Slydini's Motion Vectors, Routine Structure, The Little Red Riding Hood and my night at The Magic Bar.
Warm-up in the morning was again held by Martin.
Johan gave us a 10 minute assignment after the warm-up - Write a review of a show you will open in exactly one year. - That was pretty uncomfortable to do. Of course I want it to be great, but I also don’t like raving about myself. So yes, that was a good exercise.
Tom lectured on Slydini’s motion vectors today and talked a little more about structure.
Here is a summary of what Tom was teaching:
- You can’t see everything at the same time. You see it in an order that was defined by Slydini’s motion vectors.
- People will always look at an object in motion rather than a still one; at the one going toward them rather than away from them; at the one going upward rather than downward.
- Slydini thought that an object going up can’t be canceled by anything. Tom says that it can be canceled by an object moving up from a higher place or in front of it.
I am not completely sure what the assignment was. Judging by the video of our exercise it looks to me like it was ABA ABA ABC. Going back and forth between two elements, ending on a third one. Am I remembering this right, Tom?
Here is the video:
After lunch we continued working on our projects for tomorrow. Johan bought some hand puppets and the little red riding hood he got is so much better than my princess. I am not sure if I already mentioned that holding 6 cards in my mouth for a few minutes is not very practical so I had to come up with a new method. I tried quite a few things and hopefully came up with a working one. We’ll see if it really works tomorrow.
Then I continued preparing for my close-up show at The Magic Bar and I had to skip the mini-lectures again. And this time even a Skype lecture with Will Houstoun. The Magic Bar was waiting for me.
I got there at 5 when a group of potential guests was already peeking in. They were from Florida and they had a little girl with them so I knew I won’t be able to use some originally intended words in my show. They went for a little sightseeing tour first. I am starting to think that the space I dedicate to some not so relevant things in this journal is wasted - I think I’ll be more brief.
That night was supposed to be a weak one - not many people. Arne told me that he thought we are going to be there alone. Then there were about 22 people in the dining room and later about 15 magicians in the other room. We decided that I’ll do 2 shows so everybody gets a chance to see it.
The first one was not so great. For the Florida family, Bob and Chris from Australia, about 4 Swedish guests, Erik and Axel and a few others. It went well besides the first and the last trick.
The first one was the Personal Card and I just couldn’t set it up right. I had to go through the deck 3 times to set it up correctly.
And then the Triathlon. To hope to succeed in classic forcing 2 out of 3 selected cards when you’re not good in classic forcing is in the very least brave - or foolish. So I continued forcing cards and failing in forcing cards until there were about 7 cards selected in the audience. During that I forgot who I forced the right cards onto. So I started fishing. By revealing the other cards. Asking people who picked a heart, low heart and so on. And in the end when I was down to those two force cards and after the revelation of the first one I started counting cards for ACAAN since I already had a number from someone. In the beginning I ask someone "If I would to ask you to name a number between 1 and 52, what would you say?" Then I ask another man the same question getting a different answer to which I respond, "And they say that all men are the same. See? Here you have it. They're not." And then I continue like nothing happened - later in the act I force the card that falls onto one of the named numbers in mnemonica stack on a different spectator. And then I ask the man the same question to which they hopefully respond with the same number and then I continue with ACAAN plot.
And then I realised that the 10 of diamonds have already been revealed and what’s even better that when I got to 49, it was the 6 of clubs. So I asked him what was his last name. He said PAUL. And I thought, Dammit, that’s not going to work. And the little girl started spelling it as Powell, that felt better, so I started dealing backwards and the Ace of Diamonds fell on the last letter. Good save, but a terrible feeling.
I know, I am getting lost in this myself. I could've just written that I messed up. Let's move on.
The Personal Card is one of my go to impromptu effects that I’ve been doing since Joachim Solberg taught it to me during his visit to Prague about 20 years ago. Unfortunately I don’t remember its original name or creator. Does anyone recognise it? Here is the effect:
The deck is shuffled by the spectator and set up in the process of finding the spectator’s personal card in the deck. The card is placed face down in a visible place. The deck is now set up as follows. Let’s imagine the personal card is a 5. Another 5 is on top of the deck and the other two 5s are on the 5th and 6th positions from the bottom. The deck is then split in two piles. The top card of the first pile is turned face up. It is a 5. 5 cards are dealt in a pile from top of the second pile and the 5th card is revealed as a 5. The top card from the rest of the second pile is revealed to be a third 5 and the spectator finally turns over the personal card to find out it is the last 5.
Then the Australians came, Bob and his wife Chris. He gave me his business card - he was a magician. They’ve been travelling from Australia, through China, across Russia to Sweden, and further down through Prague to Croatia and then to Rimini, Italy. He talked about street magic, performing at the Red Square and being taken away by police, about FISM Beijing being their first and I told him about the course and he didn’t know who Tom Stone is. He confused him with David Stone. So when I found that out I put him in a drawer with mediocre magicians. Anyway, I introduced them to the other magicians in the next room and went on reseting my show.
My apologies to Bob if he's reading this.
Ten minutes before the second close-up show I decided to do the Hallelujah rope routine on stage as a little pre-show which turned out as a good choice. I did the Tabary's rope routine with the accompaniment of Rufus Wainwright's version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah.
The second show was for the wizards - the first row was Simon, Alexandra, David S, Jerome, and PFS friends Amanda and Guillermo, then in the second row it was Denis, his wife, Mattias, Nicholas and his other friend Hampus and in the back Inga and Xoaher, all from PFS. PFS is Prague Film School which I studied film acting at the first 4 months of that year. And other magicians like Balazs, John-Henry, Jacob, even Arne came to see the show. And it was great, It went so well that I decided to end with Chaos and not do the Triathlon. I finished the show and since the energy was so good, I decided to perform the Industrial Revelation that I felt at my belt. I started putting the coin through and it wouldn’t go. I tried harder and nothing, so I started thinking what else could I perform? And then I just asked Jerome to tell a joke and went to the bar to reset.
Then I came back starting it with the same patter - this time the whole thing the way it should be. And while they were sending the metal block around I decided to force two cards, do ACAAN and reveal the prediction in the paper crane. It was logical. It didn’t occur to me as I forgot to introduce the ACAAN deck. But the number and the crane were already in and since I succeeded in forcing both cards immediately, it was perfect. A part of the Triathlon routine was an origami paper crane that I gave to a spectator in the beginning of the show. The crane contained a card prediction.
The second show felt very good - people liked it, magicians liked it and I was relieved.
I also did some tablehopping - I remembered the good old Daryl’s card stab which is a great trick.
Then Hanna asked me if I can help her with Ninja Rings so I did, and Jerome really liked my technique - compared it to Shoot’s. That means that I have to practice a lot.
Arne liked my show. He said that I’m very good. Then I went home in the company of Jerome and Mikael. But before that I talked with David S outside of the bar for a while. Firstly my edge deck totally fooled him. Secondly he thought that the ending of Chaos somehow doesn’t work. So next time I may try it with only one effect - just spread the new deck order and swap the cards. Also when I’m writing it now, it doesn’t sound to me any better. Anyway, the whole sequence deserves a little revision so I’ll put it on my list and when I’m back in Prague it’ll get fixed and improved.
I fixed it, it's better now. Tomorrow is a very short one and all about the Little Riding Hood.
Tom explaining Slydini's Motion Vectors