1. The actual switch is similar to the one employed in the regular top change.
2. The right hand should be held out in front of the left hand to show each card before it is removed. This tends to keep the spectator's gaze away from the left hand which appears to be carrying out a subservient role, i.e. that of holding the cards which have already been displayed.
3. At the point when the switch is made the position of the left forefinger in pushing back its cards covers the ends of these cards, so hiding the exchange. In the original version of the Hammen Count the ends are exposed during the actual switch and an observant spectator may see the move.
4. The count does not have to be done quickly, and is, in fact, most deceptive when done very slowly. It is keeping an even rhythm with no perceptive difference between the count and the switch which is most important.
5. The right hand grip on the cards should not be too firm, but just sufficient to hold the cards aligned. A certain 'touch' needs to be acquired.
6. As the left thumb pushes off a card from the right hand packet the cards below it are held aligned by gripping them between the first two fingers and the palm of the left hand.
(to be continued)
THAT CERTAIN SOMETHING a collection of card tricks by Roy Walton. Available from L. Davenport & Co, £2.00 U.S.A. 4 dollars.
Containing fourteen effects from one of Britain's leading cardmen the first described is loosely based on a Hofzinser concept and entitled Grown up Hofzinser. The performance apparently divines which of the four jumbo aces laid face downwards on the table matches in suit a chosen card. The climax comes whenihe chosen card changes into the ace of the same suit and the jumbo card is seen to be of the same suit and value of the selected card, a startling finish. This trick alone is well worth the asking price, and for those readers not having gained the necessary confidence to perform the top change, need not delay any longer. The actions leading up to the moment it is required to make the change provide such powerful misdirection that the sleight can be without fear of being caught. The top change is not a matter of technique alone, but largely depends on its successful performance in channelling the attention of the audience away from the hands which never seem to come together. The routine ensures that this condition is fulfilled plus one other. It is important that the card to be changed is impressed on the minds of the spectators —• in this effect its face is displayed on three separate occasions before the sleight is made.
The rest of the effects described may be considered as a bonus. They include a small packet effect using blue backed cards which are alternated, face up, face down. When spread out onto the table the face uppers have congregated in the centre and the backs then shown to have changed to red. The remaining blue-backers are shown to have blank faces. There is a patter theme which provides a reasonable excuse for these shinanigans.
Then follows effects using the Galbraith principle, a faro shuffle, turnover pass, monte throw and similar common sleights. Verdict — something for everyone and value for money.
BODY MAGIC by John Fisher. Published by Hodder and Stoughton £5.95.
This is a hardbound book for sale to the general public and contains no new effects, though even the most diligent magical bookworm will most certainly find the odd effect new to him.
The title embodies a comprehensive collection of,over 100 effects in which one's own body, or other persons, is responsible for the effects, or phenomena — call it what you will.
Starting with the eye, there are optical illusions, retinal impressions which are retained and some odd effects possible with these afterimages etc. It continues with explanations of odd effects relating to hearing, taste, smell and touch.
The ground covered makes it impossible to even mention the numerous items in detail. They include, pulse stopping, button on thread sex detector, ouija board, hypnotism, contact mind-reading mnemonics, feats of strength etc.
The close-up performer and mentalist alike will find not only 'icebreakers', but sufficient information to provide an icebreaking conversation as a lead in to his icebreaker. He will also find innumerable party stunts, and need never be at a loss, whatever the situation, to provide entertainment.
The book is much more than a mere compilation of previously published material. That it is the result of meticulous and thorough research into the subject is evident from the bibliography which lists well over 100 titles of which about a third are non-magical publications.
From these sources the author has produced, not only an informative book, but one which I found immensely interesting and entertaining just to read.
Get yourself a watch of the pocket variety. I found one about the size of a dollar or a crown piece. Have this in your right pocket with a coin, half dollar or ten pence. Oh, by the way, any old broken, I daren't say 'second hand', thing will do. Remove the coin from the pocket and conceal the watch in the palm. Don't try palming the thing, just hold it there. Throw the coin from the right hand into the left hand saying "Watch." (don't get ahead of me). Repeat the above a couple of times till you have the spectators undivided attention. Assuming that you now have his beady eyes on you, perform the throw change. (For easy reference, see Bobo's Coin Magic, chapter two, The Bobo's Switch). Let the left hand close on the timepiece as you repeat the word "watch". Open the left hand and let the spectator see guess. Somewhere someone is going to turn a groove in the back of a watch to take a coin. This way he can push the coin into the back of the timepiece before the final throw. He can now show his right hand empty, or rather gesture with it, before the world shattering climax. So it's not much of a trick, try it with lay people and pardon me, 'watch' the reaction. It's quick, visual and 'punny'.
SYNCH-CERELY Phil Goldstein
The following was developed as a solution to a self-posed problem. The performer and spectator each take halves of a shuffled pack of ESP symbol cards. Simultaneously, each removes cards from the top of his group, continuing to deal slowly until the spectator decides to stop. The two cards thus arrived at are compared, and are found to match.
An ordinary 25-card symbol pack is used, with some small amount of set-up. Six cards are removed. These may consist of any symbols, in any order, as long as there are no two identical symbols next to each other. For example, the order of this six-card packet might be, from the top: circle, square, cross, circle, star, waves. Arrange the remaining stock of nineteen cards so that an identical stack of six symbols is at the face, in reverse order to the separated packet. (In our example, then, the face card of the pack would be a circle, then square, cross, circle, star and waves). The six-card packet is in your pocket or in your lap, depending on performing conditions. The pack is in its case.
Introduce the pack, describing its history and use. You can safely state that the pack consists of twenty-five cards, as the spectators will not be able to ascertain that the nineteen card pack you display is short. Hold the pack on your outstretched palm, and ask the spectator to cut off "about half". Ask the spectator to shuffle the cut-off stock, while you shuffle the remaining stock. It matters not what kind of shuffle the spectator uses. When you mix your group, use an Overhand Shuffle, running the last half-dozen cards singly — thus bringing the six-card stack to the top of the half-deck. This stack is now reversed, therefore it is in the exact Fame order as the packet in your pocket or lap.
Exchange packets with the spectator. Explain that, as each of you has shuffled the other's cards, everything is fair and beyond anyone's control. .. As you explain this, the six-card packet is palmed, and secretly loaded onto the stock you now hold. The situation is now that the top six cards of both stocks are the same.
Explain that you and the spectator will slowly deal in unison, and that the spectator will call "stop" whenever the urge strikes. Proceed to do this. The spectator can, of course, call "stop" at any point, provided this occurs within the first six cards dealt. You can insure that this will happen by making the dealing procedure extremely slow — seemingly for the sake of fairness.
When the spectator calls "stop", both you and he deal the stopped-at cards off to one side. Say, "Just out of curiosity, what is your next card?" The spectator will turn up his next, showing that symbol. You apparently show your next symbol, but in fact use a Double Lift — thus, the two will not match. Gather up the cards from the spectator, placing everything away, so that attention is focussed only on the two chosen cards. Turn them over, revealing the match.
The only preparation required for this effect is to fold a £5 note into a size sufficiently small for it to be concealed in the fingers and place it in either the right coat or trouser pocket. With a lOp concealed in the right hand in the finger palm position you are ready to perform.
Borrow a wallet from any obliging spectator and place it onto the table loading the fingerpalmed coin beneath it. From another spectator borrow a lOp piece and cause it to disappear using any method which finally leaves it finger palmed in the right hand. With the left hand pick up the wallet to reveal the coin beneath it. Pass the wallet into the right hand and place it back onto the table loading the fingerpalmed coin beneath it.
Pick up the second coin and proffer to show how it was done. Explain that you only pretend to put the coin into the left hand but actually retain it in the right hand. Demonstrate this by performing the 'French Drop' in an exaggerated manner making it obvious how the coin is kept back in the right hand. Continue the explanation by saying that you leave the coin beneath the wallet as you pick it up, and in showing 'how it is done' you pick up the wallet with the right hand, retaining the coin it holds, revealing the one previously loaded. Replace the wallet on the table loading the finger palmed coin beneath it. ^21
Continue by telling the audience that a real magician would simply put the coin in his pocket and it would reappear under the wallet. Suiting the action to the words the right hand picks up the coin and goes into the pocket containing the note, finger palms it, leaving the coin behind, as the left hand picks up the wallet once again revealing the coin. The wallet is then taken with the right hand which loads the note beneath when putting it on the table, as the left hand picks up the coin.
At this point appear to be in doubt who loaned the coin. Hand it back to the claimant and pick up the wallet with the left hand revealing the note. Pick it up with the right hand, and using that hand only unfold it. As all eyes are on the fiver casually put the wallet in the inside coat pocket, and the now free left hand assists in smoothing out the note, which you examine with an air of curiousity and disbelief. Remarking "This must be mine," refold it and hold in the right hand as the left removes the wallet and flips it open. Apparently place the note inside but actually retain it in the right hand. Close the wallet and act as though you suddenly realise that it belongs to the spectator and say, "Oh — this is yours." As he opens the wallet — as he surely will — casually drop the note in your pocket.
If no-one will lend you their wallet it is of course possible to use other articles such as a cigarette packet, ashtray etc but there would be a loss of spectator involvement and the scope for making the effect more entertaining would be considerably diminished. Using a borrowed wallet one can beg the lender not to go away when he hands it to you — when returning it give it to the wrong person. The business of pretending to put the note in the wallet would also be lost. It is the introduction of these mildly humourous 'bits of business' which makes the trick more entertaining without reducing its effectiveness.
Good news? I have just been reinstated as a member of the illustrious I.B.M. Is that good news? I don't know either. I suppose to be reinstated as a member of something is better than being thrown out of something else. As in the days of King Arthur and his round table, I didn't bother to fight my own battles. . .1 had a 'Champion'. In this instance it was Mr Edward G. Love, known to friends and enemies alike as Teddy The Terrible. As far as I can gather, and remember I wasn't there, only one person spoke out against my reinstatement and that was Bayard Grimshaw, former editor of the I.B.M. Budget magazine, former editor of the World's Fair Magicians Only page. I respect his views but
I still think he was wrong He must have been he lost his case That's democracy. All I can say is that the next time he gets involved in a discussion of this sort he should get himself a 'Champion'. I know one I can recommend.
Albert Goshman was back in town for a few days en route to and from the Irish Convention. No doubt he sold everything as he usually does, including his suitcase, his balls etc. Albert really is a modern version of the old fashioned mountebank. He packs his bags, hits the road, pitches his wares, and returns home with the loot. The only difference between Albert and the oldtimers is that he does it in style.
Rip offs I am not talking about strippers. The other week I saw a magician on TV doing a routine which was lifted straight out of Maurice Foget's act. The most blatant steal imaginable. I know it was a straight steal because I was involved in its creation and I know that Maurice has never published it
Colin Rose also back in town after visiting most of the European capitals. He tells me he could have stayed forever and has a standing offer to return anytime he likes, but he came home. And do you know why? No, of course you don't, so I'll tell you. He has come home to rearrange his act. . .yes. . .he is going to change the act a little and decided he could do it better while he was at home rather than in hotel rooms etc. Why should he want to rearrange his act? It seems odd that someone who has a I
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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.