The Evolution of a Show

Things are about to get crazy with shows for the rest of the year. So, I’ve a bit of work to do to tie up some loose ends for my books. “Pack Flat Illusions for Kids & Family Shows” will be available from all magic dealers worldwide this coming week so we look forward to a good run of that title.

The rest of my books are scheduled to be released to the mass magic market later in the year and next year. The next title up for mass release is “The Event Illusionist”. However, I’m basically re-writing the book as “The Event Magician”, to cover all magicians who want to perform a platform and stage show for events. The book will likely be released in two volumes instead of the one original big book. Volume 1 will focus on the designing of an event magic show. Volume 2 will detail the marketing of an event magic show.

The first edition of this book was published in 2004 and the second edition in 2008. Since then, some of my approaches to show production have evolved and been refined so this will be reflected in this de facto 3rd edition of the book. In particular, lots of the marketing has also evolved and needs to be updated. The rise of social media as a marketing tool and significant part of the marketing action plan has to be covered in the book to be relevant to today’s market. I hope to have this re-written by the end of August for a release by end Sept.

In the meantime, my formal close-up show has been evolving rapidly and transforming into quite a beast. 3 hours of practice, rehearsal and thinking a day on this show is turning it into something quite special. Several more people have had the chance to view the show live and provided great suggestions & comments that have steered me into new areas of thinking.

An elusive opening routine has been caught and the custom props needed in that routine are being made and sent over from two different countries. One of the issues of the new show was the build-up towards the magic effect in the original first routine. I wanted the magic to happen as soon as possible but with a motivated reason for the magic to happen, without just doing something flashy for the sake of doing magic. The new routine #1 will see 9 effects taking place in the short span of 90 seconds.

A lot of the techniques I have used to produce or more accurately “evolve” this show will be shared in “The Event Magician”. The show started with the choosing and refining of the individual routines. Even individual routines have changed so much in a year with the combining, cutting and adding of different elements to make them better. Next, all the next props and items required in show had to be fabricated or obtained. The show is at the tail end of this process… I hope.

Scripting has been on-going with refinements to plot presentations. A lot of people familiar with my close-up work know how my patter works as an important punctuation tool to my routines. My rhythm and timing is quite specific to my style and the script is one of the tools I use to highlight the rhythm of my performance.

I have been rehearsing most of the show in its entirety. Several of the routines are tied to each other as part of the unifying structure of the show. So, while, acts are still modular, the show is still best rehearsed in order.

The full show can run up to 40min with an “act” version of just under 10min. It looks like I will have an opportunity to perform the show in Singapore and Korea later in the year. The most updated version of the show, in order, includes:

  • The Hourglass/Packing Light
  • Boxed CSB/ Triple Destination
  • Lesson in Magic (Cups & Balls)/ Tomato Can
  • Inverted Aces
  • Training Weights
  • The Morgan Mysteries
  • Dice Explosion

Just some of the items I use in my new formal close-up show!


About J C Sum

International Headline Entertainer, Content Creator and Investor
This entry was posted in Illusions, Books, Products, Show Production and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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