Difficulty in Magic

By Andi Gladwin - Friday, June 7, 2019


The number one question that the Vanishing Inc. support team receive is: is Josh's hair real? But after that, we hear from a lot of people who ask the difficulty level of a trick. When we first started the company, we mulled over the idea of doing a "difficulty rating" on the site, but there's a big problem:

Difficulty is subjective.

Have taught magic in lectures and workshops for almost a decade, I have learned that what is easy for one person, isn't always easy for another. I have managed to teach some people my Master Pushoff in a few hours, whereas others have spent months on it without much success. To some, it's an easy move, but to others, it's a challenge that will take a serious time commitment.

So when someone asks for the difficulty level of a trick, it's just not possible to give an accurate answer because everyone is different. Therefore, a trick shouldn't just be valued on how easy it is to learn, but how effective it is for your audience. If it's a trick that you want to add to your repertoire, I encourage you to think less about how difficult a trick is and more about how much time you are willing to dedicate to it. If you can spend an hour a day on a new trick for the next two months, you'll give yourself much more opportunity to perfect new tricks than if you plan on adding it to your show next week. And if a trick might be harder than you expected, don't be disheartened: mountains make good hikers, not staircases. The same applies to magic.


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