body. Even turning your back on something is a f Since you are obviously not turning your body toward"" °f po'«in rather away from something, your body will actual! SolBetlliI1[,. attention on whatever you've turned away frum. ' aerve to f.^'

(3) Patter. They took where you tell them to look. Anoth important point to remember. This works bcel whon 6*,®lniPU l,. techniques (1) and/or f2). combined »(J

(4) Movement. They look at anything that is movine Th of the eye to folio»' motion must be one of the most in '8I!,|Mcy human reflexes. No doubt it's an ancient survival J®11 of all primitive man anything that moved in his field of visionw'i™' be either something that he might want to catch and eat lj <°

that might want to catch and eat him. Either , i,*"""»!

moving object with his eyes was likely to improve hi ">«

survival. a chane&a 0f

(6) Sound, TTtey look ni anything that is making noise -Improbably another primal mechanism designed to helo ™ dangerous world. The great thing about loth movement anT™' * a controlling attention is that these reflexes are h»„™J , S0U11<I We have no choice but to look. Gy0Dd Pe0ple s "Mt»l,

(S) Contrast. They look at anything thaïs different fr ■ surroundings. The only face-up card in a fan, J fnm ,ls immediately draw the eye. So wffl the only red cÎrd™ f"* J® lack cards or th. only EngIlsh penny in . -

But whenever a n^iv prop fs ^rit^H ^i1' omcs "> «he audieil'e audience's interest^ P ""reduced it will initially draw the

(S) Inherent Interest. This i"l»™«t»nanimter„(i;;' * ^ °nD Pla™ where source of «ate suspense aroundT ^ H

automatically look at it when that s J ' 'he «^«n« will curiosity about a box, aS^KSrTif* f releaSe'1 If you arouse uncertainty J^l' M tjM when you open it. If they will iDDl at the card when J°UVe fol,n!i lhe ^zM card, anticipation concerning the muX f tUr" " lf a™use hand, they will look at h fh^T^ * * « spectator's

OnTCUjar'y POl<!nt f°r °PB,,S * Inheren' intere8t to^ioT' u ',eU your ««»■ ^ —'

at, absorb. In other w„rds, 11* want them to notice, look of information one and the same »f interest and the source

Directional Misdirection misdirection is used in magic to mean two very different The iBmiten Without making it clear that they arc two different :|UI1KS 0 Q..(, meaning is what we might term physical misdirection: rt»cf,,t5' tll0 audience from seeing what you've done. The other preventing ^ sometimes termed psychological misdirection-, pea«"! tlK.: audience from figuring out what you've done, preveii ^ misdirection is nothing less than the psychology of Psycho gntirc book deals with the psychology of deception.

ant to discuss only physical misdirection, not controlhng the HeTe ■ ihinkine just controlling their attention to cover a secret audiences ttuur^ ■>

1110 I've already noted that misdirection is only an aspect of the StncEi. subject of attention control, it follows that, if you've absorbed (¿^information about tools for controlling attention, you already know most of what you need to know about misdirection. R member, it's impossible to direct attention away from something; ™ can only direct attention toward something. So, in misdirection, the first step is to determine what you want to direct the audience's attention toward. This should not be something arbitrary. Ideally, it should he something that is logically the source of information at that point in the effect anyway. In other words, it should be something you would want them to look at in that moment even ifyou to do a move just then. Having determined wha you want them» look at, you then use the tools of attention control to make them look

For example, suppose you're need misdirection for loading the giant ball at the encL « y bal1- . The stronaest source of misdirection

Inherent Interest as Misiu-ectwn: ItaJ™» £ analogollB ta ¡„do. In from exploiting inherent mterSi. ^ ^^ Herc you comes from exploiting inherent mterei ^^ ^ ^ you judo you use your opponents own mom ^^ jt ^ bo(h case8, use the audience's own natural cunos ty ^

you don't fight against the others na u ^ ^^ ^ BMctll, and use it toward your own ends. I ^ ^ ^ for the nove. whore he wants to look anywaj a ^ ^ the feit ace

from one pocket with your left na of the second ace with your right hand The misdirection » since everyone wants to see whether the first ace has arrived ¡Perfe<* pocket; it is a point of inherent interest. y0Ur

In the section on suspense we discussed Paul Harris' "Reflex" v, magicians I've seen perform this effect try to palm the top card nf?' deck when the spectator slaps her hand onto the tabled card q you don't know when she is going to do so, it's virtually impos^y*

coordinate your action with hers. The correct time to execute the Palni is when the spectator looks under her hand to see whether hB selection is there. Everyone is curious to see whether she got the card' The inherent interest in her action is so strong you couldn't hope f0r better misdirection.

In a pick-a-card trick, the strongest moment of inherent interest is always when you reveal the selected card. I exploit this for direction in my "Nine-Card Location." I spin one of the selections out of the dcck onto the table. It lands face down, so I ask the assisting spectator to show the card to the rest of the audience. As she does so, I perform a secret card fold of another selection. The next strongest moment of inherent interest in a pick-a-card trick is when the spectator looks at the card she selected and shows it to the rest of the audience. In one effect I use this moment as misdirection for doing a half-pass. I've even used this moment as misdirection for a deck switch; it's that strong. All these examples are only specific applications of the tools of attention control for misdirection. However, misdirection also raises some issues that go beyond these eight tools. Let's now look at these. Staggered Movement: It's natural to think that the misdirective action and the secret action should occur simultaneously, but this is not always the case. Suppose I want to load a palmed card into my wallet as I remove the wallet from my inner jacket pocket. As my right hand with the palmed card goes to the wallet, my left hand places the deck on the table. My goal is to cause the audience's eyes to follow the hand placing the deck on the table rather than the hand with the palmed card going to the pocket.

We already know that the eye follows motion. But, a corollary of that very important rule is that, when two objects move, the eye will follow the object that moves first. If my left hand starts moving toward my pocket before my right hand starts to placc the deck on the table I'll defeat my goal; the audience's eyes wUl follow the hand with the palmed card. If both hands start to move at the same time I'll have no control over which hand the spectators follow. In order to achieve my goal the hand with the deck must start moving just an instant before the hand w,th the palmed card in order to draw the audience's eyes.

hand must not Btart moving too much earlier than pVer. ^e first n acti(jn before the ^amd hand hn«

H° icond hand or it« ^ attention will turn to the hand

(flashed ¿^llet before I want it to.

Intensity Misdirection


When it cornea to misdirection, attention control may involve not onlv the direction of the audience s attention but also the intensity 0r,h„, attention. You can sometimes cover a move, not by directing Z audience's attention toward something else, but simply by makine the audience momentarily relax its attention. Humor: One of the most effective ways of doing this is with humor When people laugh they watch you less closely. Yet they themselves don't realize they've let their guard down. Imagine if whenever you wanted you could cause the audience to close its eyes for a moment without their realizing they had done so. A good gag accomplishes just that. Always be on the lookout for the laugh that can be used to cover a move.

Tension/Relaxation: Another way to cause an audience to relax its attention is for you yourself to relax. They will tend to mimic your attitude. This is particularly effective if you first create a moment of tension. If you study John Carney's close-up act on his videotape Up Close and Far Away you'll see him repeatedly use this technique. In one coin effect John places a coin in his hand in such a way as to make the audience suspect that he didn't really put it there. This creates tension. Sensing the audience's suspicion, he opens his hand to show that the coin is really there. This action releases the tension. Carney himself relaxes. You can see all the tension drain out of his body. This reinforces the audience's own tendency to relax after the momentary peak of tension. It's at this instant that he steals the coin back into the other hand.

René Lavand also makes effective use of this technique, for example in his one-handed stripout shuffle. He shuffles the two halves together and holds the deck up high as he commente on the thoroughness of the shuffle. This is the moment of peak tension. He then relaxes, dropping his hand to the table, and in that moment strips the two halves apart. Tony Slydini was also a master of tension/relaxation for "I'sdirecUon^

A detailed discussion of the body language pnnciples mvolved n this type of misdirection is beyond the scope of his book bat jjuTTfind such discussion, along with numerous examples. ,n Sly din. s books.

Beginnings and Conclusions: Two areas wK attention naturally diminishes in intensity a ^ tile and begins and after it ends—that is, before they tfr ¿eforG thelenceB after they think it has ended. Occasionally this haa begjf^

to advantage ^

The classic example of exploiting the moments befo , V°°r is the card man's notion of "toying with the deck " ni lrick be« up cards openly yet unnoticed because the audie 11 ca„ trick has started yet. For an example of exploiting th an'' feel ft' the trick has seemingly ended, check out "Darwi T ,?°mente aT* Darwin Ortiz at the Card Table, in that effect I d cards for ungaffed duplicates in tho moments ot-^f1* «fed attention after the effect has ended. relaxed audjs^

V,e Limits of Misdirection: There are times when v j misdirect from a move. Modern sleight of hand has to and more on simulation moves where you anneJ Vre]y ®°>i when you actually do another, as opposed to classic 1 , ™6 "«f hand where you do something while appearing o do ^ «'

in the pass, most palms, and the top change). Example, „i* <« moves are the Braue secret addition, Ui iS? „ f^««. retention vanish of a com. t-tmsley count, and the

In the case of simulation moves often th information at that point in the effect If you dT™ m Show that you are holding four kings " Elmsle>- to

,Y Distractions

Gary Provost, Make Your Words Work

Attention control ha m decide where n * festive aspect. Once

B feet you employ the toota we^T ^^ <=«h step in tbe attention directed there. Sl,^ fn<:u8 the audience's accom f IT y0Ur , ''miMte *Wt »at distractions is the negative aspeef^™"01 techniques. Eliminating 338 attention control,

. have an enormous capacity for being distracted. When Au<«eI"*h a choice between paying attention to what a performer i» fsc=d to thBm a„d paying attention to a distraction, they will i1*"if liooae the distraction. That's why you have to make sure they "iyerU'hat choice.

tion is the Hip side of misdirection. Anything that can act as J'ectio» at the right moment can act as a distraction ot the wrong lT,it That means that if you understand misdirection, you "°derstand what you have to eliminate to avoid distractions. U/ . ment is a very strong attention-getting tool. It is also the most "rnon source of distraction in magic performances. Often a 'former will engage in unconscious fidgeting, usually as an outlet V■ nervousness. He may constantly shift his weight from foot to foot. He may engage in constant, meaninglesB riffling of the deck. These things con easily distract the audience from what you want them to focus on.

Since these actions arc unconscious, they can be difficult foe you to detect. If you ever have the opportunity to have yourself videotaped during a performance, take advantage Df it to study the tape for any distracting movements you may make. You con also ask a friend to watch a performance specifically looking for distracting movements. As vou become more experienced as a performer you Will become more aware of every action you make. Here a« the rules to follow: Make no move, however small, without a conscious reason. Use every move to help focus and direct audience attention. In general, you II make only one movement at a time. The only excepUon is when using movement as misdirection, performing the hidden movement in the shadow of the open movement. Always keep in mind that your first reaped* to*» 1=

(the story of the effect) as Tetter how anything that distract, your audience torn ftat i,oal ^ ^

much you may like it. Kin tbe case of dropping a funny gag. Ibis can»"l . . „ „)„,„

humor. Magicians often find itMtaUU" dfeet A

that laugh may distract the ^ gaod laugh at the good laugh at the right moment ^J^s the magical wrong moment just isnt worth >t not it moment you've worked so hard to create.

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