The Legends weren't flawless...

Discuss general aspects of Genii.
Leonard Hevia
Posts: 1686
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Dai Vernon, Frank Garcia, Slydini, Houdini,
Location: Gaithersburg, Md.

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Leonard Hevia » February 6th, 2018, 11:02 pm

Never understood the appeal of Cards Across. Paul Potassy warned that modern audiences don't have the attention span to sit thru this effect.

performer
Posts: 2588
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby performer » February 7th, 2018, 12:39 am

Leonard Hevia wrote:Never understood the appeal of Cards Across. Paul Potassy warned that modern audiences don't have the attention span to sit thru this effect.


I certainly understand the appeal of 3 cards across. I have two excellent versions one of which I have been doing nearly 60 years. The effect is very strong I assure you.

As for Potassy he used to do it himself years ago. And he did it for a long time. Here he is doing it when he was a young man:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dTMWu39ufZk

Tom Gilbert
Posts: 698
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: NH
Contact:

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Tom Gilbert » February 7th, 2018, 9:21 am

Leonard above mentions attention span. A interesting take from years ago when I had the chance to spend a few minutes with Walter Gibson at a great convention put together by Steve Dacri. Walter was talking to me about working with Houdini, and talking about safe escapes. He went on to say HH would be out of a safe in no time and would sit behind the curtain reading a paper for a few minutes, then dousing with water and ripping his shirt. Walter lamented that audiences now (mid-70's) had no attention span for something like that. Appears it's a continuing problem.

Jonathan Townsend
Posts: 7800
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Westchester, NY
Contact:

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Jonathan Townsend » February 7th, 2018, 9:37 am

Leonard Hevia wrote:Never understood the appeal of Cards Across. Paul Potassy warned that modern audiences don't have the attention span to sit thru this effect.


As compared to the coins across trick? It seems to have played for audiences since Ponsin's time. Making the trick entirely about the performer and having cards jump into the pocket (cards up sleeve) might be a compromise. What do you think?
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

User avatar
erdnasephile
Posts: 3682
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby erdnasephile » February 7th, 2018, 11:41 am

I've had success presenting a one phase, single card thought of "Cards Across" routine by whittling down the effect to it's essence, playing up the impossibility aspects, and staging it larger in a parlour situation. It's direct and to the point. (I'm also keen to try out Simon Aronson's killer version).

I can't recall if anyone mentioned this effect in this thread, but I've seen several master magicians present "The Sympathetic Cards" and even with the reversed card kicker, the effect didn't connect with me as an audience member. The performers started the reveal slowly, then went faster, then slowed down again at the reversed card, then faster as the remaining cards were revealed. Although I think the drama was meant to build, I almost felt like it didn't build all that well , especially after the reversed card showed up in the middle. The remainder of the reveal felt like showing us what we already presumed had happened, and the performances didn't end on an upbeat. It really felt like one drawn out reveal--almost like an "Enough, we get the point" moment.

I feel a lot of the routines with repetitive phases play stronger for me when there is a twisted, but logical, ending instead a repetition of the same. I'm sure stronger performers don't need this, but for me, it plays better and is more satisfying for me as a performer.

performer
Posts: 2588
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby performer » February 7th, 2018, 1:52 pm

This is my version of Three Cards Across. It is not that different from Ponsin's version in the century before last.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlN3dR_al7Q

User avatar
Christopher1979
Posts: 275
Joined: January 23rd, 2017, 10:46 am
Favorite Magician: Ricky Jay, Dai Vernon, Darwin Ortiz, Ed Marlo
Location: Phoenix AZ

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Christopher1979 » February 7th, 2018, 3:35 pm

pduffie wrote:I hope I have the name right, I believe it is The Olram Subtlety - where you continue to show the bottom card during a Hindu Shuffle. To me, that always looked like exactly what it is - repeatedly showing the bottom card.

That's the Hamman Flushtration Count (yes, it is essentially the Hindu Shuffle principle). Poor old Hamman's been hit twice now in this thread :( I think this only works if the audience already assume that the cards are all the same. It's also more convincing when showing a small group of cards as all blank.

Peter


If your a beginner and want to force a card it can work well

User avatar
erdnasephile
Posts: 3682
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby erdnasephile » February 7th, 2018, 5:43 pm

Johnny Thompson describes a much superior way of handling the Hindu Force in his "Prowling Jokers" manuscript. Perhaps it's included in his big books?

(PS: I don't think the above cited description is the Orlam Subtlety---I actually think that subtlety can be very effective in the right spots)

MagicbyAlfred
Posts: 798
Joined: June 7th, 2015, 12:48 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby MagicbyAlfred » February 7th, 2018, 10:28 pm

performer wrote:This is my version of Three Cards Across. It is not that different from Ponsin's version in the century before last.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlN3dR_al7Q


Bravo! Very entertaining and well-constructed presentation. It also flows quite nicely from the predecessor (6-Card Repeat) routine.

i have heard that 7 will be the most commonly named number between 1 and 10, but have found myself wondering what the out would be if a number other than 7 were to be named in the second phase...

performer
Posts: 2588
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby performer » February 8th, 2018, 9:48 am

Alfred. You must remember that I am psychic and know what number they are going to say!

Jonathan Townsend
Posts: 7800
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Westchester, NY
Contact:

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Jonathan Townsend » February 8th, 2018, 10:07 am

Sean Piper wrote:Just for fun... what effects/moves/sleights/etc. published by a legend of magic (Vernon, Marlo, Hamman, etc.) was, in your mind, a complete dud :)


Until something connects the procedure of a trick to a story or idea I'd like to share with an audience ... they're all "maybe someday/somehow" items. Even then it's hit/miss on what people like. But when they say what they imagine as interesting ... that gets me looking through the books for performable tricks to match.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

performer
Posts: 2588
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby performer » February 8th, 2018, 10:11 am

[quote="MagicbyAlfred" It also flows quite nicely from the predecessor (6-Card Repeat) routine.
[/quote]

As for the Six Card Repeat I always hated the trick but the late Harry Stanley insisted I open my act with it. He taught me his version and I hated the corny story that went with it and I did not like throwing away two rather than the traditional three. I fought tooth and nail with him over the bloody trick and didn't want to do it but he prevailed. And I am glad he did. I was working to very rowdy, inebriated audiences in London night clubs at the time but as soon as I opened with the 6 card repeat the inattention and noise died down suddenly as if by magic. There was something about the repetitive counting that shut up the rowdiest audiences and gave me a chance to establish myself.

I showed Harry's version to other magicians and they hated it saying that it sounded so stilted and rehearsed. And not very spontaneous. I thought I had an argument against Harry and was daft enough to tell him what the other magicians said. He got mad and said to me, "Why are you listening to those idiots? Don't discuss my conversations with them! Listen to me and nobody else!"

I did and it worked out.

MagicbyAlfred
Posts: 798
Joined: June 7th, 2015, 12:48 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone
Location: Myrtle Beach, SC

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby MagicbyAlfred » February 8th, 2018, 12:41 pm

performer wrote:Alfred. You must remember that I am psychic and know what number they are going to say!



Ah yes, I had a temporary lapse of memory - to go with those of sanity...

Leonard Hevia
Posts: 1686
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Dai Vernon, Frank Garcia, Slydini, Houdini,
Location: Gaithersburg, Md.

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Leonard Hevia » February 8th, 2018, 11:56 pm

Jonathan Townsend wrote:
Leonard Hevia wrote:Never understood the appeal of Cards Across. Paul Potassy warned that modern audiences don't have the attention span to sit thru this effect.


As compared to the coins across trick?


Compared to Cards Across, Coins Across can be more direct and reach the finish line fairly quickly. Lots of fussing and counting with Cards Across. How many cards do we have on the left? Let's count them...1...2...3...4...5...Was there a miscount?

performer
Posts: 2588
Joined: August 7th, 2015, 10:35 pm

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby performer » February 9th, 2018, 12:18 am

I have done coins across. It does not have the same impact as cards across and you can't do it on a stage. However, if a trick doesn't suit you then it just doesn't suit you. Mind you, cards across can be far funnier if you have the right presentation. I have another version which has gags every few seconds. I got it from a Jon Tremaine book on card tricks. A beginners book too and probably written for young people. I have often said the best tricks are in children's books!

Jonathan Townsend
Posts: 7800
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Westchester, NY
Contact:

Re: The Legends weren't flawless...

Postby Jonathan Townsend » February 9th, 2018, 8:28 am

Going from that comment about the coins across... how many folks have you seen perform the Robert-Houdin coin casket item?

Audiences presume the entertainer is competent. If a magician, that they've successfully completed their basic education in doing magic. Of course you could present yourself as an autodidact or misfit-throwout or collector of toys that behave in strange ways... or ... but again now we're into character rather than magical effect design.

Finding where the practice, rehearsal, preparation and fuss payoff in shows is its own challenge. You can slather anodyne and affable onto a trick but that's not the same as finding what works for you.

:)
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time


Return to “General”