Originally posted by ChrisDavid:
. . . surely the fast and furious hands of a Gregg Wilson or a Lee Asher are appreciated by many . . .
This is not the first time I've heard or read Greg Wilson and Lee Asher's names linked with the description of "fast hands," but in my opinion there is a huge difference between them. (Not to belittle Chris David's excellent post, by the way.)
I've never seen Greg live and I've given his videos luke-warm reviews because I feel much of what he does is to rush through the magic and. while he is extremely entertaining, I feel the magic is diminished with this rushing through. The spectator is left overwhelmed and, I think, with a sense that there was an interesting effect, but I also think he may be left thinking that if he had just watched a littlemore closely
he would have seen what the magician had done to fool him.
Lee Asher has also got a dynamic presentation, speedy talk and high energy. But Lee performs his magic very slowly!
He makes a real attempt to show the spectator every step of the presentation. He choreographs the magic so it appears he's going out of his way to show every angle. He's actually only one step away from Slydini's famous (and controversial), "If you miss what I'm doing this time, it's not so good," or Rene Lavand's, "I can't do it any slower," or Goshman's "challenge" presentation. Lee doesn't out-and-out challenge, he makes it clear he's in it for the fun. But like these masters, he wants the spectator to know that they've been fooled while they were at their most observant level of attention.
And this, to me, is also what Mike Skinner did.
And, by the way, the opportunity to observe this on video is one of the greatest benefits of this electronic medium. It is a lesson one might see described in a book (and I think everyone reading this knows I am an unswerving believer in the superiority of books for learning magic), but actually seeing
it for oneself is, I believe, infinitely better.
We might open another topic on another theory I have trouble with, Darwin Ortiz's belief that the pace of the magic should be slow except while the "dirty work" is happening.
Then he speeds up, and then slows down again for the remainder of the effect (the denoument, usually).
It's an interesting notion, but open to debate. Maybe another time.
By the way, another master who performs in a deliberate and "slow" manner, and someone I've had endless discussions with about this very topic, is the great Harvey Rosenthal.