EFFECT.—The left hand is held in a loose fist with the index finger pointing straight up A thimble is placed on the index finger and the hand is covered with a silk. The right hand strokes the silk a few times and all the while it is shown unmistakably empty Suddenly the thimble is seen to have penetrated the silk.
METHOD.—As the silk is placed over the left hand the left index finger bends slightly and the thumb pushes the thimble under the 2nd and 3rd fingers where it remains in a finger palm position, with the opening of the thimble towards the thumb. The index finger immediately resumes its erect position, as though it still contained the thimble. (This entire operation is done in one continuous movement as the silk is covering the hand).
The right hand strokes the silk a few times and under cover of this movement the left thumb enters the thimble and bends backwards as far as it will go. (Stretching the portion of silk between the thumb and the index finger). As the right hand makes the next stroking motion the right thumb pushes down on this stretched portion of silk forcing the silk away from the left thumb and bringing it out from beneath the silk. It immediately raises to take its position behind the covered index finger. (This move is covered from the front by the silk and the right hand as it strokes the silk). On the next stroking movement the index finger bends downward and the thumb raises well above the index finger (covered by right hand). The right hand picks up the thimble in the thumb palm position and the index finger is forced into it as the right hand continues its downward stroke. The illusion of the penetration is perfect.
The beauty of this effect is the fact that the right hand can be shown empty at all times and that you are working facing the audience not sideways. All of the moves are well covered by the silk and by the right hand in the stroking movement. It must be remembered, however, that the right hand immediately transfers the thimble to the index finger on the last move and since the thumb is raised above the index finger all that is necessary to effect the penetration is to raise ¡'he index finger into the thimble and to continue the downward movement of stroking the silk.
THE ANNUAL BANQUET, CABARET and DANCE of
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