Trolling doesn’t just happen on the internet. If you perform magic to the public, sooner or later, you will come face to face with a magic troll.
How do you cope with people spoiling your magic tricks?
What do you say when someone tells you that they want to show YOU a trick?
What do you do when a spectator starts naming the techniques you are using, right in the middle of a trick?
On the internet, it’s easy to handle trolls, you simply don’t feed them with a reaction. But what about in real life? When you join a group to perfrom your magic and discover a magic troll, right there in the group. There’s no delete button in these situations. But there are easy and effective ways to deal with this situation.
Dominic Reyes talks about how he handles hecklers and trolls:
Key points from the video:
You are there for the groups entertainment. The service you are supplying is entertainment and fun. Putting your own ego as a performer above this is not a good idea.
If a spectator asks to show you a trick. Let them. Allow them to be in the spotlight for a moment and make sure you signal that you are enjoying their trick, even if it sucks.
Should a spectator start to explain the ending of the trick, ask them not to spoil the surprise for everyone else and that you would love to talk to them about magic later. Acknolodge that they are also a magician.
If a spectator shows you a card trick, make sure that the trick you do afterwards is not of a similar type. Don’t ‘one up’ the spectator. Do a coin trick or some mentalism, so you don’t appear to be putting them down with a better trick.
If a spectator seems to be set on ruining your tricks, end at the next natural stopping point and thank the group. Explain that you will be doing more magic later in the evening, and then move on to another group. You are not obliged to perform under these conditions. You can return to the group later in the evening, once the ‘heckler’ has moved on.
If a group clearly are not interested in watching you do magic tricks, DON’T. The spectators own you nothing, and you are there to entertain. A restaurant would not force a customer to eat a meal they did not like, and you shouldn’t force pople to watch magic if they don’t want to. Remember it’s all about THEM not YOU.
We all have different techniques and styles of handling tricky spectators. Share a tip about it in the comments section below: