SINGAPORE RING 115 - Mar 2022 Magic Meeting Report

Written by John Teo

This was our first lecture for the year 2022. It was conducted by David Kaye (aka Silly Billy). The title of the lecture was “Performing Magic For Children”. Because the pandemic was still rampant, and there was no relaxing of restrictions for holding a physical gathering, this lecture was conducted virtually via the Zoom platform. It took place on the evening of 15 March 2022 and attracted a total of 42 people which included 3 guests.

This was a very special lecture. Most lectures that we attended were effects-based. This means that the effects were first performed and then the lecturer explained the method, the techniques and the psychology involved. David Kaye first explained the principles, as well as the techniques and the psychology on how to be a successful children performer, and then he played video clips of his live children shows to demonstrate what he meant.

As a starter, David performed his version of the “Applause Gag” poster board, using a play on the words NO, ON, OZ. ZO, YES, NEVER and ALWAYS.

David explained the theory of performing for children and mentioned that there are 5 different types of routines for performing to children. He then emphasized the importance of interacting with the children. He played a video clip of him performing the “Crystal Tube Blow” using red, yellow and green silks to represent the colours of the traffic lights. When we saw how excited the children was when they interacted with the performer, we understood what David meant.

He mentioned the use of comedy elements for interacting with the children. His next performance video was “The Bread ‘Red’ Trick” which demonstrated the many visual comedy props used by David.

After a short break, David continued with the psychology of performing for children of different ages. He played a video of his performance of “Princess In A Pickle” using the “headless cartoon silks” with older children.

David discussed the use of running gags to link up the various tricks in an act. He also explained the psychology of empowering the children. He played a video of his classic performance of “The Colouring Book”. We could see how the children interacted with David when they were “empowered” to “erase” the colours of the pictures in the book.

David answered several questions from some of the children performers in our audience. He offered a free e-booklet of his running gags for those who attended his lecture. As a parting statement to all of us, David said that the important thing is “to have a great time with the kids by interacting with them”.

Everyone, including those who do not perform for children, had a great time with the lecture by David Kaye.