Cups and Balls

All beginners in magic should address their questions here.
John McDonald
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Cups and Balls

Postby John McDonald » January 17th, 2008, 9:00 am

I would like to learn a cups and balls routine.

Two questions if you have time to spare.
1. What make of cups to buy? I see there can be big differences in price. What would be a good first set?

2. What routine do you suggest - which books to learn from etc.

Thanks for your time.

John
Best John

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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Richard Kaufman » January 17th, 2008, 9:06 am

John, Mike Skinner used paper cups or coffee cups. Dai Venon has a routine in Stars of Magic using glasses wrapped in newspaper.
Some folks like to buy $1000 copper cups.
It doesn't matter what type of cups you use--it only matters what types of cups you WANT to use.

There are, literally, a hundred good cups and balls routines out there. The Vernon routine (published many places) is the gold standard. His routine in Stars of Magic is also excellent.
There are also a number of two-cup routines by people like David Williamson and Tommy Wonder (and, of course, John Ramsay).
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Guest » January 17th, 2008, 9:29 am

Michael Ammar has a very interesting 3-cup routine that's for a platform situation (i.e., not surrounded).

See the Magic of Michael Ammar book or the Stevens C&B teach-in video.

Gerald Deutsch
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Gerald Deutsch » January 17th, 2008, 3:03 pm

Dover Publications has published some of the older classic books on magic in paperback and one such book is "Hugards Magic Manual".

There is material on the cups and balls on pages 123-135.

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Q. Kumber
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Q. Kumber » January 17th, 2008, 4:26 pm

The most amazing Cups and Balls routine I've seen was at the age of twelve and thirteen (I saw it twice) at Butlin's Holiday Camp in Ireland.

The children's entertainer was Dick Richards from Cardiff and once a week he'd perform a full stage show at the Playhouse Theatre which seated about 800.

The balls changed colour, grew, became multi-coloured before changing into giant balls.

However the most amazing thing was his vanish. He just held the ball at his fingertips and with no cover at all, it just vanished.

When I met him and he put me in touch with Abra and Supreme Magic, he also did the ball vanish. I don't know how he made it vanish but I did catch a glimpse of where it ended up - at the base of his first three fingers. But it didn't look like it dropped, it looked like it vanished.

I've been told he won a prize in the British Ring Shield competition with his Cups and Balls act. A pity Peter Warlock isn't around as he'd probably remember every detail.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Bill Palmer » January 17th, 2008, 8:55 pm

If you have not gone to the cups and balls museum, you are missing an important resource for the cups and balls. There are many suggestions for source materials.

For more information, go to www.cupsandballsmuseum.com .
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Brandon Hall » January 18th, 2008, 9:24 am

I love my JP's (Johnson Product) from Magic Warehouse. They're an excellent mid-priced cup that will last forever. Keep your eyes open because there seems to be a few people at the green place selling off personal collections. There are some great deals to be had.
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Jonathan Townsend » January 18th, 2008, 9:57 am

Originally posted by Quentin Reynolds:
...
The balls changed colour, grew, became multi-coloured before changing into giant balls.

However the most amazing thing was his vanish. He just held the ball at his fingertips and with no cover at all, it just vanished.

When I met him and he put me in touch with Abra and Supreme Magic, he also did the ball vanish. I don't know how he made it vanish but I did catch a glimpse of where it ended up - at the base of his first three fingers. But it didn't look like it dropped, it looked like it vanished...
Would you have contact information for the guy?

THAT calibre of routining and touch on a one handed ball vanish is worth following up.
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Q. Kumber » January 18th, 2008, 11:14 am

Unfortunately he died a good few years ago. I used meet his widow, Esther at some of the British Ring Conventions.

The only other thing I can recall is that he appeared to wiggle his fingers as the ball vanished, almost like you would with a billiard ball.

I was told (but don't know for sure) that the table upon which he performed the cups and balls had a revolving inside which allowed him to ditch and collect balls as needed.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Bill Palmer » January 18th, 2008, 8:44 pm

I wonder if that might not have been Delaporte.
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Terry » January 20th, 2008, 10:08 am

John,

Question #1 - the type of character you do and the type of routine you choose will determine what cups to buy. Another consideration is the weight of the cups. The Johnson brass are heavier than the Sisti copper, etc.

Your best bet would be to find a magic shop and try out the various makes and weights of cups manufactured. If you don't have a shop close by, find the local magicians and see if they may have different models in their collections.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby John McDonald » January 20th, 2008, 10:43 am

Thanks Terry, I am just wanting to learn a very basic cups and ball routine to develop. As for wanting to develop a character - that is still ongoing.
I am more of a serious guy than a David Williamson - if that is any use to you offering advice.

I now just want to learn the classics of magic and do them well. I am in a magic club and will ask there but have just purchased a set of Bazaar da magica copper cups for $50. I know they will come with a basic routine but any advice on a good beginners routine would be great.
Best John

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby David Alexander » January 21st, 2008, 5:41 am

Jim Riser is a very generous guy. He provides a lot of good advice on buying a set of cups on his site at www.jamesriser.com

Worth your time to go there and read his thoughts. He also has a nicely stocked collection that he has on-line.

The best "character" for performing is an enlargement of your own best personality features. Your countryman Geoffrey Durham gives much good advice in his new book. It is also well worth your time.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Jim Riser » January 21st, 2008, 9:18 am

Thanks for the kind words, David.

Warning!!! All of the cup pages are down for updating. I had done very few updates after they were created in 2001. I have since picked up additional historic cup images that I am trying to include. On the "Selecting a Set Of Cups" web page I need to add and remove a number of images. I specifically want to point out problems with brass and stainless steel cups.

Unfortunately, I can not find the time to get to all of this updating. Every time I start on the work, a stack of orders for various items starts flowing in - which it not all bad.

The pages are being updated; but it is going slower than desired. Hopefully things will be done and back up by March some time. This is all part of a major web site upgrade. 'tis a big project to do between other things. A lot of things are being removed and/or redone.

Jim

David Alexander
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby David Alexander » January 22nd, 2008, 6:52 am

Jim would be more productive if he would cut out his frivolous activities like sleeping, spending time with his wife, helping his family, etc. ;)

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Terry » January 24th, 2008, 11:03 am

A mans got to know his limitations. . .

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Richard Evans » January 31st, 2008, 2:20 pm

John & Clay: you both asked about sources for routines.

Michael Ammar's book 'The Complete Cups and Balls' is a good starting point. Although the book went out of print a year or so ago, it's still pretty easy to pick up a secondhand copy. The book starts off with basic moves (and routine) and then moves on to the more advanced. It's got a good annotated bibliography so that you can chase other sources that interest you. The book is complemented by a DVD set (sold seperately) which is also excellent - very comprehensive.

For just a few dollars, there's also a great little booklet produced by FUN Inc, called simply 'The Cups & Balls'. It's edited by Gabe Fajuri and contains a nice intro by Bob Read, who was had one of the greatest cups & balls routines ever. As I said, it's a great little book that contains plenty of sleights and a couple of routines too.

I wouldn't advocate using DVDs alone to learn - books are much better, but there are some noteworthy DVDs out there that will complement the books. Two DVDs well worth considering are the Stevens Magic Cups & Balls 'Teach-In' DVD (it features some of the real greats: Johnny Paul, Charlie Miller and Mike Rogers). The other is vol 4 of the Johnny Thompson 'Commercial Classics of Magic' DVDs. Not only do you get to see one of the best routines ever, but Johnny's insights into the history and past masters is fantastic. More than anything, these DVDs illustrate the importance of being entertaining and developing your own unique routine and style.

Oh - and don't forget to check-out Bill Palmer's incredible collection of cups at www.cupsandballsmuseum.com

Good luck - and have fun!

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Doug Brewer » January 31st, 2008, 4:18 pm

I recommend Ammar's book/DVD on the subject, but I don't recommend his routine (other than his opening sequence). His loads, in my very, very humble opinion, are done on the wrong beat. There is no misdirection when he sequentially loads each cup. None. There are some nice moments in the routine, however.

If you are completely green on cups & balls, you might want to start with a one cup routine (or chop cup routine) to get used to the vanishes and loads. Much less to keep track of and you get a lot more confidence to progress to 2 or 3 cup routines.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Rick Schulz » February 19th, 2008, 10:19 am

One could hardly do better than Bob White's DVD on the subject. It has a tremendous amount of good, practical advice from someone who has made his living from performing. He also addresses the subject of the kinds of cups available, the types of balls and final loads to use, etc.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby jmac » February 20th, 2008, 3:04 pm

I have both of the Ammar DVD'S they are very insightful. Al Schnieder has some great cups and balls work.
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Bill Palmer » February 24th, 2008, 10:55 am

Bob's DVD on the cups and balls is excellent, but I wouldn't recommend it for a beginner. It's really not fundamental enough.

The Ammar DVD's are a better starting point.

Bob's DVD is probably the third one I would buy. I'd go for the two Ammar DVD's, then Bob's.

After that, go for DVD's that are aimed at the specialty field in which you perform.
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Riversky » August 22nd, 2012, 8:57 pm

Doug Brewer wrote:I recommend Ammar's book/DVD on the subject, but I don't recommend his routine (other than his opening sequence). His loads, in my very, very humble opinion, are done on the wrong beat. There is no misdirection when he sequentially loads each cup. None. There are some nice moments in the routine, however.

If you are completely green on cups & balls, you might want to start with a one cup routine (or chop cup routine) to get used to the vanishes and loads. Much less to keep track of and you get a lot more confidence to progress to 2 or 3 cup routines.

Doug,
Any books you can suggest for one cup routine other then chop cup?

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby erdnasephile » August 22nd, 2012, 10:59 pm

Larry Jennings one cup routine from "The Classic Magic of Larry Jennings"

John Carney's Fruit Cup routine from "Carneycopia"

Personally, though, I actually prefer the Benson Bowl-type routines.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Ian Kendall » August 23rd, 2012, 3:00 am

If you are a member of SAM and can dig out your MUMs, in the March 2010 issue I wrote up a fairly detailed lesson on Paul Wilson's Chop Cup routine (also with my first phase for it). It's also in the Basic Training book.

I would also cautiously agree that starting with a chop cup can help. The slightly automatic nature of the cup allows you to concentrate on the loads and vanishes with less to worry about. You still need to put the same amount of effort into blocking and the like though.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby webbmaster » February 15th, 2017, 1:40 pm

David Roth's routine for the Chop Cup is the best I've seen, although I think the Chop Cup should be in a different category than the 3-cups versions. Anyway, several things to keep in mind are, first, don't make too long a routine; second, even though Vernon used an expose' ploy to set up for the ending, search and ye shall find other ways of getting into the ending that don't 'give away' so much about the sleight-of-hand techniques being actually used. Finally, I recommend looking up Gregg Webb's routine in an old Genii magazine. Last but not least, get the cheapest set of cups to learn on and feel free to bang them around until you start to find yourself in the trick. Then invent your own routine that suits yourself. Then you can buy an expensive set.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Jonathan Townsend » February 15th, 2017, 2:05 pm

Gregg, the routine is his first lecture notes? Evolved from the Jennings routine :)
your routine from April 2002 (page 60)?
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby MagicbyAlfred » February 16th, 2017, 3:15 am

webbmaster wrote:David Roth's routine for the Chop Cup is the best I've seen, although I think the Chop Cup should be in a different category than the 3-cups versions. Anyway, several things to keep in mind are, first, don't make too long a routine; second, even though Vernon used an expose' ploy to set up for the ending, search and ye shall find other ways of getting into the ending that don't 'give away' so much about the sleight-of-hand techniques being actually used. Finally, I recommend looking up Gregg Webb's routine in an old Genii magazine. Last but not least, get the cheapest set of cups to learn on and feel free to bang them around until you start to find yourself in the trick. Then invent your own routine that suits yourself. Then you can buy an expensive set.


There are probably about as many opinions on the cups and balls - which routine, which cups, which moves, etc., as there are magicians who do a cups and balls routine. Honestly, I was never that enamored with the Vernon routine, or the idea of just blindly adopting it because it was Vernon's. I never liked the idea of the false explanation because it always struck me as patronizing to the spectators and also came perilously close to tipping important secret moves. Hence, I am in agreement with webbmaster in regard to the expose ploy. IMHO, virtually any routine that a reasonably competent magician were to come up with that was original and which would fit his/her style and personality would be bound to be better and more entertaining than simply another Vernon clone presentation. So, I also agree with webbmaster on the point of inventing your own routine that suits you.

In regard to the props themselves, while I own an expensive set of Brett Sherwood cups and his custom balls, the truth of the matter is that metal cups and balls with sweaters (or other "preppy-looking balls") are innately suspicious to spectators. They will believe they are "trick' cups no matter how skillful the sleight of hand. That is why the most convincing cups and balls routine (as well as chop cup routine) use regular coffee cups or mugs, ala Michael Skinner. I have found it is no harder to load 3-4 final loads into coffee cups than into my Sherwood cups, but the impact of the former is exponentially greater.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby performer » February 16th, 2017, 8:02 am

With regard to using coffee cups and suchlike crusty old Wilfrid Jonson used to amuse me greatly by occasionally snorting in disapproval in his writings at what he considered improper procedures in magic. One example was regarding the cups and balls. Here is what he said about them:

"Which brings us back home to certain English conjurers who use plastic beakers, paper picnic cups, or old ice cream containers. These seeming practicalities add nothing to the effect and we advise the reader to purchase a proper set of cups worthy of the dignity of this classic of legerdemain"

At the time I was a beginner in magic so felt that old Wilfrid knew what he was doing and I had better listen to the teacher and accepted what he said. But not quite since I had also learned from other books that the more ordinary seeming the objects used the better. And I still believe that. However, old Wilfrid had given me a complex about the cups and balls and I thought I would be struck down by lightning if I didn't do what he said. Or that I would get psychic vibes of disapproval from the spirit world and imagine that Wilfrid would be glaring at me in great disapproval from afar.

For this reason alone I have always stuck to the regular cups even though I now believe that old Wilfrid was wrong. Sshh--don't tell him I said so! The trouble is that when you are a beginner you are afraid to go against your teacher. Alas instinctively I know that ice cream containers or other common objects like coffeee cups would be better and one day I might even do it that way. I am just too nervous of rumblings from the spirit world to do it but one day I might just pick up courage and ignore Wilfrid.

Oh, that reminds me. Years ago I was on a top rated BBC television show called Crackerjack. Ali Bongo disapproved of the old BBC card table that was used when I performed and had some daft theory that I should use fancy looking colourful props of some kind. I mentioned this to the producer, Peter Whitmore and he snorted, "I don't agree. Surely the more mundane your objects are the better. You tell Ali Bongo that you have been on this show four times and he hasn't been on once yet!"

The moral of the tale is that I strongly suspect Alfred is right when he says coffee cups are better. But don't tell old Wilfrid Jonson that!
Having said all this I have to say that I learned a LOT from Wilfrid Jonson and his books when I was young. I couldn't make any real progress in magic until I read his book on card tricks. And his other book, "Mr Smith's Guide to Sleight of Hand" is really excellent although not easy to obtain nowadays. His advice on patter is the best I have ever read and it is the method I have used for my entire life. And yes, I use some of his cups and balls technique too!

Not with ice cream cups or plastic beakers though. But one day.....................

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Jon Elion » February 16th, 2017, 10:41 am

FYI: Gregg Webb's routine is in Genii April 2002, page 60.

His routine uses a "Wand Spin" for a production rather than a vanish. Gregg's "Wand Spin as a Production" is described in Genii November 2001, page 69.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby erdnasephile » February 16th, 2017, 12:24 pm

If one is interested in a coffee cups routine (or any cups routine), this new DVD by John Carney is an outstanding resource:



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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby erdnasephile » February 16th, 2017, 6:12 pm

Since the above is a new video, I thought I'd mention why I like it.

John Carney is a master. He not only is one of the deepest thinkers we've got, but he's one of the most entertaining performers around who walks what he talks in the real world. Even better--he can lucidly explain complex concepts so simpletons like me can understand and apply them. Finally, he inspires. I've studied his work and have heard him live--each time, I come away enthused about working harder and really pushing the boundaries of my ownmagic.
The DVD begins with a section on cups and balls background history. Carney touches on his personal high marks and advances in cups and balls performances and technology over the years. It's easy to dismiss this as mere background or an homage, but what it really is is an invitation for the student to seek out and study the primary literature. By doing so, you can understand where his inspiration comes from, and more importantly, perhaps discover new directions for yourself. (Monkeys, anyone?) In this day and age of lousy, inadequate credits, this lengthy section of the DVD stands tall.
The meat of the video is the "Caffeinated Cups & Balls" routine. It involves three plastic coffee cups, grapes, and the final loads. It's entertaining, extremely practical, and nearly impromptu (as long as you can secure the necessary props and loads at the venue). The routine itself is stripped down to it's essentials--as Carney says: it's simple, but not easy. However, it's absolutely doable for the intermediate student willing to work, and Carney gives you every detail you need. Far from the "vulgar display of pointless manipulation" that so many cups and balls routines represent, this routine has a context--where everything: the theme, the props, and even the sleights used, all hang together to form a cohesive whole. Along the way, he offers so much insight into what makes "magic", magic. Carney is like Johnny Thompson in that way--sometimes the asides during instruction turn out to be the best bits of wisdom. Examples: Carney talks about the primary reason he creates: that it shouldn't be originality for originality sake, but rather to solve a problem to better the effect. He opines about the difficulty in simplifying, and that often the best thing to do is to "kill your darlings" if you wish to help your routines reach their best. He explains why and how he chose to completely eliminate the usual ball passes (it made me laugh), and what substitutes for the wand in his routine and why. These details extend to the level of procedure as well. The standout is his final load technique. I think out of all of the cups loading sequences I've seen, Carney's timing is the most natural--his method makes them practically invisible, and Vernon's theory of punctuation now makes sense to me. Some might argue that his techniques are not "new". True, but the insights, details, and procedures he shares make them just plain better. These are only a few of the practical ideas and solutions that come at the viewer--so many and so fast, in fact, that I would suggest taking written notes while watching to get the most out of it. One thing you will not get is Carney's presentation, which is a very good thing. The point of this DVD is to teach you to reach your potential with the cups, not become a Carney clone. In summary, this routine is just a wonderful, powerful showpiece of magic, and you get all you need to do it, if you choose.
The DVD would have been well worth it had it stopped there, but Carney goes on to detail his handling of the Classic Vernon routine. Again, he applies his keen eye to what he can pare down for greater impact, and manages to maintain the flavor of the routine, while streamlining it for modern attention spans. He offers lots of tips along the way, including a more effective way to do some of the humorous opening cup sequences. However, once again, it's the final loading sequence that shines here. He does do away with the Vernon "exposure" to justify the loading sequence, but his body language, facial and verbal expressions, and his timing serve as their own misdirection. These details matter with this sort of thing if you really want to deceive audiences, as opposed to just being happy they laugh even though they knew "something" fishy just happened.
I did want to touch a bit on the organization of the DVD itself. It's a one camera shot (with occasional close up insets--and one text over notation). There is no L & L-esque audience (or any audience), but the lack of eye candy is not a problem and does not hamper the teaching or impact. One touch I really appreciate is that the DVD starts right away with the menu. Not having to sit through some lengthy animated sequence every time I want to study this material is a huge plus. Another feature that found favor: Carney repeats moves several times from various angles, which keeps me from having to use the rewind button to learn the sleights. Some other producers expect you to stop what you are doing and rewind to see something again to learn it. I really don't like doing this while I have props in my hands, so for me, this design choice was a really great.
Is there anything I didn't care for? Yes, I found the sound level of the jazz during the main routine rather distracting. Also, dark grapes are hard to see against a black close-up pad. I also would have liked to have seen footage of the main routine performed live for real people, along with a background commentary from Carney. Some might not like the fact that the main routine will likely require a trip to the store(s) to find the exact props, but it probably won't bother anyone who is serious about learning the routine. Finally, given the rise of 4K, I'd like to see videographers update their technology to take advantage of the new standards.
In summary, this was a "must buy" for me. Although I'm primarily a book guy, I believe that with "The Dai Vernon Book of Magic", "Bob White on the Cups and Balls", and "Caffeinated Cups & Balls" the student would have all of the instruction they would need to develop a true mastery of this effect.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Leonard Hevia » February 16th, 2017, 10:14 pm

Wow! Great review Erdnasephile. No need to write a review in Genii on the "Caffeinated Cups & Balls DVD, this one is perfect. That Carney has also released the "C C & B" on DVD is a winner for me and a must have.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby performer » February 17th, 2017, 10:02 am

This is what I do. I start with exactly the same pitch routine I have used for the last 50 years or so when using the little plastic cups and balls. Incidentally, if I just stopped there it would be more than enough from an entertainment point of view and it only takes about a minute or so. However, there is no big load and for the bigger cups I continue on. I follow this up with the Malini idea that I read in the Genii Malini issue where he used to eat the balls. It works wonderfully well and you should see their jaws drop when I do it! The balls reappear under the cups. I think this is more than enough so I finish with the Wilfrid Jonson method of putting in the large loads. Wilfrid would be gravely disapproving of the Vernon method of loading and I know that from reading his diatribe about magicians using the fake explanation for the torn and restored newspaper trick!
However the Jonson method does seem practical enough and it does not have the controversial exposure element that Vernon used.

I try to keep the routine under three minutes. In most cases (not all) this is more than enough. Any more than that is just gilding the lily and making eyes glaze over with balls here, balls there and it all becomes a confusing haze. After all, I have always said the main reason for the trick is the big finish at the end although I have had people being silly enough to disagree with me on that point.

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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby MagicbyAlfred » February 18th, 2017, 2:15 am

Erdnasephile,

Thank you for the thorough and articulate review.

Houdini is reputed to have said that no man can call himself a magician until he has mastered the cups and balls, or words to that effect. But to my way of thinking, no man (or woman) can call himself an entertainer merely because he has mastered the cups and balls. Sure it is a challenge to do a clean vanish and certainly to execute Vernon's wand spin. However, coming up with a routine that will truly entertain, be it with plastic coffee cups and grapes (green ones would work well with a black mat), or with Brett Sherwood or Paul Fox cups and hand crocheted balls, is even more of a challenge. Something more must be offered to the spectator than a demonstration of the magician's prowess and cleverness - something far more than the typical, "If I place the ball in my hand and give it a squeeze..."

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erdnasephile
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Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: Cups and Balls

Postby erdnasephile » February 18th, 2017, 6:39 am

Appreciate the kind words, folks. Thanks!

I should have mentioned that the material in the Vernon Routine appeared in a slightly different form in Carney's "The Master Sessions" DVD series. However, "The Master Sessions" performance segment was filmed in front of a small studio audience, which is fun to watch. "The Master Sessions" also comes only in a 4 DVD set and costs $125 (but contains a lot of other terrific stuff). The "Caffeinated Cups" routine only appears on the new DVD, plus you get the also the Vernon/Carney routine for $35. Finally, Carney's take on Vernon's routine (circa 2002) also appeared in print form in "The Book of Secrets", which is currently out of print. Since timing is such a large part about what makes many of these moves deceptive, I think that in this case, video can greatly facilitate learning this material properly. In addition, Mr. Carney has continued to evolve and refine his thoughts over the years, so comparing the various sources is an object lesson in and of itself.

Gerald Deutsch
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Gerald Deutsch » February 18th, 2017, 7:59 am

I contributed a "Bill - Cup" routine using dollar bills and a coffee cup to Harry Lorayne's Apocalypse and it appears in the May 1985 issue on page 1064.

I also posted that routine to the Perverse Magic thread of this forum on January 1, 2012.

Leonard Hevia
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby Leonard Hevia » February 18th, 2017, 9:51 am

Bob White's cups and balls DVD is also another fine tutorial. The routine he teaches does not rely on stacking the cups so it too can be done with coffee cups. White performs it for only two spectators so the reactions are a bit subdued. There is a moment in the middle phase of the routine when the crochet balls jump from the end cups to the center cup. The young lady just shakes her head in disbelief.

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erdnasephile
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby erdnasephile » February 18th, 2017, 2:54 pm

I agree 100%. Great DVD! I love Bob White--one of the living conduits to the real work. His ball vanish is absolutely uncanny--it will fool just about anyone (even when you know what's going on). Interestingly, he is a strong supporter of the Vernon "exposure" gambit, and feels that the loading sequence is not nearly as deceptive without it.

MagicbyAlfred
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby MagicbyAlfred » February 18th, 2017, 3:13 pm

erdnasephile wrote:I agree 100%. Great DVD! I love Bob White--one of the living conduits to the real work. His ball vanish is absolutely uncanny--it will fool just about anyone (even when you know what's going on). Interestingly, he is a strong supporter of the Vernon "exposure" gambit, and feels that the loading sequence is not nearly as deceptive without it.


IMHO, the final loading sequence is either deceptive or not deceptive - there is no in between. With proper timing and the more or less built in misdirection, the loads will not be seen, and you will not be caught. I was never a fan of the Vernon exposure gambit, and doubt that I ever will be.

performer
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Re: Cups and Balls

Postby performer » February 18th, 2017, 9:04 pm

All my life I had a complex about the theory that you are not a magician if you can't do the cups and balls (I think it was Jean Hugard who mentioned it and he scared me even more than Wilfrid Jonson). Because of this complex I decided last year to learn the bloody thing. It has worked out quite well yet even so I get just as much reaction from the little plastic cups and balls which is virtually self working. I have a great climax to it that some silly woman magician (I can't remember who it was) suggested to me years and years ago. Alas not as good as large loads but pretty decent nevertheless and a hell of a lot easier.


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