Copper Silver Redux

¥his is my routine for the standard copper/silver coin theme. It combines time-tested, standard phases by Thomas H. Beardon, Bobo and J.G. Thompson, Jr. with avante garde techniques by Mark Jennest and Jay Sankey, as well as a finale that is (I think) original. This is a hoot to perform for lay audiences, as you get a ton of magic out of one gaffed coin! I hope you enjoy it! Although it will read long, it only takes 2-3 minutes to perform.

Requirements and preparation: You need a copper/silver coin (c/s), one regular silver coin to match (s), and 11 matching copper coins (c). You'll also need a coin dropper (available from magic dealers, or easily made at home). Attach the dropper inside your coat on the left side, just above the hemline. Load ten of the copper coins into it. The reason for using coppers and not silvers is that the coppers do not reflect the light as well, so it is much less likely that they will "flash" when you steal them or while you are secretly holding them. Place the c/s on the remaining c with the copper side up (c/s). Place these in your left pants pocket. Place the s in your right pants pocket.

Method and performance:

Phase One: Thomas H. Bearden's "Presto Chango"- Two coins change from copper to silver, back to copper and then one of each. Reach into your pants pockets, finger palming the s in the right hand and taking the other two coins in the left hand. Remove the left hand, displaying the two coins (both as copper) on the palm, with the c/s on top. The right hand with the secretly palmed s comes out just after the left. Tilt your left hand slightly forward, allowing the c/s to slide onto the fingers. Pick up the c with the right fingers and turn it over as you toss it onto the left palm to show the other side (photo 87).

As you do this a second time, secretly toss the finger palmed s while the right thumb holds the c against the right fingers. The left fingers immediately close over the coin, before there is time to see that it is silver (photo 88). This also turns the gaffed coin so that the silver side is on top (c/s).

Slowly open the left fingers and tilt the hand so the c/s slides onto the left fingers and the s rests on the palm. Meanwhile, transfer the c in the right hand to finger palm (photo 89).

Repeat the above sequence, this time picking up the real s and flipping it over and switching it for the real c on the second toss. Again, open the left hand to show the coins have changed to their former color. As the left hand opens, the right secretly transfers its coin to finger palm. Allow the gaffed coin to slide onto the fingers again and then simply curl the fingers into a fist, turning the gaff over in the process.

Open the hand to show one copper and one silver. Do a Shuttle Pass: secretly finger palm the c/s as the left hand turns over and tosses the c into the right hand, which turns palm up to catch it (photo 90). The coin lands on the s coin in the right hand, and it appears that you threw both coins into the right hand.

Phase Two: Abbreviated "Poor Man's Hopping Half" (Mark Ten-nest / Scott F. Guinn) - One coin is removed from the hand and placed in the pocket, but magically travels back to the hand. The other coin is removed from the hand and placed in the pocket, and it, too, instantly and mysteriously travels back to the hand. As you display the two legitimate coins on your right hand, let them slide onto the fingers and curl the fingers up so that both coins flip over (photo 91), thus effectively and casually displaying both sides of the coins. (This also reverses the order, so the s is on top, facilitating the upcoming sequence.)

Allow the staggered coins to slide into an open finger palm position. Bring the left hand palm down over the coins and use the left thumb to slide the finger palmed gaffed coin to the ends of the fingers (but not to the tips — the fingers still hide the coin from view, as in photo 92).

Clink the gaffed coin against the right-hand coins and then immediately close the right hand and turn it palm down, finger palming both coins. The left hand simultaneously turns palm up to show the c/s. Refer to photo 93. Apparently, the left hand has removed the s and the right retained the c. (We'll call this the Fake Take Switch.)

Pretend to put the gaff into the left pocket, but actually finger palm it in the pocket and then bring the hand back into view. Snap your left fingers and make a catching motion with your right hand, allowing the coins to clink together. Open the right hand by extending the fingers as the wrist rolls clockwise to a palm up position, displaying the coins (photo 94).

Do a Shuttle Pass, tossing the c onto the c/s in the left hand while finger palming the s in right hand. Execute the Fake Take Switch as above, but with the hands reversed.

Put the s away in the right pocket. Bring the hand back into view, show it empty in a casual gesture and snap your fingers. Make a catching motion with the left hand, allowing the coins to clink together. Open the left hand, extending the fingers as the wrist rolls counterclockwise, to show one copper and one silver coin.

Photo 93
Photo 96 imiiiiimni

Phase Three: Tay Sankey's "Palm-Up H.P.C.-C.P.H" - The copper coin is covered with one hand, the silver with the other. Amazingly, they transpose!

Openly take the c/s with the right hand, and let it rest at the tips of the fingers. Let the c rest at the tips of the left fingers. Hold both hands flat, palm up about two inches above the table, with the fingers of both hands pointed at each other at about a forty-five degree angle (photo 95).

Your right hand turns palm down as your left hand simultaneously "hops" to the left. The "hop" causes the c to fall onto the table, the gaffed coin turns over and lands, copper side up, on the left fingers in the position the real copper coin formerly held (photo 96).

The right hand continues to drop to the table, covering the copper coin (photo 97). Everything from photos 95-97 happens in one motion in less than one second. Your right fingers don't touch or shield your left fingers at any point during the move, and the copper coin never seems to move. The speed with which the move is carried out makes the switch totally invisible. (This is one of those rare times when the hand really is quicker than the eye!) As you carry out this move say, "Silver here." Turn your left hand palm down onto the table, automatically turning the gaff over and covering it, saying, "Copper here." Wiggle your thumbs and raise the right hand saying, "Copper here!" Lift the left hand and say, "And silver, here!"

Phase Four: "Transpo Number Three" (Bobo) - Both coins are held in the left fist. The right hand removes the copper coin and places it in the pocket. The left hand opens, showing the copper coin, and the silver coin is removed from the pocket!

Place the c/s on the left palm and then place the c on top of it, overlapped to the right (photo 98).

Close the left fingers over the coins and turn the fist over. With the right thumb and forefinger, reach into the opening of the left fist between the left thumb and forefinger (photo 99).

Remove the gaff (it's the upper and nearer coin), displaying it as the copper coin. Place it into the pocket, where you finger palm the real s and ditch the gaff, silver side against the leg. Do not remove the hand from the pocket yet.

Open the left hand to show the copper coin and then remove the right hand from the pocket with the real silver coin. Hand both coins to Rocky for examination.

Phase Five: "Transpo Number Four" (T.G. Thompson) - Rocky drops both coins into his pocket and hands you one, which you place in your pocket. You ask him which coin he has and he answers. You both remove your coins, showing that everything is as it should be. You place both coins in Rocky's pocket and come back out with one, which you display and then place in your pocket. Asking which coin he thinks you have, you turn and let him remove the only coin in your pocket—it's the one he should have! Amazed, Rocky removes the coin in his pocket—it's the one you removed earlier! Both pockets and your hands are completely empty!

Ask Rocky to drop both coins in his left coat pocket. Reach into your right pants pocket, quickly finger palm the gaffed coin and then pull the pocket out to show it is empty (photo 100). Push the pocket back and leave the coin in it as your hand comes back out. Extend your palm up right hand and ask Rocky to remove one of the coins from his pocket and to give it to you.

Assume he gave you the silver coin. Place the coin in your right pants pocket and secretly switch it for the gaff, holding the gaff so that the silver side will show when you remove it (you left the coin's silver side against you leg in phase four, remember?).

Photo 100
Photo 101

Ask Rocky which coin he thinks is in his pocket. After he responds ( in this case, he should say copper—have some fun with it if he says silver), ask him to remove it. He has the c coin as he should. Extend your palm up left hand and ask him to place the coin on your palm. Say that, of course, you must have the other coin. Bring your hand out of your pocket, displaying the s side of the gaff. Place it on your left palm with the other coin, as you remark that you'll try it again. Dip your left hand into Rocky's right coat pocket, drop the c coin and secretly turn the gaff over (photo 101, exposed).

Remove the gaff, displaying the c side (that matches the regular coin in Rocky's pocket). Pretend to place the gaff in your right pants pocket, actually finger palming it, and remove your hand. Ask Rocky which coin he thinks you have. Turn to your right and ask him to remove the coin from your pocket. To facilitate this, lift your right arm, holding it across your chest (photo 102). As Rocky removes the coin from your pocket, drop the gaff in your breast pocket (photo 103). There is more than enough misdirection to cover this. Rocky will be surprised to find the coin in your pocket is the one he thought he had. Tell him to remove the coin from his pocket—it's the coin you had just a moment ago! He's left holding two regular coins, both his and your pockets are empty, and so are both of your hands! This is a great moment!

Photo 102
Photo 104
Photo 107

Finale: Scott F. Guinn's "Copper Showerhead" - You take the copper coin in your left fist and Rocky holds the silver in his fist. You snap your fingers, telling him the coins have changed places, but upon inspection, the have not. Confused, you try again, snapping three more times, again to no avail. You try one last time, snapping five times, but the coins still haven't transposed. However, when you open your hand, you find ten more copper coins, one for each snap! Everything may be examined.

At the end of the last phase, after you've shown your hands empty and all eyes are on Rocky and the two coins, steal the ten copper coins from the dropper with your left hand (photo 104) and hold them in curl palm with the left middle and ring fingers (photo 105).

Form this hand into a loose, knuckle up fist as you take the copper coin from Rocky. Insert the coin into the fist at the thumb hole, secretly thumb palming it (photo 106).

Ask Rocky to close his hand into a tight fist around the silver coin. Explain that you will try to make the coins change places. Snap twice and have him open his hand. No luck. Try again, snapping three times. Again have him open his hand. It still didn't work. Say you'll try it one more time. Snap five times, saying that you have now snapped ten times altogether, and if it hasn't worked by now, it never will. Rocky opens his hand to reveal the silver coin—you seem to have failed. You remove the thumb-palmed coin as you turn your fist toward yourself (photo 107), and then you look shocked. Pause and then count out the ten copper coins onto the table, one coin for each snap (photo 108)!

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