A few concerns about the classic pass again :-)

Discussion in 'Magic Forum' started by Lord Magic, Oct 10, 2017.

  1. Okay, so here goes:-

    I know it sounds stupid, but how long does it take to have a pass satisfactory enough to use in a performance? I know a pass is an ever improving technique, and we all should forever strive for the better, but still, how long should I logically take before I build enough confidence to perform on spectators? Approximately?

    Just 2 days in the classic pass practice ( I know, sue me...) and should I still only be bothered about getting used to the motion or should I start checking my angles? I feel I am used to the motion now, but I may be wrong. However I do not know if I yet have the required muscle memory, any way to test that?

    Chris Ramsay, one of the magicians I follow on YT, has described learning the pass from You Tube as walking on a broken foot. Honestly speaking here, I took the major part of the lesson from RRTCM on the pass, and a few pdf's I could get. I do not have any DVD's of the pass, so I follow Asad's, Jarek's and the Russian Genius' tutorials for only the VISUAL part of the learning. Will I never be good enough at the classic pass or did Ramsay say that only to help sell his friend Xavior Spade's work on the pass (understanding he is a good friend of Spade) ?

    Some teachers use a few great techniques for making even a simple classic pass quite invisible. And they are quite simple. But I still don't feel comfortable with them. Should I practice them or will I be able to incorporate any required covers later and just focus on my current pass right now?

    thanks! :)
  2. YouTube is a terrible place to learn magic, on average. There are a few isolated videos that are decent quality, but for an overall education in magic, it's awful - mostly because the vast majority of people who "teach" on YouTube are not good performers and they don't understand what makes magic actually work. If they did, they probably wouldn't be scrounging for views on YouTube. There are a few exceptions, but not many.

    Aaron Fisher said he spent, I think, 8 years studying and practicing the pass to the point where he felt really comfortable with it. He also said, though, that he is now able to distill those years of work into a day of solid teaching, which puts someone on the path to be performance-worthy with the pass in about a year.

    2 days is barely enough time to understand what's supposed to be happening, let alone have any genuine skill at it.

    I spent about two years in a fairly casual way, getting to comfortable with the pass. Mechanically I'd say I'm above average skill, but the mechanics aren't the important part to my mind. Once you get it silent, and can do it without showing tons of tension in the arms and hands, the important thing is to learn to create an off beat so no one is ever looking at your hands when you do the pass.

    For the mechanics, get Jason England's pass 1on1 here on T11, and read the description in Erdnase. Those and practice are all you need. Don't keep looking for new resources hoping to find the magic tip that will make it easier and perfect - that comes with practice.
    Lord Magic likes this.
  3. There is no set length of time that it should "logically" take. It will take as long as it takes. Everyone is different, and therefore some are going to pick it up faster than others; some never will; and no one will ever get good at it in two days, or two weeks, or in most cases, even two months. Harry Lorayne, for example, is widely acknowledged to be a great card magician, and he freely acknowledges that he can not do a decent pass. So he just skips it and does other controls - and he has done quite well for himself. I have seen well-known and professional magicians who have been doing the pass for years, and yet they flash. As Christopher points out, the most important element is the timing and misdirection - not merely the mechanics.
    Lord Magic likes this.
  4. First, regarding your multiple posts, I think you can consider posting new concerns etc. into your already existing threads to make everything more organized. That way, people who wish to help you can find all of your concerns in one thread rather than seeking multiple threads just to give you insight.

    You said you've been practicing for two days. How long each day? I remember when I was starting out, my pass didn't look decent until maybe month three or four, and that was with maybe 30 mins of practicing JUST the pass every day.
    Maaz Hasan likes this.
  5. Probably 3 - 4 months just to get the mechanics fluid, but expect to take over a year. The only way you can get a good pass is through performance. It isn't a move you can perfect in front of a mirror, as it is huge on timing, audience control, and misdirection.

    A year to get it down fluidly in performance, and a lot of practice of it after that in performance to refine it.

    Work with the pass until you get it fluid. If you want to add something like a dribble to cover it, you can do so when you start performing with it, but work on the mechanics of it first.

    And yeah, as @VagueTheory said, maybe just keep asking the questions in one thread, like this one.
  6. I guess I will take the suggestion and post every problem I encounter with the pass here (seriously speaking here), so get ready! Lol, srsly tho thank you for helping.

    So I should just keep trying to get used to the motion and not cram my head with any concerns about covering it NOW right?

    Also, am practising without a mirror currently, I mean it is physically impossible (for me atleast) to keep standing in front of the mirror for the 5-6 hours I practice the pass each day.
    Again, I practice it continuously, like, while reading, watching T.V. , etc, only paying serious attention to
    1) the motion
    2) the tension in my hands, which I should try to lessen
    3) and taking care my cards don't accidentally 'speak'.

    Incidentally, I don't see any reason I should halt learning other sleights OR flourishes during this period, right?

    Last question for now...
    Can you guys name any other card controls other than the pass and double undercut?
    The latter has served me well, but I decided it was time I got a better control, so I started learning the pass ( I had left the hermann pass, hoffman pass and the spread pass midway before, haha).
    So any other good control mostly in the public domain?
    I don't mind buying anything...just saying. :) :) :)
  7. Don't stop learning other things, and don't marathon a single move for that long. You're preventing yourself from learning effectively.

    When you practice you are sending electrical impulses along the neural pathways in your brain matter. The more you do a certain move, the thicker those pathways get, and the closer to automatic the physical motions become. This is "muscle memory".

    However, if you continuously practice a movement for hours on end, you muddy up those neural pathways. You need to give your brain (the physical organ in your head) time to sort of clean up and process those changes in the structures. Otherwise it sort of gets fuzzy and less distinct.

    It's like weight lifting. When you lift, you put tiny tears in the muscle fibers. Those tears get repaired with more muscle fiber, and you get stronger. However, if you do too many reps, or lift too much weight, the tears become just injuries and you actually weaken yourself.

    Practice smarter, not harder.

    The only controls I use are Death to the Double Undercut (which is the only 'flourishy' thing I do), the Pressure Shift, 3P, and occasionally the Cherry Control. Or I just put the card where I want it when no one is looking.
    Lord Magic likes this.
  8. There are so many controls. Here are some more popular ones.
    Marlos tilt
    Bluff pass
    Side steal
    Herrmann pass
    Palm and replace it
    Clip shift
    Spread cull
    Hindu shuffle controls
    Overhangs shuffle controls
    Ruffle shuffle controls.

    Get the royal road, expert card technique, and/or card control (all by Jean Hugard, and Braue I think).
    Lord Magic likes this.
  9. Have RRTCM
    Hmmm... you have a great list there. Not that I want this thread to magically transform into a Marlo Tilt question but, I kinda am afraid of performing it in public (though I have hit a few performances on it by chance and done great by chance) PURELY because of no serious practice there.
    I guess that will be concern a little later :)
  10. Really helpful!
    Thanks...and I guess I will lighten up the praxtice for a day or two...and start my as usual practice again?
  11. Practice a new move until you feel you've done it better than previously, then repeat a few times, and then do something else.

    I generally will focus on a single move for maybe 20 minutes. Either working it out slowly until I get all the mechanics down, or slowly working up speed if I've got the mechanics already, or just conditioning it if I've got it pretty well figured out and am just working it into muscle memory. Then I stop doing that move entirely, and do something else. Either a completely different style of move (Like, start with the pass, move to a second deal - so none of the motions interfere with each other or overlap at all), or I'll go watch TV, read a book, take a nap, etc. I try never to do moves that are similar to each other in succession.

    I also don't practice for long stretches, but I will practice periodically throughout the day. Work on whatever it is, let my brain rest, work on it again. I'm lucky in that I work from home so I can just put whatever I'm working on near me and pick it up a dozen times a day, for a few minutes each time, without interfering with my job.
  12. You know, don't act like you don't.
    Lord Magic likes this.

  13. This may help :)
    Lord Magic likes this.
  14. Get the pass silent. I think that is priority number one. The pass is fast, but has violent movement. You can hide all movement by getting the audience to look some where else, but they will still hear it. Get a silent pass first.

    Then work on having the packets end up as square as possible when they coalesce. I think of this like shooting hoops. I don't just practice until I can make 10 free throws in a row. I practice until I can make 10 free throws in a row, all swish. Same with the pass. Don't just work on having the packets transpose as quick and silently as possible. Work on them landing as close to perfectly square as well.

    Finally, work on speed and then add the covers.

    If you are interested in magic as much as it seems you are, then I would ditch the Classic Pass for now and devote a lot more time into getting used to reading magic books. Books on methods, theory, and performance tips. There is a lot of powerful magic available out there that is far easier and requires much less time to master. All those hours you've spent on the Classic Pass, you could have already been practicing in the real world some working effects, building your character, understanding people and their behaviors, etc.

    But if you just really want an invisible Classic Pass and that's what turns you on at night...then yeah keep at it. Just remember that practice doesn't make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect. Good luck.
    Lord Magic and Maaz Hasan like this.
  15. No one will be burning your hands while doing a pass. The fact that you can do it seamlessly is just there in case people are looking at your hands. Sure it's satisfying when you do a pass in front of them and them but if you can pull it off it works.
  16. I agree. The opportunity for them to burn your hands while you do the pass should not exist. If they are being a hard customer, you don't need to perform, or you simply use a different control. And if they aren't , you use misdirection and redirection to do the pass.
  17. If you have great audience management and crowd control you don’t need an invisible pass. Work on it for awhile for sure but how long is up to you. Some moves are easier for some people but harder for others. Even after 15+ years of doing the pass mine still isn’t invisible. I have really tiny hands (my wife is 5’2” and we literally have the same size hands) Not complaining because it’s made me a better magician. I understand angles really well because I’ve had to. Always strive to make the move (especially the pass) as invisible as possible but please spend some time learning audience management. Sometimes all it takes is asking someone to move to the other side of you and you can (but don’t) do the sloppiest pass known to man and get away with it. So my advice is this, keep practicing but don’t forget to practice controlling or manipulating your environment. Go out one day and just practice holding peoples attention, getting them to do what you want when you want. See how the conversation leads to openings where you would be able to do the pass and get away with it. This sort of mental practice will allow you after awhile to instinctively know “when” to do your pass. Which in my opinion (others will disagree) is way more useful than a perfect pass.
  18. Kinda made my day!

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