Playing With Magic Tyler

" PLAYING WITH MAGIC " by Wilfred Tyler

(Published by George Armstrong, price 30/-).

The writer of this book in his introduction writes:—

" Following the large success that O fen Sesame enjoyed I have been approached many titties to write a book entirely on my own on the same subject. Whilst lecturing up and down the country on ' Entertaining Children,' the demand has increased with requests that some of the popular features of those lectures should be incorporated as a permanent record of useful information. Thus with chosen features from those lectures as a nucleus I commenced to frame the contents of this book."

There, therefore, the reader has the basic theme, and whilst a number of effects are described, the main task of the writer is to deal with certain angles that are important to a children's act as a whole. In particular he deals with the important task of opening and closing a typical children's show. In the latter, he assumes that a production should finish the show and we think all other things being equal that this is as it should be. One chapter deals particularly with the presentation of standard effects and we particularly liked his version of the rainbow plumes which he entitled " Hussar." Other chapters cover comedy plots and a by-play.

The book covers some hundred and seven pages, has nearly ninety illustrations many of them photographic. It is well bound and printed on art paper. There is a foreword by Bill Stickland the popular secretary of the British Ring.

For those who perforce have to present for children this book is a " must" and at the price is very good value.

PAWRUS COIN—continued from page 73

the ledge made by the curled 2nd, 3rd and little right fingers. This is at the moment exactly in line with the right sleeve. The right forefinger is brought forward over the left fist in a rubbing motion and on bringing the hand back, the coin is allowed to fly backwards into the right sleeve.

" VARIED DECEPTIONS" by Milbourne Christopher (Published by Harry Stanley, price 15/-).

For sheer value, this well produced book of some 152 pages will be hard to beat. Containing (at a rough estimate) some two hundred tips and tricks there is something (as we have written in the preface) for every kind of magician whether he be close-up worker, mentalist, general practitioner or would be T.V. performer.

The most important thing is that the average reader will have at hand most of the articles required and his thanks to Milbourne Christopher will be for producing so many attractive themes in which these articles can be used.

In all there are some nine chapters dealing with the following angles :—

1. Mental Magic. 2. Close-up conjuring. 3. Rope Wizardry. 4. Money Magic. 5. Handkerchief Hocus Pocus. 6. Magic in the Cards, 7. Stage and T.V. tricks. 8. Novelty Magic, 9. Behind the Curtain.

Quite frankly it is difficult to list tricks in any order of preference for with few exceptions we find that everything described has a good audience attack. Thinking in terms of stage magic, however, we would like to say that in our own opinion, that "Silk from Smoke" and "Red Ashes Climax" alone are worth very much more than the price charged for the book.

To illustrate the tricks, our friend Ted Elliott must have made some hundred odd drawings so that everything is quite clear. As we have said before, outstanding value.

The rubbing is performed twice more and the hands are shown to be empty, thus proving the coin to have vanished. (I know this reads rather badly but I think that on rehearsal you will see exactly what I mean).

" The secret hoarder is NOT a magician. He never will be a magician from the standpoint of being an interesting entertainer. These secrets aren't so damned valuable. There are few of them that can't be reasoned out by a man of fairly logical analytical ability.

It must be repeated again. The secret is NOT important. The only thing that is important is its favourable impression upon the majority of the spectators"

Showmanship for Magicians," by Dariel Fitzkee.

"The show should have gone on. People don't usually appreciate value unless they pay for it. They paid this night to learn that no one, not even the very greatest in his line can do without constant rehearsing and practice."—Report of show by Servais le Roy. Jinx, page 604.

IN THE May number of the Linking Ring there is a Columbus " Hocus Pocus " Parade. Following a most sententious piece of magical slush by a Mr. William Mark Taylor, Eddie Clever rather surprisingly comes forth with these words :—

"I wonder what the American Medical Society would think of a doctor who wrote a book FOR THE LAYMAN describing in detail how to perform a number of operations? I doubt if the medical profession would greet the books with peans (we quote it as spelt) of praise or the author with a pat on the back . . . even if the book did sell for a dollar or more ... a dollar, ha . . . what price treason?

This is just another knock added to those of the bar sinister boys at Bruce Elliott and Wilfrid Jonson. Why can't these people grow up and see magic through the eyes of an adult. Don't they realise that their own magical education came from books that were for public sale. Do they Relieve that Hoffman, Sachs, Maskelyne and Devant wrote books with the idea that they should never reach the public. We can never believe that any book on magic, intelligently written has ever harmed magic, but rather it has achieved one of two things. Firstly it has possibly brought a worthwhile newcomer into magic or secondly it has made the reader more appreciative of the magician's work. Just remember that " Modern Magic " appeared serially in a boy's paper in the latter half of the nineteenth century, that Downs exposed Bis coin act in a national publication and so-on and so-on.

As we said before we were surprised to see Eddie Clever, for whom we have a very great Tegard, writing like this. Surely he must know that the " Hocus Pocus " Parades which contain some excellent material are read by those who are not magicians in any sense, but just people who are trick conscious and members of a huge organisation of Which possibly ten per cent, (and we think we are rating this percentage high) can in any sense be called magicians. These trick conscious cretins invariably do far more harm with their numerous public exposes than any bookstall publication. (Just to make things a little clearer don't let it be thought that the remaining ninety per cent, of I.B.M. members fall into this latter class. Far from it. Our assessment of the word magician means something more than a good conjuror).

We have never been able to use the Pentagram as a news sheet for the very simple reason that it is published monthly and unlike some magazines we don't like reporting events that have taken place three months previously. Starting on the 11th June, however, we have a column in the "Stage" dealing with magicians. We shall at all times appreciate any news items that readers might consider merit publication.

Neil Foster was all that we heard he was. Lovely work. With a smile or two more and cultivated charm he could reach out and enter the Cardini class.

One often wonders how many magicians are really interested in the history of magic. We say this for on the occasion of the Magic Circle Coronation week-end, Arthur Ivey, the Curator of the Museum, assisted by his wife, spent many hours setting out an exhibition of posters, programmes and various memorabilia. In all, out of the thirteen hundred membership, some forty or fifty came along. The trick conscious class, however, came along on the Saturday evening to see the tricks at the Gala show.

" I do not hold the opinion that any man who can get up and do a few tricks—even though he may do them well enough to entertain his audience—is necessarily a conjurer, because it is quite possible he may be an exhibitor of tricks. To say that a man who knows a few tricks is a conjurer is like saying that the man who knows ' The Merchant of Venice ' by heart is an actor."—David Devant—" Magic Made Easy."


i by WILFRED TYLER SELECTING the right routine is important but it's the PRESENTATION that counts ! You'll find SPARKLING MATERIAL and all the SPECIAL ADVICE you need for SUCCESS in delighting a young audience in Wilfred Tyler's latest book, " PLAYING WITH MAGIC."

Sincereley written by a SPECIALIST in the art, famous for his articles and books, lectures and shows on MAGIC FOR CHILDREN—Here's a " must" handbook for pleasure and profit.


THE OPENING of the act is dealt with in great detail, and countless readers will use the author's theme of "The Land of Let's Pretend," in addition to original opening effects and suggestions for adapting standard routines to this purpose.

PLOTS are covered in a complete lesson on how to build up entertaining plots around your effects, and some fine examples are given.

PRESENTING " STANDAED EFFECTS TO CHILDREN will save you countless pounds, for here the reader is shown how to adapt what are normally considered "adulr" effects to the entertainment of children.

COMEDY, FUN AND LAUGHS are provided in profusion, as well as BY-PLAY with many standard and original props.

THE FINALE is possibly the most important part of the show, and included in this section are the most,.complete instructions on preparing "loads" ever written, together with spectacular routines for closing.

DON'T MISS THIS BOOK A finely produced 112 page book packed with advice, ideas, tricks, business bits and gags galore. Cloth bound with a gay dust jacket and illustrated with nearly ninety drawings and photographs.





NOT a magazine but a super giant-sized magic book published in four quarterly parts, each part complete in itself. NO news reports or similar material that dates a " magazine," but CRAMMED FULL of worthwhile workable magic.

Vol. 42 No. 237 issue contains 48 pages, by 11 inches in size, on super-quality cartridge paper, with stiff art-board covers, with contributions by :

Jim Merlini, George Johnson, E. Brian MacCarthy, E. Malcolm Davison, Douglas Francis. Harry Carnegie, Graham Bailey, Roy Green, " Hen " Fetsch, Francis Haxton, Tom Sellers, Jack Lamonte, Melvano, Edmund Rowland, T. M. Irvine, Roy Cowl, W. C. Weber, Peter A. McDonald, Charly Eperny, George Pigott, Lawrenco, James B. Findlay, Tony Koynini, L. H. Slipper. The first Instalment of


(A new card system that will revolutionise card magic)


Per copy 7/9 post paid.

SUBSCRIPTION 6 months 15/6 : One year 30/-

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