Be a process oriented magician not goal oriented magician

amit kalantri blog

We have been taught and trained to set a goal for ourselves in order to be a successful in any profession. I won’t comment about other areas, but being a professional magician I can responsibly say that a magician should be process oriented and not goal oriented. Imagine at the current state of your preparedness you set a goal and start working towards it. In reality, you have limited the possibilities for yourself by setting a goal.

You can set a goal only on the basis of your present knowledge, skills, perception. You have not experienced all the scenarios in the business of magic. Even if you are a skilled magician you may have set ambitious goals like to be the most famous magician in the world. When you reach to it, you may realize that you could have been the most famous artist in the world leaving behind actors, singers, musicians etc had you taken some steps in the past.  But you missed those steps in the process, you kept your eyes only on the goal and now you are sad in spite of achieving your set goal.

Let’s say you want to grow oranges, orange is your goal. But is the orange going to appear by always thinking of oranges, no it won’t. To grow oranges you will need orange seed, soil, sunlight, manure, water etc. None of these raw things taste like orange but eventually they give you orange, this is also a magic. You take care of the process to grow orange and oranges will come.

Similarly, imagine you want be a professional magician, so your priority should be the process of being a skilled magician. You learn right sleights rightly, you research rightly, write right script, buy right props, you practice right, do right marketing. When the opportunity arrives you will give the best performance like a seasoned professional magician. You need absolutely devoted to the process and need not think about the goal.

Your ability to enhance your magic business is possible if you are undeniably committed to the process. Watch the people we call successful, look at their faces and you will be surprised to know that hardly anybody of them is joyful. They probably achieved the goal they set it for them, but now they realized it was a meager and insignificant goal so they disappointed. Those who couldn’t achieve even the small goals are frustrated because they avoided the process. What is the point of being a man of this kind.

When I just started into professional magic, I set the target of doing 50 shows in a year. To get my first ten shows it took little time. It seemed to me I will not be able to fetch 50 shows in that year. Then I realized, I was not making significant impact on the audience and also that I was not marketing myself enough. I changed some of my magic effects, I updated my scripts, I learned the sleights I was afraid to do  and I added more acting and drama to my performance etc. During this process change I had forgot about the target of 50 shows in that year. After I enhanced my process, my leads enhanced and I got more and more shows. At the end of year I had performed more than 100 shows in that year.

Initially as per my understanding I was good enough for 50 shows, but when I dedicated myself to the process of learning magic, I surpassed my own expectations. So don’t worry about result, target, goal. Just take care of the process and just like magic everything will fall into place.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

7 challenges professional magician encounter

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1) Getting the right price

The entertainment industry is swarming with all kinds of average artists at a cheap price. Though average in their performance these artists still serve the purpose of entertaining the audience. Your clients don’t know much about the difference between an average magician and an exceptional magician initially, so obviously, they go for a magician with low price and you get rejected only for quoting the high price. Because of this an exceptional magician who charges high struggles to get the more shows in starting years.

2) Getting the full attention of the audience

Even the extraordinary magicians performing for a private party goes through a scenario where all people don’t pay attention to magician’s performance and disturbs the whole surrounding with their chatter. After this kind of shows, magicians don’t feel good about themselves even if they get the good money for the show.

3) Waiting for the show to start

As a professional magician you value the punctuality and reach to the venue on time, but guests arrive late sometimes too late. Client requests you to wait more and more till maximum guests arrived. The result is you get exhausted and your time gets wasted which could be put to good use and client don’t pay you extra for waiting time. Because your show begins late, you may also have to curtail the performance time to accommodate other sequences of the party.

4) Cancellation of the show from client

You prepare and plan your week for the next show and couple days before clients inform you about the cancellation of the event because of unavoidable reasons. This is annoying for the magician because he must have denied other leads which came from other clients on the same day, same time because your date was already occupied. This is a straight loss to the magician because he don’t get paid fully and he loses the performance at both the shows which may have fetched him future shows.

5) Cancellation of the show from magician’s side

Sometimes even the magician needs to cancel his performance for the event because of an emergency situation like severe sickness, family issue, flight cancellation etc. This is an unfortunate situation and nothing makes magician feel bad if he himself had to cancel. This puts clients event in jeopardy especially when your performance was the only entertainment activity planned for the event.

6) Managing back to back shows

A magician wishes to perform every day because he loves doing magic and it gets him good money. Sometimes a magician gets lucky and he gets two shows back to back with a time gap of an hour in between. But reaching to the second show on time is challanging because most of the times your first show will start late and that puts magician under pressure because he had to reach the other show on time especially if the client of second show is ready to start the show on time. If magician reaches to next show late, it spoils his reputation.

7) Maintaining a sense of wonder for himself

Magic creates instant wonder, a solid surprise and a delightful mystery for the spectators. This wonder was the primary reason why you became a magician. As a professional magician, you know many secrets, techniques to achieve the end result of a magic trick. Even if you watch other magicians perform you tend to be less surprised. This feeling of not experiencing the wonder may force you to question the purpose and meaning of your work and you may feel that you are not doing enough.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist) 

7 most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about mentalism

mentalism

1) Is mentalism real, can mentalist really the mind?
No mentalism is not real, most of it is a bunch of great sleight of hand, misdirection and psychological tricks just like magic tricks. It’s not possible to truly read the mind of others accurately at all times.

2) Difference between magic and mentalism?
Mentalism is an extended version of magic. Magic and mentalism are closely related. It is not possible to learn mentalism without knowing techniques of magic. A good mentalist is also a good magician.

3) Is mentalism complex and difficult to learn?
No, it’s not. In fact, the art of mentalism is easy to learn as compared to the art of magic. To be a good magician you need to spend considerable time mastering the art of misdirection and sleight of hand. But to be a good mentalist you need to know basic magic techniques.

4) What does mentalism consist of?
Mentalism consists of various types of performances like mind reading, mind control, hypnosis, telepathy, clairvoyance, divination, predictions, psychokinesis, mediumship, memory feats, deduction, and rapid mathematics.

5) Do all the types of performances need be learned to be a mentalist?
No, it’s not required to know and perform all above performances. In a mentalism show, most of the performances are of mind reading, mind control, predictions.

6) What are the advantages of learning mentalism?
Entertain and impress people using mentalism routines
Develop your presentation and showmanship skills
Understand how other people think
It boosts self-confidence, dexterity and develop lateral thinking
Enhance social skills, you become the center of attraction in social gatherings

7) Is there professional coaching available to learn mentalism in India?
Yes, you can join “Beautiful Minds” professional mentalism classes run by magician and mentalist Amit Kalantri in Pune (India) to learn the art of mentalism.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

Why magicians must refer and recommend other magicians?

A magician’s competitor is not another magician but other artists like
dancers, stand up comedian, mimicry artist, singers, juggler etc. In India when people hear about a magician, they imagine an old man in shining colorful clothes with a hat on his head performing old and traditional magic tricks. Most of the Indians don’t even know that art of magic has advanced to some unimaginable level. They don’t know that many youngsters are professionally doing a modern magic show. They are even more ignorant about the art of mentalism which is a very unique addition to magic shows.

Business Communication Duplicate model

Magicians shouldn’t behave like archers who always pursue to find out who is better. But magic is not like archery there is no such thing as best magician in the world. Anyone who loves magic shows would want to see the magic shows of different magicians. If you frequently go to Las Vegas would you see David Copperfield’s show every time? I don’t think so, sometime you might go for Penn & Teller’s show, isn’t it? Magicians shouldn’t be envious and competitive towards each other because “being the best” is not the goal of a magician “being unique” should be the goal. Following are some strong reasons why magicians must help each other for mutual benefit.

To establish art of magic as mainstream entertainment:
A magic show is still not considered as a mainstream entertainment, in spite of the fact that it is a suitable option for all kinds of social and corporate events. If you are not available for a magic show because of prior booking, you can give the client reference of another magician who is available. If the client gets another magician he will continue to plan to have a magic show for the event instead of looking for some other entertainment option. Naturally, if more magicians make more magic shows happen, people will start treating it as mainstream entertainment and ultimately there will be more inquiries for magic shows.

To prevent clients from going to amateur magicians:
Let’s assume that client is determined to have a magic show for their event. He calls you but you are not available because of some other show. You know a magician who is as good as you but you don’t recommend that magician to the client. Now, the client will search for other magicians from various sources and eventually he will find one. Now, the magician who performs for the client is an amateur, he doesn’t create the impact which a magician suppose to create. The amateur magician has not only spoiled his show but he has damaged the reputation of the art of magic and in the future, the same client may not opt for the magic show again.

People want to try different magicians:
You can perform for the same client two or three times but they would like to try a new magician fourth time before they hire you once again in the future. So even if you recommend other good magicians to the client first time, they might call him two or three times, but fourth time they would want some other magician which could be you.

More business for everybody:
Even if you are a magician, you cannot perform at two places at same time. If you are already booked for another show, you can give the lead to other magician and you can charge some fees from the magician, let’s say 10-20%  of the deal amount and if the deal gets closed, you earn extra 10-20% without even performing.

Referral is contagious:
There will be a day when you would want to perform and make some money but you don’t have any lead. But, magically some other magician to whom you have recommended to clients in the past recommends you and you get the show, wouldn’t that would be cool? If you refer other magicians in your unavailability they would want to return the favor in their unavailability by referring you and that will build more business for you.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Killer “In spectator’s hands” magic tricks

There are all kinds of magic tricks but a magic trick whose climax takes place in the hands of spectator adds considerable more value to the entertainment. This kind of magic makes the audience believe in real magic because it looks free of sleight of hands as they were the one controlling the trick. Magic in spectator’s hands is particularly effective in street magic. As a professional magician, you must know as many tricks taking place in spectator’s hands and must perform at least one in your performance.

1) Sponge balls to spectator’s hands
2) Aces transportation
3) Ashes on their hands
4) Bill to spectator’s wallet
5) Las Vegas Leaper
6) Cards Across
7) Spectator’s watch stop
8) Paper to hat
9) Starcle
10) Do As I Do effects

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

How to make people remember magician’s name?

After your show, a man comes and congratulate you for an amazing show. Then he mentions he had seen a magic show before who was good and unique like you, but he can not recall the name of that magician. You say thank you and give smile to the man but in your heart, you feel why he did not remember the name of the magician.

Truth is most of the people after enjoying your show remember your tricks but not your name. With the presence of social media, correct mention of our name leads to search of your name on the internet and it may fetch you the next show. Following are some of the ideas you can use to maximise the number of people who would retain your name.

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1) Put a backdrop with your name and photograph
2) Ask your clients to spread the news of your magic show
3) Ask the anchor/emcee to mention your name during your introduction few times
4) When you come to the stage introduce yourself by saying your name couple of times impactfully
5) During your show tell a story about your life where you say something like people would ask you, Hey Amit can you show me a magic trick?
6) Repeat your name, your website, your Facebook page address while you close the show.
7) Give away as many business cards as possible
8) If you can reveal your name through a magic trick it makes a great impression on people
9) If your first name is very common, ask for a volunteer with the same name as yours for one of the trick.

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

 

 

What clients look for before hiring a magician?

Getting a magic show is not a complete success for a magician, getting more shows from the previous show is the real success. There is no better marketing and sales technique than your own performance. But apart from your professional and immaculate magic skills, there are several things clients look in a magician. These things will affect the number of inquiries and bookings you will get in the future.

professionalism

1) Quality of magic tricks and routines – Perform some original and unique routines
2) Professionalism of a magician with prior communication
3) Work experience as a full-time magician
4) Style and aura of the magician
5) Interaction of the magician with the crowd
6) Costume of the magician
7) Cost of your magic show
8) Punctuality of a magician
9) Time management of magic tricks
10) Adding extra value to the event in terms of humor, extra time, special magic effect
11) Right closure of the deal with your client
– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

List of questions a magician must ask to clients

Any stage artist is more concern about logistics and management of his event than his art. An artist can control his skill, but for other things, he needs to depend on other people. Audience management, audio-visual failures, power cut are some of the frequent shocks an artist had to go through. This risk can be reduced if magician states his requirements and knows his event setup well before his magic show. A magician must ask following questions when a client approaches him for booking a show. All of these questions to be asked only when the client has finalized you. If the client made an initial call with a casual inquiry, don’t throw all the questions on him and consume his time.

clients

1) What type of show client needs? – Close up, Stand Up, Stage show
2) How many people will be attending the show?
3) Type of audience – Only children, only adults, children and adults both
4) Is it a themed event? – So that you can dress accordingly, create a magic tricks suitable to a theme
5) Is there guest of honor (Chief guest or any celebrity)?
6) What is the venue, date and invitation time?
7) Tell your requirements – Ask if they can arrange tables, chairs, PA system etc?
8) If you live in multilingual locality, ask them for their language preference
9) Is the show going to be in an open space or closed venue?
10) What would be their budget for a magic show?
11) Is there other entertainment program planned along with a magic show?
– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

List of people who hires magicians?

The art of magic is not a usual and regular type of entertainment. Having a magic show at your event is straight away making your event a special one. Being a very unique art, magicians get hired by limited entities, but there are plenty of opportunities for magicians who can get the paid shows from following entities.

1) Restaurant and Resort Owners
2) Amusements Parks/ Theme Parks
3) Tourist cruise ships
4) Travel agencies
5) Event managers for all kinds of social and corporate events
6) NGOs, Charity Organizations
7) Talent Agencies/Talent Managers
8) Social Clubs
9) Summer Camp Organizers
10) Schools
11) Retirement Homes/ Old age homes
12) Theatre groups
13) Filmmakers
14) Toy shop owners/ Toy Libraries
15) Activity Centers

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

Awesome tips- How to practice magic tricks and become a pro magician

As a professional magician have the of knowledge maximum tricks possible but you need not practice all of them. Sensibly choose the effects which would suit the audience you going to perform for. As a magician, you may love particular magic trick but it may not necessarily impact the audience. A magic trick should be performed like a pro salesman sales the product.

1) Divide a magic routine into small pieces, practice in pieces and then integrate all pieces to practice full routine
2) Practice in front of mirror, be a spectator of your own performance
3) Record your practice videos, watch them and improve your sleights, script and voice tone
4) Practice with exact script/patter you are going to use
5) First practice the effect as performed by expert magicians and then practice your version
6) First decide if you really wish to learn a particular trick, then practice till perfection, do not leave the trick in a middle way because it taking a long time
7) First perform for family, then friends and then strangers
8) Practice in front of your magician friends, ask for their feedback
9) Wherever possible, in place of cell phone, hold the deck of cards in your hand, practice moves like palming, one hand cut etc
10) In place of carrying an empty hand, palm a coin, practice classic palm, finger palm, thumb palm etc
11) Practice when you cannot perform, for example, when traveling by train, flight or waiting at a restaurant or in public place
12) When practicing magic, stay focused- avoid cell phones, television, the presence of people around. Give quality time to your practice.
13) Do not buy a new magic trick or a prop unless you get good at the previous magic trick you bought
14) Get rid of the magic props you don’t need anymore, declutter your collection to save your time.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Proven tips to approach strangers and perform magic

Depending upon the venue, audience and event following are some of the tested tips to approach strangers and get their permission to perform magic tricks. You need to ensure that they allow you to perform more than one magic trick.

strangers

1) Approach a group of adults with their kids. If you ask them if their son or daughter want to see magic, they will mostly agree. Perform one or two tricks which would impress kids as well as adults and then if you perform your best effects for adults they would enjoy your presence.

2) Go to a group of young people like college students, young couples. Nicely ask them “Hey guys, I am a magician and if you are not busy, would you like to see some different kind of magic?”.

3) Make sure when you perform for the first group, their applause reaches to other groups. This establishes your presence and the applause from the first group signifies that you have been doing something wonderful.

4) Sometimes you can ask a host to introduce you to the group. The guests will never turn down the host.

5) If you are going to perform for a group containing both boys and girls, do not talk to the girl first, talk to the guys first. They shouldn’t feel you came e to impress the girls.

6) Don’t start with a magic trick where you have to borrow their money, ring, mobile etc. They should feel comfortable with you before you use their things.

7) Avoid those groups which are in deep discussion with each other. They are probably discussing something more personal and important than a magic trick.

8) Observe the body language of people. Don’t go to people who are in a pensive mood, people who are talking or chatting over the phone. But approach those people who seem to be getting bored in the party.

9) While performing for strangers in street or table hopping magic do not use long scripts or wordy patter. Keep it short and direct. Impress them with your magic and not with your mouth.

– Amit Kalantri (Magician & Mentalist)

Rules every magician should follow

Being a magician is more than just performing some amazing magic tricks, it’s a responsibility. Especially if you are a respected personality in this field. Being a magician and mentalist I have seen people coming to me asking for a solution to their problems. Sometimes the art of magic is not taken seriously by others, but a good magician will always get the attention he deserves. Below is the list of proven rules in the field of magic. No matter if you are a beginner, amateur or expert magician you should follow this code. All the best magicians in the world follow almost all the below rules.

  1. Never share your secret with layman
  2. Don’t share the secret of your original effect with fellow magicians for some time
  3. Never repeat your trick for the same audience
  4. Perform only in suitable environment
  5. Never challenge the audience to catch your trick
  6. Always carry at least one trick with you
  7. Don’t misuse your magic skills
  8. Be original while performing, have your own style
  9. Talk to other magicians and learn from their experiences.
  10. Try to give credits to the original inventor of the trick
  11. Don’t buy pirated materials. Buy the secrets from authorised entities
  12. Never stop practising and practice to perfection

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Top Books to Learn Mentalism

Achieve mastery in mentalism by standing on the shoulders of the giants. No video tutorial will cover all the details of a book. If you want to be a real professional in mentalism you must read these books. Videos will teach you something, books will teach you everything. The art is in the details and the details are in the books. Following are some of the best books by the best mentalists in the world.

  1. 13 Steps to Mentalism by Tony Corinda
  2. Practical Mental Magic by Ted Anneman
  3. Mind, myth and Magick by T.A.Waters
  4. Psychological Subtleties by Banachek
  5. Naked Mentalism by Jon Thompson
  6. Theater Of The Mind by Barry Richardson
  7. The Artful Mentalism of Bob Cassidy
  8. Prism by Max Maven
  9. Mind Mysteries by Richard Osterlind
  10. Fundamentals of Professional Mentalism by Bob Cassidy

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

 

Strong Mentalism Effects With Playing Cards

A deck of playing cards is a relevant prop in the art of mentalism. Only “Pick a card” type of effects is a cliche to the laymen. If you find out their chosen card by sleight of hand, that is not a very big deal to them. But if you verbally tell them what card they chose, thought or saw, it blows their mind. So without any further doubts, do use playing cards in mentalism. Refer below list of strong mentalism tricks with playing cards. Some of following effects are also used for magic. Change your script and presentation accordingly to make it a mentalism effect.

  1. Invisible Deck
  2. Tossed Out Deck
  3. Do As I Do
  4. Kollosal Killer
  5. Out of this world
  6. Any card at any number
  7. Missing card illusion
  8. SPECTRI by T.A.Waters
  9. Four Sided Triangle by Max Maven
  10. Mind Power Deck
  11. RADAR Deck by Richard Osterlind
  12. Card Calling
  13. 5-star miracle
  14. 3 of diamond mental force
  15. Gemini Twins

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

 

Best Card Magic Closing Effects

The strong card tricks generally have something more than a deck of cards and hands of magicians. It could be special cards, some kind of magic accessory, everyday object or sometimes even very unique patter or story. Following are some of the popular strong card effects. But it is a very limited list, there are much more strong card effects in business around the world.

  1. Card on ceiling
  2. Card through window
  3. Card to wallet
  4. 51 cards to pocket
  5. Paperclipped
  6. In a flash
  7. J C Super closure
  8. McDonald’s Aces
  9. Unshuffled
  10. Out of this world
  11. Story Telling Deck
  12. Cardtoon Deck
  13. Card Stab
  14. Card in sealed containers

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Best Closing Effects in Mentalism

The closing effect in mentalism should be the strongest piece of your show. The audience must believe that you are the smartest person they ever meet. This trick should be such that people would want to learn it. Mentalism show if closed wonderfully earns a standing ovation from the audience.

  1. Chair Routine
  2. Q and A (thought scan)
  3. Confabulation
  4. The Pegasus page
  5. Drawing Duplication
  6. Master Prediction System
  7. Monalisa Puzzle
  8. Phantom Artist
  9. Slate writing
  10. Ash on hand
  11. Magic Square
  12. Card Deck Memorization

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Best Closing Effects in Magic

standing ovation

The closing effect is the last magic trick in your show. This trick should create a great impact on the minds of an audience. No audience remembers all of the tricks from the magic show. But if you want them to remember one trick from your show, then it should be your closing trick. A closing effect must fetch you a standing ovation from the spectators. Following are some of the closing effects of a stand-up magic show.

  1. Gypsy Thread
  2. Cups and Balls
  3. Snow Storm
  4. Card Castle
  5. Thumbs Delight
  6. Billiard’s Ball (Bubble)
  7. Multiplying Bottles
  8. Dancing Cane
  9. Zombie Floating Ball
  10. Bill to Lemon

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Best Opener Mentalism Tricks

The art of mentalism is not as popular as the art of magic. Your first trick in mentalism should do three things. It should introduce what is mentalism, it should involve someone from the audience and it should create amazement. Mentalism tricks tend to be little long because of its complex theory. Your first mentalism trick should be direct right to the mind straight to the heart.

  1. El Numero by Richard Osterlind
  2. Two digit mind reading (with NW)
  3. Bank Night
  4. Spike Routine
  5. Tossed out deck
  6. Invisible Deck
  7. Brainwave Deck
  8. The baby gag (celebrity picture)
  9. Locating hidden coin in the hands
  10. Multidimensional by Promystic
  11. Any mass mental force
  12. Any monte routine (with mentalism patter)
  13. Magic Medallion
  14. Pocket Writing

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Best Opener Magic Tricks

An opening magic tricks should be quick and eye catching. The purpose of opening trick is to hook the audience to the stage and set the expectations to high of whats coming next in the show. Following are some the popular openers, which does not involve the participation from the audience.

  1. Bowling Ball from Drawing Book
  2. Basketball from briefcase
  3. The ring, watch and wallet
  4. Splash bottle production
  5. Vanishing cane in newspaper
  6. Newspaper tear and restored
  7. Flash paper to cane
  8. Polka silk with vanishing and restoring dots
  9. Chinese sticks magic
  10. Pom pom pole magic
  11.  TT Silk Vanish
  12. Linking rings

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)

Must-Have Content For Magician’s Profile

Whenever new clients hire a magician, they would want to see magician’s profile. In general, a professional magician’s profile should contain the following information, not necessarily in the same order as given below.

  1. Name: Your screen name (Performing name)
  2. Profession: Write specifically if you are comedy magician, street magician, corporate magician, mentalist, illusionist, motivational speaker etc
  3. Skills: Write if you perform close up magic or stand-up magic or stage magic. If you perform all kinds of magic write that as well.
  4. Experience: Your professional experience in magic. Don’t count those years when you were learning magic.
  5. Languages Known: Mention all local and international languages you speak
  6. Events: Write for what kinds of events your show is suitable. Corporate gatherings, social gatherings, trade shows, weddings, birthday parties etc
  7. Bio: Write the summary about your magic show explaining how it is better and different than your peers. Do write about entertainment and interaction your magic show provides.
  8. Career Highlights: Mention about awards and accolades you received in the field of magic.
  9. Clients: Write the list of prominent clients you served over the years
  10. Photos: Include high-quality photos of your magic shows. Do not forget to include the photos of any press releases and media coverage.
  11. Contact details: Email, Contact number, Website etc.

-Amit Kalantri (Magician and Mentalist)