THINKING “BESIDE” THE BOX - Bo in the trenches / by Bo Gerard

“A case for everything and everything in its case” – the motto of every working pro in the magic business.  And finding the right case, or cases, for your show props is a never ending, almost Sisyphean, endeavor.  So much so, that sometimes if you find a case that is too perfect, it can actually change the content of your show.

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When I stand on stage and look into my trusty show case, I marvel at how perfectly everything fits and works.  Over the years I have tweaked how the show comes out of, and goes back into, the box during the show; and the set up inside is now quite elegant and ergonomic.  I do sometimes wonder if my desire to fit my corporate show into this case has influenced which effects have stayed in the show and which have not.

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Once I moved from a four case/three table stage set up to a single case on a tray stand, I did not desire to go back.  I was further inspired by a Jeff Hobson video I saw, in which he showed how he customized his stage case, to make everything easily accessible and ditch-able, while spending as little time with his hand inside the box.  I loved the concept, because I observed far too many magician’s hands disappear into their box for a suspiciously long time before bringing out the next effect.

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Same with loading in my show.  For the last 10 years I have been using a really great cart – The 8-in-1 Multi-Cart.  And the pursuit of the perfect load-in cart is another lifetime endeavor for solo performers.  Over time, I have noticed that if I can’t get the whole show, including sound system, on the cart, that some effect or piece of equipment eventually gets fazed out of my show.  If I can’t get into the venue in one trip, I usually change what I am bringing to gig.

So, it’s sort of a case of the “cart coming before the horse”, or “egg before the chicken”, or maybe the “cart coming before the chicken”!  The adventure of having my entire show come out of one box has been an exercise in Haiku.  The limitations it imposes end up being remarkably freeing; continually driving me to do “more with less”.  Which, by the way, is the title of my next blog!

Until then, resume normal activity!