A piece of some moment by Arthur Writis

When Mr. Peter Warlock said : " What about giving me something for the Pentagram ? " I little thought that he meant money. But as I hurriedly returned the slim volume to his bookshelf I did ponder upon the possibilities of an article in his august publication. Or if not the august one, the

My theme would be, I think, Mirth in Men-talism. There is a place for Mental Magic and it is a place not far from here. To the average layman (no reference intended to Mr. A1 Koran—I wouldn't want to cross His Nibs) to the lay adult, I repeat, the only true and worthwhile magic of 1957 is going to be the Magic of the Mind.

I have made this prediction before, and for all I know it stands still sealed in a jam-jar below the Wombwell Penny Bank.

Now as I see it—through two layers of cottonwool and one of dough—the strength of Mentalism lies in the plain fact that the best mysteries are those simplest in effect. Those that seem natural, " everydayish," a continuation of Life. And if in real life there is a place for Laughter and for Tears, why therefore should Mentalism be the grim and almost unrelievedly sober thing that so many gentlemen have made it ? I say almost. True, I've seen some Book Tests (for instance) which really were quite laughable.

Those of you seeing Lucille and Eddie Roberts will know immediately that those unwritten traditions of profound seriousness are not essential; that brilliant Act is a fine example of Humour overlaying Solid Mystery, of Magical Principle allied to Variety Technique. It left me, if not starry eyed, at least dough-eyed. And owners of the " X-Ray Eyes " will know exactly how I felt.

(N.B. Don't think, will you, that the application of a little Comedy is going to make your work automatically easier? This is muddled thinking unequalled even by the young Smithfield butcher who thought he saw a great future for himself just by gazing at his Gristle Ball.

You can of course eschew pardon me ! That's the last time I type on tissue paper . . . you can ignore the humorous approach and instead play maurice fogels.

Mr. Fogel on-stage sweats and staggers prodigiously and is completely satisfying, perhaps the greatest thing of his kind in this country, but if you have not the Grand Manner you'd be well-advised to enliven your few items with grating of gags and a leavening of laughs.)

Let us look at an illustration, deftly produced with a few quick strokes of my typewriter.

Let us look, moreover, at the sweet uses of the Swami feke. For more years than I care to remember (To Clear : Giant Memory Test, 10/- as new) this little aid was used simply to predict a single number and sometimes a single alphabetical letter. Some adventurous magician, thinking to alter or, at anyrate, improve upon this, took to predicting three figures and, sometimes, three letters. And this comprised its dreary history, with not a laugh in a cartload. (It takes a lot of Swamis to make a cartload). (It takes a lot of anything to make a cartload—P.W.) (Thank you —A.W.)

There enters now a certain Mr. George Braund upon the scene. Uniformed for War and based in the Middle East, he gave to this brief effect both sense and humour.

"What's the girl's phone number?" he asks a fellow officer.

" Er . . . . Cairo 2234 " is maybe the other's reply.

" Funny," says George, " I've got that one too." And dropping his cigarette packet onto the table he shews them the number pencilled in one corner!

Now there's an effect. There's an effect, I say.

The strong comic angle—man finds to his dismay that his secret is shared by others—ensures an entertained, an interested, an amused and bemused audience who would otherwise perhaps have paid scant attention to a simple, meaningless prediction.

All this, and more, was to be the subject of my Article on the place of Mirth in Mentalism. If you would read me further on this topic I am easily persuaded, but it must be done quickly.

I am an old man now and I don't see too clearly (it's that damned dough !) but into my twenty-four years I have tightly packed thrills, experience, laughs and a clean shirt for Weekends and assuredly some of the things that I have learned must be of use to some of you. All replies in a plain envelope sealed with diachylon.

THREE BOOKS IN ONE

ANNEMANN'S ONE MAN MENTAL & PSYCHIC ROUTINE

TOGETHER WITH

ANNEMANN'S O. ANNEMANN'S

"MASTER MIND" CARD ACT ** MENTAL MISCELLANY

ANNEMANN'S ONE MAN MENTAL AND PSYCHIC ROUTINE is a professionally routined mental act that runs according to speed of presentation and the effects included, from ten minutes to half an hour. The six effects described make one of the finest mental routines ever conceited, and can be cut down to three really sensational items for the shorter show. It is a strictly 'One Man' act, there is no cumbersome apparatus, no assistants, no confederates. A brief case will carry all that is required, but j ou could travel with the necessary items all ready in your pockets if preferred. The mental and psychic tests are presented in a routined order, and include some of Anne-mann's choicest billet methods and effects. Ideally suited as a club, private party, television or night club act.

ANNEMANN'S "MASTER MIND" CARD ROUTINE was theoriginator's favourite card routine for newspaper offices and intimate gatherings. With just a pack of cards the performer presents a series of five stunning prediction effects that leaves the audiences gasping as each one in turn eclipses the previous one. No skill is required, and the act can be learned and thoroughly practiced in an evening.

ANNEMANN'S MENTAL MISCELLANY is a collection of six off-beat ideas in mentalism that are typical of the author. The treatise on the Mirror Reflector and the one on Pencil Reading—to the man who uses them—can be worth many times the price of the book.

AS USUAL—A FINELY PRINTED AND ILLUSTRATED BOOK Price 12/6 Postage 4d.

ANNEMANN'S INCORPORATED STRANGE SECRETS

CONTAINING

TWELVE ANNEMANN MIRACLES—AND A MASTER " GIMMICK"

THIS COLLECTION comprises some of the choicest Annemann Secrets, now collected together and printed in one volume.

INSTO-TRANSPO—Without sleights two initialled cards change places between the performer's and spectator's pockets. STOP—A freely selected card, lost in the pack, is found at a number thought of. THE POUND NOTE AND THE CIGARETTE CHALLENGE—Marked cigarettee in performer's mouth, number of a note written down by spectator—note openly burned—and then found in the cigarette—the best ever routine for this effect. IMPROVED REMOTE CONTROL—With red and blue packs the performer proves he can control another person by making them pick any card he chooses, while at a distance. MENTAL MONEY—Three pound notes borrowed and folded tight, one is chosen, the performer reveals its number. NUMBER PLEASE—A Telephone Book Test in which the performer reveals both name and number. SENSITIVE THOUGHTS—A sensational card trick, with two packs and two spectators. THE CARD DOCTOR—Spectator selects card which is initialled, corner torn from card, then initialled card torn into pieces, pieces vanish and card is found back in the pack, minus its corner. SLATES AND ACES—Performer and spectator write names of the aces on two slates, spectator rubs out three on his, the spirits' rul? out the same three aces from the performer's late. POKER PLUS—Performer deals three face down hands of Poker. Second hand shown to beat performer's. Then performer's hand shown again, and it beats the second. Third hand shown to beat performer's. Then performer's shown again, and it beats the third. Terrific effect! THOUGHT IN PERSON—A most unusual card routine. A MENTAL HEADACHE—Another typical Annemann card routine with a mental twist. And, of course, a full description of a most useful GIMMICK.

AS USUAL—A FINELY PRINTED BOOK

Price 7/6 Postage 4d.

THE MAGIC WAND PUBLISHING COMPANY

62 WELLINGTON ROAD, ENFIELD, MIDDLESEX

The Magic Circle

President: Herbert J. Collings, Esq. Vice-President: Francis White, Esq.

Clubroom and Library and Museum : Hearts of Oak Buildings, Euston Road, London, N.W.I. Magical Theatre -

King George's Hall, W.C.

Feb. 5—John Salisse's Choice

Particulars from Hon. Secretary : Peter Newcombe 38 Overdale Avenue New Maiden, Surrey

PETER WARLOCK'S

PENTAGRAM

is published on the 24th of each month and can be obtained direct from the publishers for 1'7 per single copy. Annual Subscription 18/-post free.

PUBLISHED BY: The Magic Wand Publishing Co. 62 Wellington Road, Enfield Middlesex

Manuscripts for publication and books for review should be sent to the:

EDITORIAL ADDRESS:

Peter Warlock, 24, Wordsworth Rd., Wallington, Surrey.

J ACK HUGHES

will be pleased to send you full details of

THE DE LUXE "SU-TABLE"

together with all his other effects in return for a stamp.

Write now to

Jack Hughes, 2, Evelyn Ave., Colindale, London, N.W.9.

•K Every Advertiser's goods are fully endorsed by this Bulletin *

CASE FOR CARDS

A SERIES BY STEWART JAMES 1 EIGHT DICE AND A CARD

A SPECTATOR is handed a dice cup containing four green dice and four red dice. The magician turns his back while the volunteer shakes and throws the dice on the table. He groups four dice of one colour, adds the numbers uppermost and covers these four with the cup. After shuffling a pack of cards, he notes the card at this number from the top of the pack.

Being informed that these preliminaries are accomplished, the magician turns round and picks up the pack. He holds it behind his back for a moment and then returns it to the spectator.

The cup is lifted and the magician places the four dice of one colour, one at each corner of an imaginary square. The remaining dice are distributed so that one occupies each side of this square. The cup is placed at the centre.

Care is taken in moving the dice that the original numbers rolled remain on top.

According to the number uppermost, that many cards are dealt from the top of the pack beside each die and the die is placed on top of its pile each time. When the eight piles have been completed, the pack is placed face down on the dice cup.

2 THOUGHTS

BLACK is given a written prediction to keep in his pocket until later. Gray writes a number between 1 and 10, on a slip of paper. He secretly counts off that number of cards, reversing them as he does so, from the top of the pack, notes the next card and replaces the counted cards on top of the noted card.

White writes a number on a second slip, between 10 and 20, counts off that many cards in the same manner, notes the next and replaces the counted cards on top of the noted card.

Gray and White give their slips to Black who subtracts the one number from the other and an-ounces the difference aloud.

The magician asserts that if the spectator will turn the top card of the pack face-up it will be the one he noted—and it is so.

THE METHOD

The method can be best explained by giving an example.

The spectator rolls out the dice and groups the green ones. Numbers uppermost on these four dice may total fourteen. He covers them with the cup, shuffles the pack and notes the fourteenth card from the top. We will say that it is the jack of diamonds.

When the magician turns around to take the pack, he quickly notes and totals the numbers uppermost on the four red dice. Perhaps it is ten.

With the pack concealed from view behind his back, he shifts eleven cards—one more than the total of the numbers uppermost on the red dice—from face to top of pack.

Follow through as explained in the effect and the card noted by the spectator will be the top card of the pack.

This sounds ridiculously simple but I can assure you that it has puzzled some keen minds.

IN MOTION

You impress the spectators with the fact that this gives no clue as to the actual numbers selected and that it would be impossible to know in advance what this number would be.

Count off this number of cards, reversing them as you do so, and give Black the next one to place in his pocket. (2)

Gray thrusts a knife in the pack which is cut at that point. The top card of the lower half is his card. (3)

White deals the cards one at a time face down on your extended hand. At your command, he

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