Seeing is Believing

The curtain on the Spirit Cabinet is closed again on the entranced volunteer and immediately the instruments on the table begin to play. David opens the curtain but nothing seems to have changed. The instruments lie undisturbed on the table. The curtain is closed and the audience hears moaning and groaning from within. The curtain is quickly opened. The audience see the young man still tied to the chair with ropes binding his arms and crossing his chest but his jacket has gone! Somehow the spirits managed to tear it from him, penetrate the ropes and toss it onto the floor.

"How on earth did that happen?" says David. The volunteers are invited to check the bindings but find nothing wrong. They leave the cabinet and David closes the curtains. Immediately the musical instruments are heard playing noisily then, one by one, they fly into the air and out of the cabinet. The young man's jacket quickly follows. David is shocked and tells the volunteers to move out of the way as the objects land on the stage. It's just as well he did because the last item to be thrown over the top of the cabinet is the heavy typewriter! It crashes onto the stage with a loud metallic thud.

The curtain is opened. No spirits, just an empty table where the typewriter and instruments once lay and the young man still tied to the chair and apparently still sound asleep.

"I think the spirits are still with us," says David. He asks the musicians to start the music again and closes the curtains. A scream is heard from inside. It seems the hapless volunteer has suddenly woken from his trance. His head and shoulders, bathed in an eerie green light, slowly appear over the top of the cabinet as if he is being carried by the spirits. He wobbles there, uncertainly, for a moment or two and then starts to tip sideways. He's awake now and shouts, "Let me down!"

He falls sideways, the audience gasps and there is a tremendous crash. David rushes forward and opens the curtains. "I hope he isn't hurt." The young man is still tied to the chair but now he's lying face down on top of the table!

Several volunteers help lift him upright. He appears to be uninjured. "Weren't you aware of what's happening?" asks David. Apparently he wasn't. The volunteers untie him, Raj returns his jacket and David invites the audience to give him a round of applause.

Revelations: This is the finale of the poltergeist activity so the instruments were played more frenetically and even louder than before. Despite the tying it was possible to remove the jacket by slipping one arm out of the sleeve and manipulating it under the ropes. It wasn't easy for the young man to do this alone so the secret assistant, his twin brother, helped him.

The next time the curtains were closed the secret assistant played the various instruments and then threw them out of the cabinet together with the jacket. The typewriter followed them. It was an important psychological moment. It was a real surprise to the audience

when the typewriter crashed to the stage. Who would possibly treat a typewriter this way? It's apparent destruction lent credibility to the séance and the uncontrollable spirits that had been summoned. David had bought a lot of second hand typewriters for use in the tour but surprised himself when he found that they were virtually indestructible and suffered little damage from their flagrant misuse.

After the typewriter hit the stage David called for the music to restart, moved the volunteers back and warned them to be careful, "The spirits are mischievous tonight." The music was louder than it was previously and covered any noise the secret assistant made as he helped his twin brother, still tied to the chair, to move towards the table. The tied man could waddle about but little else. Carefully his brother helped set him face down on the table in the seemingly uncomfortable position he would be found when the curtains were next opened.

When the audience thought they saw the young man being lifted above the top edge of the cabinet by the spirits they were actually seeing his twin brother's head and shoulders. His twin was standing on a stepladder that had been concealed in the rear of the cabinet. The green light came either from a spotlight or from a torch that the twin held directly below his face. He was also wearing an identical shirt with some rope wrapped around it. He mimed being carried aloft by the spirits and gave a look of horror as he realised the spirits were about to drop him to the floor. Then he ducked down, got off the ladder and carried it into the secret compartment with him. He stamped heavily on the cabinet platform to produce a loud bang.

David immediately opened the curtains to reveal the young man lying on the table. It was a truly shocking moment for the audience.

The Art Of Cold Reading

The Art Of Cold Reading

Today I'm going to teach you a fundamental Mentalism technique known as 'cold reading'. Cold reading is a technique employed by mentalists and charlatans and by charlatan I refer to psychics, mediums, fortune tellers or anyone that claims false abilities that is used to give the illusion that the person has some form of super natural power.

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