I would like to perform magic tricks to people without having to say, 'do you want to see a magic trick? Do you have any suggestions?
There are two options if you wish to perform magic tricks without asking if someone wants to see a trick. You can simply direct them to hold something and simply do the magic, a very David Blaine or Dynamo style approach. The other option is to talk with your spectators about random topics and steer the conversation to where you need it to be so that you can perform a magic trick for them.
If you wish to use the first approach, you must be aware that you may have a lot of unsure people who do not know what you are going to do. Even when you see people on TV such as Dynamo, Troy, or David Blaine walk up to people they have all been asked if they would like to see a magic trick, it is never a ‘cold call’. This cold approach is certainly the hardest approach to use.
Ask yourself this question, 'If a stranger walked up to you and asked if they could borrow your phone to show them something, would you give it to them?
Of course, you would be wary and most likely not help them out. With that in mind, it is not impossible; they must trust you though. A good way to get people to trust you is to perform magic tricks with your own items. Maybe float a banknote as you sit at a table or make an item move without touching it, something that would get a spectator’s attention. This way they will then be more accepting of you, and a lot more likely to allow you to borrow an item from them. They now know you will show them something interesting and not just steal their items.
In order to do this, your magic tricks should be strong and visual and these aspects should talk for themselves. You do not want to perform magic tricks with lots of instructions for the spectator to follow. A simple, ‘hold this’ or ‘watch’ is all that will be necessary to say. This minimalistic approach can work wonders, but the magic tricks MUST be good or else it will fall flat.
The other approach is to lead your spectators up the garden path and begin chatting to them about a topic that you can steer in the direction you wish it to go. Talk to your spectators without trying to jump into performing a magic trick, in fact, forget the magic trick for the time being. Chat to them about things that can relate to the effect you wish to perform on them. A great way to steer a conversation in the direction you wish for it to go is to just Google search a meme on the topic. For example if you wish to perform a trick where you make an item move on its own accord you could talk about the film Carrie and how it has been remade.
There is a meme that went viral of a video of a girl in a coffee shop who makes a man fly up the side of a wall; all the tables move on their own, and finally when the girl screams books fly off the bookshelves, and all the pictures fall off the wall. Over 56 million people have watched that clip on YouTube, and it may be that the people you are speaking to have seen it also. This is a perfect lead in to performing a magic trick where a pen falls off the edge of a table or a fork spins on a table.
In order to get the most out of these approaches, you must be confident and comfortable when handling people. If you try the first method of approach and get shot down then do not get disheartened, try again! To go up to someone cold and simply do magic for them is a very tough thing to do, it takes guts, confidence and technique to make it a success.
For those of you interested in the Coffee Shop Telekinesis Prank check it out here:
What's your experience of approaching people to introducing your magic? Let me know in the comments section below: