Monday, April 19, 2010

Dan Lacey Competition “Magician of the Year”

Sharpen up your skills and compete at the May 5th meeting for the Dan Lacey Memorial Trophy and the title “Magician of the Year”. The winner will receive a rotating trophy and a spot to perform at the 2011 Ring 50 Magi-Whirl Gala show. All paid-up Ring 50 members both new and veteran members can seek the title. A panel of judges will declare the winner. Each performance should be 8 minutes or less. Contestants will be graded on Originality (technical, timing, flashes), Presentation (volunteer management, confidence, eye contact), Performance Skills (introduction, patter, speech), and Entertainment (effect strength, entertainment value, routine strength). The late Dan Lacey was a president of Ring 50 (1999-2000) who inspired others--especially newcomers to magic—to hone their skills. The contest provides an opportunity to recognize the exceptional magic skills of our members. The contest was started in 2003 to honor the deceased magician. Contact Louis Meyer, Ph 703-765-1923 or if you are interested in being in the competition

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Creativity Springs Up at April Meeting

"How many of you have a drawer full of tricks that you bought years ago and never even opened? A roomful? A HOUSE full? Before you buy another trick, let’s learn how to use the ones you already have." This was the challenge and the promise of the April 7 meeting, where Kyle and Kelly Peron presented their lecture on "Creativity in Magic." The Perons hail from Reading, PA, where they are very busy doing family and community events, fairs and festivals. Kyle, whose background as a graphic artist gives him an unusual perspective, claims that we are all creative, and proceeded to demonstrate it. Calling four people up, he handed them each a clipboard with a sheet of paper containing a simple shape, on which they were to add their own embellishments. It turned out they each had gotten a circle, and each did something vastly different with it.

After this demonstration, Kyle talked about some of the blocks to creativity, chief among them being fear: fear of failure, fear of what others might think, etc. He provided some funny examples and told stories of his own successes and failures along the way. Kelly aided and abetted like a lecture ninja, making sure the visual aids and notes flowed smoothly. This was important, because until he told us, nearly nobody noticed that Kyle is almost totally deaf.

After giving us the theory, Kyle moved into the practical, leading the group on several exercises to help us learn how to generate ideas and make connections. “The goal,” he reminded us, “is for the magic to come from YOU.” This was certainly not a typical trick-trick-trick lecture, and the members were suitably impressed. Kyle also shared with us some very useful tips for our shows and our business, which have the same weight of experience as his book on Blue and Gold Banquets.

Just two days later, Ring 50 hosted our annual Magi-Whirl convention, featuring Duane Laflin and Company, Darwin Ortiz, Jim Sisti, Linking Ring Editor Samuel Patrick Smith, DC Magician of the Year Dick Christian, former International President Bill Wells, Buddy Smith and more. You can get updates on next year’s Magi-Whirl and see photos from this year at