The show causing the concern features the Masked Magician, a professional magician who risks breaking the magician’s code in order to reveal secrets of many major illusions, from the classic sawing lady in half to simple street-magic card tricks. iTricks broke some disturbing news about the show: An anonymous source reports that members of The Magic Castle have been contributing to the exposure. Young said he will name those alleged to have helped the show profit at the expense of other magicians.
Keep in mind, that charge about Magic Castle members is still an allegation. If proven to be true, it would be heartbreaking to many. Membership in the group is significant, and earning the chance to perform there is an honor.
But here’s the question: How does exposure affect you? Tremendously, some would argue. If you spent money and hours of practice on perfecting Tattoo Joe, then perform it for a crowd on the street, only to have someone yell, “I know how you did that! You’re blanking a blank that has been blanked,” it would seem your performance, credibility and future gigs have disappeared like that bass on Russell’s arm.
But consider this: The Masked Magician has been doing his shows since 1997, yet magic is incredibly popular right now. Look at all the new shows that have cropped up on TV and in Vegas. We have seen David Blaine, the Mindfreak, Phenomenon, CelebraCadabra and many incredible performers. And the Masked Magician isn’t the only one exposing magic these days. Yet magic has thrived. Ellusionist has grown since its creation THREE YEARS AFTER the first special. (Don’t get us wrong: Ellusionist condones NO FORM of exposure of any magician’s effect.)
ITricks and Magic Newswire are doing what they can to fight the problem. You can fight the problem by simply performing this art you have discovered. Many people know that magic is accomplished through sleight of hand, and they love watching it anyway. A strong performance persona and compelling style will bring back spectators and fans, even if they know how all your tricks are done. Don’t believe me? Consider that one of the MM’s shows was about street magic, yet the field has grown by leaps and bounds, and Blaine and Angel still have popular shows.
If exposure still gets you down, do a search through target=”_blank”>the Ellusionist forums. You’ll find great advice on dealing with exposers, hecklers and other malcontents.