Thursday, September 2, 2010
The Next Level!
Don't you wanna elevate your magic to the next level? According to Rich Ferguson, a rather recent addition to the drone army that supports Ellusionist, mentalism is the way.
Magic is fine the way it is. If you have a good, solid close up base and a nice stage act you don't need the next level. What is the next level anyhow?
Are there levels in magic? Sure: Layman, Beginner, Extreme Beginner, Professional and IBM-Member I guess. But once you are a professional is there a need to progress into the realm of the mentalism? I think not. When I am booked, they book me, because I do magic. Not because I do mentalism. If they want a mentalist, they would hire a mentalist. The client wants me to do magic. And I love doing that. Making a coin vanish is a great thing. Magicians seems to be too close to that issue and dismiss a simple coin vanish as a beginner's trick. It is not. The same way mentalism is not the natural progression of magic.
Sure Mentalism can be a nice way to entertain a crowd, but it is not the next step in magic. It is a distant cousin of magic.
According to Rich Ferguson you can enhance your magic with the principles of mentalism. Really? I thought the mentalist's use the principles of magic. But I might be mistaken on that, not having researched mentalism along side magic... wait, I have.
Rich Ferguson also claims that putting magic and mentalism together "it's the best of both worlds". I think the best of both worlds is that they are not perceived as the same and that they stay apart from each other as much as they can.
Magic is a pure little world full of vanishes, transpositions, levitation, and restorations. Mentalism is a world full of predictions, suggestions, chances and talking with spirits. If you mix both, you get something that is hard to grasp and you need one hell of a character to make clear for the audience what is going on.
And I might add my own little observation here: Most performers lack the ability to support such a character. Especially the majority of the Ellusionist customer base.
You wanna know the next level of magic? A really deceptive false transfer with no funny moves and no awkward dancing of the hands. If you are able to do that you can do almost anything...even mentalism.