4 Differences between Amateur and Professional Magicians

differences between amateur and professional magicians
Cheesy, fumbling amateur or smart, confident professional - which one do you want for your event?

When you're looking to hire a magician for your important event, it's likely that you'll receive a range of prices. Some quotes may be from amateur (or semi-professional) magicians, who work a only a few events per month alongside their day job, while others may be from full time professional magicians.

When making your decision, you might want to consider the differences between amateur and professional magicians.

  • What are the key things that separate them?
  • What are the extras that you get if you pay for a professional?
  • And importantly, which should you choose for your event?

Sidenote: Magicians! I know that a lot of performers also read my blogs, so while this post isn't designed for you, per se, it could be very useful for you if you are looking to turn professional, or just generally offer a more professional service.

Suggested podcast episode: 004 - Professionals vs Amateurs

So, with all of that said, let's jump into it these four differences.

EXPERIENCE
CONSISTENCY
FOCUS
SERVICE

PRICE DIFFERENCES AND WHICH IS BEST FOR YOUR EVENT
AND FINALLY

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN AMATEUR AND PROFESSIONAL MAGICIANS

EXPERIENCE

Within the community of magicians, we often talk about the concept of flight time. Just as a pilot has to fly for a certain number of hours until they are allowed to fly solo, a magician needs to perform for a certain about of hours until they become proficient.

Now, of course, there are some excellent semi-professional magicians, who have been performing for many years, but still want to hold down a regular day job, either because it suits their lifestyle better or because they have more than one passion. That's, of course, totally fine, but generally a professional magician has more shows under their belt.

That experience helps them to know their routines inside out, which gives the performer a whole lot of confidence.

Quick tip: In the world of performance confidence is key!

An audience can spot when someone exudes confidence, or conversely when they are nervous.

We've all had that experience of struggling through watching a bad performance, and it makes you feel uncomfortable, right? I doubt you want that for your guests. Instead you want them to be congratulating you for hiring someone so well, polished! In short, all of that experience adds up to a better experience for you and your guests.

Not only that but I know that in my case, being a professional magician has allowed me to expand the range of magic that I perform. When I started out in magic, I focused mainly on close up magic with playing cards. Now, I'm also proficient in magic with coins and other small objects, mind reading magic, magic on stage and even magic for younger audiences. All of this, as above, gives me the confidence that I can deal with anything.

Ready to find out more?

Looking for a confident magician to interact with your guests? Get in touch today for more information and an accurate quote.

table magician performing at a corporate party

CONSISTENCY

An amateur magician may know a lot of tricks. They may even know some really great ones that will fool the pants off you! Some of them can even create the feeling of real magic. However, what they often lack is the consistency to do that again and again.

By definition, a professional magician performs more regularly than a semi-professional or amateur magician. As such, the professional not only has the learned experience as mentioned above, but they are also, for want of a better term, "match fit."

I know that in my case, I perform at about three to five events per week. Sometimes during busy periods, up to eight shows per week. I live, sleep and breath magic, and that difference counts.

I have encountered and solved almost every possible situation that could go wrong, but here's the best thing, that means that should anything unfortunate happen during your event, you probably won't even notice.

I'll solve any issues before it becomes a problem. It's the invisible advantage of hiring a professional. Hey, it's like magic.

Of course, it's worth saying, that if you hire an amateur magician and nothing goes wrong, then that's the same, but do you want to run that risk? In short, an amateur magician might know a lot of really great tricks, but it's a toss up as to whether the stars will align for your event or not.

FOCUS

I watch a lot of magic, both on video and in person. One of the saddest things I see is a magician who performs only for themselves. Maybe it's an ego thing ?) but they treat your event as a chance to practice their routines on a captive audience. That's not magic! It's self congratulating, patting themselves on the back.

Now of course, not all semi-professional magicians perform like this. Some are excellent performers that really get the audience involved, but it is something to look out for.

My approach to magic is to put my focus on you, and your guests. My magic is a conversation. As such, it's interactive, but not in a false way. Instead, through years of experience, and through performing week in, week out, I know exactly how to bring out the best in people. Do you want to know the secret to magic? It's all about building a rapport with others. People are more interested in people than they are in shiny things!

At the heart of what I do, is helping you to spend quality time laughing with your close friends and family.

corporate-magician-motto

SERVICE

As a professional magician, my focus is on you. I just said that in the section above. But here's what that also means for you. You get a five star service, every time. It's one of the reasons I've got so many fantastic reviews - click the link below to read a few of them!

Jenny Court
Jenny Court
Thank you so much. Amazing tricks. Highly recommend. Everyone loved it. Thank you for getting round all the people at the party. Excellent
Nick Aldridge
Nick Aldridge
Very good
Mark Howard
Mark Howard
Ed was amazing tonight at the Severn Transport Services Christmas Party in Welshpool, highly recommend, he will on our entertainment list each year.
diane watson
diane watson
Ed was invited to entertain our charity group, and we are all very pleased he did!. Entertainment wise he was spot on, involving all of our members with his magic tricks, good humour , and easy going attitude. It was really good to see all of our members so engrossed, paying attention and getting involved. Thank you Ed
nick moseley
nick moseley
I arranged for Ed to provide entertainment at our daughter’s wedding. Absolutely spot on. He made sure he engaged with every table, and the constant howls of surprise and delight made for a really great atmosphere after the main dining. Everyone really enjoyed it and said what a fantastic addition to the whole event it was. Thanks, Ed !
Laura Moseley
Laura Moseley
Ed was the magician at our wedding and was fantastic. He was great with all our guests and did some amazing magic tricks. He was great at going around the room and entertaining everyone. Also, thank you for teaching our flower girl and page boy a magic trick, they loved it !
Andrew Marsden
Andrew Marsden
Just hired Ed for a family party in Nantwich and he was awesome! I was very clear about what I wanted at the event and Ed delivered. Entertaining the little ones with balloon modelling and magic (sorry Ed - didn't think the balloon requests would ever end at one point!) and then walking around performing table magic for all the other guests. Feedback has been brilliant, with everyone impressed with the magic and feeling like they'd been entertained with some amazing tricks! And in terms of booking Ed - easy to communicate with, friendly, punctual and very accommodating. It was a great night, everyone had fun. Thanks Ed!!
Tracey Fowler
Tracey Fowler
Ed performed at my daughters wedding , he was brilliant, all our guests loved the magic he performed, he was entertaining funny and very professional, we wouldn’t hesitate to book him again and highly recommended him, Thank you Ed ⭐️

Magic is my full time living, so I work hard to respond to you in a timely manner.

Throughout the whole process from enquiry to booking, I'll keep you updated so you are always aware of what's going on or what the next step is.

And, hey, if anything is ever unclear, you can always call me on 07792 129 828. I even send you a text message when I leave for your event, so that you know I'm on the way. Worrying about whether the magician is going to turn up, is not what you want on the day of an important event.

Ready to find out more?

Want to find out the difference I offer? Get in touch today to find out why I'm trusted with the most important events.

PRICE DIFFERENCES AND WHICH IS BEST FOR YOUR EVENT

incredible reaction from a guest seeing black tie events magician perform

AND FINALLY

As with anything you can buy, there are always a range of prices, and guess what? You get what you pay for.

It's just not possible to get a quality professional magician, during a key time (Friday nights and weekends) for a low price.

Just as you get a pay rise at work, magicians raise their prices as their experience level grows. Someone just starting out, and performing a few shows a year, is going to be cheaper than someone like myself who performs magic to a professional standard several times a week.

I wrote more about how much it costs to hire a close up magician here?

But, I would recommend that you get in touch for more information.

Pricing is also a matter of priorities. If entertainment at your event is something you don't really care about just ask one of your mates who knows a few tricks to perform for your guests.

However, I believe entertainment is incredibly valuable. And sidenote - many people agree with me. In a recent survey, 1,000 couples were asked what they would change about their wedding and guess what 78% of couples wished they had spent more on the entertainment.

After the final drinks have been sunk, the venue and the decorations will probably be quickly forgotten, however, people will remember how they felt. They'll look back on your event and either recall standing around making the same old small talk, or laughing along with their friends and family. That later situation is what my close up magic brings to your event. I bring your event to life.

So there you go, four plus differences between amateur and professional magicians. Is there anything I've missed? Which do you think is most important?

One of my favourite magicians from history was a lawyer and an amateur magician. Arturo de Ascanio (the found of La Escuela Magia de Madrid), achieved great fame with his card tricks, but never became a professional magician. He always continued with his legal practice. His books on magic are difficult but highly recommended reading for magicians. Here is a wonderful quote from his first book, The Structural Conception of Magic, on the differences between amateur and professional magicians:

The pros that practice every day, and every night, develop that smoothness, that ease, that stage presence. An amateur, who performs his act weekly or monthly, even in the best cases, doesn’t have that.

YOUR INCREDIBLE EVENT IS
JUST A FEW STEPS AWAY

1. CONNECT

It's easy to get in touch with me, either:

2. DISCUSS

During a short phone or video call, we'll talk about your event and your initial ideas. Don't worry, if you're not sure. I've helped to plan many events so I can advise on the best use of magic and other events entertainment.

3. AGREE

Once all the details are agreed, I'll send you a booking confirmation and ask you to make the first payment which confirms your date in my calendar. Then it's time to start looking forward to your big event.

4. ENJOY

I'll check in with you in the week before your event, and on the day of the event. All you need to do now is enjoy the magic, mind reading and conversational comedy.