The cost of a magician, or his fee can vary considerably, so why is this? This is because magicians vary considerably too. Some are more entertaining and skilful than others, have more experience and can mix well with people. There are other factors that enter the equation too such as status, professionalism and reliability and so forth.
It is very easy for a novice to state that they are a “professional” magician. All they have to do is create a website that says “professional magician” and that’s it. There are no qualifications needed apart from hiring a website designer.
Everyone has heard of a magician but most people have not seen a good adult professional magician working live. (I don’t mean a children’s magician)
The harsh reality is that not all magicians are of equal skill. Most flash when they perform, which means you can see how the trick is done as they do it. Hiring a magician of this nature is a complete wast of time. Your not supposed to see how the trick is done! It’s a bit like hiring a singer that is out of tune. Not much point and also embarrassing if you a trying to make a good impression at your function for your guests.
Another problem that the novice magician has is that they are unable to sell the trick and make it entertaining. They usually have a bad presentation in the style of another magician they are trying to copy; In the 80’s it was Paul Daniels and now it is Dynamo. Very few lack an original performing persona. In fact most have a very annoying personality about them which results in them getting 3 X’s on shows such as Britain’s Got Talent. Very few professional magicians will enter such a competition because these type of shows are biased towards singers so the pro magician is smart enough to stay away from this type of situation. However, the novice magician is not and this type of show takes delight in ridiculing these individuals in the attempt to gain viewing figures. The result is that magic gets a bad image and people think that all magicians must be that bad and cheesy. (Especially if Simon Cowell says they are).
However, in reality there are some truly amazing magicians who the public have never heard of who are performing some fantastic and entertaining magic. Just because a magician does not have his own television show it does not mean that they are not very good. Indeed people with no talent at all do end up as celebrities these days due to reality TV. This is how things can work out these days.
So how do you find a good magician? Well, first off, you get what you pay for. If your searching for a magician on the internet then take a look at their website. Ignore the text. A good sign is that there are plenty of pictures of the magician working in lots of different venues such as weddings and parties. Look to see if the people are having a good time and smiling or laughing. A picture speaks a thousand words so they say and it takes a lot of time and experience to build up a picture portfolio of a solid standard.
Even better, see if the magician has a good promotional video. You should look for clips with the magician performing live and the audience is engaged and enjoying themselves. These type of videos are very hard for the novice to obtain. One, because they don’t have many performing opportunities, and two they don’t have the experience and skill to evoke such strong reactions out of their audience. Most most novice magicians write how good they are but very few are reluctant to show off their magic skills, especially if the don’t have any.
You can also ask the magician if they can meet up with you and give you a little demo of their act so you can see if you are comfortable with them. Ask for real references and follow them up. Ask if the magician has won any magic awards or is a member of The Magic Circle.
It is better to pay a little extra and get a solid professional entertainer than pay less and get a bad performer. If you choose well you will have a magic event which you will talk about, enjoy and remember for a long time.