Introducing the Magellan Master Levitation

Discuss your favorite platform magic and illusions.

Postby trickstar » 09/23/08 07:19 PM

The Magellan Master Levitation, just being introduced to the west coast

Imagine, the performer walking to the center of an empty stage, foyer or any open area. He is effortlessly carrying a satin sheet. He stands behind the sheet, while allowing the sheet's bottom edge to touch the floor. He begins to rise upward, ascending, as if he's being lifted by an unseen force. The performer rises slowly, not mechanically, but as if he were being filled with helium. At the top of the rise, almost a foot and a half, he drops the cloth to expose the feet, hanging eerily in mid-air as if he were being hung or burned at the stake, in a position similar to what you would imagine seeing at a witchhunt. The audience gasps, whether it is a group of laymen OR magicians. This is something that they're just not used to seeing. Video cannot do justice to what is being seen LIVE! The performer holds the cloth in both hands again, and he begins his descent, gently touching down. He throws the cloth down and steps forward, clean and free to bow, thank, and effortlessly pick up the cloth and walk away. The audience is always blown away by this piece of magic!

Magellan Master Levitation, the ultimate in real world self levitation, without needing to wear fake body parts, excessive setup or contrived scenarios! Weighs just 12 pounds and fits in a carry-on sized piece of luggage.

Please see www.magellanlevitation.com for video and reviews
trickstar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: 09/23/08 06:39 PM

Postby 000 » 09/26/08 07:18 AM

Any restrictions on weight?
Care to disclose the angle width?
000
 
Posts: 563
Joined: 04/16/08 10:01 AM

Postby trickstar » 09/26/08 07:47 AM

At this time, 260 lbs, but I can custom design and fabricate it to over 300. At that point, the performer's balance and smoothness becomes an issue.

Angles are at least 45 degrees to the left and right of center, and with adjusted lighting, even more.

Please see website for more info.

Thanks,
Jimmy
trickstar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: 09/23/08 06:39 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/26/08 07:59 AM

From the video it's like Linus from Peanuts learns a trick and it works as long as he's got his blanky.

Seems pretty contrived to happen to have such a cloth - maybe a full length jacket which could be removed and put back on after the float?
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Bill Duncan » 09/26/08 05:26 PM

Jon,
You're thinking like a Close-up Magician. Stage magicians don't need to justify such things. People expect them to have big flowing capes, and boxes with gold dragons painted on them.

Street performers can dress in Goth drag, and they'll be fine.

I am puzzled about the statement "hanging eerily in mid-air as if he were being..." "burned at the stake, in a position similar to what you would imagine seeing at a witchhunt"
Bill Duncan
 
Posts: 1352
Joined: 03/13/08 11:33 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/26/08 07:03 PM

Bill - you're thinking like a hypothetical Las Vegas fanboy waiting for the next Liberace tribute or perhaps Michael Jackson's decorator. On stage - setting is all the more considered - usually called production design.

Again, I'm not critical of this latest stepper for magicians and hope it does give folks a chance to get a little exercise. If the LeviGaffus can be worn or stage managed easily it might be a real winner with folks who work with an assistant or cooperative host for that one part of the show.

I simply wonder about overly optimistic presentations which beg the wind to blow or the question of why the performer is holding onto his blanky so carefully against his feet. There are some amazing renaissance paintings that come to mind but the image of Linus from Peanuts showing off a trick seems more accessible.
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Bill Duncan » 09/27/08 04:55 PM

Actually Jon, I was thinking like Oscar Wilde.
Bill Duncan
 
Posts: 1352
Joined: 03/13/08 11:33 PM

Postby trickstar » 09/27/08 06:38 PM

Jonathan...

No gimmicks are worn at any time, and no assistants are necessary in any way before, during or after the effect to accomplish a full view setup or post performance cleanup.

You don't know about how the cleanup and setup are accomplished. As Bill Palmer stated in his evaluation of this gimmick and overall system for accomplishing the effect... This is the real deal. This has been thought out much more than you realize.

Read Bill's words...

"After he takes his bow, he can either repeat the illusion or he can pick up the cloth and walk away."

And the setup is just as clean. No preset on the stage. The performer walks to the center of the staging area and rises.

You are only speaking from a position of not knowing enough about this, right?

Bill Palmer, an expert on the history and art of levitation, with the benefit of having seen the effect, the workings and the gimmick, gives a hugely positively review. The most positive review that I've ever seen from him.

You (a coin man, right?) give a hugely negative, almost contemptuous review, having seen very little, and with misconceptions about the workings.

Some of the limitations that you have projected on this piece are simply not existent.

About the cloth... Yes, VirJonia, there is no Santa Claus... It's not real magic, it's simply an illusion, and there are, understandably, certain constraints.

And about the continuous references to Peanuts... I assure you, nobody else in the audience is thinking about little boys in bed linens when they see this performed.

I'll just rest on the kudos from real-world, LIVE reactions of lay audiences AND groups of credible, knowledgeable magicians.

Jimmy Fingers
trickstar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: 09/23/08 06:39 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/27/08 07:10 PM

To start - Jimmy there are almost certainly more folks who would recognize Linus holding his blanky and like the Peanuts cartoons than like magic. To respond as you have to my reference seems... sad. As to the "constraints" you mention - I remain skeptical about what the video shows as a willful act.

Gee here I was imagining a variation of the old Coppertone add with a little dog pulling away that on so contrivedly held and placed cloth... and someone goes and tries to put an image of Linus in his bed linens into my head. He, unlike you or anyone doing that item with a cloth, had a reason to have a a cloth there that way. BTW that reference to the classic copertone ad is also a nod to Robert Harbin's classic levitation where the performer does a levitation right in front of the curtain and then has the curtain lifted.

I have no opinion of your product beyond the performances on the linked video.

Here's your post as written lest any attempt to revise history.

Jonathan...

No gimmicks are worn at any time, and no assistants are necessary in any way before, during or after the effect to accomplish a full view setup or post performance cleanup.

You don't know about how the cleanup and setup are accomplished. As Bill Palmer stated in his evaluation of this gimmick and overall system for accomplishing the effect... This is the real deal. This has been thought out much more than you realize.

Read Bill's words...

"After he takes his bow, he can either repeat the illusion or he can pick up the cloth and walk away."

And the setup is just as clean. No preset on the stage. The performer walks to the center of the staging area and rises.

You are only speaking from a position of not knowing enough about this, right?

Bill Palmer, an expert on the history and art of levitation, with the benefit of having seen the effect, the workings and the gimmick, gives a hugely positively review. The most positive review that I've ever seen from him.

You (a coin man, right?) give a hugely negative, almost contemptuous review, having seen very little, and with misconceptions about the workings.

Some of the limitations that you have projected on this piece are simply not existent.

About the cloth... Yes, VirJonia, there is no Santa Claus... It's not real magic, it's simply an illusion, and there are, understandably, certain constraints.

And about the continuous references to Peanuts... I assure you, nobody else in the audience is thinking about little boys in bed linens when they see this performed.

I'll just rest on the kudos from real-world, LIVE reactions of lay audiences AND groups of credible, knowledgeable magicians.

Jimmy Fingers


later Jimmy.
Last edited by Jonathan Townsend on 09/27/08 07:14 PM, edited 0 times in total.
Reason: grammar, not content.
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby 000 » 09/28/08 12:18 AM

LEVIGAFFUS....................defenitely a good word for the magical lexicon
000
 
Posts: 563
Joined: 04/16/08 10:01 AM

Postby Scott Emo » 09/28/08 12:45 AM

I own a Magellan and I have to say that I don't think Jonathan's concern of the cloth is as big a deal as he seem to be making it. Frankly, no one seems to care, accept magicians, that a cloth is used. I've seen this argument a lot from different levitations that require cover. I have performed the Magellan leviation and other cover-needing levs many times and not once have I heard from the audience, "hey, why the blankey?".

The cloth is a prop. People expect magicians to use props. Like a deck of cards are props. It truly is no big deal for laymen. They just don't care and they accept it as part of the overall effect.

In fact, I kind of like the idea of Linus as a reason that you might be holding the cloth in the first place, if one really feels it necessary to explain away the cloth. Do a whole routine around Peanuts if you want. It might play pretty well. It could be the reason you are flying.

Bottom line, laymen don't really care and dismiss the use of the cloth simply as another magician's prop. At least that's what I've experienced.

If I'm not mistaken, Jonathan also wrote that you need an assistant to perform the effect. This is not accurate. You can perform this solo, with no assistant. There are also handlings that I have used that DO use an assistant, but it's not necessary. I just wanted to make sure that part was clear.
Scott Emo
 
Posts: 8
Joined: 09/28/08 12:14 AM

Postby Bill Duncan » 09/28/08 02:17 AM

I guess it boils down to, what staging can you think of which makes the cloth part of the staging, rather than part of the method.

In the bald demo the cloth has no reason to exist except to hide the mechanism. In a theatrical display, with something to think about besides the cloth, it would probably pass as stage dressing.

I think an amusing presentation might focus on what the audience thinks is happening behind the cloth. When it "accidentally" drops away the performer is standing on a couple of blocks or something, which fall over leaving the performer hovering in the air.
Bill Duncan
 
Posts: 1352
Joined: 03/13/08 11:33 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 09/28/08 08:57 AM

Bill, the halloween posts above and elsewhere likely nailed it - it's a huge breakthrough for the working performer and makes things from the Paul Harris Superman item to other things in levitation books worth doing IMHO and practical. I still think the image of Linus learning a magic trick is cute - might even ask someone about it for staging in a production and see if they like the idea - a moment between Linus and Lucy.

As to throwing focus under the feet with blocks as you were considering... IMHO not a good idea unless you ALSO have an assistant to help move focus up and back to faces and hands ect. I could be off on this part but at a guess IF you had an assistant you might be able to let them take the cloth at that moment and use a principle applied to the super-x. Anyway - that's conjecture on my part.
Last edited by Jonathan Townsend on 09/28/08 09:02 AM, edited 0 times in total.
Reason: transparent
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Steve Bryant » 09/28/08 10:45 AM

I once did a goofy (and far less effective) self-levitation in which I removed various props such as an aviator helmet, goggles, scarf, etc. from a bag and then held up a large cloth that bore the words THE INCREDIBLE FLOATING MAN. A similar presentation could be used here. Wet your finger, raise it to see which way the wind is blowing, and up you go. (The point is that the wording gives a modest reason for the cloth.)
Last edited by Steve Bryant on 09/28/08 10:45 AM, edited 0 times in total.
Reason: spelling
User avatar
Steve Bryant
 
Posts: 1642
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Bloomington IN

Postby Scott Emo » 09/28/08 12:18 PM

If we were going to catagorize staging options for this effect, I see it as 3 different approaches, which I think can all work, depending upon your stage persona:

- just do the effect with the cloth as a prop, not necessarily calling direct attention to it. Not explaining it's existance, it's just there, and it's the only thing there. There is no board, no uprights, no curtain, no base to stand on, just do it organically with some music. (This is the way I perform this today)

- stage it where the cloth becomes the REASON that you can levitate, giving the audience a false out, silly or not (call it a sail where the wind can catch it and raises you up, or it's a cape from Kripton and that's the REAL reason superman can fly, etc.)

- give the cloth a reason to be there where the cloth is NOT the reason for levitating, but helps builds a story (like the Linus always carries it with him, or it becomes a sign like "The Incredible Floating Man")

I think all these categories have merit, and it comes down to how it fits into your act, and what theater you want your audience to experience.
Scott Emo
 
Posts: 8
Joined: 09/28/08 12:14 AM

Postby Bill Palmer » 10/01/08 01:10 PM

The videos on Jimmy's site do not do this justice.

Yes, the purpose of the cloth is to hide the method. However, Jimmy's assesssment of the performing angles is very conservative. He could do this almost surrounded if he made a very minor modification to the gaffus.

Much of the criticism here from a theatrical standpoint is valid, but some of it strikes me as Oscar Wilde wannabee criticism.

I should add that I have been Jimmy's harshest critic many, many times. I will probably work with him on a video that really displays this to its best advantage.
Bill Palmer, MIMC
Bill Palmer
 
Posts: 719
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Houston TX

Postby Scott Emo » 11/04/08 01:22 AM

Has anyone seen this in action live other than Bill and I? I agree with Bill that video does not do this justice (similiar to alot of things seen live vs. video...concerts, magic, the grand canyon...but I digress). If you see this live, it is breathtaking. Hearing the audience react to the float is one of those wonderful sounds that you hope to hear every time you perform. If you hear of a chance to see this live, go there and see for yourself.

In the video that I posted on Jimmy's site, I had the microphone in the back, so you can hear some of the responses. Not the best performance that I've done, but the reactions were still great.
Scott Emo
 
Posts: 8
Joined: 09/28/08 12:14 AM

Postby Pete Biro » 11/04/08 02:10 AM

One premise would be talking about playing basketball, but you're not tall enough... grab a big towel with your favorite team logo on it... do the levi and... well you decide how to finish the bit.
Stay tooned.
User avatar
Pete Biro
 
Posts: 7124
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Hollyweird

Postby Igor » 12/25/08 03:14 PM

C'mon!
When did stage magicians start worrying about the presence of a silk, cloth, whatever, small or large?

But what does bother me is the position of the feet, apparently carefully balanced on a small platform. I'd like to have some logical explanation for that. Perphaps a rope? Perhaps staggering the feet? Please note I haven't seen the illusions - just responding to the video.
Keep the Art Alive!
Bob Meigs
robertmeigs@sbcglobal.net
User avatar
Igor
 
Posts: 3
Joined: 03/04/08 01:00 PM
Location: solana beach, ca 92075

Postby trickstar » 05/10/10 03:24 PM

"The highlight of the whole World Magic Seminar was an impromptu, late-night performance, given by some guy I'd never heard of: Jimmy Fingers. He performed a close-up levitation, which he invented, and if he wasn't charging $1,500 for the gimmick, I'd be performing it, too." - Rick Lax, Las Vegas Weekly

http://www.lasvegasweekly.com/blogs/cle ... rallelism/

Now, discounted deeply, way under $1,000!
trickstar
 
Posts: 5
Joined: 09/23/08 06:39 PM

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 05/11/10 10:00 AM

trickstar wrote:"The highlight of the whole World Magic Seminar was an impromptu, late-night performance, given by some guy I'd never heard of: ...


Now that's a scathing review of the World Magic Seminar.
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 05/11/10 11:50 AM

One more - just cause I luv ya: Behold the world's strongest Chihuahua. Cloth appropriately decorated like carnival banner. BYO chihuaua.

To Scott Emo - how's it going with the item?
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby schwabe » 05/19/10 02:13 PM

Eh!
Don't worry Spiders, I keep house casually.
User avatar
schwabe
 
Posts: 11
Joined: 05/06/10 09:22 AM
Location: Michigan

Postby Dynamike » 01/06/11 02:42 PM

Scott Emo wrote:Has anyone seen this in action live other than Bill and I? responses.

My friend bought one. He showed it to me. It is amazing. It is well worth it. On the Magic Cafe it received standing ovations.

The cloth helps makes it an art if used right.
Dynamike
 
Posts: 67
Joined: 08/08/09 01:22 PM
Location: Detroit, MI

Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/06/11 03:28 PM

It's really interesting looking, but starting with the cloth just laying on a bare stage doesn't work: it begs a question.
Ditto for holding the cloth to the side during the "reveal" of the float--it begs the question.

I can see that the creator is trying very hard to go for the "bare" look that seems to be popular at the moment, but the mechanism won't allow for that--it needs to be camoflauged in some way.

It also looked for a few seconds like he was walking up the rungs of a ladder or walking up small steps as he was moving upward.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20010
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 01/06/11 03:51 PM

Richard, that's exactly why I suggested using a Chihuahua.
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY

Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/06/11 06:05 PM

Jon, I am at a total loss to understand what a small dog has to do with this trick.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine
User avatar
Richard Kaufman
 
Posts: 20010
Joined: 07/18/01 12:00 PM
Location: Washington DC

Postby Jonathan Townsend » 01/06/11 06:21 PM

From post of May 11th last year "ya: Behold the world's strongest Chihuahua. Cloth appropriately decorated like carnival banner. BYO chihuaua."

This way when it looks like you are stepping up on something, that's the effect. :)
Mundus vult decipi
Jonathan Townsend
 
Posts: 6536
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: Westchester, NY


Return to Platform & Stage Magic