It all started about 10 years ago. Actually, it has started and re-started several times for various reasons, many of which were technology-related. We were trying to do something that the world wasn’t quite ready for… until now.
We love teaching classes in Las Vegas, but also realize that not everyone is able to spend a week hanging out at Jeff’s house working on their magic. Even those of you who have been to Vegas know that we have more information to pass on than we can even cover in just one week. Of course, both Jeff and Eugene have DVDs and books for sale. But then you’re paying for shipping, waiting for the product to arrive and then you are left on your own to work on the material unless/until you email or call one of them for some help (which can be daunting the first time and tricky because they both travel so often).
We wanted a more efficient way to pass on the collective wisdom of our teachers. The internet was the obvious choice as a mode of communication, but how would we make it work?
The idea is simple. We’re putting pieces of our collective wisdom online. We’ve started by taking apart Jeff and Eugene’s existing DVDs and posting each segment online as an individual lesson. You no longer have to buy a 3-DVD set if all you want is one effect. Breaking out the material this way also allows us to provide the individual segments and much lower prices. Think iTunes versus a CD.
Got questions or feedback? Each lesson has its own discussion forum. Not only do you get the basic teaching from Jeff or Eugene — now you can brainstorm ideas and ask questions of other people that are working on the material. Jeff and Eugene will drop in now and then to answer questions and provide further insights.
Jeff is also offering private sessions online via Skype. The ones he’s done so far have been hugely successful. Whether you’re working on routining your show or just trying to perfect a move, having real-time video help from Jeff is the way to go.
Now that we have filmmaker Jordan Wright on our team, we’ll be able to get new material to you faster than ever. New content goes directly online once it’s edited; no need to wait for DVD production or shipping.
In addition to the material from the DVDs, our first new, never-before-seen footage should be up on the site by the time you get this email. It’s an interview I did with Eugene on the business of close-up magic, a topic which he’s never talked about before. Jordan even managed to make me seem almost natural on camera (the things terrify me).
The whole Virtual Magic & Mystery School is still a work in progress, so feel free to poke around and email me comments or questions. As with our Master Classes, we want to create the highest quality learning experience possible.
I should also mention that the Virtual Magic & Mystery School is only the first step. I’ll be finishing up work on two, even bigger ventures in the next week or two. The first is a digital store for magicians that uses the technology I created for the Virtual School. In addition to Jeff & Eugene’s materials, I’m working with other magic creators to get their content online. This is going to be a great new resource for magicians and students of magic.
I’m also forming alliances with people who have expertise in other areas (hypnotism, martial arts, marketing, basket weaving, etc.). The idea is to partner with experts who can serve as “Wisdom Filters”… people that can provide quality instruction based on true experience. The internet is full of charlatans. My goal is to get people connected with the true masters. If you are interested in contributing material, please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I look forward to seeing you online at The Virtual Magic & Mystery School!