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Discussion in 'Product Questions and Reviews' started by Josh Burch, Oct 13, 2014.
Thank you, hopefully I can keep up to date with the rest.
Yes, thanks so much for the reviews!
Appreciate the honesty as well!
We have many more surprises coming too...well into next year.
Maybe even a class fit for masters?
Joshua Jay is a young guy that has done tons to communicate to magicians at all levels. He is a very talented creator, publisher, and teacher. I think most will enjoy this lecture.
Hitchcock: This may be my favorite effect in the lecture. A card is torn, multiple cards are selected, the selections are found and there are two or three kickers depending on your view. This is an outstanding piece of theater, I don’t want to spoil the effect but it is has such a strong finish that you must see it! The deck even finishes clean and complete.
Inferno: This was voted the trick of the year last year. It is so cool. A matchbox is placed on the spectators hand, they pretend to burn all of the cards in a deck besides one. That one card is found to be the only card in the matchbox. This has the potential to be as strong as an effect like the invisible deck. The selection process is extremely fair and the sleight of hand necessary is fairly easy to do. You may need to purchase the gimmick in the DVD in order to perform it. If you are hazy on the questions to ask check out the uncut trailer on Murphy’s website, the performance scenario is just different enough that it may help out.
Trumped Triumph: A card is selected and the deck is shuffled face up into face down. With a spread all the cards are sorted out except for the selection. It is removed and when the cards are spread all of the cards of the selections suit have been reversed. You will need a table for this one but it adds a second kicker to the already powerful triumph.
Color Change: A single card magically pops out of the deck and changes with a wave of the hand. This is a slick, tough, fairly workable color change of a card. With a weeks practice you’ll have this down.
Lateral Bottom Deal/Triumph Aces: This is a fast paced ace cutting routine using a very cool move called the lateral bottom deal. The cards are all shuffled at the beginning and the last ace is found reversed in the middle of the deck. I love the pacing on this and the various subtleties he has added. Even if you don’t like this routine you will probably walk away with a couple subtleties that you can add to an existing routine.
Back in Time Meets the Jennings Display: Joshua Jay talks a bit about Jay Sankey’s triumph Back in Time and how he has updated it to make it a bit stronger. This makes it much harder to do to achieve the same effect but it makes it stronger in my opinion.
Prism: This is not a normal rainbow deck. Josh teaches how to do a handful of different effects with the deck and then when the time is right you can change the backs color. There is no deck switch! You could do a 5 minute set with this deck and as a finale change the deck colors without ever doing a deck switch.
He teaches a handful of classics here including card under box, think stop, and be honest what is it.
Phantom Deck: This is Josh’s update on the Omni Deck. The handling isn’t too different but the effect is slightly different. If you like the idea of making the deck turn transparent than this may be for you. It’s really a matter of taste as to which you would prefer, the phantom deck or the Omni deck.
Any card at Any Book Page: Any card is selected and any book page is named and the selected card is found on that exact page. This is a very interesting version of the Any Card at Any Number plot. I love that you can personalize the book to fit what ever occasion you are using. A note on the book, you will need a large book with a loose binding. This will not work with a some paperback books but most people will have a book that it will work with. I love the theater that surrounds this effect.
Triad Coins: This is a new coin gaff which allows you to easily produce or vanish 3 coins. He shows various applications for this including productions and vanishes of a few different types. These will be available sometime in 2015.
Clean Coin Vanish: This is a total coin vanish that is very deceptive. You Do not need sleeves but there is a small wardrobe requirement. I will be using this.
Coins and Cylinder (Performance Only): Josh performs a modern version of the coins and cylinder. He does not teach every aspect but he does explain that he uses the Triad coin gimmick as well as the Clean Coin Vanish during the routine.
Blind Card Trick (Performance Only): This fried me, and he didn’t teach it. The spectator thinks of a card while the magician is blindfolded. That card is found and the rest of the deck is shown to be completely blank on he faces.
Keep up the awesome work with these reviews!
Caleb Wiles is a lesser known card magician that has been slowly gaining popularity over the past years. He has various downloads available as well as a bi-monthly magazine column. If you are looking for card magic that is unique but not incredibly difficult than this is the place to go.
Re-Swindled: 4 jacks change places with 4 random cards, they change places again, and they then change into the aces. This is based on Paul Harris’ trick Reset with an added kicker ending. This is a nice commercial effect with a lot of good magic, if you already perform reset you could consider performing this. If you don’t do Reset Caleb’s version is very good.
I-Deck: The presentation here is a little bit corny in my opinion. This feels like an ambitious card trick that uses computer language as motivation for the appearances and changes in the effect. I have never been a huge fan of the ambitious plot or the idea of a “computerized” deck. This is not really my thing but if you are looking for ideas for an ambitious card trick then this may suit you. He ends with a production of a four of a kind as well as an idea to finish with Jay Sankey’s Paperclipped. He does not explain the inner workings of Paperclipped here so you will need to purchase that elsewhere.
Replicator: This is a color changing deck that can be used to follow I-Deck. The scripting is again computer related except this time it involves a virus infecting the deck. This leads to a card being selected, changing color and then the deck changes color as well. This can be performed with a signed card and was not too difficult to do. As with most effects of this type the deck itself is kind of limited to this specific trick.
Make a Wish: A card is selected and signed. It is lost and a picture of a birthday cake appears on the back. They then can blow the candles out and the flames disappear. This is an effect that you can go into at any time during a set. Caleb created this so that the moment that he finds out about a birthday at a restaurant gig he can go into it on the fly. There’s not a whole lot new here but it is a useful effect to learn. He gives some ideas here to personalize it for many different holidays .
Deal or No Deal: A card is selected and signed. The spectator then places a small suitcase on the card that they think is theirs. The suitcase not only finds the card but the card appears in the case as well. This is very strong and has a nice hook. There are a couple pieces of difficult business but it is worth it if you like the effect.
The Fully Automatic Card Trick: This is an epic effect, the cards are never touched by the magician. With the help of some cue cards the spectator is able to find their card, its other mates and the aces. This is very baffling and could easily close a close up set. You will need some table space for this effect.
Paparazzi: 2 envelopes are placed in the deck at random places. It is revealed that the entire deck has celebrities names on the back. The envelopes contain photos of the cards they were placed next to. That sounds a lot more complex than it is. If you are familiar with the gemini force then you get the gist of this effect. There are multiple points that he goes over to make the trick much more powerful and compelling.
Clue Cards: In this effect 4 special cards are used to divine a spectator's card. There are multiple kickers here and it really ties everything up in a bow at the end. This was based on a unique principle created by Paul Harris and at the end it feels like an early harris effect to me. It is simple, quirky and almost self working.
Magician Fooler: Every magician needs one of these if they perform for other magicians often. Caleb, very generously, reveals this. A card is selected and shuffled into the deck while the magicians head is turned. After a moment the magician is able to name the card selected.
Caleb Wiles is a talented guy for sure, his card magic is unique and fresh. I kind of expected more impromptu magic but in its place there was a lot of unique card magic with interesting plots.
I love Patrick’s Style. Everything he does looks impossible and he always surprises me with his the simplicity of his magic. This lecture is a great place to go if you would like to learn some of the magic on his most popular downloads, with a couple tricks on his DVD Patrified.
Extortion (Performance Only): A bill is given to a spectator and one of another denomination is held by the magician. With a small shake the bill is held at the fingertips and changes into the spectators bill. This is outstanding and is available at Sans Minds Magic for purchase.
Inflict: A card is selected and lost in the deck. A joker is sandwiched in between 2 kings and it visually changes into the selection. The Joker is then revealed to be reversed in the deck. This handling is closer to the handling taught on his Wire download at Theory11. It differs a little from thee handling taught on Patrified. This effect is very visual and much easier than I expected it to be although it still is tough.
DIY Aces: The spectator cuts the deck four times and finds the aces. This is probably the easiest trick that he performs. This is taught on Patrified as well but he gives a slight modification that helps make the trick a bit more dramatic. It is just as easy as the original but it does require a second more of preparation.
Collectors: The four aces are used to find 3 selected cards. The aces vanish visually from the top of the deck and pop out of the middle with the selections. This is an unpublished routine and I love it! A version is taught for 1 and 3 spectators. The control that he uses is very difficult and the productions are not self working but I was pleasantly surprised with the difficulty of it.
Thumbshot: Patrick shares a method to shoot a single card out of the deck. He insists it is an old move but Patrick does it as well as anyone out there.
Ice Shot: Created by the little known magician Valdemar Gesture, Patrick shows you how to shoot multiple cards out of the middle of the deck.
Birthday Card Trick: The magician writes “Happy Birthday” on a playing card. A card is then selected and signed. Magically the selected card becomes the birthday card. This is Patrick’s take on the mystery card plot. You will learn a small variation on his Mirror Force here which isn’t terribly difficult in practice but in this routine it gets fairly difficult.
Reflex: This is the full ring routine taught on Patrick’s download at Theory11.com. A ring slowly penetrates the magician’s finger over and over and over again. This is a very strong effect, and it looks so good in Patrick’s hands.
Vector: This is an impromptu haunted pack. The deck slowly cuts itself and then the selected card pops out. This has some funny angle considerations, Patrick prefers to perform it on the ground. There are various pieces of this that get difficult but the trade of of performing a haunted pack with a borrowed deck may be worth the sacrifice of time.
Paul Harris Pop Out Move: Patrick has tons of work on this and he jams a bit here showing its various applications. One of my favorite pieces was superhero themed. He dribbles the deck and seems to blow the selected card out of the deck.
Vow (Performance Only): Patrick has a new DVD coming out with a few versions of the anniversary waltz. Patrick is always innovative in his approach to the classics. Here 2 signed cards cleanly fuze together.
Mirror Force: I love this move, it is a switch, control and force all together in one move. This is very versatile and if you put in the small amount of practice that you need to master it you will have a great piece of magic.
Morph (Performance): 4 cards are selected and they all change into the aces visually. This is available on Patrified as well.
Tilt Subtlety: This is a nice way to make the spectator feel like they push the card in when you are actually performing the tilt.
I love Patrick’s magic. It really feels like it is gimmicked magic but for the most part it is all performed with a perfectly normal deck. This is a great one stop shop for some of Patrick’s best downloads.
Nicholas Einhorn is a polished professional and the type of magic that you will learn here will suit almost any professional magician. With the contents of this lecture you get a ready made act that you could use for the rest of your life with much success. Oh and he was clever enough to fool Penn and Teller so there’s that too.
Money Deck: The magician makes a ribbon spread, flips it over and on gathering the spread 4 coins appear. This is a visual, nearly self working instant production of four coins. You will need a gimmicked pack of cards as well as a close up mat. This is easy and elegant with minimal crafting skills required, a perfect opener for a formal close up act.
Classic Coin Matrix: This is a straightforward coin matrix. 4 coins are placed in the four corners of the mat. Four cards cover the coins and the coins progressively teleport to one corner of the mat. This is an excellent routine, it is fairly classical in execution and you will need to perform it on a mat.
Unicorn Coin in Bottle: A coin is inspected as well as a bottle. The bottle is corked and the coin is slammed through the side of the bottle. This is of course a worker of a routine, Einhorn has added many touches to make it stronger, more elegant and more suitable for walk around. If you already perform a walk around version of this effect than Einhorn’s handling may improve your own. If you do not perform this, Einhorn’s handling is a great starting point.
Coin in Bottle Pro Tip: This is an interesting idea for preserving old coin in bottle gimmicks. This will not fit all performers but it is an interesting way to disguise the more worn places in the gimmick.
Signature Triumph- A blank card is shown to be tucked away in the magicians wallet, on it is written “You Will Chose the...”. A card is selected and signed, it is lost in the deck and the deck is shuffled face up into face down. With a shake the cards all right themselves, with another shake the selection reverses itself in the deck. Returning back to the card in the wallet it is completely removed and is revealed to completely have predicted the spectator’s selected card. Not only that but when it is turned over it has become the spectator's signed card. This fooled me, it is a commercial mash up of triumph and card to wallet.
Co-op: This is Einhorn’s version of the Chicago Opener. It is quick and flashy and very commercial. A card is selected the back is shown to have changed colors and it immediately changes back. The Chicago Opener has been a go to piece for me and I have yet to find a variation that beats the original. Co-op seems to water the magic down and you are not left clean, that and the fact that it is highly unoriginal in method means that it was a low spot in the lecture for me. That said it is a strong professional piece, but it is bound to be compared to the original by magicians.
Gold Rush: Using a piece of cotton a borrowed ring is polished and in a burst of flame it vanishes and appears among the keys of the magician. This is a nice routine that you can use if you own a ring flight with a reel. There are a couple touches that he adds here to make it more portable and easy to get into. He mentions that he only uses this for parlor but it instantly resets which would make it great for walk around as well.
Rainbow Deck- A mystery card is introduced, and put aside. The deck is shuffled face up into face down, a card is selected and lost in the deck. With a snap all of the cards right themselves with the exception of the selected card. The selected card matches the mystery card and the rest of the deck lives up to its name. This is mind blowing. There are so many climaxes and every single thing fooled me. I didn’t have a clue. This takes a special deck of cards but it is more than worth it for the impact it has
Ring on String- This is a full fledged professional routine mixing his Pro-flite gimmick, nest of wallets, the invisible deck and the ring on string. This is a multi phase routine all using a borrowed ring. He does explain how both the nest of wallets and Pro-flite work but you will need to purchase them to perform this. The ring on string moves are excellent though and you can perform them all with just a shoelace and a single borrowed ring.
Nest of Wallets: Here he teaches a short simple routine with his nest of wallets. A signed coin vanishes, a sharpie vanishes, the sharpie returns and the coin ends up in the middle of the nested wallets. This is just a simple illustration of how powerful the nest of wallets can be as a utility device. It can be applied to any small object.
Autographical Transposition: 2 bills are signed, one by the magician and one by the spectator. As they are folded they switch places. This has been done by others before I don’t think it is the most powerful use of the utility move. I know that Jay Sankey has performed something very similar to this and I’m sure others have as well.
Serial Number Divination: Almost as a side note, when the magician asks for a bill they are able to divine a few of the serial numbers. This is a pure piece of mentalism but I wish it would play a bit bigger. The way he frames it you almost have to do it as part of a bigger piece of magic.
Hidden Influence: The spectator deals down to any card of their choosing, it is then revealed that the card they stopped on matches a card that has been in the magicians wallet from the start. This is a strong piece and the way it is staged it motivates the movements. This is a minor variation of a classic piece of magic that I know Max Maven, Teller and many others have work on. If you have been in magic for long you will know the method and besides his choice in props I can’t see this being a huge improvment.
Classic Force: Einhorn gives a couple tips on this force and an interesting routine or two that you can use to practice and perfect it. This isn’t completely new but it is clear that Einhorn knows what he is doing and he shares tricks that he has learned from performing in the trenches.
IMP Force & Applications: The magician lets a handful of cards drop from hand to hand and the spectator manages to glimpse one. Every single time the magician is able to divine the selected card which is only ever thought of. This is another classic with Einhorn’s tips. It is an impromptu version of the force made popular by TV magicians and was used on Now You See Me. Einhorn’s ideas are far from revolutionary here but he covers a lot of applications that you might find to be helpful.
The Martini Deck: A card is selected very fairly from a red deck and it is shown to be the only blue card in the deck. It is then cut into the middle, a new card is selected and it is shown to be red, the rest of the deck is then shown to be completely blue. This is a wonderful new application of a well known principle, with some excellent tips and tricks that will make it more powerful no matter how you do it.
Thought Extractor Book Test: As the magician flips through the pages of a borrowed book the participant says stop. They remember a word on the page and the word is revealed by the magician. This is amazing, it makes so many other book tests obsolete. You can use a borrowed book, you can write a prediction before hand and the only gimmick you need is a small card or bookmark. I can’t say much more without giving away more of the method but this was worth the price of the lecture alone.
ESP Reading: 5 boards with ESP symbols are placed in envelopes and mixed. The magician is blindfolded and is able to divine which symbol was placed where. This fooled me badly, it is an ingenious method that completely looks like real mind reading. This could be released seperatley and I’d gladly pay $40 for it.
This was an outstanding lecture. The magic that he taught that was not his own had unique touches and full routines included. You learn close up, walk around and stage magic. I can see most magicians getting something out of this whether you are just beginning or a full blown professional.
Mark Calabrese is a clever dude. His magic is on a different level than most. Everything he teaches on this lecture fooled me, badly. Even when I know what he was doing there was still enough grey area for me to be completely befuzzled. That said I don’t know if I will be performing any of the magic he taught. It is not difficult to do, it is all practical, and it is all powerful but they types of gimmicks he used will not suit my style. That said it may suit yours.
DVS: Mark tips the secret of his DVD produced and released by Criss Angel. He shows you where to purchase the gimmicks and goes through painstaking detail explaining how to use it both at a table and in walk around. These are all card tricks and they all use borrowed decks of cards. The DVS gimmick is brilliant and practical, it just weirds me out a bit and I wont be using it.
DVS Peek: The deck is shuffled, a card is peeked and the deck is shuffled again. The magician then deals through the cards using his intuition finds the selected card. This is an outstanding effect that you could perform blindfolded if you’d like. It is straightforward and to the point.
Copy Cat: The magician shows a prediction cards. The participant takes the deck reverses one card under the table and upon spreading the magician shows that his prediction matches. It’s that easy, you will end a little dirty at the end but he shows an easy way to clean up using a Dani Daortiz effect that you will need to learn separately.
Open Prediction: A prediction is made on the table. The spectator takes the deck and they begin dealing the cards face up. They deal one face down and the rest are dealt face up. The card they deal face down is cleanly shown to match the prediction. I can’t see a way to be closer to the holy grail of open prediction effects. I know there must be something out there but this one is very good. It is almost self working and the illusion is so clean it is almost worth sacrificing my comfort and using the DVS device. It does require some set up before hand.
The Hindu Card Trick Revisited: The spectator cuts to a card, cuts it into the deck a couple times and shuffles it away. Just by dealing through the magician can find the card selected. This involves a lot of dealing and cutting. Mark suggests only performing this for magicians and I have to agree. It is very dry, cancels out common methods as you go and is very deceptive.
Quincy: A signed card vanishes from the deck and appears in the magician's pocket. It is then lost in the deck again and manages its way back into the magicians pocket. This is bold and difficult. It combines some tough sleight of hand with the DVS device and you are left with a strong piece of magic.
DVS Wash Control: Through multiple shuffles and a wash, spreading the cards all over the table in a haphazard way, you are able to control the selected card. This is very fair. No real routine is taught but you can reveal the selection how ever you’d like.
DVS Dead Cut: Using DVS you can dead cut any predetermined card including a selected card. You can also use this as a card stab if you’d like.
Grab: A spectator names a card and the magician reaches into a dribble and pulls out the named card. You do need a gimmick to perform this and a lot of practice. He doesn’t really explain how to do it with any named card but you can use this for a selected card, a predetermined card or even a force. Even with the gimmick there is room for error and you need a lot of practice.
Traction: Under the guise of Shuffle tracking the magician cuts to a named four of a kind, finds the aces and they switch spots. This is a solid ace cutting routine with a nice kicker. Even if you don’t like the whole routine you may still like pieces of this. It’s almost like a repeat ace cutting routine if you perform it exactly as Mark it has some tough parts. You can get rid of most of the work if you set up the deck before hand.
iF@$#: A spectator takes the magicians phone. The magician is texted a word and the magician is able to divine it. The magician can then very cleanly reveal the spectators passcode. This is going to take a lot of commitment on the performers behalf. It will fry people with crazy direct mentalism and it’s easy to do. What you need to use to pull it off though is out of reach for many magicians. Those who are able to use it will fry their audiences. He gives a couple tips on the center tear as well.
His methods are not for everyone, but for a select few this lecture will give magicians reputation making material that is extremely powerful.
Jesse Feinburg is a young guy that has made a big name for himself. He has consulted for Criss Angel, and released multiple effects with Paul Harris. His magic is surprisingly practical and easy to perform. If you purchase this there’s you will be sure to take something away with you.
WTS (Performance Only): A mini Altoids container is opened and a Sharpie is produced. Jesse will be releasing this in the future. It is a utility gimmick that allows you to produce or vanish a Sharpie. The applications they talk about are impressive but he does not reveal anything pertaining to the method.
Spello Change: Scribbles on a card box slowly morph into a word or phrase that reveal itself visually. This is a simple, deceptive, visual effect that doesn’t take up any space in the box.
Coin in Box: This is a clean subtle coin through box. The coin is placed inside the cellophane, the box is turned over and the coin vanishes. It is then found inside the box. Using a similar gimmick you can switch out a prediction made on a box as well. I’m not sure about the idea to switch out a prediction but I do like the coin in box. It is clean, easy and non obtrusive. You might be able to combine both the Spello Change and the coin in box but I don’t see it as necessary or wise.
Yaya: On the DVD put out by Paul Harris you get a handful of ideas using this gimmick. On the lecture you will learn how to make a Sharpie lid vanish visually and reappear at your finger tips. The visuals are interesting here but I’m not sure if I love the effect.
McStraw: I know Dan Hauss has some work on this as well but jesse’s has some stark differences. Basically the red stripe on a straw slowly and visually changes yellow. You are then able to change it back to red, and you finish with one side red and the other side yellow. This is an interesting piece but I don’t see a really good place to perform it.
Call Box: A flat empty card box is displayed fairly, it is shown to be empty and the magician pulls their cell phone out of the box. Of course to perform this you do need a phone that can actually fit in a card box. There are some angle issues here but it is a completely normal box and phone.
Blurr: You can borrow a phone for this, the magician slowly erases the apps on a phone. Then they reappear instantly. The magician then makes one spectator lose the power to see the phone apps, but when it is shown to the rest of the audience the phone is normal. This is outstanding and completely baffling. I feel like this was the best piece in the lecture, if you have the right kind of phone (a newer iPhone) you have a great impromptu miracle without any apps. Jesse was not sure if it would work on Android phones, it doesn’t. My family all have Android phones of different models and it wont work on any of them as is. That doesn’t mean that with some work you can’t fix it up to get a similar trick.
Rip Off: A card is taken out it can be signed (I don’t see this as necessary) the corner is torn off placed in the magician’s mouth and it restores itself. Another corner is torn off and it appears in an impossible location. It is impromptu and only uses a single card from a borrowed deck. He makes reference to Blake Vogt’s Regeneration because they share some similarities, the credit really goes to Dalton Wayne’s Bite Me as his version of the same effect is much more similar. In either case Jesse has made removed the gimmicks. He makes reference to a Daniel Madison effect as well. Really this is a Jay Sankey idea that Madison has a lot of work on. Anyways, Feinberg's effect is unique and to the point.
Syncro: Jesse’s take on the Erdnase color change. Two cards change at once with a pass of the hand, you will swear he uses dupes but he doesn’t. This is super cool and I was completely fooled. You can use this to also reverse a card in a visual way.
Animate and Restore: This is a cool trick but he really struggles with the handling and slaughters the presentation. I’m not sure but they may have cut out part of the performance as well. The gimmicks involved are complex and I can’t see many performers using this. If you like this effect I would recommend checking out the DVD released by Paul Harris. It’s worth mentioning that Jesse really didn’t feel like sharing this but was coaxed into doing so. This explains some of the tough to watch performance.
Shadow Box (Performance Only): A card is selected and signed. The lights are dimmed and using the light from a cellphone you can see the shadow of everything in the box. The magicians finger enters the box and the folded up selected card materializes. This is neat, I can’t think of a professional performing environment where it would work. If you like this you will not learn it on the lecture. Instead you will need to check out the DVD put out by Murphy’s.
So that’s it you get a handful of funky fresh magic by one of magic’s most creative young guys. If you like the effects in most cases the methods are very practical with the possible exceptions of Mcstraw, and Animate and Restore. There is definitely stuff here that i would like to add to my repertoire.
Before this lecture I was familiar with some Chris Korn’s television work as well as a few things that he has created with coins. He is a laid back cool guy, I think of him as a type of mix between Hugh Laurie and Owen Wilson. The majority of the lecture focused on coins with some other random items.
Fire Ball: The magician offers a participant a shot of whatever they would like. They name their poison. The magician then lights a piece of paper and in a blaze of fire a small bottle appears with whatever type of drink that they chose. This is a fun quick trick that I can see working at a club or bar. You will probably need a jacket for this unless you’d like to change his handling.
3 Coin Vanish: 3 coins vanish in slow motion and they reappear. This is a funky visual routine with a handful of surprising moments for magicians and laymen. It is of medium difficulty, most will be able to do it with a few weeks practice. You don not need a table but will need a common coin gaff.
Jam on Sleeving: Chris covers a few ways to practice sleeving and teaches various ways to use sleeving while performing. This is, as Chris would say “the real work on sleeving”. There are some great tips here.
Coin Flury: This is similar in method to David Roth’s flurry but he talks about phones as he justifies every move of his. Finally instead of a jumbo coin he produces his cellphone. This is a great modern coin routine that is highly motivated. I love his motivation here and his idea to replace the jumbo coin with a phone, it is much less “magicy” now and a bit more “street”.
3 Fly: Chris Korn has his roots back with the likes of Troy Hosier and Chris Kenner. Korn’s take on Kenner’s classic is very pretty and eliminates an awkward move used in the original handling. 3 coins held at the fingertips visually disappear and reappear in the other hand. The presentation looks very similar to Kenner’s original but with the addition of a unique coin gaff you can now clean it up so it is even more deceptive.
Hot Summer Night: This is an idea for a card revelation using condensation from a glass of water. I can see it being a very strong revelation but it is not performed because it requires a “Hot Summer Night” to work. This could work well at a bar or resteraunt where you have a moment alone at a table to set things up.
The Story of FISM: Chris takes a break for a minute and tells his hilarious experience at FISM. There’s no magic explained here, just a good story with a little bit of potty humor.
Television Magic: Here Chris talks about his various experiences on television. He gives some great insight as to what to look for when performing for a network and explains what you might want to do to maintain your credibility.
Impromptu Cups and Balls: Chris’ ideas on the cups and balls. Using objects from around the house Chris shows how he puts together a powerful piece of magic at a moments notice. I do like his sequence here and how he gets his final loads but I am not a fan of his choice of props. Of course you are not limited to the types of cups and balls that he uses.
So that’s it. If you like gaffed coin magic or bar magic you may enjoy some of this lecture. If you enjoy being able to throw together some killer magic at a moments notice then you may also like this lecture. I enjoyed it all around. If you dislike coins I would probably steer clear and check out another product.
Bizarro is a creative guy, he is probably my favorite magician named after a Superman villain. He goes about making magic differently than anyone else in the industry. In this lecture he let’s you in on some of magic’s different secrets. This is not a classic “do a trick, teach a trick” lecture. You will learn a couple effects but for the most part you will learn how to build, sculpt and create your own props.
As a disclaimer this really isn’t a lecture for young magicians. There are a couple adult jokes that might not be great for the younger crowd but more importantly the tools and materials used to create the props are in many cases very dangerous.
Oreo Box: A box of Oreos is shown to be empty, it is torn at the seam and opened up as proof. It is folded up and it refills itself. The magician can then pass out all of the cookies to be eaten by the audience. This is probably the simplest prop to make in the lecture but it still requires a lot of arts and crafts. I think out of everything that he discusses this is the thing that I am most likely to make and perform with/
Sprite Production: A napkin is displayed on both sides with a picture of a sprite bottle on one side. The bottle is produced with a wave of the napkin. This is a nice simple bottle production. It is pretty classic in method. You do have some clothing requirements in order to perform it.
The Incessant Cap: The bottle of Sprite is shown to be missing its cap. It then a pears magically on top of the bottle. It is then removed and jumps back onto the bottle. You can make this as long or short as you’d like. This requires a lot of arts and crafts and some extra little bits that you will need to purchase. The effect is very bizarre but I the effect doesn’t really fit my style.
Straw Penetration: 2 straws are removed from a package, and they are both bent in a hook. They are then passed magically through each other. Bizzarro’s good friend Kyle Marlett used this with candy canes on his show the weekly with Penguin magic. Personally, I feel like the effect is better with candy canes but you learn the basic method here and with a little work you can work out the candy cane version.
PK Pin Wheel: Using only his mind the magician causes a pinwheel to spin. This looks very simple and really the method is fairly simple but it will take a lot of work to construct. I do like his various ideas with the prop even if it can’t be examined by any means.
Nose Be-Gone: With a sneeze the magician’s nose pops off and nothing but a black hole is left. He then reattaches it with a twist. If you like sylvester the jester type magic than this is for you. The gimmicks can be set up for relatively inexpensive and you have a cartoon like effect. He also teaches a way for you to pull your face off leaving a big black hole using a similar method.
CD Card Transpo: A signed card turns into a CD and ends up inside of the CD player where the CD was moments before. Will Tsai released completely different effect with a similar method a few years ago. You will need to do some arts and crafts as well as make some electronic changes.
Rock and Roll: A CD case is opened and a rock and a roll are pulled out. The CD is then removed and the case is shown to be very flat. This is similar to the classic briefcase illusion with smaller props that may fit the style of some.
Silk Through White Board: Bizzaro is very well know for his silk through hand effect and as far as I know this is as close as he has come to revealing it. A small red dot is drawn on a white board and a silk is slowly pushed through. Now while this has similarities to the silk through hand it is obviously different in effect and method. This is much closer to the classic silk through mirror in method.
Props and Creativity Section
Printing on Fabric: This has many uses in magic. He covers what types of ink and materials to use as well as a handful of props that this will help you with.
Making A Little Bottle: Here you get to see Bizzaro in action creating a prop. He takes a small Corona bottle and slowly transforms it into a small Heineken bottle. He goes over the best tools and materials that you will need to make it for yourself. Much of the knowledge here can be used in other situations and props.
Reels: Bizzaro talks a ton about badge reels and their various uses. He gives 3 or 4 ideas throughout the lecture using these neat little gadgets.
Adhesive Porn: Bizzaro talks about all the different types of glues that you can use on different type of materials. He also teaches how to mold with some types of glue. He really goes into detail on glue here and I really can’t say much more without re-giving his lecture.
Fixing Problems: Using a salt shaker launcher as an example he talks about how to make one and how in a pinch he solved a problem he had. There is an interesting lesson in this to be had concerning creativity.
Latex Props: Here he takes us through how to repaint and put new life into old latex props. He also goes into detail on how to make your own latex props. He walks through how to make molds and goes through different materials that will help in the creation of your own latex props.
Springs: Here he lets you in on where he gets some of his springs. If you want a prop to snap or pop this is worth looking at.
Crash Course in Electronics: Here bizzaro takes electronics and breaks them down in laymans terms. He shows how to make LED light light up, make things spin, open and close. With just things that you’d get at Radioshack you’ll be able to make up your own moving props. He even glazes over wireless.
V***f***: With this neat gadget Bizzaro takes you through how to make copies of props shells and molds. This is commercially available device and it’s uses are nearly endless in magic.
This is a crazy lecture and it’s tough to compare with the other products out there. There were tons of times that Bizzaro skipped over little things but there were also times where he would just throw in an extra idea here or there. If you want to make your own props check it out, I feel like I’m a pretty crafty guy and I learned a lot. If you are looking for tricks this probably isn’t for you.
I feel like Jeff Prace is going to be the next Joshua Jay. He is a young guy with a creative mind and a great filter for good magic. I can see myself using almost every effect he taught which is quite the accomplishment. Let’s get into the details.
First is a performance of a new effect. A card is selected and the numbers on a credit card rearrange themselves to form the selected cards name. This will be released with the gimmicks hopefully before Christmas through Kozmo magic.
Pr-Aces: This is a very visual flash production of the aces and it is fairly easy to perform. He gives 3 main handlings, the first is from a borrowed deck. He explains how to set it up in full view of the spectators. In the other two handlings he shows how to make the backs change color.
Where Time Stands Still: 3 cards are selected using a watch gift card. The cards then perfectly match the time on the watch. He gives a handful of ways to have the card selected including a sleightless gimmicked handling, one that takes some set up and a nearly impromptu version. This is neat revelation even if the method isn’t completely original.
The Contest: A hand full of spectators take a packet of cards. They shuffle it up as does the magician. Everyone shows their selected card and they have produced a four of a kind. This is a wonderful adaptation of a trick in Royal Road to card magic. It was updated by Tom Dobrowolski and taught with his permission. This really feels like the type of trick Dani Daortiz would think up. I have used it already and it is quite surprising even if you are familiar with the method in Royal Road.
No More Card Tricks: This is one of Jeff’s signature effects and is a nice version of Paul Harris’ solid deception. Multiple cards are placed in the deck and with a toss it is completely enveloped by black tape. This is a ton of fun and I see it as a very visual, deceptive version of solid deception. I’ve built my own gimmick for this and used it a few times with great results.
Strawsome: Some soda is sucked up through a clear straw and changes instantly in color. You can make it look like you are drinking Coke all night and when you’d like you can change it into orange soda or just about whatever you’d like. This is an extremely situational effect but I followed his instructions to the T and fooled my wife while we were eating out. You pretty much need to be near a soda fountain to set it up how he says but I imagine you could set it up at home as well with a little creativity.
The last section was all techno magic using cell phones, mp3 players and ear buds. Jeff has become very well known for his contribution to genre and currently writes a column in the Linking Ring all about tech magic. So this guy has a lot to offer on the subject.
Short Circuit: With split you can move sound from one headphone to another. Jeff presents this saying that his earbuds are broken and in his attempt to fix them he causes the sound to travel from one side to the other. He then causes the sound to fill both headphones. This is a very interesting concept and an odd experience for the spectator. Following Jeff’s instructions I was able to make my own version and performed this a few times with great reactions. As a note this takes a fair bit of one time preparation with any MP3 or CD player but once you are set up you can use a borrowed set of headphones.
Earfun: A headphone suspends itself in the air at the magician’s fingertips. With a snap it becomes limp again. This is a cool update on a classic rope effect. Unfortunately, these 2 effects don’t fit together very well. To put it simply you will not be able to use a borrowed set of headphones. The gimmick takes a few minutes to build but once you do, you have an interesting little piece of strange.
Orbit: A packet of gum is shown to be empty with all but one piece. The gum is closed and upon opening it is instantly refilled. You get an in studio performance as well as a clip of Jeff performing on the Today Show. This is an easy to do very different piece of magic. The method is simple and even if you don’t chew gum you can easily make this up with a single packet. I was completely fooled by this each time it was performed.
Using one album and no apps the magician is able to make an album of lost photos slowly appear in his phone. Jeff talks about a few applications of this including a revelation/ changing photo. This is cool and got a lot of my juices going! Jeff talks about how his idea is still in development but it is a very good idea.
There are only a few magicians that I wish to emulate and Jeff Prace is one of them. I would love to be able to be creative like Jeff Prace. He has a sound magic mind and I feel like he is the next Joshua Jay. I think most magicians would enjoy this lecture.
Jack Carpenter is the definition of the hardcore card guy. The majority of the material discussed on this lecture is tough, even the easier stuff requires some sleight of hand. Carpenter really relishes the art of card magic and takes his creative cues from the classics as well as young magicians like Patrick Kun, Lee Asher and Dan and Dave. This is definitely not a lecture for the feint of heart when it comes to sleight of hand with cards.
The Twenty-One Dollar Hustle: Using just a few bucks the magician is able to show a fun hustle with a magical climax. The spectator asks for change for a twenty and upon receiving the money they are found to be four dollars short. This is a great trick that you can perform out of your pockets or wallet. There are no gimmicks needed and the sleights are very easy to accomplish. This may be my favorite piece on the lecture and I plan on using it.
King Swing: 4 Kings are removed, a selection is made and lost in the pack. The Kings change to aces and then vanish to reveal the selected card. If that sounds a bit complex it is supposed to, that is the premise of the trick. The idea is that magicians like to make things as complicated as possible. This is a pretty big showpiece and while I don’t feel like the presentation was as polished as it could be with a couple minor tweaks I feel like a talented magician could make this into a theatrical piece of magic. There are some pieces in it that don’t seem to flow real great and it needs a lot of table space. It is one of the less difficult pieces on the lecture but it isn’t too easy either.
Slip Cut Jam: This is one of my favorite parts of live lectures. Although he was not planning on it Jack goes into a session on the slip cut, how to use it and what he thinks are dos and don’ts when it comes to this classic move. He gives some valuable info concerning authentic gambling situations here as well.
Pocket Triumph: Jack calls this an almost self-working triumph. This routine would not really be considered self working but with a little practice it is performable at one point it does require the magician to perform a p**m and I know that many magicians will shy away from it for that reason. There is a great substitute for the Tenkai optical revolve taught here as well as an interesting presentation point that really sells this as a super-natural feat. This is not an easy or extremely magical version of triumph but it is a very impressive routine.
Way Off Balance: This is a startling instantaneous transposition of the aces and the rest of the deck inside the box. The method is very devious and the handling is fairly bold. It uses a classic Marlo move and it completely fooled me the first time. I won’t be using this but I do love how startling it was.
Shuffle Shift: This is a multiple shift that can be used to control a four of a kind that has been distributed throughout the deck to the bottom in the action of performing an in the hands shuffle. He also shows how to reverse the cards as well. To tell the truth the reversal is slightly easier then the control. In Carpenter’s hands it’s not the most elegant of moves and he really plays it up to look pretty sloppy. For those who put the time in to master it, this could be a very useful move and you don’t need a table to perform it. I would prefer other methods for the most part.
Scissor Shift: You can control q four of a kind that has been distributed through the deck up to the top in the midst of doing a one handed shuffle. If you can do a one handed shuffle then it wont be too difficult to master. If you can’t do a one handed shuffle then you have years of practice ahead of you in order to do this.
Table Shift: Using a brilliant innovation by Howie Schwartzman Jack has created and excellent table shift that you can perform directly from a hard table. This is pretty easy to do and is a full deck switch. I agree with Jack when he says that it really fits actual cheating scenarios best but this is a really sweet move that looks very natural.
LeClaire Pass: This is an application of a principle taught in Charlie Miller’s cascade control. It is readapted in Carpenter’s hands to look very pretty but not nearly as flashy as Miller’s classic. Jack performs this beautifully but I could not get my hands to do it right. This will take some practice. It is most useful to control a single card to the top of the deck without a table.
The Jail House Shuffle: From time to time during the lecture it is really tough to follow Jacks movements. This is one of those times. He goes over a simple way to stack a deck and a way to perform a very pretty full deck false shuffle. It took me a good 15 minutes just to perform the false shuffle once because it was referenced so vaguely and I’m still lost as to how he stacked the deck. I would have liked some more clarification here because both applications are not technically difficult and could be very useful.
Z-Break Shuffle: This is a very natural approach to an overhand shuffle and it keeps the entire order of the deck. It is very simple and is taught very clearly. One of its selling points is that you don’t need to do any single card runs to perform the shuffle but you can add a few if you’d like. This is chunky shuffle sequence which has it’s place from time to time but I prefer a more elegant shuffle.
Zarrow: Jack’s work on the Zarrow is beautiful. He has combined a deceptive running cut and telescope display here that make the Zarrow look extremely deceptive. This is the kind of shuffle that you could use exclusively and no one would be the wiser.
Pimped out Charlier: The Charlier shuffle is one of the most underused and easy to do shuffles out there. To add an extra layer of deception and elegance Carpenter has figured a way to add a nice cascade to the mix. This might be the easiest piece taught on the lecture and it is beautiful.
The Lightning Palm and Lady Killer: Wow this is a powerful move. I can get the idea of what is going on but he never actually broke the move down. He performs it a few times and explains what is happening but you never actually see the sleight. This is complex and there is very little real explanation of it all.
The Pure Count: This has similar problems with the lightning palm. Basically you can steal a card away as you reverse count a small packet. It looks great but there needs to be more detail in order to learn it properly.
The Fingertip Count: While this is a bit more advanced it then the top two palms it is explained just a little better. Basically you are able to count 4 cards in a stand up situation and palm off one invisibly. It looks so great I just wish the teaching was a bit more in depth as I said before.
Mixing moves by Allan Ackerman Lee Asher and Hofzinser you get a great palm that you can do while the spectator believes that their card is outjogged in the deck. This is a fun move but is tough to perform. It’s the kind of card sleight that move monkeys will really like. I prefer Patrick Kun’s Mirror Force for these situations but Jack’s move is very interesting in its own right. He really jams a little bit on each idea from each creator, this was the most interesting to me.
If you are into the small detailed sleights and intricacies in card magic then this is a great lecture for you. Some moves are covered in depth with others being just touched on leaving you with a lot of work to do on your own. The hard core card guys out there will be sure to find something that will get their creative juices flowing. For the talented move monkeys as well this is a must have.
Rich Ferguson has been well known in the magic community for quite some time. He performs mainly for celebrity cocktail parties, and high profile parties. In this lecture he shares his secrets concerning this type of venue, the business aspect of things, some tips for Youtube magicians and shares some cool card effects along the way. I was pleasently surprised by the amount of value he offers in this lecture. Let’s get into what he covers.
Magic Jokes: To start off Ferguson hits on a handful of classic jokes about magicians. They are not his own by any means but they are kinda funny. Along with this lecture he gives a link to a small collection of other jokes. These are corny for the most part but there may be a joke or two worth repeating. As a warning some of the jokes are meant for adult audiences, there are a couple that are kind of suggestive or slightly vulgar.
Gags and Quick Openers: Rich runs through a couple gags here. You get an update on the “NO” gag, with a small handful of one liners, prop gags and presentation ideas for a booktest and the vanishing liquid effect. Some of this is funnier than others but these are mainstays for the magic community and will prove to be useful to many. He touches on the methods a little bit but this is really his ideas on staging. If you are not familiar with a booktest method already you will not be able to perform what he teaches but if you do there’s a handful of good ideas here that I found helpful.
Ambitious Subtleties: The next section of the lecture is devoted to the ambitious card. The moves are fairly classic but there are multiple subtleties and touches that he adds to make it feel a lot different than most ambitious card routines. You won't learn a tn when it comes to the moves and sleights involved but there are some great tidbits that will help any routine out.
Branding: Rich Ferguson “The Icebreaker” has some serious branding here he explains why he is called the Icebreaker and what it has done for him to have such a strong brand.
AI Magic: Rich has created an app that makes it look like Siri can read our mind. This is a very cool app. Right now it can only guess playing cards but as people download the app they will receive more money and add free features and updates. Rich says that he wants to make the app completely customizable allowing Siri to divine a spectators appearance, birth date or even their phone number. Even if you don’t download this lecture if you like I-Phone magic download this app and help Rich out. This is only available on the I-Phone right now but the plan is to release it on other devices as well.
Even without the app you learn how to use a phone invisibly in conjunction with a deck of cards to determine a selected card. I have seen this application before but for those who have not seen it it is very clever and is an easy method that could be mastered by just about anyone.
Voodoo Card Redux: This is a restaging of an old Paul Harris effect but Rich really takes it up to the next level. He has added a couple different prediction revelations and a lot of audience participation.This trick is used to explain various techniques he uses on television appearances. The trick itself is excellent and the tips on television magic are very interesting.
Using the same principles he then shows you how to apply them to a live performance to great effect. He has one spectator name another spectators freely selected word but it could be easily applied to a card or other type of selection.
Psychological Ring on String: Rich adds psychology to almost every effect he performs and here he explains 2 ways to apply psychological principles to this effect. The string passes through a borrowed finger ring multiple times while in the spectators hands or inches from their face. I wasn’t too enthused by his handling but he brought up some interesting handling tips.
Funky Moves: Rich has a different story in magic than most magicians and the way he approaches creativity because of this he has come up with a couple knacky and unique moves. This next section concentrates on these moves.
Inside Second: This is Rich’s take on the second deal. With it you can deal the second card towards yourself. No this isn’t a classic handling of the move but I think you’ll find that it will fit into many magic routines and it is easier than many of the classic second deals. He also teaches an interesting steal that you can perform as well using this move standing up allowing you to do a switch or color change if you wish.
Sniper: In the midst of a cut a card is shot out of the deck. On paper this sounds like Daryls hot shot cut but the actual shot is markedly different even to a layman. Depending on you handling you can make the card shoot out face up or face down.
For the last 2 hours of the lecture he covers aspects of business and professionalism. He talks about everything from practice, personalization, contracts insurance, what to charge, and how to get more gigs. He roleplays conversations with possible clients, how he organizes his clients how he assures repeat bookings and how he takes care of his clients. The material here is very accessible to both amateurs looking to go professional and professionals looking to become a little more serious. He even covers why he believes that even the most basic amateur must charge at least $250 a gig. The information here is super valuable and I think just about anyone who wants to be paid for there magic needs to listen to this
He finishes with his thoughts on Youtube and how he got to be so successful on Youtube. I have and maintain my own channel and really didn’t feel like his tips helped me. I was expecting a little more here that would be applicable to most Youtubers but it didn’t really impress me.
Man this is an informative lecture. I feel like he covered presentation ideas for professionals, funky moves for move monkeys, and out of this world tips for professional magicians. There really is something for everyone here. This is one of the most helpful lectures on the business of magic that Murphy’s has put out.
Hey everyone I have put all of my video reviews of Murphy's Lectures on a single playlist that makes it a little easier to watch all together. If you subscribe to my channel you'll see all my newest reviews as they come out.
Chris is a lot of fun to watch and is very talented. He teaches some of his most popular downloads on this lecture and most of what he does teach can quickly be applied to most magicians close up repertoire. If you are not sure go ahead and take advantage of Murphy’s new feature where you can see the first 20 minutes of any lecture ou wish for free. This will be sure to help you make a better purchasing decision. Follow this link for the details http://www.murphysmagic.com/free20/
Invisible deck/ Professor Cheer's Comedy Rope Routine (Performance Only): To open Chris gives an example of how he fills the stage with just a simple card trick. This performance is a fun sample from Chris’ stand up show. It is very funny in my opinion and it’s a nice illustration of how you can update classic effects. The invisible deck is not taught but most magic dealers have it available. The rope effect is also a classic, and it is not taught.
Mr. Hands: This is Chris’ version of a color change in the spectators hands. One of the strongest effects in magic. Chris has taken this effect and made it truly surprising. There’s a lot of great touches on this and a great utility move is taught as well. I like this enough that I think I’ll try to add it to my repertoire.
Ambitious Card and Lazy Rise: This is a quick, basic ambitious card routine. It is simple to do and follows the classic idea of a card appearing on top of the deck over and over again. The lazy rise is a nice visual addition to the ambitious. A card is out jogged and progressively rises up the deck. This is pretty tough but is not as difficult as other versions including Ray Crosby’s original.
The Running Man: This is Chris’ version of Tyler Wilson’s version of the Anniversary Waltz. In this version 2 cards are selected and signed, they are placed in different packets one vanishes from its packet and appears next to the other selection. The cards then fuse together with a signature on the face and a signature on back. There is a great reason he uses for having the back of the second card signed and I think that the 2 packets really help there to be multiple magical moments.
Fake Routine (Performance Only): I laughed out loud about this. This is a series of fishy movements and actions where nothing happens. Chris performs a series of pseudo sleights and never finds the selected card. It’s like the modern art version of magic. It is a routine that is only appropriate for magicians and I found it to be very funny.
Mediumph: This is an in the spectators hand triumph. There is a nice addition here that makes it make so much sense when compared to other triumphs. The magician tries to magically rearrange the cards so that they match the spectators and in the process magically finds the spectators card. There are a couple things that I really like with this triumph and you really don’t need a table.
Safety: This is Chris’ take on the linking safety pins. It is very refreshing. At one point the linking safety pins were very popular but lately they have become less so. Chris’ version is very cool and everything is examinable afterwards. I will experiment with this and may put it in my own repertoire. I love that it feels so unique when compared to card and coin tricks.
A card is selected sandwiched between 2 cards, and put aside. Another card is sandwiched and set aside repeatedly until there are 4 cards on the table. One card vanishes and the spectators selection is found sandwiched once again. This is a crazy cool routine that might be best suited for magicians but it looks very nice and was a ton of fun to watch.
The Hole Thing (Performance Only): This is a crazy visual sandwich effect where a selected card is found by 2 jokers with a hole drilled through the middle. It looks very impossible and is so pretty. He exposes the gimmick here but does not explain the routines he performs. He uses this mainly to illustrate a point of how he gets creative with his magic.
Chris is a funny quirky guy. His magic is just as fun and quirky as he is. If you like close up magic with cards and like magic inside jokes than this is a great lecture for you. This has been one of my favorite lectures to date.
Alan Rorrison is a force among street magicians. His mind is prized among all sorts of people including Dynamo and Troy. He has consulted for a lot of guys and it is for a good reason he is very creative. Check it out.
Jorge Key Trick: Alan starts off with an effect with a borrowed key. He slips it off a key ring and then pops it right back on penetrating the brass and steel of the key. This can be performed with a borrowed ke most of the time but it will require a certain clothing set up.
Broken and Restored Key: Using a similar method a borrowed key is broken in two and restored visually. This is very similar to the Jorge Key Trick in its angles and clothing restrictions. You will probably need a jacket for both and you can’t have someone behind you while you perform it.
Ungimmicked NFW: This is the first effect Alan ever created. Basically four jokers are shown. They turn over one by one and then are revealed to have changed to the aces. This is a simple packet trick and if you like the idea of a twisting the aces effect with a simple kicker that you find that this is fairly easy to do with some practice.
Card to Wallet: This is a quick card to wallet that you can do with most wallets with just a little work. This is a fairly easy to do card to wallet with a fairly normal wallet. You will need a table to work with but the card can be signed and you should be able to use your everyday wallet for this.
Card Transpo: This is a very cool transpo based on Patrick Kun’s effect inflict. A selection changes places with a joker and the joker ends up in the center of the pack. This is a cool routine with a knacky color change. If you can hit it it will look great. I actually prefer Patrick’s original routine.
Spectator Sandwich: This is an excellent sandwich routine where the spectator is allowed to throw the 2 jokers into a dribble and they find their own selection. I really like this trick but it does require some gaffed cards. Rorrison covers a handful of methods to make the cards and even after you create the gaffs they still look very innocent. It may take you five minutes to make them how rorrison explains it.
R***h Jam Session: Alan talks about a few effects that he uses a r***hing stick for. He also goes into possible alternatives that are cheap to use and easy to find. I found this section to be very helpful. Unfortunatley he doesn’t explain the difference between the feel of the sticks to the sprays here. I personally would like to know the differences.
“Cheeky” Cap in Bottle: This is an effect with a signed cap in bottle that you can basically set up on the fly. The cap is placed in the spectator's hand and the bottle is smashed on top of the cap. This is an interesting take on the effect, I like how impromptu it is and that when you do it the cap is left open inside the bottle. It is very clever but Rorrison’s performance of it probably doesn’t give it justice.
Pop Cap: The magician causes the cap of a bottle to magically pop off. This uses a gimmick that you can add to most bottles. There are no threads used so you kind of have to wait for the gimmick to work itself. This seems like too much effort for such a small effect.
Coin to Wallet: The spectator signs a coin and inside the magicians wallet is a sealed envelope. The coin is found inside. This is not very unique in method or presentation and Rorrison lacks the presentation skills needed to pull it off. It is a fine trick but there’s nothing new here. He goes over a nice coin vanish here which is this efects biggest saving grace.
Bill Through Head Phones: A borrowed bill is pulled through the cord of a set of headphones held by the spectator. The bill can be borrowed and signed if desired and the headphones are ungimmicked as well. I think I would most likely use this in place of the silk through microphone stand. The gimmick is similar but I love how organic it feels.
Alarm and Prediction: With this cool little piece of strange you can cause you alarm to go off on your phone when ever you would like. This is an easy to do very strong effect. Alan uses it to predict a selected card with the alarm sounding as the spectator deals. While this is easy to do and very clever you will need a very expensive gimmick in order to perform it.
Dice App: Alan takes you through an app that you can use to predict a virtual dice roll.This is an interesting app but it does require a very expensive gimmick in order to work. I didn’t really see anything special in this app and didn’t really like it.
So all in all Alan is a nice guy, he has some creative magic but very little of it was good for my style of magic. I think that there are some who will find this lecture to be helpful or insightful but I think that there are a whole bunch of other lectures available that would far surpass what was taught here.
Jay Sankey is a crazy creative guy. If you haven’t heard of him then you have been living under a rock. Jay has created countless effects for David Copperfield, Blaine and Criss Angel. Many of his magical creations have become modern classics and when you purchase this download you get to learn a handful of these classics.
Don’t Feed the Cards: This is a fun effect using a deck of cards and a rubber band. The cards are shown to be able to act on their own accord with the help of a rubber band. As half the cards are dribbled the rubberbanded cards jump out trapping a selection. The most difficult part of this routine is the control at the beginning. As far as the trick goes it is a viable cool effect but I feel like in recent years there have been more direct methods of finding a card with a banded deck. Sankey’s version is worth knowing but in my opinion it is not the best version out there.
Cardboard Contortionist: Two cards are selected from a normal deck and are ripped in fourths. They are then restored. This is extremely practical, it can be done with a borrowed deck and the cards can be signed. The cards are fairly beat up afterwards but they can be handed out for examination. Jay says that this can play for a very large crowd and I don’t see why i wouldn’t. This is a gem!
Simple Division: On a whim Jay tosses this in. He takes a rubber band and visually splits it into two. This is a nice piece of eye candy that you can easily add to most rubberband routines. This would be a great opener.
Wichita Slip Jam: A Skype caller calls in looking for tips on Jay’s original switch The Witchita Slip. For those who understand the move you may pick up a few pointers. For those who do not know the move you will be able to get the gist of the move even if Jay does not specifically teach it.
Deranged(Performance Only): Pieces of a post card are fairly mixed face up and face down by a spectator. The magician correctly predicts exactly which pieces would be face up and which would be face down. This is now available by Murphy’s and completely fooled me. I’m going to have to get my hands on this.
Back In Time: This is Jay’s classic take on triumph. A spectator pulls a card out of the pack, it is returned and the deck is shuffled face up and face down. The spectator is given a card and it changes into their selection as the deck rights itself. This is a fairly simple to do effect with a minor bit of sleight of hand that really packs a punch much larger than you’d expect. This is a bonafide Sankey classic and should be learned by any Sankey enthusiast.
Mr. Clean Coins Across: Another great Sankey classic. Three coins magically pass from hand to hand. This is NOT a 3 Fly style coins across routine but is about as clean and visual as you can get without turning into a 3 Fly. The routine lives up to its name and it is very clean. It is also very difficult to do. I have played around with it for years and still do not have it down. This is not for the feint of heart.
Camouflage(Performance Only): This is a new product and Sankey performs it to drumb up some interest. He takes a borrowed pencil passes it through a deck of cards. It looked pretty good on screen and according to Sankey there are many applications using this gimmick.
Back Spin: Taught on a whim again Jay takes a detour to probably the most difficult effect he ever created. A card is selected and a coin is launched at the deck cutting it and rolling back into the magicians hand. Of course the deck has been cu to the spectators selection. Jay thows this in to illustrate a point and fails to get the effect to work but I bet someone will latch onto this and get it down, it just won't be me.
Topper: One of Jay’s go to moves, Topper is a wonderful utility move. He shares 3 applications of this relatively simple to do sleight and his ideas are bound to spark your own creativity.
Belly of the Beast: This is a funky transposition where the tear in one card moves to another. This is a fun take on the 2 card transpo and can be performed impromptu with any deck.
Magnetic Cards: This is super fun quirky version of the ambitious card. A “Magnet Card” pulls a card up through the deck multiple times until finally the card becomes the signed selection. This is also an impromptu miracle that has a great finish.
Group Hypnosis: 3 spectators remember cards from 3 different packs of cards. Mysteriously they all thought of the same card but the magician shows that the card they selected was never in the deck and was always in the magician's pocket. I love this effect and it flows well. I have performed it before with mixed results but it has the potential to really slay an audience
Slydini Sequence; This is a quick one coin routine adapted from Slydini. A coin vanishes both hands are shown empty and the coin appears in the magicians hands. This is a fairly simple set of coin moves with the perfect amount of psychology that really becomes a strong piece of magic.
Marrow: This is a super cheap and easy bill to impossible location. A borrowed bill is torn and the spectator hold onto the corner. The magician uses a straw as an impromptu magic wand making the bill vansh. The bill is then shown to have appeared impossibly inside the wrapped sealed straw. This is a great alternative to the classic bill to lemon and is much cheaper and easy to set up. This could be a great closer for a restaurant gig.
Overall this is a great collection of magic. Back in time, Mr. Clean Coins Across, Cardboard Contortionists and magnetic cards are my stand out favorites. The only letdown was that much of what was discussed Jay has provided for free on his website or You Tube channel. That said this is a great place to go for a great batch of magic.
Dani Daortiz is a very fun magician to watch work. He is one of my favorite magicians to watch for sure. Unfortunately I was a little disappointed in this lecture. Dani teaches some great magic for sure but he starts out the lecture by stating that everything is up for grabs and that he will share all. Then the host, Chris Oberle (Mike Hankins was sick), asks him to explain Dani says he will do so later. This caused a handful of effects to be forgotten and not taught at all. Then when Dani was asked to share his tips on lapping he said that he didn’t want to, he was asked to share his thoughts on memorized deck work and he said that he has a lot but he wasn’t going to share it, he performed the open triumph but would not teach it and was asked to teach a couple other effects but did not teach them. This wouldn’t be a problem but he came into the lecture saying that he would teach anything we wanted and then he kept saying that he couldn’t teach this or that.
The real great part of this lecture is his thoughts on psychology, improvisation, setting up an act and how to set up for a close up show. His thoughts on improvisation were very interesting. He likes to make it look like he is just making everything up but he explains exactly when he takes chances and you’ll be surprised to find out when he actually improvises.
L’Homme Masque: This is a go to of Dani’s. A card is peeked by multiple spectators, the deck is then handed to one and they begin to shuffle. The peeked cards are named, they are
Ode to Hofzinser: A spectator takes a group of cards. Whatever number they take the magician then produces the four of a kind that matches how many cards the spectator pulls. Dani teaches 2 versions, one is basically self working and the other gets a little more involved. There is a sleight set up as well as the need for a table and a close up mat. This is Dani’s take on a classic Hofzinser idea.
Magic Castle Effect: If you look at Dani’s Youtube channel you will find a performance of this. The cards fly all over the place as you and the spectator shuffle. The spectator always selects the card that you want them to. This is a full on tribute to Lennart Green and is beautiful in a messy disorganized way.
Open Triumph (Performance Only): One of the most beautiful triumphs ever devised and it is completely performed in the hands. Unfortunatley Dani talks about teaching this the whole lecture but in the end he never teaches it.
Card at Any Number: This is a 2 person version of card at any number. Unfortunatley you do need a second person who is in the know to pull this off. Dani ccreated this especially for him and Lennart Green. It is really not much of an improvement on the tpes of card at any number effects out there.
And that is it. I have to say I was disappointed. If you like Dani’s style purchase one of his sets of lecture notes. You will get about 10 effects for $10 with more variations, tips, tricks, and theory than you will find in this lecture. Dani came into the lecture giving the idea that you would be learning a ton. Unfortunately you only learn a few new effects with some theory which can easily be found for cheaper elsewhere.
I first saw Paul Gertner on Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood. He is from Pittsburgh and coincidentally Mr. Rogers originated from Pittsburgh as well. Paul may have been my first exposure to a magician and it was as wonderful then as it is now. This is one of the first lectures of their new casual format. It seemed like Paul was a little thrown off from time to time but overall it was successful. The first portion of the lecture was Paul performing a formal close up show.
Steele and Silver: Perhaps Gertner’s most prolific piece, this is his take on the cups and balls. He uses noisy metal cups and metal balls throughout the piece and uses the sound to really sell the illusion. This is the same routine I saw on Mr. Rogers and it was also performed on World’s Greatest Magic. This is not Vernon’s cups and balls but Vernon did coach Gertner on his routine and it is a lot of fun to hear his personal stories about how Vernon helped polish the routine. The only thing that I disliked about this was Gertners script. He seems so well rehearsed that it gets a bit rigid in places this happens in much of his magic but if you add your own style to the magic you perform you will not have this pitfall.
A Familiar Ring: This is a four coins across routine using a spectators hand and a borrowed ring to help the sound. There really isn’t much new here method wise but the climax consists of a ring coin transposition that happens in the spectators hand. You will need a common coin gaff and if you like the idea of using a spectators ring during a coins across routine you may want to check this out.
Those Are the Aces, Those Are Not: the spectator holds onto the aces, a card is selected. After some fun byplay the spectator’s card vanishes and reverses itself in the deck. As a kicker he transposes the aces with the four of a kind matching the spectators card. This was a fun challenge effect but it does require some intermediate to advanced card handling. I personally felt like the effect was a bit cluttered for my taste.
Classic Force Jam: Paul uses the classic force quite a lot in his day to day work. He has some good tips here and his approach is a little different than the norm. If you are interested in learning this move better this is a good place to go to refine your classic force. He also teases a future project teaching his favorite forces that will be available at Murphy’s.
Library Card: This is a very fun effect that Paul has created for the students at his wife’s school. A book page is selected as well as a card. The cards are thrown at the book and the selected card ends up at the selected page. This is presented as a stunt and I really like the idea. The trick seems to get a little cloudy in the middle but I think that this could play well on stage as well as in a close up environment.
Expanding Texture: This is a little bit more of a performance only. The conversation leads to performing magic live vs Youtube. A Coin is pulled through a handkerchief and then is thrown back through the same handkerchief as the spectator holds it. He quickly goes through the explanation but this is a really nice classic and it feels like a bonus effect. If you are not very adapt at coin magic you may struggle with this but it is worth the effort to learn. Out of all of the magic Paul covers in this lecture this is probably what I am most likely to perform.
Black Jack: Sharing a story of how he learned how to play blackjack Gertner turns each card in his hand into an ace. The setup and payoff are incongruent in this effect. I feel like there is a lot of sleights, story and magic going on that take away from the directness that I like in my magic.
Unshuffled: This was performed for Johnny Carson on his television show. A card is selected and as the deck is shuffled words begin to appear on the side of the pack. They eventually read “Unshuffled”. They then change into the spectators playing card. This is a very cool effect, it has a nice build with a solid ending, It is difficult to perform perfectly but Paul gives you everything you need to know in order to perform the shuffles correctly.
Obvious, Interesting or Amazing: A card is thought of by a spectator it reverses itself and changes it’s back color in the spectators hand. This is very cool effect and is super easy to perform. He goes over an advanced handling as well but I’d say that the beginner handling is much better.
No Chances: A card is selected the magician fails to find it four times in a row. They chose one of the cards face down and it turns into their selection. The other cards change into their selections four of a kind. The actual trick is neat here and the method gets fairly clever.
Stop and Stare: This is a fun card to any location. Paul uses this in trade shows to make cards appear on the ceiling. It is a fun little routine that is very easy to do. I think most magicians have performed a version of this at some point.
Triple Die-lema (Performance only): This was a great chop cup routine using dice and a hat. It’s a great combination of solid effects all melded into one great piece.
So there’s a little bit of a greatest hits going on here. Paul is a modern legend and he teaches some of his classics. If you are a Gertner fan I can’t think of another place where you can learn both his Unshuffled and cups and balls routine. This is a really strong lecture.