Circuit

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Brad Jeffers
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Re: Circuit

Postby Brad Jeffers » May 29th, 2013, 6:01 pm

Brad Henderson wrote:What highly regarded, powerful magic effects position the key move at the moment of the magic?

There are many examples of this ... When one billiard ball becomes two, when a card vanishes at the fingertips, when a pair of gloves transforms into a dove, etc.
All classical, powerful and very magical effects. Others would include the vanishing birdcage, cane to silks, and that trick where a pot of flowers instantly and visibly vanishes from a table top.

These are all from the world of stage magic but close-up has many examples also. I will never forget the first time I saw Ricky Jay perform his Queen's Coterie. I was awed by the sequence where the four queens are produced via the Piet Forton pop out move. I had no idea what he was doing and it was beautiful. Although this is a prime example of the move being simultaneous to the magic, to my eyes it was just that - magic.

All of these have one thing in common, they have to be done at the proper speed to be deceptive. Not to say that in all cases they have to be done fast, but they certainly could not be done super slowly without disclosing the method. I would think the same would be true of Circuit.

An example of an effect where the key move is positioned at the moment of the magic, which can be done as slowly as you like, would be the vanish or change of a card utilizing the Elmsley count.

Brad Henderson
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Re: Circuit

Postby Brad Henderson » May 29th, 2013, 8:18 pm

Brad, you must have missed the discussion on the back palm and its place in theatrical/variety theater. One can argue that it is not a magical happening, but a display of skill.

Which is stronger, the instantaneous change of the cane to the silk, or rolling the cane in the newspaper? Or even better, the swirl of the white tipped silk through the air which solidifies. Admittedly, the method occurs at the moment of the magic, but it is obscured by the motion.

Is the visible birdcage vanish more magical than one under a cloth and thrown into the air - or even McComb's which is diffused as well? Is it any wonder that magicians who perform the visible vanish as a rule immediately address the obvious "up your sleeve"? Seems to me that if the moment were profound, one would not need go into proving after the fact.

Do the gloves to paper flowers fool anyone? Does any adult not think the bird pops out of somewhere when the balloon pops? Are these strong mysteries, or visual amusements?

The billiard ball is an example to my favor - the shell is a deception which occurs before the moment of magic. The production is just the reveal. Where does the ball come from? I was pondering this on the miser's dream example posited by Pete. I was thinking of the Shaw production popularized by Miller. In my mind, it doesn't matter DECEPTIVELY is the coin is shot to the fingers from the hand or whether the hand is closed and opened to reveal the coin - these are just choices of revelation. Do you turn over the card or do the vernon through the fist first. Sure, they impact the feeling, but the mystery is the same - how did the coin get in the hand. In either case, the METHOD has nothing to do with the revelation - the method is performed after the reveal! Brilliant.

The pop out move looks good when done well and I will confess that as a young magician seeing Diana Zimmerman in a clip about teaching young magicians, that visual stuck with me. But then again - I was a magician.

I wonder if laypeople remember the pop out production or the amazing moments that follow, resulting from the use of methods that occur well out of bounds from the moment of magic. I don't believe Ricky has visual vanishes of the cards. Starting a meal with a little flourish is one thing. But when it's time for magic . . . .

I also love how you mention the vanish of the flowers FROM THE TABLE TOP. Does that speak to the inherent "how else" weaknesses of the visual effect?

Brad Henderson
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Re: Circuit

Postby Brad Henderson » May 29th, 2013, 8:22 pm

I can't edit the previous post:

Re:Billiard balls. A study of Benson and great routines reveals that most of the productions occur NOT by splitting the ball from the shell. Instead the shell is used as a one ahead allowing the magician to load and steal the ball for productions which occur well away from the shell. Magicians who learn from magic kits split the balls from the shell.

Jonathan Townsend
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Re: Circuit

Postby Jonathan Townsend » May 29th, 2013, 9:56 pm

Agreed about using the shell to set up the one-ahead for an apparently bare handed solid billiard production (think shuttle pass in coin magic ;) )
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

Bill Mullins
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Re: Circuit

Postby Bill Mullins » May 30th, 2013, 12:14 am

The responses to my earlier post make me think I didn't do a good job of making the point I wanted to make, so let me try again:

Mindman wrote:I suspect some of the negative comments in this discussion stem more from a failure to understand modern video marketing than from Zach Heath's 'Circuit' effect.


If a video/commercial/marketing item makes some of the viewers antagonistic to the product, as has happened with several commenters in this thread, it's not the customer's fault for "failure to understand modern video marketing." It's the marketeer's fault. Period.

Yes, the video "connected" with some (much?) of its intended audience. It also seems to have predisposed some potential customers to actively dislike a product that they previously had never heard of -- which couldn't have been the desired result, and is clearly sub-optimal.

The issue I'm trying to home in on isn't whether the video misrepresents the effect. It's that the video may be accurately portraying the effect, and that viewers realize this, and like neither the video nor the effect. If the effect is in fact better than is portrayed in the video, it isn't incumbent on viewers to rise above their prejudices via superior understanding of modern magic marketing.

Mindman's comment was condescending.

Mindman
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Re: Circuit

Postby Mindman » May 30th, 2013, 5:20 am

Marketeers are doing a good job when it comes to selling stuff. They do manage to appeal to their target market. The issue is what they present as meaningful, or important, or worthy of being valued WHEN THEIR PRODUCT IS MEANT TO BE AN EDUCATIONAL TOOL FOR THE GROWTH OF A MAGICIAN.


Brad, how I wish it really were true that magic distributors are meant to perform the function of educational institutions or schools of magic. The sad truth is that vendors of magic tricks are just that: vendors of magic tricks. No more, no less.

And this has always been the case. Just cast your mind back to those ads. in mail order catalogues. They certainly never taught the skills missing from today's video ads.

Education in misdirection, presentation, and the myriad of other necessary skills for good magic must be looked for elsewhere - in magic clubs, magic courses and in the other products sold by online vendors and brick-and-mortor shops: DVDs and downloads, books and magic magazines (hard and soft copy) and e-lectures.

PS: I also must make clear I do not have, and have never had, any connection whatever with any magic suppliers - apart from the fact that, over the years, I have contributed probably far more than I ought to have, to their bank balances!

Jonathan Townsend
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Re: Circuit

Postby Jonathan Townsend » May 30th, 2013, 10:22 am

@Brad, in your experience what percentage of consumer demand is motivated by "how can I be more effective and offering wonder to my audiences at social occasions" rather than something like "what looks clever and might be fun to play with"?


Any thoughts on the "try to grab the ring and it jumps away" approach to circuit?
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time


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