Admit it. The best kids’ birthday parties always had a professional magician.
They’d dazzle you with their magic skills, gather you in a magic circle, and bam! You were completely enamored by their different tricks and gimmicks.
But budding magicians need not worry that their career path only includes kids parties. So why don’t you take a look at the route towards becoming a successful magician below?
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#1. Learn some basic tricks
Every amateur magician needs to start somewhere. And luckily, the Internet is chock-full of magic trick tutorials galore.
Watch videos of some of the best magicians out there. It can be close up magic, stage magic, you name it.
Learning magic has perhaps never been easier with the Internet by your side. But that being said, there’s always a handy dandy magic shop just around the corner stocked with magic books for you to learn from.
You don’t want to start with complex illusions. Instead, try out some easier tricks first. Or even work on mastering one trick alone.
The complete course of learning magic takes years of practice. So start learning tricks today that are manageable for you.
#2. Create a persona that embraces your own style
Professional magicians are, at their core, entertainers. So you’ll want to develop a persona that feeds into your unique style.
New magicians ought to brainstorm what their unique selling point is. Are they more like Criss Angel or David Blaine?
Do they perform magic as a form of corporate entertainment or are their magic performances on a Vegas stage? All of these questions will inform how you create your magic act.
And if you’re at the beginning of your career, the possibilities really are endless. As you learn magic, you may find you’re drawn to a particular set of card tricks.
Or maybe you even come up with your own tricks. All of these revelations will help guide you towards the kind of professional magician you want to be. So pay attention.
#3. Attend your local magic club
Professional magicians wouldn’t exist without each other. In fact, the international brotherhood of experienced magicians is pretty much what makes the magic world go round.
So start by attending magic clubs to meet a local professional magician or two. And learn from other magicians as they perform magic tricks.
A magic shop may have a diverse range of magicians for you to learn from. Whether they’re street performers, wedding magicians, more experienced magicians, or otherwise.
All of them will have something to offer you in your magic journey. So don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and introduce yourself to a professional magician or two.
This niche industry is all about looking out for one another. Whether it’s trading new tricks, or giving advice, there are many magicians out there who want you to succeed.
#4. Network with fellow magicians
There’s only so much you can learn from watching videos on the Internet. That’s why you’ll want to learn magic from the pros in person.
They’ll be able to show you different card tricks, recommend a great magic store, or offer you magic books that helped them along their journey. You’ll soon find that becoming a magician is a lot about networking.
But in each connection you make, the greater your magic show becomes. As you pick up as many tricks as you can, each will play into your career. And you’ll have all those other magicians to thank.
#5. Practice performing magic tricks in front of others
Magicians perform in front of any number of crowds. So you’ll want to work on gaining confidence in front of an audience.
This isn’t to say you have to have a whole magic show panned out. Just test out one magic trick to start.
And master it to the best of your ability. Even mastering just one card trick can open the door for a host of other tricks for you.
So gather as many magician friends as you can. And perform for one another in preparation for the magic shows down the line.
#6. Work on your presentation skills
Professional magicians don’t just perform a couple of magic tricks. They have to know how to walk the audience through with them.
This means understanding how to work a crowd. And how to grasp their attention.
Mostly, this boils down to presentation skills which is something every master magician embodies. And it means making a meaningful connection with the audience.
Just think back to the first great magician you ever watched. Yes, they performed their magic tricks.
But more than anything, they connected with you. Then dazzled you with the tricks they had to offer.
Making that connection is essential. Because each audience member in the room will have a different set of expectations in mind.
You’ll either want to convert someone into a believer of magic. Or confirm to someone that magic is their true calling.
Either way, the way you present yourself to the audience is what counts. So don’t underestimate the performance of magic.
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#7. Hone your unique performance style
Like corporate comedians for hire, every good magician will have their own style. Maybe they are a neurotic clown who likes to keep their cards in order.
Then, bam! They slip and fall, causing all of their magic tricks to spill out onto the stage, leaving the crowd in laughter.
Or maybe you have a magician who is quiet and reserved. But once they get into the swing of their magic tricks, they’re heroically dashing and charming the heck out of you.
Most magicians find their performance style while honing their persona. But a good magician will know how to be a chameleon as well.
Every chance you have to perform, you’re performing in front of a brand new audience. Having at least some background in what they’re looking for is paramount to your success.
Like we tell our own comedy magicians, do your research. Magic tricks are just magic tricks.
But when tailored to the specific audience, they’re so much more than just a party gimmick. They’re a tool to communicate with and unite a room of strangers.
#8. Work with other professional magicians
There’s no better way to become a magician than to work with one. Take on as many magician jobs as you can.
Especially the ones where you’re helping other magicians work. Each chance to work with a magician is a learning experience for yourself.
And we don’t necessarily mean the chance to learn magic. But to learn from that magician’s performance.
Every magician has a different approach to their magic tricks. Take note of what’s working and what’s not.
Let that inform your own process as a magician. And make connections with these other magicians as you go.
You never know which relationship might lead to another. So keep all of your options open and commit to the practice of magic by doing it, studying it, and applying it.
#9. Attend magic conventions and local magic shops
Yes, you read that right. There are actually magic conventions for magicians to convene and network at!
These conventions are for every kind of magician out there. Whether it’s somebody just starting to learn magic or somebody who’s had a years-long career in the industry.
And not only do you get to network with those who have a host of knowledge on magic tricks. But you can also take classes and seminars to further your craft.
The connections made at these conventions simply can’t compare to anything else. So if you have the chance to attend, just go for it.
You may even make a connection with The Society of American Magicians. Or even The International Brotherhood of Magicians.
Each society has a wealth of knowledge to offer. And an amazing group of fellow magicians who are just as interested in developing their magic just like you.
#10. Study famous magicians and their magic shows
You may not know this. But aspiring comedians are also told to go back and watch their favorite comedians’ work.
Not just for the sake of laughing at the jokes. But for studying them.
Each comedy set – and magic routine – is full of little lessons that you can analyze and dissect. It can be the way that particular magician engages with the audience.
Or maybe a unique magic trick that you’re trying to master. What flourishes are they using, if any?
What connections are they making with the audience and when? All of these questions will guide you as you watch your favorite magic show.
Because at this point, a magic show is no longer entertainment. It’s a chance for you to get a masterclass in magic.
#11. Continue developing your craft
Any art form requires dedication. And that means a commitment to continuing to develop one’s craft.
Even magicians who have supposedly “made it” are still working on their magic tricks. They’re going to magic clubs to learn from the newest generation of magicians.
They’re not stopping their study of magic just because they’re at an all time high in their career. If anything, that’s the time to commit even more to the study of magic.
So as you go about your magic career, never stop learning. You might have started learning magic from a YouTube video.
But that doesn’t mean you necessarily stop learning after the video plays out. Magic is a living, breathing entity that you have to continue to care for.
FAQs about becoming a magician
There’s no singular way to become a magician. But for those who are just starting to get into the field, here are a couple of more answers for you to consider.
How long does it take to become a magician?
Like we just said, there’s no one way to become a magician. And there’s no one answer as to how long it takes to become a magician.
But with any line of work, there is the pinnacle standard of 10,000. That is, 10,000 to master any one thing.
So consider this your benchmark for mastering your craft. But it doesn’t stop afterwards. It continues on and on.
Where can I learn to become a magician?
You might have been bummed as an 11-year-old when your Hogwarts letter didn’t come. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still learn magic in other places.
Many magicians get into the craft by attending magic lectures, magic shops, magic clubs, and magic conventions. Just to name a few.
But really, any event, shop, or club where magic is involved is a great place to start. As we mentioned earlier, professional magicians will continue to hang around these arenas.
So you’ve got a good chance at finding a mentor in one of these spaces. It’s just a matter of putting yourself out there and finding like-minded folks who love magic just as much as you do.
Is there a school for magicians?
We’d say Hogwarts, but that joke has clearly been overdone. In all seriousness though, there’s not necessarily a single school in which to learn magic from.
But rather the world of magic is your school. This means clubs, shops, lectures, and conventions.
Magic shows, magic classes, magic societies, and more. The world is your school and you its willing student.
So while there isn’t a set curriculum, you can think of it as a Choose Your Own Adventure-type education. There’s plenty to learn all around you.
We wish we could give you the ultimate guide on how to become a magician. But there really isn’t one.
Instead, it’s up to you to figure out what kind of a magician you want to be. And how you end up getting there.
This may not appeal to some. But that’s where the real fun begins. Or should we say, that’s where the magic happens…. (We had to.)
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Adam Christing is a professional comedy magician, virtual MC, and the founder of CleanComedians.com. He is a member of the world-famous Magic Castle in Hollywood and a popular corporate entertainer, magician, and virtual speaker.