The performer visits a dignitary several weeks or days prior to a scheduled performance. Opening a cardboard carton, the performer removes a tray holding a locked wooden chest which is placed on a table. Unlocking the chest, the performer opens and removes a second, smaller chest. The dignitary is asked to unlock the smaller chest and to remove its contents, an audio cassette with a blank label affixed to it. The dignitary is handed a marking pen and requested to sign his name on the label. The signed cassette is then returned to the smaller chest, which is locked by the dignitary. For identification purposes, the dignitary places his signature on a label affixed to a brass plate on top of the small chest. The time and date of the procedure is then written on a small label affixed to a brass plate on top of the large chest. The dignitary places the small chest back inside the larger one and locks it. The locked, nested chests are then remanded to the custody of the dignitary who is instructed to bring them to the performance scheduled at a later date.
As requested, the dignitary brings the locked chests to the performance where he is invited to bring them on stage. In full view of the audience, the dignitary unlocks the outer chest. The inner chest is then removed and it, too is unlocked by the dignitary. The dignitary confirms that the information printed on the labels affixed to the brass plates on both chests is accurate. The dignitary removes the signed audio cassette and confirms that the signature is the one he placed there several weeks or days prior to the performance.
Using his own, or a borrowed, cassette player, the dignitary inserts the signed cassette and presses the "play" button. As everyone listens, the performer's voice emanating from the cassette player is heard to correctly predict the headline in that day's newspaper, which is simultaneously displayed for confirmation. The audio cassette is then removed by the dignitary and kept as a souvenir.
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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.