Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

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Dave Egleston
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Dave Egleston » December 25th, 2002, 8:33 pm

It's interesting to note that many of the people who critisize the way Michael Ammar markets magic love Stars of Magic.

I'm one of these people - But I'm not quite following your line of thought, and I'm not sure if you think these magicians of the past blatantly deceived their customers as does the hero of the above quote. Please don't think I'm attacking - I'm sure I'm probably misreading your post.

Dave

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Dustin Stinett » December 25th, 2002, 8:34 pm

I too would like to thank Mr. Rosenthal for adding to the discussion of this great work. (I would love to hear more about Francis Carlyle - perhaps the same way we are reading about Ken Brooke. He has always been toward the top of my "wish I could have met him" list.)

Knowing the origins of the effects that we do is of tremendous importance to the health of the art and is something that should be stressed upon, especially to the younger readers of this forum (or should I say "novice practitioners" since not all beginners are young). Perhaps I did not choose the best words to describe the importance of these effects (as I and I hope others see them). My idea of what "constitutes the genesis of countless variations" is (whether born of 100% original effect and/or technique or not) that these effects (and not their predecessors, should they exist) are consistently identified as the templates, or the whole cloth, from which so many variations have been cut. How that happened (better marketing, etc.) is immaterial; it did happen.

A perfect example of what I am trying to articulate is Vernon's cups and balls routine. The cups and balls are centuries old but it is Vernon's routine that is the template from which so many fine routines derive. Most of the effects in SoM are of this same caliber. That having been said, it is imperative that the written record be corrected/amended whenever clear documentation is possible.

Dustin

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Dustin Stinett » December 25th, 2002, 9:06 pm

Originally posted by Dave Egleston:
...I'm not quite following your line of thought...
I really do not want this thread to evolve into an "Easy to Master" misery. I think Harley simply believes that there is a correlation between the way the EtM series and SoM have been marketed. There is no question that they were both successfully marketed as being "the best" but the correlation ends there. The SoM material had not seen publication before and the originators of the material had a direct hand in the production. The EtM material (except for that of Ammar himself) cannot make either of these claims.

Dustin

Kevin Baker
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Kevin Baker » December 27th, 2002, 12:25 am

Originally posted by Harvey Rosenthal:
... The descriptions of other Vernon routines, to a greater or lesser extent, were also modified for various reasons, e.g., his Ambitious Card routine...
Mr Rosenthal,

Thanks for the background information.

As a matter of interest, can you share with us the differences between Vernon's published Ambitious Card routine and the version he actually performed at the time?

Regards

Kevin

Carl Mercurio
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Carl Mercurio » December 27th, 2002, 1:39 pm

One of the most overlooked tricks in SOM is Hanky Panky. I still do it today. It's a thing a beauty. Don't pass it by.

Rick Franceschin
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Rick Franceschin » December 29th, 2002, 4:58 pm

I don't see the Ammar / Stars of Magic marketing connection. Stars of Magic was marketed much the way Henry Hardin, Charles Jordon, and Ted Annemann stuff was. Single treatments that were thoroughly explained. The top of pocket dodge in the "Homing Card" was actually a Henry Hardin manuscript that sold for two dollars at the turn of the century. That was a lot of money, yet he sold plenty of them. I think the alure of Stars of Magic was that it offered (still does) "the real work" on solid audience oriented effects. Whit Haydn's "The Chicago Surprise" seems more in the spirit of the "Stars of Magic" series, than anything I've seen in recent years.

Vernon's Ambitious Card was mentioned above. I wonder how many performers are working it? I'll bet not many. It just may be one of the very best Ambitious routines around. It solves the looped monotony that most routines possess. It exploits the themes and variations of "Ambitious" without deferring to non-sequitor additions and endings. It redirects spectator attention preventing stagnancy. In the spirit of John Ramsay it challenges the spectator, while offering some visual dazzle as well. Best of all, it leaves the student with choices. Any thinking individual will bring things to this routine and coming away with something personal and beautiful.

Guest

Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Guest » December 30th, 2002, 7:19 am

Mr. Franceschini, thanks for changing my mind on the subject.

HR

Bill Mullins
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Bill Mullins » January 2nd, 2003, 8:30 am

In Cliff Green's book, he introduces Henry Christ's four ace routine by saying it was to have been one of the Stars of Magic routines. Why wasn't it? Are there other published routines that fall into this category?

Jon Racherbaumer
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Jon Racherbaumer » January 2nd, 2003, 8:50 am

B. Mullins' question about why the Christ effect did NOT appear in STARS OF MAGIC series raises a number of other questions regarding lost or misplaced tricks that have had similar fates during the past century. Not only that, sometimes the method that gets into print is not EXACTLY the original handling. For example, Henry Christ told me that the method for reversing a card in the Ace routine is incorrectly rendered in the Green book. Green apparently described HIS way of doing a reverse, which Howie S. then wrote up.

One could write an interesting monograph on lost-and-found tricks and ideas.

Onward...

Ryan Matney
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Ryan Matney » January 2nd, 2003, 10:54 am

One could write an interesting monograph on lost-and-found tricks and ideas.
That would be a good Genii article. I enjoy reading about 'lost' tricks or tricks with mythic serects such as the anneman bullet catch, hooker rising cards, reaching your arm through a jewelery store window. ;-)
Spoiler Alert- the new book published by Richard Kaufman and with an introduction by John Bannon-Available now at http://www.ryanmatneymagic.com

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Dustin Stinett » January 2nd, 2003, 11:43 am

Originally posted by bill mullins:
In Cliff Green's book, he introduces Henry Christ's four ace routine by saying it was to have been one of the Stars of Magic routines. Why wasn't it? Are there other published routines that fall into this category?
It would be easy to speculate on this. My first guess would be that Stars of Magic, Inc. stopped publishing individual titles before getting around to the Christ routine. Whether that effect was part of the SoM, Inc./Tannen's deal is also part of the mystery. Did Lou Tannen acquire only those items that were already published by Stars of Magic, Inc., or did he also acquire future items from their files? I had hoped that some information in regard to SoM/Tannen deal would come to light here, but alas no light has been shed on the subject. I spoke to Tony Spina (through a trusted emissary) but his memory on the subject is understandably uncertain.

Some mysteries are destined to remain so.

Dustin

Mike Remington
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Mike Remington » September 10th, 2008, 11:11 pm

I am not sure whether restarting this thread is the right place to ask my question. I have the Tannen's bound reprint. Does anyone know who the person is that Slydini is demonstrating the Flyaway Coin Routine to in the photos?

Andrew Phillips
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Andrew Phillips » October 10th, 2009, 8:38 pm

You could make a career from this book alone. Even by todays standard this is truly outstanding magic. It was one of the first books I ever bought as a young boy. It made up just about all of the magic I did. I bought another book called Coin Magic by...well I don't remember the guys name really, it will come back to me I am sure!

T Baxter
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby T Baxter » January 15th, 2011, 3:14 pm

All of the references I've found to the original set of Stars of Magic note that it came in a red binder. The set that I have is in a BLACK binder marked with the Stars of Magic logo on the front.

Does anyone know anything about his discrepancy?

T. Baxter

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Dustin Stinett
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Dustin Stinett » January 15th, 2011, 7:29 pm

In fact I do, and only because it is covered in the TERRIFIC edition published by Meir Yedid.

The black cover was issued at the same time as the red one. It is unknown why the two colors, but the black cover is considered "scarce" in relationship to the more common red one.

For those who have an (all too common) edition of SoM with crappy photos, scrap it and buy Meir's edition: You will thank yourself--and it is a bargain at $35 (and that's postpaid in the US; it's only $42 postpaid outside the US). Besides the cleaned up photos, there is also the added historic material, so even if you have a "clean" (older) issue, you'll want this reprint for the added info from Meir: http://www.mymagic.com/som/index.html

Dustin

T Baxter
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby T Baxter » January 15th, 2011, 10:44 pm

Thanks, Dustin.

T. Baxter

Michael Westen
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Michael Westen » September 29th, 2015, 5:02 pm

Most everything I perform is actually from this book. I would say it is one of, if not, the greatest books ever done. I think every routine in it is a money; bread and butter trick.

performer
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby performer » September 29th, 2015, 5:19 pm

I agree. It is a fantastic book and I use a fair bit of material from it. I should use more.

Leonard Hevia
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Re: Book of the Month: Stars of Magic

Postby Leonard Hevia » October 4th, 2015, 5:12 pm

Jon Racherbaumer wrote:B. Mullins' question about why the Christ effect did NOT appear in STARS OF MAGIC series raises a number of other questions regarding lost or misplaced tricks that have had similar fates during the past century. Not only that, sometimes the method that gets into print is not EXACTLY the original handling. For example, Henry Christ told me that the method for reversing a card in the Ace routine is incorrectly rendered in the Green book. Green apparently described HIS way of doing a reverse, which Howie S. then wrote up.

One could write an interesting monograph on lost-and-found tricks and ideas.

Onward...


Jon, Howard Schwarzman had a column in Tannen's Magic Manuscript many years ago. Did Schwarzman write up the correct reversal for the Christ routine in one of those?


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