What does a magician do during lockdown?Guest blog by Magicman London
I spoke with Magicman London (also known as David Harris!) to find out what he has been up to during lockdown. I was intrigued to see how a magician, who relies so much on being close to others to perform, could continue to practise and learn new routines. Over to you Magicman...
A typical week for Magicman London before lockdown
Before I tell you what a magician does during lockdown, let me tell you what my normal day or week would usually look like.
My week would normally start on a Sunday evening, I would sit down and write down everything that I needed to do during the week, from making sure meetings and events are in the calendar and confirmed, I have all the paperwork and directions to the venues and meetings if I need them, I write down everything I would like to post on social media, I don’t always have the content but just an idea or a theme.
In a normal week I would be calling venues to either arrange meetings or see what events they have coming up where a magician would be suitable. I’m on the Preferred Suppliers list for a lot of venues and hotels, so when people book an event and are after some entertainment they would recommend me. Most of my gigs take place in the UK, from private parties to weddings and the occasional trade show, but I also get to visit different countries and perform my magic, either to work on a trade show stand or perform at someone’s wedding or party.
Keeping in touch during lockdown
Since the lockdown all my events have been postponed till next year, apart from one or two that I am monitoring, with the government guidelines. So what am I doing during the lockdown? Firstly the most important thing I can do is stay in contact with the venues and suppliers I work with to see how they are and if we can help each other out, this could be as simple as sharing their posts on social media, or putting them in contact with people who could help them. But it has another role too, for example the reason you are reading this blog post is because I called Liz for a chat, just to say hi and see what she had been up to and I mentioned that I was running out of ideas for my social media, as I can’t go out and practice or perform my magic as I normally would, therefore I don’t have any photos or videos to use on my social media. I mentioned that I was thinking of starting a podcast with all the stories I have got about my magic, from it going wrong to funny stories. She liked this idea and said I should write a blog post too, I have never written a blog post before, so this is my first one, and she kindly offered to post it on her blog for me.
Learning new skills and tricks during lockdown
Secondly I have been working on new material for my magic. This has been a combination of coming up with brand new methods for new tricks, improving old effects and trying new things out. There is however one big problem, normally when I come up with new ideas or routines I go out and road test them either in bars or with friends, so I can see if they work or what problems they might face in the real world. So what am I doing to see how they look? Someone suggested that I film them and watch the footage back, this sounds good in principle but magic that is designed for live performance doesn’t work well on video, also most effects rely on having a spectator there to perform on. I could always try it on my parents but they don’t react like I need, because trying the trick at home is completely different to trying it out and about. What it is good for is trying little bits out and seeing if they notice it. So although I have new effects to try out, until I can go back to going to gigs or meeting friends I don’t know how they will go down, so whilst at home all I can do is make them the best they can be under the current restrictions.
Staying healthy during lockdown
I have also been walking the dog more in the park to get some fresh air, but it's a good form of exercise as the gym is currently closed. I have got back into photography too, I forgot how much I enjoy taking photos, it’s relaxing and makes you look at the world and objects around you differently. You can see examples of this on my Instagram page. I’m cooking more at home, trying new things out (they don’t always work).
Lockdown best bits
Finally someone asked me the other day what I have enjoyed so far about the lockdown. Here are my answers:
- It has given me time to work on new ideas and routines.
- I've been able to read the books I have been meaning to read for a while, but haven't had the time.
- I am getting more time to meditate
- Write in my journal daily, this makes me find the best in every day and if I write something down that I have to do, I make sure I complete it.
- I get to speak to my friends and contacts more as they are now available during the day or evening as we are all in the same situation.
- Where I can’t get ideas by going out as normal, I am getting ideas from films or talking to people on the phone or even video chats.
- I am doing more Instagram lives which are going down well.
So that’s what I have been up to, what has everyone else been doing? What are you looking forward to going back to once the lockdown is lifted? Get in touch with me to let me know!
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