Audience

and therefore removed, before presenting "The Spider").

The performer stands wi,th the table on his left as he faces the audience. The table is set up as figure 1. PRESENTATION :

"Do you keep pets, boys and girls?" (play this up).

"Well, I have a most unusual pet. I call him Gordon — Gordon the Golden Spider. Would you like to see him?"

(Remove screen—clearly, bu,t not pointedly showing reverse side—and replace behind frame, as position 'B' figure 1. In this position the reverse side of screen will face front. If lined with dark paper, ¡the thread across the frame will be invisible).

"Gordon lives in this house which I built specially for h im. At the moment, he's in an invisible web. And even if I remove him," (Do so) "he won't move, because he doesn't like the light".

(NOTE : Do not, inartistically remove him purely by unhooking from thread, but—

(Position

Screen (Position b)

Screen (Position b)

after unhooking him—trace an imaginary patrern as if taking him from an invisible web. At this point, if deemed necessary, ^the frame can be shown back and front).

"When Cordon is happy, he likes to spin a web in bright colours. Shall we see if he'll spin one for us now?"

(Replace spider in frame)

"I shall have to put this screen before him, because he won't move in the light".

(Replace screen in original position).

"Now, besjt of all, he likes spinning in wool".

(Remove lid from woof box and display wool).

". . . and as you see, he has a lot of different colours"

(Replace box on table. IMPORTANT : It should be with its length going from left to right—parallel to the footlighjts. See figure 1).

(Pick up, with RIGHT HAND, bottomless tumbler).

"We'll put the wool in Cordon's Crystal Casket so ¿that he can see which one to choose. Firstly, since he's a very patriotic spider he has RED (pause) White (pause) and BLUE (pause) followed by GREEN and YELLOW. Right, now we'll put this behind the screen".

(Throughout this dialogue, the LEFT HAND removes the named balls of wool from ,>the box, and transfers them to the tumbler which is held aloft by the right hand. It is important that the FORCE colour (RED) is the first to drop in the /tumbler. Though bottomless, the tumbler being perspex has a ridge round the bottom which normally prevents the red ball from falling through; none the less, it is a wise precaution to curl a finger of the right hand underneath the tumbler as a further obstruction.

Don't hurry this part. Let the audience see that all the wool particularly the red—is indeed in the tumbler. Then, with the back of the RIGHT hand to the audience, the LEFT hand presses down the wool into the glass. This inevitably forces the red ball of wool down into the RIGHT hand which is waiting to receive it. Don't be self-conscious about this move—it's perfectly natural, and merely looks as though you want to make sure the wool can't come out.

The ridge of the tumbler holds the remaining wool in place. With the back of the RIGHT hand still to the audience,, the red bail still palmed, place the glass in front of the frame but behind the screen. Withdraw the RIGHT hand.

Here follows a beautifully natural move for the disposal of the ball. Casually remarking "We shan't need that any longer" the Magus extends RIGHT hand to the now empty Wool Box. The fingers automatically go in front, giving 100 per cent, cover for dropping the ball of wool into the box as the thumb goes to the rear: simultaneously the box is picked up, the lid replaced and the box put aside. Of course, keep the mouth of the box away from the audience. (See figure 2).

"Now what colour shall we ask Gordon to use tonight?"

(If 75 per cent, of the kids in your district—particularly boys—don't shout 'RED', get 'em psychoanalysed. But the plain business-sized cards are your second line of defence—the old dodge of writing the force colour on each card whilst the audience think you are writing each different colour. Having obtained the colour RED by fair means or foul, continue).

"Red? Oh, all right. Let's see, there's a special Magic Spell for RED . . ."

(Consult notebook referred to in "Requirements". Turn over pages and pretend to read aloud):

(This creates the impression that since you have the other spells written out for other colours, there is no special significance in RED being chosen this time).

. . here we are: 'Spider, spider, do not snooze. Red's the colour you must choose' ".

(Children repeat spell)

"Well, fet's see if he's at least chosen the correct colour".

(Remove tumbler from behind the screen. Adjust screen to fully mask frame, being careful of the extreme edges, and release feke to produce WEB. Tip out contents of tumbler, showing chosen colour to have vanished).

"Now, we come to the difficult part" (Consult notebook).

". . . the actual spinning of the web. Now what does it say for red? Ah, yes. 'Spider, spider, use your head. Spin a web of brightest red' ".

(Children repeat spell).

(A bit more blah, then whip off screen to reveal the Web).

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