Thursday, September 10, 2009

Do you dare to watch them all?

Deutsche Version

Ahh, the linking rings, a timeless classic. Or a classic that fits in no time.

Pretty confusing routine, what is going on with the rope at 1:35? I do not get the effect. And the Titanic Soundtrack, really? Nice practice routine with all the tossing, but it is boring to watch. A bedroom magicians that is very Jeff McBride like.

The Ninja Rings, too fast? Maybe! But at least easier to follow than the last one. But could it more efficient? The handling require lots of weird extra moves. And another bed in the background. And nice J-Pop... don't know what Manga though.

What the hell is that? My grandpa used to dress like that. But only in private. If Jean Michel Jarre knew that his music was abused to such purpose I guess he would sue. Is this guy funny with all the "helicopter" moves and the "hitting on the thumb"? Am I really that much of an uncooperative, antisocial cohort if I do not like that? At 3:15 it gets really gay.

Again the Ninja rings. At least some talking... but the proportions are way off. A fat dude with tiny rings... only when it is funny. But this was no comedy. I use the small rings and I am a fat dude, but at least I make it a point that the rings are so small, not because I am so fat, but because I could not afford bigger rings.

Again, too long, at least does this aged Hippie know how to spin the rings in his hands. The choice of music is weird, as if he had taken too many drugs. (or the musician) Jeff McBride goes through the same moves in less than 3 minutes.

Flying linking rings. Reminds me of Victor Voitko. The music from a Copperfield special, making the performer a fading memory with no character or charisma. But no bed- or living room in the background. That sure gives him plus points which are taken away right away because of all the other self working props in the background.

You might think it is hard to follow a regular linking rings performance. Naturally three routines at the same time are even harder to follow. Someone should tell the girls, who thought it was a good idea. But maybe the point of this performance is not the stupid ring trick. This would be even better when drunk.

With all the broad moves this is clear as water.... WRONG this is most confusing. And the choice of music really doesn't fit the rhythm of the routine. Bad performance.

What the heck is this? He clearly just bought the rings, but it is a bit lovely how he just tosses away the used rings, except one of them. Kind of a spoiler if you ask me.
So why does he post this on Youtube...? I don't know.

Another McBride clown... err, clone that leaves no impression. At least he goes through the moves fast. That way I forget way faster.

Here is a tip, from fatso to fatso. If you are fat, wear black and wear layers. I can see the man boobs, which made it very hard to follow the routine. Is he wearing sun glasses or is it just a blindfold? Hard to tell. Again way too long, but at least he patters, making it seem a lot shorter. Gotta give him that.

Singing, according to the action. Not bad actually, but a 2 ring routine...? Really? Naturally this is not magical, the rings are just a gimmick to illustrate the lyrics.
It is kind of sad, that so far this is the best performance.

Wow, this is old school, but a step in the right direction, as it is hinted that the rings are actually handed out for examination. But as usual, way too long and way too much repeat. Typical case of: I practiced all the moves, ergo I must show them all.

Why doesn't he hand out the rings? Handing them out is the strength of the routine. And holding up three rings, looking thought the center ring, saying Mickey Mouse takes away any dignity that one has.

How old is this kid? Should he be practicing the linking rings... Sadly I was about the same age when I started to practice this. And if you endured this blog post so far, here is a little reward by telling you a true story. When I was 14 years old I was practicing the linking rings. At night. At three in the morning. My mother open the door, with a really tired face. "Roland, I am tired, those rings are just too noisy. Boys your age should do something at night that is a lot more quite. Masturbate or something, but let's have some quiet!"

A nerd in the making, no body tension and again the McBride routine. Rehearsing the routine more often would not only make him good, but also be a physical workout.

Here is a tip for the future. If you are a magician in a comedy club, be funny! You got the magic gimmick, that helps a lot. But still, you gotta be funny. People go to a comedy club to laugh, to forget the worries of the day and to relax. A half-assed serious performance, that is not fluid really doesn't help.

Boooooooooooooooooooooooooring! You might say, yeah for a magician maybe, but a layperson will be baffled and mystified... You are kidding right?

This clearly is not a performance, but a practice video, so what the heck is it doing on Youtube? But I like the choice of music. It has something. I cannot tell what, but something.

I like the box. It has advertisement, as well as functionality. It serves as a holder and as a servante. You can hide rather large loads behind the box and yet nobody will question it, as the box seems to have a funtionality, therefore it is above suspicion. The table seems to be like one of those you can fold together. Maybe you can do the same with the box too, making it a "packs flat, plays big" item. Oh yeah, there is a linking ring routine in the video too. Damn I like that box. I wish my name was Mike Daniels.

Could this young man look more bored? I think not.

This probably is the most noisy routine I have ever heard. And talk about a weird structure. Eight rings: Three of them are linked in a chain. That chain is hung around the neck and nothing is done with it anymore. Three more a linked, Again hung around the neck, but not the same way as the other three, having no consistency at all. The remaining two rings are linked, then unlinked ending the video on a dumb expression at 1:28.

If you make a video, at least remove the dirty laundry from the background.

As professionals we often have to do some shows, where we are not in the mood. It might be the location, the audience or oneself. This man is a clear case of "I do not want to be here, but I get paid" He goes through the routine, like a robot trying to get it over with. Again no handing out of the rings. So what is the point?

Ok, this young fellow loves video effects. Even down to slow motion... slow motion in a linking ring routine. Wow, as if it was not boring enough. Watch at 2:15 as he starts spinning the ring, with all of his might, I swear I see his fat jiggling along the way.

I see a pattern! No handing out of the rings. Mostly music. I get it, working with the linking rings must give one physical pleasure. Not the kind my mother referred to in the statement I gave earlier, but some sort of pleasure. So I guess there is some merit in the linking rings. None that would be good for magic though.

AND, TO END THE TRAVESTY, the world famous Shaolin Magician. Actually giving the linking rings a motivation. I am in awe at this cinematic master piece..

I am not finished yet. If you had the endurance to read up to this point you deserve my humble opinion on the correct handling of the linking rings routine.

1. Just a few rings. Four rings seems optimal, because it is really not confusing.(yes I dare to disagree with the God of magic, Mr. Dai Vernon)
2. Hand out the rings during the performance!
3. Patter, as it makes the routine more clear!
4. HAND OUT THE RING BEFORE THE PERFORMANCE... I should have told you that right away right? I think this is crucial, that ALL the rings are handed out for examination BEFORE you start. Only then people will not think of a gap on at least one of the rings. Of course most sets do not allow for that ruse. Well switching rings in and out not only is possible, but mandatory.


Rosenkrantz said...

I've been touring 'round the country with a lecture on Linking Rings, and your post was a GREAT addition to the "The way you shouldn't do it" section, saeriously!

You know when you get driving lessons and they show you gory videos of accidents caused by drinking then driving? I do pretty much the same, at one point of the lecture I actually show the students how not to behave on a routine. I already had some of the mentioned videos, but you brought up some gems that'll be very useful indeed.


I know 'Lellusionista' (We just cal him Lelo, easier to spell haha) in person. I bursted out laughing when I saw his name, LOL.

lars.rapp said...

Thank you for your comments on the routines and (mostly lack of) presentations. I understand that you know the art of performing.

I myself have used the linking rings (four ones) for some 50 years, but still make small improvments. It seems to me that the magicans do not understand the plot of the trick - a number of separate solid rings links and unlinks mysteriously. You have to convinse the audience that they are separated from the beginning, and when linked, let them be examined by the sepctators. Finish by separating all the rings makes a good sence and is a logic end. The only exception from these rules is if you perform the rings in a smooth, estetic way on a stage like Rickard Ross did.
Yours, Delgado