Many performers first became aware of Ted Lesley some years ago, when his Working Performer's Marked Deck was marketed by Martin Breese. Mentalists and magicians who had avoided using marked decks, because of the difficulty in interpreting the marks under the pressure of performance, found that many effects using this principle could now be performed with relative ease. The deck was well-named; for the working performer it is an eminently practical device.
In the pages that follow, you will find the same sort of practicality In my own researches, and in my tenure as a book reviewer, I've had to read through a good deal of what is loosely called magical literature. Time and again I've had the experience of reading an effect and realizing that the creator had never tried it out in front of an audience—because either it was technically unfeasible or impossible, or it simply would not deceive anyone.
You won't find such pipe dreams here. As you read through this book you will find not only a wealth of practical material, but also those invaluable little touches and angles, refinements that only come from repeated testing in the crucible of live performance. What follows is material taken from his own professional repertoire; these are effects and routines that have proven successful for Ted—both artistically and financially.
Will using this material give you the same kind of commercial and artistic success enjoyed by Ted Lesley? That's something no mentalist can predict—but Ted has done his part in providing you with tested professional effects.
The rest is up to you.
T.A. Waters September 1994
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Today I'm going to teach you a fundamental Mentalism technique known as 'cold reading'. Cold reading is a technique employed by mentalists and charlatans and by charlatan I refer to psychics, mediums, fortune tellers or anyone that claims false abilities that is used to give the illusion that the person has some form of super natural power.