出典：”Sphinx” 1926年7月 執筆者：Harry Opel
WHAT MAKES A MAGICIAN?
The above question has as many angles as we had versions of “Sawing a Woman in Two” a season or so ago.
We all have our own individual views and there is no better place to expound them than through the pages of The Sphinx as it reaches out into all the hidden corners of our magic world and it gives us all a chance to get together (if only on paper) and find out the big points and the real material that is required to constitute a magician. I shall use for an illustration one that is novel as well as original with me.
Suppose a woman wants to bake a cake, what does she do?
First she hunts up a recipe. Next she gathers together all the many different ingredients that are required to make the cake. There are sugar, flour, milk, eggs. Then she follows the recipe very carefully so as to use the proper amount of each item listed so as to get the desired results.
Now as to magic and the making of a magician. It would be a hard proposition to develop a magician by a set rule of magic ethics or as a method as used to make a cake. Yet there should be a standard set that all magicians should measure up to. First of all there must be a firm foundation to build upon.
Some who are interested in magic will tell you this is not essential but it is. A man’s character should be good and his mind should be clear. He must have courage, also faith in whatever branch of the magic game that he embarks in.
He must be able to talk; he must be able to wear clothes well. While we have all heard the old saying, a dress suit does not make a magician, and while it is true, nevertheless a neat appearing wardrobe helps to build up any act or show.
Another requirement is to be a keen observer; also to study an audience and to be able to use a free flow of words but not meaningless words for each sentence should be so constructed as to bring forth in a clear manner the point you want to emphasize. Some will argue a large flashy stage setting will put the act over and therefore help to make a magician.
Now reflect for a moment. The woman baking the cake would not be careless, she would not use five cups of flour if the recipe called for three, or she would not use four eggs if the recipe called for two, and so it is in the making of a magician, for when a certain amount of patter is essential don’t overstep the danger line and tire out your audience.
The magician should also know the technique of dramatic art for magic has its place for many dramatic moments.
A good laugh scattered here and there helps a whole lot.
In the making of a magician confidence plays a great part.
A wise magician will study his people. He gets his hearers interested and if he is a smooth talker he keeps them interested while his hands get in their deft work.
A few years ago we did not have many talking magicians, but times are changing and now when we go to a vaudeville show we have more talk and less magic.
As the cake baker continues her work she should improve in the art of baking; just the same with a magician. Constant work and practice should enable him to perfect the art of magic. Now looking the question fairly in the face.
“What makes a magician?”
I would as my version say, Personality is the greatest asset that is required in the making of a magician or any other entertainer for that matter, for with personality you can sway your audience; you can control them and hold their attention and for the time being they forget how you are dressed, or how large a stage setting you are carrying. You are entertaining them. You are giving satisfaction and that is all that is required from any magician, large or small. Therefore you will find that Personality is one of the largest factors to contend with when you are searching for the true analysis of what makes a magician. Now, who is next?
私はこの記事のタイトルに惹かれました。’What makes a magician?’を直訳すると、’何がマジシャンを作るのか’となり、日本語としては変な感じがします。’どんなことがマジシャンに必要か’とすると、洒落た訳ではありませんが、意味としては著者の意図に近づくと思います。しかしながらタイトルとしてインパクトがありません。そこで思い切りって発揮して大胆に意訳します。’素晴らしいマジシャンはなぜ素晴らしいか’というのはいかがでしょうか。
Fred Kapsほど、多くの人が素晴らしいマジシャンだと認める人はいません。彼が素晴らしいマジシャンである要因をリストアップしてみると、Hary Opelが上記の論評で指摘しているような要素が浮かび上がってきます。