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How To Learn Magic And Become A Magician

Oct 26, 2007
Is your dream to become a magician? Magic is something that has always fascinated me as an art form and also as a profession. But how do you become a magician, where do you start? This is probably the most common question that spectators ask when they meet a professional magician.

Well this is my personal story as I do not think there is set way of becoming a magician. For me, it all started with the amazement that magic generated in me whenever I watched magicians on TV or live shows. One of my older cousins also had an interest in magic and used to get catalogues from a magic dealer in France.

The description of the effects that you could accomplish (after purchasing the props or technical book / video) was fascinating and the publicity even made it sound like it was pretty easy. I did not know anything about magic but that was how it all started for me.

Back then, there was no such thing as internet - and there were only a handful of magic shops in France, charging a lot of money for the very special items they were selling on a real niche market. I first ordered a few magic tricks that I thought were a bit disappointing.

Then I got my first magic book, called "The Magic Book" by Harry Lorraine. The book had been translated into French which helped as my English was pretty basic at the time. I highly recommend this book if you can get hold of it as it contains a great variety of material and techniques. Basic coin magic and card magic is covered but also some mentalism (mind magic) effects and general magic with everyday objects.

As soon as I got the book, I started practicing very seriously, dedicating most of my spare time to the study of magic. I got my first pack of Bicycle Playing cards (made by the United States Playing Card Company or USPCC) and practiced most of the basic card techniques that are needed in order to perform the tricks that described in the magic literature.

Once you have mastered about half a dozen of important card techniques, you can then learn hundreds of card routines created over the years by our magic community. Of course, I must point out that you do not need hundreds of card routines in your repertoire.

The same applies to coin magic. Once you have learned the most important coin techniques, you can then learn the routines created by magicians. David Stone, David Roth, David Williamson are excellent coin magicians and I would highly recommend the material they have created.

The two most common formats for learning magic are books or dvd. So which format should you go for? Learning magic with DVDs is slightly easier and faster than from a book, and you can get a better idea of the timing for the performance of the effects. One of problems with DVDs though, is what we call the "clone effect", or magicians copying exactly their source of knowledge even using the same patter as the inventor. Learning magic from a magic book on the other hand leaves more space for the imagination, and personalization of the effects.

I hope this will inspire you to start learning magic. It is great a hobby and can also become your profession if you are ready to spend the time practising.
About the Author
Steven Smith is a professionnal close-up magician based in the UK http://www.manchestermagician.net/ and performs table magic at private and corporate events
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