Tips and tricks from a Vaudeville professional including openers, audience appeal, costume, make-up, and a lot more. The ideal is to have a director who pays attention to these areas, but most magicians are performers and directors rolled up into one person. It is therefore important to read and study showmanship and presentation.
From the introduction by Park Shackleton:
It is now, thank goodness, many many years since I cared two hoots how a trick was done (i.e., the actual secret which is of no importance). I am only interested in how it is presented (which is of vital importance).
When a man like Edward Maurice, who by his "practice" is so obviously entitled to "preach," writes on Showmanship and Presentation, every thinking magician must read it. He may not agree with all the views expressed - I don't myself - but be he a beginner or an advanced performer, he must benefit by a study of it, as the author is so obviously sincere, and so obviously knows what he is writing about. In fact, in my very large circle of magical friends, I cannot think of one who will read it without profit to himself.
Don't read this book. Study it. Keep its precepts ever in mind and build on it as a routine (possibly the most important word in the book), and I am convinced that you will be surprised at your own improvement. I mean You, and You, sir. You may even become another Edward Maurice.
- Preface To The Fourth Edition
- Showmanship And Presentation
- The Scope Of This Work
- The Opening Effect
- The Show Continues ...
- Personal Appearance
- Stage Personality
- Audience Appeal
- Stage Technique
- Filling The Stage
- The Pièce De Résistance
- Obiter Dicta
- "Straight" Make-Up
- Stage Make-Up
1st edition 1946, 46 pages; PDF 41 pages.
word count: 13716 which is equivalent to 54 standard pages of text