Maryland Magicians

Frequently Asked Questions

With the popularity of David Copperfield, Penn & Teller, Lance Burton,
Criss Angel, Mac King and others
Magic is more in demand than it has been in years
and many events are looking for great magical entertainment

Why an Illusionist/Magician?
Nothing can capture or stimulate the imagination like a great illusionist.
Engaging entertainment on many levels from evoking astonishment to side splitting laughter.
A superb magical performance can touch us in many different ways.

Things to look for and ask?

What sets them apart from everyone else? Ask why they would be a good fit for your event.
Do they have experience performing the type of show you are interested in?
A stage performer may or may not be a good fit for a birthday party.
All performers should have video on their website,
take a few minutes to watch and see if the performer is what you're looking for.
Every performer should make time to speak with you either on the telephone or via email
to go over all the details and expectations for your event.

Why we don't review or recommend strolling magic?
We feel strolling magic is invasive and some of the performers aren't the best performers to hire.
When visiting with friends at a party or reception  who wants to be bothered in mid-conversation with
"Hi, I'm your magician, want to see some magic?"
Strolling or mingle magic like children's birthday magic tends to attracts some of the least talented magicians,
performers who are just in it for a quick buck and don't care about or focus on the craft and art of magic.
The most astonishing and creative magic may not always fit into pockets.
We suggest the alternative of hiring a magician and having them to set up a table (preferably a mobile one) and performing magic
where your guest can join them and enjoy magic at their leisure. A good magician will draw a crowd doing some very visual
magic and your guests curiosity will draw them to the performance encouraging them to enjoy the magic at their leisure.
Also this creates a focal point which will draw guests and serve as an ice breaker .

About references?

Of course all the references the magician gives you are great. Who would give you a bad reference to speak with? 
Obviously word of mouth is the best.  Some performers may be able to provide independent third party reviews.
The magician you are considering may be performing a show you can see before hiring
 If none of these are available again check the website and videos. 
Speak with the magician you are considering and don't be shy about asking questions. 

Differences in price and you get what you pay for?
You may get very different prices for the same show. Generally the more in demand a performer is the higher the price.
If you shop on price alone chances are you won't get the best performer for your event.
Like everything else in life you  get what you pay for. 
When a performer is cheaper than everyone else there are usually reasons why.
A cheaper magician may be desperate for money or overbooking shows and sending a different performer.
A magician may charge less if you are nearby to where they live or there may be additional charges more if you live further away.

Years experience professionally performing?
The longer the performer has been working regularly the more experience they have with different types of shows and crowds.
That doesn't mean someone with 20 experience performing is necessarily going to give you a better show  
than a performer with 10 years experience.  However performers with less 3 to 5 years performing and study 
may not have the right or enough experience to work in every situation. Far too often we've seen or heard of 
someone calling themselves a magician just a few months after buying a few "tricks" and trying to sell their services.   
Speak with the performers, check out their websites and videos.
Find the magician that will be best for your event, the performer you feel most comfortable with. 
Inquire how many shows they perform a month and if you can see them perform somewhere

Awards and why they might not mean anything?
Some awards are very prestigious like FISM. 
However some magicians may tout awards from small local clubs.
It may not carry much weight if their awards comes from 5 other performers
whom they have known for years and meet with once a month.

Philosophy on magic and what studying the magician has done?
Magicians approach their craft in different ways. 
Learning magic is a lifetime journey, the education of a good magician is always ongoing .
Magicians may specialize in different eras (like Victorian or Roaring 20's) or in different bodies of theory.
 Some magicians feel the effect (trick) is strong enough to stand on it's own, 
others believe the proper presentation is most important. We feel magic should be presented in an encompassing format, 
where the audience is engaged by the story and the illusion
. A complete presentation. 

Different types of performances and shows?
Stage or Platform - Takes place on a stage or raised platform. Usually for larger crowds, may included larger illusions.
Can range from festivals all the way to Las Vegas or Broadway type shows. 
Too often is a bunch of big box tricks done to music with no interaction with the audience. 

Parlor  - Usually for groups or 50 or less, can be performed in many places. 
More intimate type show as the magician gets to interact with and is closer to the audience.

Children's - Birthday, daycare or other parties. It is really challenging to find good children's performers. 
Some performers view performing for children as "easy" money and many children's performers do it just for the money. . 
Sad to say but many incompetent magicians are doing children's shows.
Some magicians who usually do other types of shows will take children's shows occasionally, again just for the money
There are excellent children's performers but they are few and far between.  

Trade - Performing at trade show booths to gather large crowds for the sponsor and help get the message out to more 
potential clients in a memorable fashion.   

Corporate - Magic done for companies to honor top performers, to express company visions 
or new information in a memorable fashion or just to give the employees a well deserved break and 
fun downtime with their fellow staff in a team building exercise. 

School and or Library -  Shows done specially for these venues, usually promoting a message.    

How can I and where do I find the right performer for my event?
Here at Maryland Magicians is a good place to start