A Slydini Rebuttal to Darwin Ortiz by Bill Wisch

Apr 12, 2020
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Hi all,
Wanted to alert you in this forum specifically to the new entry into my father's blog "Slydini - The Legacy". In this newly written entry, my dad offers a rebuttal to Darwin Ortiz's writings on Tony Slydini in his popular book "Strong Magic". Namely Ortiz's feelings on and the role of "challenge" in Slydini's magic and in magic in general. I hope you enjoy it.

https://www.billwisch.com/post/a-slydini-rebuttal-to-darwin-ortiz-by-bill-wisch
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RealityOne

Elite Member
Nov 1, 2009
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Kevin:

A great blog post by your dad.

I've always had a problem with Darwin' Ortiz's portrayal of Slydini. In all the videos I've seen (many are included in the blog post), Tony was really just having fun. It was part of his character and it was woven seamlessly into his presentations (even using it as misdirection). His expressions told the spectators that there was no way they could "see" what he was doing and that his chiding was all in good fun. He was playing the part of the magician and the spectator was playing their part. The resulting routine very much reflected the banter common to the comedy of the 1950s (Abbott and Costello, Laurel and Hardy, etc.).

There is an innate challenge in magic. Spectators are conditioned to try and figure out the method. In a counter-intuitive way, Slydini changed that conditioning by letting the spectators know that they would never "see" anything and encouraging them to give up. This is similar in some ways to Juan Tamariz's strategy of leading the spectator toward a method and then disproving it. Slydini acknowledge there was a method and encouraged the audience to give up trying to figure it out. "You look, but you don't see" is his way of saying that you have to surrender to the magic.

P.S. I really enjoyed seeing your dad lecture and perform at Marc DeSouza's a number of years back.
 
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Apr 12, 2020
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Thank you so much, RealityOne, for the kind words and the insights. I shared this post with my Dad and he said, "Yes! He gets it!"

He also remembers the Marc Desouza lecture well. He hopes to lecture again at Marc's soon- it's been too long. He estimated that was in 2011? Time flies.
 
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