Dancing Cane

Discuss your favorite platform magic and illusions.

Postby Guest » 01/07/04 01:11 PM

Since I had posted both zombie and dancing cane, quite a few issues have been brought up. The last stating that the layman knew what the gimmick was on the dancing cane. This being the case, do we remove this from our act, or let it remain.
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Postby Guest » 01/10/04 01:31 PM

How many people know sawing a woman in half, or metamorphosis (or they think they do) because of exposure shows such as the Masked Magician?

Does it really matter? No, if your magic is entertaining then technically people shouldn't give a damn whether they know how it's done or not. Of course there are exceptions and I am not saying exposure is ok here but I am simply stating that if your magic is entertaining then go make a whole act using a dancing cane if you want! Knock yourself out!
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Postby Guest » 11/23/04 08:42 PM

I believe that the dancing cane can be a beautiful effect if performed correctly. But, it appears to me that magicians have this trick all wrong in that, everytime you see someone perform, they do it way too long with only three or four moves and think that is the way the trick should be. Try my New Dancing Cane 101 DVD, it has 17 different moves. Precision Magic
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Postby Pete Biro » 11/23/04 11:18 PM

Ever watch cops on the streets in NY City during a parade?

They stand around with their long Billy Clubs, which have a leather cord to hold... and in fact they are just like a dancing cane and lots of the cops do some pretty cool moves with them.

If you insist on doing it...

1: DO NOT LOWER THE LIGHTS
2: Learn to DANCE
3: The cane is coming along for the ride, it is NOT to show how many moves you can do.
Stay tooned.
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Postby BlueEyed Videot » 11/23/04 11:33 PM

If you want to see a Master perform a beautiful dancing cane routine, don't miss Ray Anderson staring at Esther's Follies in Austin, TX. Ray's routine is absolutely world-class.

Pete, if you EVER get a chance to see Ray's act, I guarantee you'll bust a gut. Ray's thin-model sawing routine "The Amazing Frank & Lucky" is, quite frankly, the best, funniest, sawing routine today, bar none. (Of course so is his "Jumbo Sidekick" routine...)

Esther's follies info HERE
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Postby Guest » 12/03/04 12:44 AM

We have an exerpt from Dave's DVD on our site. It is truly beautiful. And the new moves are very cool. The "hat removal" got 'oohs' and 'ahhs' from the crowd at Bob Little's Super Sunday every time I played it.

Just watching Dave demo it at TAOM made me want to do this effect. So I bought one and a DVD...and then bought them for our store!

You can see the exerpt HERE!

Ben S
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Postby Guest » 12/03/04 11:03 PM

Thanks Ben for the kind words. I understand your becoming quite proficient with the dancing cane yourself?
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Postby Pete Biro » 12/03/04 11:52 PM

Sorry, it still looks like you are just swinging the cane around on a string.

I have ONLY SEEN TWO performers do the cane the way I think it should be done.

1: Ken Brooke. Ken came onto the floor (he worked mostly cabaret dance floors) DANCING. A comedy eccentric dance AND THE CAN JUST CAME ALONG... it didn't look like he was manipulating the cane and the entire routine lasted maybe 15 seconds.

2: A French comedy act (I don't recall the name, as it was 20 years ago) had a routine where the cane took on a life of its own, and had a FIGHT with him, hitting him on the head, knocking him down, etc. It was a riot.
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Postby Guest » 12/06/04 12:23 PM

Originally posted by Ben Salinas:
We have an exerpt from Dave's DVD on our site. It is truly beautiful. And the new moves are very cool. The "hat removal" got 'oohs' and 'ahhs' from the crowd at Bob Little's Super Sunday every time I played it.

Just watching Dave demo it at TAOM made me want to do this effect. So I bought one and a DVD...and then bought them for our store!

You can see the exerpt HERE!

Ben S
Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but I saw the ad for the DVD, but no exerpt. :(
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Postby Guest » 12/06/04 12:59 PM

The main problem with the routines most people do with a dancing cane comes on several levels.
#1 - is it a dancing cane or an acrobatic cane you are doing? There IS a difference. once is making moves with the cane such as clinging to your hand, jumping from hand to hand, spinning on your hand, etc., and the other is "dancing" around the stage.
#2 - too stiff in movement and the performer is way too conscious of the thread work.
#3 - the performer only uses ONE hand for the cane to move and the other hand barely does anything.

Peter Pitt and I had a lengthy discussion on the theory of the handling quite a few years ago and he agreed with me when I said that the perfomer needs to conduct the music with BOTH hands and that the cane should just follow the conductor with the music. In that way the hands move to the music and the cane merely does as it is directed to do. You must completely forget about your connection to the thread and instead immerse yourself to the music and "feel it" which is then broadcast to the cane.

Also, if one keeps the htread at the first joint of the middle finger and not all the way to the knuckle of the hand, (it will stay secure) one only need pump their middle finger only slightly in order to get movement from the cane. A slightly stronger pump action will get more movement/speed from the cane. Also by keeping it there, it keeps the hands ABOVE the cane, if you were to place both hands together, and merely pump your finger slightly the cane will move in circles around/under your hands and yet the audience will see NO movement on your part to control the cane which is very importnat for this illusion. The audience must not be aware of any connection to the cane. Allow the cane to do what IT wants and when you need to move your hands, move BOTH of them, not one moves a lot and one barely moves. Think again about the "conducting the music", allow both hands to move well and if you keep the htread on the first joint of the middle finger you will find that you can also have finger movements and free flowing movement from both. Hope that helps,

PSIncerely Yours,
Paul Alberstat
AB Stagecraft
http://www.mindguy.com/store
Supplying unique mentalism world-wide
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Postby Guest » 12/12/04 09:54 PM

hello all. I love the dancing cane as well as any type of floating or levitation effect . I recall that 20 years ago there was a toy I think was called 'the trick stick" and all it was was a plastic stick with a "string"(fish line) and then everyone said that no one should do the dancing cane because of this. as I was young i felt the same. but I was told that peter pit performed the "trick stick' as if it were the real dancing cane and no one could tell how it was done. So this is the concept... even if the trick is exposed so some degree ... it is all in presentation. Michael

Ps. I just got "sphere" and it is excellent
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Postby Guest » 12/14/04 07:04 PM

I tried very hard to include Peters Performance of 1.09 Seconds on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, but there were VERY HEAVY Fees involved in the licensing that made it Impossible to Include in the Dancing Cane 101 DVD. However, Peter Pits student Hugo Wei contributed to my DVD as well as Jeff McBride.
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Postby Guest » 01/02/05 10:18 PM

I had someone ask me if knowing how something is done ruined it for me. I ask him you know how people sing don't you? Can you still enjoy the music? Now that got a seriously perplexed expression. Knowing how improves my enjoyment of the performance.
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Postby Guest » 01/03/05 09:38 PM

Back around 1975 the late Mike Rogers did a dancing cane, as a matter of fact he was on the same bill with Ward Thomas (who cut his cane out of his act for Mike). Music to the eyes, cane danced, gloves were removed and the darn thing kept changing color. Well it was acually spots. Masterful, quick, to the point and it was over. Like any great performance you just wanted more.
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Postby Guest » 10/27/05 05:53 AM

I do thank everyone for the constructive criticism. I will use every bit of it to make it a better routine. I also along the line purchased the Vortex, a Jeff McBride product. It is very nice and the lighting on it is beautiful. It can be seen from the back row where a regular cane may blend out.
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