What are the two genres of street magic?
What is busking?
How do magicians seek remuneration in traditional street performance?
What type of magic is most often performed in street magic?
What is the skill of greater importance in traditional street performance?
Who is regarded as one of the pre-eminent U.S. street magicians to emerge from the surge in street performance artistry?
What is guerrilla magic?
What is the desired effect of guerrilla magic?
Which magicians are associated with guerrilla magic?
Street Magic: Traditional and Guerrilla Magic
Traditional Street Performance:
- Street magic has two genres: traditional street performance and guerrilla magic.
- Traditional street performance involves busking, where the magician draws an audience from passersby and performs an entire act for them.
- Magicians seek remuneration by having a receptacle for tips available throughout the act or by offering a receptacle for tips at the end of the show.
- Street magic most often consists of "hand" or "pocket" magic, sleight of hand.
- The ability to draw and hold an audience is cited as a skill of greater importance than the illusions themselves.
- Anthropologists chronicle this form of street magic from approximately 3,000 years ago, and there are records of such performers across the continents.
- Jeff Sheridan is regarded as one of the pre-eminent U.S. street magicians to emerge from the surge in street performance artistry which began in the late '60s.
- Jim Cellini, Gazzo Macee, and Eric Evans are other performers who have garnered accolades from the magic community for their contributions to the art.
- Guerrilla magic is a relatively recent style of performing magic illusions where the magician performs a single trick or two in a public space for an unpaying audience.
- The desired effect of this "hit and run" style of magic is to give the audience a feeling that what they are seeing is impromptu, unrehearsed, and experimental.
- This style of "street magic" is associated with David Blaine, Criss Angel, Derren Brown, and Cyril Takayama.
- The format was developed to play well on television beginning with the 1997 ABC television special David Blaine: Street Magic.
- Magic historians, such as Jamy Ian Swiss, note that "guerrilla magic" is primarily associated with only a few individuals who perform on television and certain magic dealers who sell effects to amateur magicians who watch these programs.
Think you know all about street magic? Test your knowledge with our quiz on traditional and guerrilla street magic! Learn about the history of street performances and the skills required to draw and hold an audience. Discover the differences between traditional busking and the hit-and-run style of guerrilla magic, made popular by David Blaine and others. With this quiz, you'll become an expert on the fascinating world of street magic!
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