When fulfilling formal engagements in which he is required to perform at several tables in succession the close up magician who prefers to work standing has a problem immediately he arrives at a table. Where to put his case. If he puts it on the floor he has to keep ducking below the table top, or find a spare chair on which to put his case as he arrives at each table. Whichever procedure he decides to adopt leaves much to be desired. It is not particularly dignified to keep bobbing down out of sight to obtain your props, apart from losing contact with the audience it is usually dark in that particular area and it may take some time to find what you require, thus aggravating the problem. A spare chair is not always available, and even if there is an empty one it may be only temporarily so, making it necessary to ask around if anyone is using it, which is not a good opening remark with which to start your show.
There is another problem which is common to all table workers whether they perform seated or standing, and that is finding space on the table to put any props. No doubt these problems have been solved by others but for those who have as yet no solution I offer my own.
It is a case 24 inches long by 8 inches wide and 6 inches in depth when the lid is open it provides a working surface 24 inches by 16 inches. The case itself consists of a drawer and its housing. The drawer contains your tricks and a photographer's tripod which when screwed to the bottom of the case can be at any height from 18 inches to five feet which should prove equal to any conditions you are likely to meet, even to making it possible to do your act standing on a chair. The diagrams should make everything clear.
When you arrive at the establishment where you are booked to perform remove the tripod from the drawer and adjust it so that the lid of the case when open will lie level on the top of the tables at which you will work. On arriving at a table open the lid of the case and let it rest on what space is available getting as much of the lid as possible onto the table, and as you do this indicate by a suitable remark that the closer you get the better they will be able to see. Unless they are definitely hostile they will move the odd glass or ashtray enabling you to push the lid further onto the top of the table. You are now ready to perform with the minimum amount of trouble having solved the problem of table space and having your properties readily available. There is an added bonus in using this table, in that you are working a few inches away from the patron's table making you less vulnerable to bad angles.
It is probably best if the props for your first trick are taken from the pocket as opening the drawer at the commencement of the act seems a bit mundane and may prove to be of too much interest to your spectators who at this point should be mainly interested in you. You may have made a fine job of the table and by using it in the manner described will enable you to make immediate contact with those you are about to entertain, and to maintain this contact throughout your act. To allow your table to become a point of interest would be to minimise its usefulness in this particular respect.
Was this article helpful?
Magick is the art and practice of moving natural energies to effect needed or wanted change. Magick is natural, there is absolutely nothing supernatural about it. What is taught here are various techniques of magick for beginners. Magick is natural and simple and the techniques to develop abilities should be simple and natural as well. What is taught on this site is not only the basics of magick, but the basics of many things.