A Vernon's advice

Discuss your favorite close-up tricks and methods.

Postby Philippe Noël » 08/07/03 10:35 AM

What do you think of this Vernon's advice:
"Take ONE trick, work on it, study all aspects of it, practise it, perform it as often as you can, try to make it as perfect as you can.
Eventually, you will have a trick which you can do better than anyone else in the world and it will be you they will talk about whenever they see anyone else do the trick."
I think inconsciously many magicians followed this advice:
Al Schneider who took the trick "The Sympathetic Coins" and made it "Matrix".
Guy Hollingworth who took J.C. Wagner's Torn and Restored card and made it "Reformation".
Larry Jennings who took the trick "Open Travellers" and made it "Invisible Palm Aces".
Do you have other examples coming to your mind, would you like to comment this advice, what do you think of it, have you tried to follow this advice, did you succeed, have you other advice?
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Postby Robert Allen » 08/07/03 11:46 AM

This "learn one trick very well" is also Eugene Burgers advice, in a nutshell. I think it's a useful exercise, which of course means that I have not done it. I believe that even if you don't take the advice precisely to heart, the point that you need to fully build up a presentation, rather than just learn the mechanics of a trick, is the critical point.

The other useful bit I've heard was from Dick Zimmerman, who said "start with the strongest magic you can." To further paraphrase, "It's said that a great magician can make any trick good, but most people when starting should take every advantage they can get."
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Postby Pete Biro » 08/07/03 05:42 PM

You missed Vernon's major contribution... he told Albert Goshman to take "Unlimited Coinage of Silver" and build on it... and we all know what Gosh did with that... maybe the strongest table magic of our time.

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Postby Max Maven » 08/08/03 01:02 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
You missed Vernon's major contribution... he told Albert Goshman to take "Unlimited Coinage of Silver" and build on it... and we all know what Gosh did with that... maybe the strongest table magic of our time.
Pete, I agree with your conclusion about Albert's act, but the evolution is not quite as you describe.

It began with Albert Goshman asking Dai Vernon how he could make a name for himself in magic. The Professor replied with the same advice mentioned earlier: Find one effect and learn to do it better than anyone else, thus developing a signature piece on which to build a reputation.

Albert chose "Spellbound," and became the acknowledged master of that one specific trick, in terms of both quality of execution and range of variation. This, in turn, provided a base of confidence on which he eventually built his superb close-up act -- which, ironically, did not include "Spellbound."
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Postby Pete Biro » 08/08/03 09:43 PM

Albert certainly did "Spellbound" as good as it could possibly be done.

Thanks for the clarification.

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Postby Philippe Noël » 08/09/03 12:41 AM

Is Goshman's method for Spellbound published in Magic by Gosh?
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Postby Pete Biro » 08/09/03 09:08 AM

Not sure, but as I recall (Albert taught it to me but I have not done it in some time) it was the basic Connie Haden (who made the coins) handling. It is just that Albert did it so well and his presentation... "The Sun Rises in the East and Sets in the West....." patter was direct and it was a fooler in his hands.
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Postby Bill McFadden » 08/09/03 10:49 AM

"Magic by Gosh" unfortunately does not contain a presentation/handling for "Spellbound." However, the Goshman routine to which Peat is referring can be found on page 440 of "The New Modern Coin Magic" (Bobo), entitled, "Sun and Moon." You can also find some nice Connie Haden material in that part of the book.

If it's a unique method for "Spellbound" you're looking for, try to locate a copy of "Al Schneider on Close-Up." An entire chapter is devoted to improving the handling and routine.
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Postby Philippe Noël » 08/10/03 02:44 AM

Bill,
Thank you for the references.

Pete,
Haden's trick is not really a "Spellbound".
Perhaps Max was refering to an other Goshman's routine?
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Postby Pete Biro » 08/10/03 12:24 PM

Jet lag strikes again... I mis-read Maven's reply as SUN AND MOON.... sorry.... yes Gosh was the master at Spellbound (and many other coin tricks as well).
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