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CostHelper > Recreation & Activities  > Magician

Magician Cost


How Much Does a Magician Cost?

 
 average costPer Hour: $100-$500 
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A party magician performs magic tricks at birthdays, bar/bat mitzvahs, corporate events, carnivals, fundraisers and other special events. When it comes to birthday parties, magicians will either offer an hourly rate or may perform a pre-packaged birthday party magic show for a set fee.

Typical costs:

  • While some magicians quote prices by the event, such as a birthday party, others charge a set hourly rate.
  • A birthday party magic show lasting 30 to 45 minutes typically costs $175 to $350. This may include card tricks, stage illusions, a live bunny or balloon sculptures. For $350, All About Me Entertainment[1] in South Florida offers a 35-45 minute, family-friendly magic show with audience participation and special attention for the birthday child.
  • A magician typically costs $150 to $500 per hour. Rates vary with experience and often magicians able to do more complex illusions charge more. For example, Castle Party Rentals[2] in the Chicago area offers magicians for hire ($175 per hour) for family magic shows. The company also offers magical illusionists for hire ($250 per hour), with tricks that may include animals, levitation or cutting audience members in half.
Related articles: Party Clown, Balloon Twisting, Cake, Helium Balloons

What should be included:
  • The magician should set up and tear down his or her own equipment, such as a table, special props or a sound system if required.
  • Space permitting, magicians should be willing to accommodate groups of any size. There is generally no limit to how many kids or adults may attend a birthday magic show.
  • The magician should specify how much space is needed to set up in the living room, for example, and if any furniture will need to be moved.
  • A party magician should be able to engage a crowd for 30 to 45 minutes without losing their interest.
  • For children's birthday parties, most magicians incorporate the birthday child in a special way, perhaps by including them in an on-stage illusion or twisting them a special balloon hat.
Additional costs:
  • A 50 percent deposit may be required to reserve a party magician. Some magicians do not require a deposit and will accept cancellations with a week's or even a day's notice.
  • A magician may charge travel fees of $25 or more. However, some magicians are willing to travel within their region or state for free to increase their market.
  • For a small fee, some magicians provide birthday party favors. For instance, Turk the Genie[3] in the Seattle area charges $2 per child for a favor bag with small magic tricks, a finger trap and candy.
Discounts:
  • Some party magicians offer a discounted hourly rate of 15 to 40 percent off after the first hour. Magicians that stay past the group magic show may interact with guests through balloon twisting or "street magic" (close-up magic tricks in front of guests' eyes).
  • Look for discounted rates for early bookings or shows booked for non-peak days. Magician Tim Mannix[4] in Southern California takes 10 percent off the cost of shows booked 30 days in advance. Magician Brian Happie in New Jersey drops the price from $225 to $205 for shows anytime but Saturdays and Sundays, 11am to 5pm.
Shopping for a magician:
  • The Magician Directory[5] and Gigmasters[6] provide contact information for party magicians by state. Magicians pay to be listed in Gigmasters, but do not pay to be listed in The Magician Directory.
  • Local magicians should provide a list of past clients to contact for references. Their resume and experience can show if magic is a profession or more of a hobby.
  • The Magicians' Network suggests previewing the magician's act at another upcoming event before booking for a party. Sometimes a promo DVD is available.
  • Consider how much space the party magician will need to set up for the show. Magician Leif David[7] in British Columbia needs 4'x6' space, easily performing in a family's living room, while some magicians require a larger room to set up a small stage or props.
  • Sensitive children may be too shy to get up in front of a crowd. Ask how the magician handles audience participation and if they take volunteers only.
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External Resources:
  1.  www.allaboutentertainmentinc.com/Awesome%20Magicians.html
  2.  www.castlepartyrental.com/Chicago_Entertainers_Rent.html
  3.  birthdaymagiciannw.com/blog/faq/
  4.  www.funamazingmagic.com/faqs.htm
  5.  www.magician-directory.com/Magicians-United-States.htm
  6.  www.gigmasters.com/Magician/Magician.htm
  7.  www.hasslefreebirthday.com/faq.html
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