Editor’s Note: This article is the seventh in a weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week, Jason shares his experience from a recent cruise ship gig, where he performed close up shows for 10 days, while cruising around the tip of South America.
Old Dog, New Trick
As some of you know, I was recently on a cruise ship that sailed around the tip of South America. I was hired to perform close-up magic in a small theater on the ship for up to 22 guests at a time. This meant that I did two shows per day for about 10 of the 21 days I was there. When not performing in the theater, I had full guest status and was encouraged, but not required to mingle with the other guests and to do some informal performing if the situation was right and I felt comfortable doing so.
Although I’m known primarily for my abilities with a regular deck of cards and for my penchant for gambling-related routines and moves, I’ve never let go of my magic roots completely. I still enjoy a wide assortment of great close-up magic effects both with and without playing cards, even though I rarely perform with anything other than cards these days. Continue Reading
Rising Card, our best-selling magic app on iTunes, has a new update! Created by Chris Kenner and theory11 in 2009, Rising Card is back and better than ever.
New features include:
- The Incredible Burt Wonderstone! A free, limited-time feature in promotion of the new movie. You can enable this special mode from the Settings panel to change the default “Rising Card” screen.
- Updated for iOS6 and iPhone 5. Now the app is more compatible than ever, and looks amazing on a Retina screen! Re-designed in high resolution for iPhone 4s and 5.
- Choose Your Deck! From the settings screen, you can now choose what kind of playing cards you want to display in the app. More choices coming soon!
This month only, Rising Card is only 99¢ in iTunes! Download it now.
Today, we’re launching a massive, EPIC contest in collaboration with Warner Brothers: The Incredible Burt Wonderstone Contest!
Your challenge is to create and submit a 60 second short film showcasing your magic or cardistry skills. The winner will take home an epic trophy, 500 decks of playing cards, 4 tickets to Burt Wonderstone, and 4 front row tickets to the David Copperfield show! Special thanks to Warner Brothers, David Copperfield, and David Kwong for making this event possible.
Not only that, but David Copperfield will personally call you to announce your victory!
You have TWO weeks to make it happen! See details HERE and good luck!
With ReCord, you can STRETCH a pair of headphones like chewing gum. VISUALLY and AUDIBLY tear the cord in two. Then restore it before your spectator’s eyes. No Setup. No Extra Pieces.
Now available for instant download. Check out the ridiculously awesome trailer.
Editor’s Note: This article is the sixth in a new, weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week, Jason shares several cheating moves and techniques he saw while hosting the 2013 World Game Protection Conference in Las Vegas.
Hosting the World Game Protection Conference
As most of the readers of this new column know, I’m a magician with a serious, long-term interest in gambling moves. By “gambling moves”, I mean of course the techniques and principles that card, dice and roulette cheaters use to win money in both private games and in casino games.
This interest of mine has resulted in me hosting for the past two years in a row, the World Game Protection Conference here in Las Vegas, Nevada. As host, my duties include introducing the speakers to a large (over 400 attendees) audience and ensuring the day proceeds smoothly. I also facilitate Q&A sessions between the speakers and the audience. From time to time, I’ll chime in and participate in discussions where it’s appropriate, but only if I feel I have some insight into the subject matter at hand.
The 2013 conference ended this afternoon (it’s very late on February 27th as I type this) and I thought I’d give those of you who share my interest in “real” – as opposed to “theatrical” – cheating moves and techniques a glimpse into what I saw and learned over the past 3 days. Continue Reading
Editor’s Note: This article is the fifth in a new, weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week, Jason talks about how to manage performing for “difficult” spectators.
It’s better to maintain control than try and regain it.
As I type this, I’m sitting on a cruise ship docked in the southernmost city in the world, Ushuaia, Argentina, at the very southern tip of South America.
While I’ve been on the ship the past few weeks, I’ve been performing close-up magic shows for approximately twenty guests at a time in a small theater that’s been set up on board just for these performances. It’s very much like performing at the Close-up Room at The Magic Castle, only without the raked seating. Still, the room is intimate enough that sight lines are not a problem and I don’t need a microphone.
Over the past fifteen or so shows, I’ve begun to realize that I don’t have a lot of the problems that other, less experienced close-up performers often have with non-magician spectators. Until I gave this some thought recently, I had always shrugged off my success with “good” spectators as mere luck. Now that I’ve been thinking about writing an article once a week however, I’ve begun to analyze my act a bit more and I think I realized something these past few weeks: I’m not lucky at all. Continue Reading
Editor’s Note: This article is the fourth in a new, weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week, Jason describes a practical way to practice and master The Bottom Deal.
The Bottom Deal is a classic sleight-of-hand card movement that enables you to covertly deal the bottom card of the deck while in play. With practice, the move can be done without detection.
Come Sail Away - A Practical Way to Practice and Master the Bottom Deal
I no longer have a set practice schedule. These days I find that frequent performing, even if they are only informal performances for friends and family, is enough to keep my physical skills with the cards reasonably sharp. I do still practice quite often. It’s just that I no longer need to sit down for formal practice sessions every day like I did when I was first starting out in magic. Continue Reading
Editor’s Note: This article is the third in a new, weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week, it’s all about one question: why?
Mysterium: Why Am I Here? – By Jason England
I’ve often thought about my job as a magician in relation to the job that a filmmaker has. I see a lot of parallels between magic and film. In fact, I think there are a lot of parallels between magic and theater in general. Naturally, there are some significant differences as well. Let me explain what I think my “job” as a performing magician is. Continue Reading
The PERFECT Valentine’s Day Gift. Love Me Playing Cards, inspired by Curtis Kulig’s global street art campaign. An elegant design and universal message.
Curtis Kulig’s art began on the streets of LA with one simple phrase: “Love Me”. Today, that signature statement has transcended the street to become the latest trend in fashion, art exhibitions, and now – playing cards. Love Me Playing Cards feature an original Ace of Spades, Joker, Back Design, Box Design, Sticker Seal, and Ace of Hearts – renamed the Ace of Love.
Editor’s Note: This article is the second in a new, weekly series by Jason England: MYSTERIUM. Each article in this series will be posted on Wednesday at 11:00am EST – every post on a different subject. This week’s article is all about the count…
Mysterium: Card Counting History & Methods – By Jason England
Within the realm of gambling games using playing cards, the concept of keeping track of cards that have been played has been around for centuries. In some games, mechanical devices have been used to assist the player by displaying the number of cards of a given value that have appeared.
The game of faro comes to mind. The faro ‘casekeeper’ is a wooden frame that resembles an abacus. Beads of wood or ivory were used to keep track of the number of cards that had been removed from the deck as the game progressed.
After the deck was exhausted, the beads were moved back to their starting positions and the next game started anew. Continue Reading