from the enthusiasm of children I entertain and the comments of parents at the shows or who send feedback after buying my ebooks, that children are learning to do magic tricks or to make and use puppets in greater numbers than ever. The appeal is, I think, in the human interaction that technology hasn’t simulated very successfully yet. Even when virtual hologram performances are common, costs are likely to keep them beyond the reach of most for a while. And there’s one major attraction that no machine-based system can match.
It’s great to watch a magic show, but there’s even more fun being the person that waves the wand and causes the scarves to change places or the elephant to appear. And, provided you have access to a well-trained elephant – or the necessary scarves – it’s really very easy to learn to do a few little miracles yourself.
John Williams is a part-time professional magician who writes and sells ebooks between his magic shows. The books, including his latest, ‘Ezy Magic Miracles’ are available from Ezyebook.com