Relating to Performance

Few things make me more livid than insultingly bad theatre of any sort. Conversely, perfectly realised and exquisitely elegant performance can move me deeply and reduce me to sobbing like a big girh. Seeing for the first time good actor friends, whom I already respect and love, act in something where they excel invariably moves me deeply. I have insufferably high standards as regards these things, and when people whom I know go out and meet those standards, 1 am always transported. in all other...

Environmental Issues

As I write, the sun has just set over the not un-Dickensian view from my bedroom after a glorious summer's day. The air is still warm, the window is wide open, and I am sat here stunningly naked. Summer is the time when this happy magician takes his little beard and appears at the slightly honible garden parties of the rich and ludicrous. Enormous marquees, ornamental lawns, half-pints of Pimms and married cousins abound in their formulaic way, and through them I mingle bringing fresh and...

The Devils Pidurebook

The Role of Playing Cards, and Choice of Material I have a dear, delightful Grandmother whom I see occasionally in the warden-assisted flat where she ekes out her twilight years. The transient, crepuscular period between saucy middle-age and violent, painful death has, in the case of this heavy octogenarian, been a time of variable madness. One minute she is a sweet old silly, knitting herself a set of syringe covers and talking about her favourite flowers, and the very next moment she has just...

Closing Notes

This trick is excellent when you repeat it. You will find during practice that some people are much easier to read than others. That's why Derren Brown chooses these 'easy to read' people for some of his bigger effects. When you find someone that you can consistently get it right with, create an audience and amaze them all. 10 10 correct predictions should do it Imagine knowing something that would normally be impossible to know. For example you might want to reveal someone's surname, even...

Subject OK

You Now just from the clues you have accidentally given off from your voice earlier and your body language - I think you were visualising All you now need to do match the direction they looked, with the memory they wrote down. For example if they looked up and to the right, you know they were thinking of their old friend. The great thing about this wording is that you do not mention their eyes at all. You claim that it is all to do with body language and the verbal clues they gave you. This...

Hand Stuck To Table

The hand stuck to table is more classic hypnosis and if you have a reasonable grounding in hypnotic language you will understand what is going on. Patter (said quite rapidly) Just put your hand on the desk to there in front (Direct command - if she does it it shows she is accepting your suggestion. In the same way if you are going to put someone in a trance it is useful get some agreement from them such as Put your feet flat on the floor put your hands on your lap close your eyes when you are...

Esp Prediction

This method is very easy, but took me time to come up with because I wanted to make people believe that it was truly psychological and I was really testing telepathy. So it starts out like this I lay down the five cards with the wavy lines right on the end and the star in the I then ask the spectator to think of one of those shapes while forcing the wavy lines on the end, by pointing at it with my right hand in a karate chop fashion. I then pick up the five cards and say Okay, whichever one...

Withholding the Power

I want you to remember this fundamental theatrical ruLe establish truly and precisely details that are typical and the audience will have a sense of the whole, because of their special ability to imagine and complete in imagination what you have suggested. I remember fondly as a child though why we called him 'Fondly' I now forget - finding the Wicked Witch of the West absolutely terrifying. Today, of course, a massive gay icon, she would lurch around with her green face and insane laugh in a...

Designing with Cause

Creating Effects according to the Real Magic model As we have discussed, most magic performed by most magicians takes us no further into a dramatic mode than the exercise of will. He clicks his fingers or sprinkles some absurd dust and before you can say, Don't patronise us, you. unimaginative performer with no histrionic sensibility, a length of unusual white rope has been rent asunder and cleft in twain. In this situation, no cause to the magical effect is offered, other than the will of the...

Magic and Theatre

Were I writing a book about stage magic, theatrical issues would seem immediately appropriate. However, this is not about the wretched, irrelevant dove penetration acts still, unbelievably, performed for disappointed and bored audiences in seaside towns and convention centres across God's beautiful Earth. No, no, no this is a book about the performance of my first love (In actual fact, Debbie Boon, Reedham Park Primary School, 1978-9), close-up and parlour magic. Actually, for those who are...

Acting Technique Remembering to Forget

Fine acting is a joy to watck When I see such talent on stage or in a film, I find that 1 feel safe enough to lose myself in that character. 1 know that nothing will suddenly jar or leave me unconvinced. This feeling of safety to lose oneself is a kind preparedness to be vulnerable, and this means that we placing our trust in that actor. To have him suddenly do his job badly and lose us half way through the story would be a terrible betrayal on his part. I enjoy the company of actor friends....

Can Magic be Art New Thoughts

One cannot look at a magic-related Internet discussion egroup notice-board web-forum without seeing the word 'art' bandied up and down the electric super-motorway as if art and magic were two concepts unequivocally equated arid the most well-suited word-companions that one could ever hope to find lumbling with each other in the coats-room at an ideas-party. It seems that through the literature of magicians determined to deem their own magic important and worthwhile, a whole new generation of...

Prestige and Disillusionment

0 ver the course of the three afternoons that it has taken me to write this book, I have spoken to many professional and semi-professional close-up magicians about how they feel about their work. There is an issue that always used to linger in the back of my mind, which I often bring up. It goes something like this. We, as magicians, are aware of the huge industry that caters to us. Because of the enormity of the magic scene, it has given rise to massive in-house politics and ethical issues...

Meaning and Vision

Astonishment is not an emotion (hat's created. It's an existing state that's revealed. The experience of astonishment is the experience of a clear, primal state of mind that they associate with a child's state of mind At that moment of trying to box the unboxable your world-view breaks up- The boxes are gone. And what's left Simply what was always there. Your natural state of mind. That's the moment of astonishment. Those lines are taken from Paul Harris' introduction to his The Art of...

The Watch Steal

This is a popular steal, and one that is described in detail in other works. In essence, you take the spectator by the wrist from above, your thumb pressing against the face of the watch. Your third finger is naturally in position to find the end of the strap, and to walk it up through the buckle. This sante finger pinches the same end of the strap, against the second finger if need be, and pulls it up and clear of the pin. Keeping the strap up and back, the fingertip pushes the pin down, and...

Magic Books Authors Note

Those of you who have seen me perform will be aware that I have moved away from conjuring material to work with the area of our profession that deals with mind reading and psychological effects. This type of performance has always interested me more, and the development of genuine hypnotic, suggestive and persuasive skills has come to mean more to me than learning sleight-of-hand. This is, however, a book about the presentation of more traditional magic, which constitutes my background and is...

How To Be Yourself

Magic Books that deal with the matter of presentation and performance character are full of the adage, Be yourself. It is at once an immensely easy arid very fiddly thing to achieve. It is a problem that is appropriate for every novice magician, and some serious professionals. A magician getting started generally does so without an awareness of his natural style, for it is something to be learnt over time. Equally, Ftc will be unaware of the importance of the issue at the same time that his...

Welcome to Derren Brown Mentalism Tricks

Derren Brown Secrets

The effects I'm revealing in this book and some of the strongest in all of mental magic. All of these effects can be successfully performed by a complete beginner almost immediately. Please, do yourself justice though, read through the book several times and practice by speaking out loud. If you do this, I promise - you will be baffling your mates and literally be the star attraction of any party of club you go to I have written the instructions as concisely as possible. It has taken me a long...

Table Lifting Mentalism Trick

A volunteer is chosen at random from the audience and joins you on the stage where they are seated next to you behind a table in full view of the audience. A second volunteer is also chosen from the audience and seated at the table as a close up independent witness to the proceedings. The first volunteer is then apparently placed into an instant trance state and their hand is apparently glued to the table by Hypnotic suggestion. In this state with their eyes closed, you seem to control their...

Speech Reading

Use hypnotic suggestions to get the person to say what they are thinking OUT LOUD in their head. o then, as they SAY THE WORDS OUT LOUD in their head, look for the tiny movements of the lips and mouth etc. that sentence was both a guide and an example - notice embedded commands Simple phrase you may like to start with Don't SAY WHAT YOU ARE THINKING OUT LOUD Speech reading notes td The trick of lip reading is to understand how sounds are made. As air is forced from the l ungs only several...

Rock Paper Scissors

This one when told how to do seems easy but it is quite hard to do. To do this all you have to do is sublimely tell them which one they are going to pick easy enough . The way derren does this is by making subconscious signals to the subject to tell him to pick the one he is signalling. E.g. on derren brown mind control 2 when he does this effect he says to the subject We'll play paper scissors stone where you go 1 2 3 hits his fist on his other hand 3 x and then you do something does scissors...

The Cigarette through Shirt as Misdirection for Extensive Thievery

When I perform the cigarette-through-shirt, I do so in order to provide light relief from what niay have been a series of fairly intense effects. To add to its impact, I relieve the spectator of as many belongings as I can according to a well-planned scheme which I shall describe here. Both the cigarette effect and the steals are performed as light relief - this is a more traditional setting for pick- pocketing, but I describe it here to show how much can be achieved in a short space of time...