Tips and advice for booking a magician.
Booking a magician is not something most people do on a regular basis.
It is vitally important that if you are considering booking or hiring any close-up magician that you try to make sure you get a very good quality and professional act. Unfortunately anyone nowadays can purchase a few cheap tricks from a shop and have a web site built then call themselves a "magician".
It does not take long to do a bit of on-line research. Here is some free sound advice and tips of the typical things to consider when looking to hire a magician online.
Check that there is photographic evidence on their web site and the magician can be seen performing and getting a positive reaction from the people being entertained. There should be a good selection of photos taken at many different functions and venues. (Dorian's web site has in the region of 100 different photos taken from 100 different events. The images spread out throughout the site show him performing at a mixture of events, parties, functions and weddings).
When making an enquiry please try to give as much details about your event as possible. All to often an enquiry comes through on email that asks the basic question "How much do you charge?". In order for you to obtain a fast and accurate quote at the outset, you will need to supply some basic information about the event you have planned. Typical things a magician will need to know about your event include:
* What type of event is it?
* What date is it?
* Approximate time you want the magician to start?
* Number of guests planned?
* What venue?
* What location?
* Will the guests be seated at tables? or mingling around?
* Is there other entertainment planned?
Lights, Camera, Action! - VIDEO
Video clips of the performer interacting with the audience are ideal. As with photos be sure the audience is reacting amazed, happy, excited and in a positive way. If the spectators are having a ball and really enjoying themselves in the video's then it's a good indicator of how they will enjoy themselves at your event.
As with all products at the end of the day you get what you pay for. When it comes to costs for hiring a good magician, the prices for hiring a magician are varied. There is often a good reason for this... If you have been quoted a very low fee, this may well reflect the quality of that magician's work and the lack of dependability, experience and confidence entertaining at a high level. To hire a magician on price alone just because you may have a certain budget set in mind really is NOT the best idea.
One of the most common questions is HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO HIRE A MAGICIAN? The truth is that every job has to be taken on it's own merit and requirements. A number of factors that have to be taken into consideration before a fair and accurate quote can be given. Factors such as the date, the performance times, the location etc. Asking the question "how much does a magician cost to hire" is a bit like asking how much does a train ticket cost? Or how much does a chocolate bar cost? or the classic "how long is a piece of string?
Time Will Tell:
A tried and tested magician that has been in the business for many, many years will no doubt be a safe and secure bet. A real testament to professional is when they have been in the business for a decent amount of time. A seasoned pro will have plenty of miles on the clock and the experience that goes with it.
Money Back Guarantee:
All good quality products should come with a money-back guarantee. If not, ask them why not.
The word professional is very much misused. Some hobbyist magicians refer to themselves as pro because they might charge money for an occasional job. A genuine full-time professional will have a highly polished act that should be amazing. If being a magician is the only source of income then they must be doing something right. Of course there are a number of semi-pro's around that also do a truly fabulous job, but these are the exception rather than the rule.
Full time, all the time:
Is the magician a full-time professional? Or does he just do a bit of magic on the side? Remember a professional has to be good at the job and absolutely dependable if it's what feeds the family and keeps a roof over their heads. In many cases if a magician isn’t full time, it could may mean he:
1. Doesn't have a good enough show.
2. Is lacking in experience.
3. Is simply not proficient or dependable enough to support a full time career as a magical entertainer.
Generally those who make their living performing magic have got to be good enough to carry on receiving repeat bookings with great appraisals. Yes there definitely are great magic entertainers that aren't full time professionals, but they are in the minority.
Recommendation of quality:
If possible ensure the table magician testimonials, references and appraisals are legitimate and can be proved if necessary. It is a well known fact that appraisals can just be made up and aren't necessarily true (e.g. “You we're amazing, many thanks” from Mr. Evans) A quality entertainer should be able to back-up/prove the appraisals and testimonials he has gained.
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly:
What’s the difference between a good close up magician and a bad one?
A GOOD close up magician will give you a highly entertaining experience you will remember for a very, very long time. They will have years of experience and have performed at many hundreds of events and would be willing to share their knowledge with any prospective clients to enhance the success of your event.
A BAD one could well make you hate magic altogether and not want to ever see another magic effect again. Due to their lack of experience, expertise and terrible social skills they would treat your guests or clients like fools, insulting guests, turning up late, upset people with inappropriate material and generally create a bad experience for everybody.
The UGLY truth is that there are some really bad "magicians" who are delivering a very sub-standard service. These individuals are damaging the industry in an effort to make a "fast buck". Quite often they will offer themselves at a very cheap price and of course there is a good reason for this.
It’s good to talk:
Talking to the entertainer on the telephone about your requirements can help you gauge their personality and experience.
In order to get a fast and accurate quote it is always best to include the following details about your event:
* Type of event.
* Date of event.
* Approx time you want the magician to start.
* Approx number of guests.
* Location or Venue of event.
Try before you buy / Looking before you are booking:
It is often possible that you can meet the entertainer and see him perform before committing to hire, it's always best to try before you buy. Any magician that is confident in his work would be more than pleased to meet up with you to give you a demonstration of his performance. One thing to keep in mind is that if they are a busy full-time professional it may be difficult to arrange. On the flip side a well traveled magician that works all over the country might be right on your doorstep in the near future and can pop around at little or no expense at all.
A top class professional will travel the length and breadth of the country and no doubt work all over the world. The place where the magician has a house has no bearing on where he works.
Before booking don't be afraid to ask the magician how the magic can best work for your event. An experienced magician will have performed hundreds of times under many different circumstances and should be able to advise how they can integrate with your plans and perform to the best of their ability for your event.
Keep in mind there is no recognised body that guarantee the quality of magicians in the UK. There are many clubs and magic circles that have magicians as members, but no club or society exists that regulates or can certify the quality of magicians. For example anyone can buy membership to a motor club, but it does not necessarily make them a better driver.
It's a very safe bet that nothing will go wrong during a show, but it's really good to know that the magician has all the angles covered. Ask if they have Public Liability Insurance.
The Bottom Line:
The bottom line is that there are a lot of fakers and pretenders around that are advertising themselves on the web as "professional magicians", but in truth they are not. When booking a magician act you want your event to be remembered for all the right reasons. Hopefully the above information will to least guide your hand to a well informed choice when looking to hire a really good magician. Just using a bit of common sense and it's often quite easy to spot the genuine magicians from the applesauce.
Actually this is the bottom line... Those "applesauce" magicians reading this far down should stop looking for words and ideas to steal to use on their web sites also.
When you hire Dorian you will be booking an experienced professional with a top quality and individual act. He has never been late or been a no-show for a booking. Also he offers a full money-back guarantee if your not completely satisfied with his service.
Need more than one magician or entertainer?
Dorian works with and can recommend other top class acts. All the entertainers he works with deliver a 100% sterling performance with a money-back guarantee. Please visit the TeamMagic page for more information.