The Quadro Chick

from Jon Allen

I watched Jon Allen perform the "Quadro-Chick" and completely fracture a room full of magicians at the Oakland I.B.M. Convention. He got laughs, he got sighs, he got thunderous applause, all with a cuter-than-hell baby chick marionette. He is now offering this for sale, and, as I peer into my crystal ball, I foresee that this prop is going to be the next "Rocky."

Jon provides you with the chick marionette, which stands about 8 inches tall. The chick is operated with a simple crossbar control stick. The chick has a small magnet underneath its beak which will allow to pick up a shim card (which is included). Jon also provides you with an 8-page instruction booklet which shows you how to operate the puppet and also gives you a brief routine. There are also suggested hints, tips, and gags. Jon does not provide you with his routine and patter (which is understandable), so you're on your own as far as working out a complete, scripted routine.

A couple of thoughts. The effectiveness of this routine depends on how good a puppeteer you are. I discovered that I'm a crappy puppeteer. But then again, I haven't practiced. This is not a self-working thing. It is not difficult to learn how to manipulate the marionette, but you're going to have to spend some time working with the chick in order to really bring it to life. Jon has taken the time, and he kills with his routine. Which brings me to my other point. If you get good with this chick and you develop a strong routine with it, you are probably going to have to close your show with it. Audiences go nuts over stuff like this, and I would be hard pressed to think of a routine which could follow it.

What else can I say? This is a great prop. Jon will probably sell a zillion of them. If you come up with a good routine and you practice, you will kill with it. However, there is a price to pay: Be sure your ego is ready for the jolt when the repeat customers forget your name and ask that the chick performs at their table. Highly recommended.

The No 2 Pencil by Mark Jenest

The Secret Source specializes in practical, commercial close-up routines, and this new release by Mark Jenest is no exception. The performer brings out a common, yellow, No. 2 pencil (you remember these from school). He points out the small black mark near the eraser end which says "No 2." He then slides this mark down to the other end of pencil. He slides it back, causes a duplicate mark to appear on the other side of the pencil, makes all the marks disappear, and then causes the single "No 2" to come back. As a grand finale, he stretches the mark so it now says, "N U M B E R T W O" down the entire length of the pencil.

This is a cute routine and requires no difficult sleight-of-hand. You receive two pencils and an excellent set of instructions. This is not earth shaking magic, but would be an entertaining interlude between "heavier" pieces. And it would be especially effective if you use the pencil in a preceding effect. Recommended.

Fundamentals of Magick

Fundamentals of Magick

Magick is the art and practice of moving natural energies to effect needed or wanted change. Magick is natural, there is absolutely nothing supernatural about it. What is taught here are various techniques of magick for beginners. Magick is natural and simple and the techniques to develop abilities should be simple and natural as well. What is taught on this site is not only the basics of magick, but the basics of many things.

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