Wednesday, May 18, 2011


I love reading books on magic for children. Often they contain the same stuff, but once in a while you'll get one of those self working charms, that needs little tweaking to turn it into a full stage piece that will fool and amaze at the same time.

"Das feine Gef├╝hl" by Jochen Zmeck, published in "Zauber-Abc", is such a piece. The effect is the following: A deck of cards is shuffled and them put into an unprepared top hat (nothing hidden under the brim) then the hat is covered with an ungimmicked piece of cloth. Then the spectator shuffles the cards by shaking the hat. They may even peek inside to make sure everything is fine. Then the magicians reaches inside the hat with an empty hand and "feels" the cards. He names the card that he has and takes it out. It happens to be the card. And that is repeated a few times.

If I would be a magic dealer I would state the following. Self working, everything may be borrowed and examined, no peeking, empty hand goes in. The card is named before the hand comes out. The magicians may be blindfolded. No one ahead, no one behind. No magnets, no string, no markings on the cards. The cards and their order may even be openly predicted before any shuffling takes place.

Now here is where creativity comes into play. Instead of cards you could use photographs or whatever. The method could allow for the most clean handling you can imagine. This is a mentalist's wet dream. In fact imagine a newspaper being torn into pieces then the pieces get shuffled. You reach in and pull out a piece, then the next and then the next. They fit right next to each other. The effect is that you feel the torn edges and basically find the matching ones. OR: let a spectator pick one, then you quickly reach in and find 8 more. When assembled the eight pieces will form a ring and the spectators piece fits in the middle.

I love how such a trick flies of in so many directions at ones. And it's easy as hell.

Read children's magic books. They are not concerned about method. Just plot. And that should be every performing magician's goal.


the Minutemen said...

Any chance to let us know where we can buy this book online, Roland?

Roland said...

Actually out of print... BUT this is a children's book on magic, ergo the local public libraries will often have that. At least in East Germany. But I demo the effect on the 20th of May over at the Daily Card Trick.