Performing Magic in Restaurants – Talking to the Staff
When you perform magic in a restaurant you are part of a team. You're one cog in the machine that is designed to give the guests a great experience, a fantastic atmosphere, and a wonderful meal. Being part of a team means that you need to consider the other team members. Sometimes the restaurant may not have used a magician before. Take a moment to talk with the staff and reassure them that you will be an asset rather than a hinderance. Here's some points you may want to communicate to them:
When will the magician perform magic in the restaurant?
Usually you will be performing magic in restaurants during the waiting time between a guest ordering their food and the meal arriving. Let the staff know that you will not approach a table while guests are looking at the menus, eating their food, or once the guests have asked for the bill. Restaurants care about turning their tables, so your job is to entertain during the waiting times the guests experience, not when they should be doing something to move the process of the meal forward.
How performing magic in restaurants helps?
Let the staff know that the magician is a helpful tool for the restaurant. There are many ways that magic can help things run smoothly. If a table is facing a long delay getting their food, the staff can tell the magician to keep the table occupied. Let the team know they can call you over to a table when they need this service.
Magic in restaurants is exciting.
Suggest that the staff mention to the guests that a magician will be performing magic in the restaurant when they are shown to their table. Ask the staff to let you know as soon as possible if guests have requested to see your magic.
If possible, mention that there are applause moments in the magic you will perform. In those moments the guests will be watching closely. Don't boss the staff around, but if you mention this they will look out for it and soon understand when it's not a good time to interrupt. This is also a good time to ask that waiters don't offer drinks or canapés to a group if you are performing for them. Be polite about this and explain that you will not get in their way. If the staff are aware, then it will not ruin the magic for the guests.
Talk about Tips.
Assuming that you are not working just for tips, I recommend that you pass on any tips you receive to the main restaurant staff. Let the team know that a magician may increase tips because the guests will have a great time. If a guest insists on tipping, accept the gift, but check if the restaurant has a tip jar to it's shared with everyone working that night.
Let the team know how a magician will help them.
Performing magic in restaurants is a bonus for the whole team. Let the staff know how magic will help them:
- You will entertain the guests and give them a great experience.
- Long wait times can seem shorter if guests are being entertained.
- A guests special celebration can have a magic trick to mark the occasion.
- The magician can identify any guest issues and bring them to the staffs attention.
- Magic in restaurants can increase tip levels for everyone.
- Make regular customers feel extra special.
It's also important to reassure the staff that you won't be a hinderance. Let them know that you will not:
- Disturb the guests whilst they are eating.
- Interrupt food or wine presentations
- Take their tips.
You don't need to give a long speech to the waiting staff, but a quick chat just to mention these points will really help your interaction with the whole team when you start at a new restaurant. Performing magic in restaurants can be a fast paced and challenging experience, so keep the restaurant staff on your side and aware of the help your magic provides.