Paper Balls Over The Head

This justly renowned and amusingly entertaining effect is a pet gag of Slydini's and one which he performs very often due to popular demand. It is, therefore, only natural that he should continue to devise small improvements for other performers.

The effect has been thoroughy described by Lew Ganson in The Magic of Slydini.

Slydini's effect and presentation remain as described by Mr. Ganson. However, at the point where the performer throws the paper ball over spectator's head, Slydini noticed that most could not keep their hand from shaking after releasing the paper ball. Slydini has, therefore, devised a way to make this shaking a natural thing.

When you get to the point where you say to the spectator, "Look . . ." and simultaneously release the ball over his head, your hand tends to shake back and forth in jerky arcs. Often, this is the tip-off for the spectator who then finds you out.

Slydini does not have this trouble. He has perfected his performance so that the ball flies out of his fingers and his hand remains steady.

For those of us "lesser mortals," here is Slydini's cover-up:

When you get to the point where you rest the paper ball on your palm as you say: "When I open my hand you will see the ball completely disappear," instead of the misdirection of saying "look" (here) and looking away, actually look at the spectator and make beckoning motions "C'm 'ere . . . C'm 'ere ..." (Slur the words together, dropping the h of here and say it fast both times). Release the ball the first time you say "C'm 'ere" at the top of the upward movement of your beckoning hand.

Now, spectator is not suspicious because your hand is being shaken for a definite reason.


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