Final Note

up, and then perform the flip-flop cliange (Volume 3, page 747; or, in tliis volume, see page 1164). To do this, simply slide the fiv&card block to the right and flip it over as the left hand turns palm down with the deck and practically catches the moving block Immediately turn your left hand palm up again, revealing a star-tling transformation of four Aces to the selected card.

Ace Overtures

Don V be someone dset if you can be yourself.


Thompson's Aces

'ilus Sem ofan effect is hidden ass ay in a little-known lxx>klet, written about someone even less known to todays generation of card wizards.* Originally Itaptoed "Flash Opener", I have renamed it in honor of its originator, Frank Thompson It is described here- widi details Tve come up with during die many years diis lias been in my working repertoire.


The performer shuffles and then cuts the deck, thereby producing the four Aces in an effortless, elegant and magical way.

Constniction, Management and Sciipt

The four Aces, unbeknownst to your audience, are on top of the deck in any order. If you agree dial it is a good idea to have the Ace of Spades show up as the first Ace in the production sequence, place it thinl from the top. This arrangement can be obtained before starting the performance, if this is to be used as an owning piece. Otherwise, its an easy matter to bring the Aces to the required position by means of die spread cull (Volume 1, page 187) or a similar technique.

Give tl le deck aii < jveihand shuffle, keeping die top stock intact You can use:u\ iryog shuffle here (Volume 7, |>age 44), or a lift shuffle (Volume 2, page 287). Immediately follow up by running the top two cards into the left hand and throwing the balance on top. You liave thus imperceptibly transferred two Aces from the top to the bottom You might also use adouble cut (Volu me J, page 96) or a bluff cut (Volume page 514) after the shuffle to bring about die same result In diis case I think it better to transfer the Aces by means of the shuffle, since die deck is going to be cut in just an instant, as part of die production.

Now, with your left index finger, buckle the bottom card, allowing the left little finger to obtain a break above it. Immediately grasp die deck in right-hand end grip...

ace Overtures

. . and make a swing ait (Volu me 1, page 27). As you do so, carry along the separated bottom card, executing a type of bottom slip cut Tb provide tetter cover at the outer end for the stolen card, an instant before starting the swing cut, shift the deck, minus the bottom card, half an inch forward and then immediately execute the cut.

Using the right hand's packet, tap the top card of the left hands packet This is done as a magical gesture, which you may accompany with any sound or word you like, as long as it is tasteful and doesn't interrupt the rhythm of the production. Your left hand pushes the top card of its packet to the right, and the right I land's packet is used to flip the card sidewise and face up. The first Ace makes its appearance. Hold this image for two seconds, keeping both liands immobile. The Ace is then pushed off the packet, trapped lx?tween your right index finger and its packet, and is laid on the table. (This grip can be seen in the next illustration.)

Tap the bottom of the left liand's ¡jacket with the right liand's portion, repeating the magical gesture. Using the left side of the right liand's packet, flip the entire left-hand packet over, so tluil it lands face up in left-hand dealing position—and the second Ace comes into view. Use the same handling as before to place this Ace face up onto the tabled Ace, letting them overlap diagonally inward, with their indices visible.

1101(11,18 ilS *****111 ejld ^ te bottom card with vour left middle IhS^ ^ P^ y™r right ring finger on the face of


If you lilt the hand and move it to the left, the packet will flip over sidewise and land face up in leffchand dealing position, on top of the packet already then*—revealing die diinl Ace. Willi your right hand, take tliis Ace, snapping it audibly off your left thumb for effect, and place it diagonally offset on the two tabled Aces.

You may now do either of two diings:

Tb produce die fourth Ace widiout interrupting die rhythm, die right hand grasps the deck at its right side, thumb on the face and fingers touching die back.

Flip the deck face down into die left hand while retaining die fourth Ace, by friction, on die pads in die right fingers.

The fourth Ace materializes at your right fingertips, Is snapped off die left diumb and placed onto die table to complete the display of Aces.

The Aces, arranged in a diagonally overlapping configuration, form a nice pointer, which makes it easy for the audience to identify their hero and bathe him in applause.

We «ill now discuss an alternative ending based on the idea that, dramatically speaking it nukes sense to a flowing ihythm of repetitive actions, insert conflict, dien resolve it magically.

lb do Uiis, return to the moment in wlvicf i you produce the third Ace and place it face up on the table. The balance of the deck at this moment rests in left-hand dealing position. As die right hand claims the audience's attention, for die simple reason dial the eye lias a strong tendency to follow diat which moves rather than to focus 011 tfiat which is still, die left index finger buckles the two bottom cards, so dial the little finger may catch a break between diem and lite rest of the deck

Bring your right hand back to the deck and take it into end grip, diereby shifting control of the break to your right thumb.

Revolve die deck fact1 down while maintaining the right tiiumb's break Then transfer the break liack to die left little finger as the deck is again taken into dealing position.

Continuing the flow of movements, execute a double lift, made easy by the break, exposing an indifferent card You liave apparendy failed to find die last Ace. If you have mastered it, you can use the puslvover double (Volume 3, page 573) rather dian die method suggested here, which eliminates die need for a break For any otiier technique using a break, 1 strongly advise you to use the described handling ratiier than dying to obtain die break after die deck liiis been turned face down, because this would entail an interruption of the rbvtiim, which is undesirable here.

Thm die double again race down, take the top canl and iasert it hallway int o die outer end 01 uie deck. Now use Jeny Andres's twirl flourish ( Volume 4, ,>age 1022) to create a brief into diot'^lw n3git:' ^ Sh°W ,hat 'he P^0^ flayed indifferent card lias

KSH8 22 Wi'h r Can' fn,ni Ule deck, as Andnis originally conceived f^.^in thp ,fflnds-described in Volume 4-uses the same • *au u .e description and simply imagine that you are holding the deck in your


Final Notes

Act* Overtures

Final Notes

1. For various reasons tl\is short effect is an ideal opener to a murine using the Aces. Not only is it quick, visual and easy to follow—all criteria dial constitute a g<xxi opening—it also keeps the order of the remaining cards intact Normally you won't \re using "Iliomijsons Aces" in connection with a full-deck stack, although it would ceitainly be devious to use a memorized deck, produce the Acres, do a short routine with just the Aces, then fan the deck face up and casually reinsert die Aces at the <q )pn> priale spots to complete the working order of die stack. Outwardly, it looks as if you are Hying to lose the Ares diroughout the deck

Its utility, however, seems far greater with a partial setup. If you place this arrangement below die Aces, at die end of the Act? production dlis stock will be back on top, ready to be used anytime. For instance, if you want to use this as an opener to 'The Joker is a Diakka" (page 1220), you could have the fmir Aces on top of die deck fallowed by two indifferent can Is, a Joker and die remainder of the deck, with a second Joker somewhere near die center. Or, if you want to perform "Countdown Stop" (page 1170) afterward, have the four relevant cards (Nine, Sewn, Five and T1 iree) below die Acts, do any good Ac i .» effect dial leaves the coder of the top four cards intact (for example, "Study for Four Aces", page 1207) and then lead into die piece using tin» setup. These arc» just random ideas thai will make you think about the use of delayed setups, a subject thatjustifies another book2'

2. For me, the lx?auty of this |>iece resides in its lack of an exaggerated display of skill (a style experiencing a revival at die time 1 write), but uses elegant card handling, just abit above that ofthe professional ami player, without drowning the magical effect in excessive form.

3. You can replace the Aces with any four* of-a-kind or four rants that make up a meaningful number (today's date, a PIN code, a lock combination, etc.).

Act* Overtures

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