Career Choices (3): Target Your Market

Bad career choices: Our friend, The Great Throwupdini, is still struggling to get his unique combo act of Food Magic, Regurgitating, and Knife Throwing booked for kids parties at a Hamburger chain.

Any advice?


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Career Choices (1): Fred Kaps

Clever choice No. 1: Abraham Pieter Adrianus Bongers deciding very early in his magic career to take up a stage name.

Clever choice No. 2: Abraham Bongers deciding still early in his career to change his stage name from Valdini to Mystica and then to Fred Kaps.

Bad choice No. 1: Fred Kaps performing on the “Ed Sullivan Show” in 1964 immediately after The Beatles. (O.K., not his fault.)

Bad choice No. 2: Fred Kaps performing “The Homing Card” on that occasion – on black & white television.

Clever choice No. 3: Always using professional and outstanding promotional material, like this famous “dice shot” (black & white graphic re-rendering by me):


Find out more about Fred Kaps, the only three time FISM Grand Prix Winner (the World Champion of Magic), here and here.


Orsen the Obvious: A Traumagic Life

Orsen B. was a man of many talents. Alas, magic was not among them, as we know today. By a strange trick of fate, Orsen’s diaries fell into the hands of our untiring and effervescent collector friend, Chase Doves.

When Orsen was 17 years old, he left his Midwestern home with a pocket full of money, a small suitcase full of clean shirts and a dream of a huge international career in magic. When he returned home at the age of 43, he carried no money and no career worth mentioning, but a big suitcase full of dirty laundry.

As Orsen B. vanished from the magic scene eleven years ago and his whereabouts are yet unknown, we have decided to publish only select entries from his diaries, but for privacy’s sake delete all real names as well as precise dates and locations.


First jubilee! Played my 25th show, this time at the Wulfenblitz Retirement Home. Went quite O.K., but felt completely different, with real audience and all.

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Had to stop my show at Billsgate Kindergarden untimely. Little sucker broke my break-away wand! Put him in my change bag, came out as a 15′ yellow silk. That’ll teach him!

P.S.: I wished I had the power to do that… But all I could actually do was push the kid aside. Then his father smacked me. Then I told him he had an anger management problem. Then he set my props on fire and told me I had a magic management problem. Almost a draw, I would say.

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Premiered my show “Mega-Magic for a New Millennium” at our church’s ecumenical flea market fest. All went well except they couldn’t find a magnetic tape recorder for my monster prediction effect. Sad times!

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Saw a dead pigeon on my way to a gig. Note to myself: Better check that old dove pan in the attic tomorrow. Maybe not all of them flew away back in 1996?!

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Another tiring table show in China tonight (O.K., it was rather at Lee Hong’s China Parlor). Afterwards, I wanted to relax with Qi Gong. But sadly, she was not in the mood.

(to be continued)