David Stone: Perfection is the Minimum
By Jaq Greenspon
French magician, actor, and lecturer David Stone is known for his clever, comic, creative close-up, yet he remains uncomfortable with praise for anything less than the perfection he strives for.
Some Moves, Routines, and Gimmicks
By David Stone
David Stone teaches card and coin magic, including his version of the Snap Change, along with a novel variation and two routines using the moves. Plus, he shows a gimmick to secretly load coins into your previously empty hand.
Theatre of Dreams
By Tim Pendergast
For a dozen years now, Joe Givan and Carol Massie have created a family atmosphere for performers and audiences alike with their Theatre of Dreams, a unique magic venue located outside Denver, Colorado.
Lefty's Incredible Hat Trick
By Richard Faverty
Douglas Leferovich. Lefty. The Red Gamester. All three are actually the same person - one man who is a magician, producer, consultant, nightclub proprietor, creative director, and wearer of various other hats.
Plus Updates on...
Jason Hudy in The Magic of Saipan.
Stuart MacLeod's short silent film, Funny Love.
The 45th anniversary gathering of Fechter's Finger Flicking Frolic.
"A Moment With..." Mat Franco.
MAGIC Magazine "Conventions at a Glance."
Bonus Content for the June Issue...
A David Stone performance at Double Fond in Paris.
Performances and explanations of David Stone tricks with cards and coins.
Cameron Francis performing Sleightless Sightless.
Performance and tutorial of Immediate Ace Spelling from George McBride.
All 21 of the products reviewed in the June issue, plus 414 reviews from previous issues, are all now available at the fully searchable "Marketplace" section of M360.
Convention Podcasts: SAM National Convention, IBM Annual Convention, Abbott's Magic Get-Together, and MAGIC Live!
(* Available for subscribers only at M360)
Marketplace Twenty-one products are reviewed this month by Michael Claxton, Peter Duffie, Gabe Fajuri, Jared Kopf, Francis Menotti, Peter Pitchford, John Wilson:
Confictura by Thomas Moore
Too Hot to Handle by Kieron Johnson
Unlink by Jordan Victoria
Tchin by Eric Leblon
Three Ropes and a 1000 Laughs by Cody Fisher
Hacked by Brian Kennedy
Conjurors, Cardsharps and Conmen by Bernard Reid
What Tha! by Roger Lovins
Quantum HD by Magic Encarta
Badge by Alexis de la Fuente and Sebastien Calbry
The Matrix Pad by Richard Griffin
Something Out of the Ordinary by Nicholas Lawrence
Magician Nitely and Fechter by Jerry Mentzer
Dissolve by Francis Menotti
Incarnation by Marc Oberon
Against All Odds by Alakazam Magic
I Lie for Money by Steve Spill
Elit by Peter Eggink
The Changeling by Marc Lavelle and Martyn Rowland
Canic by Nicholas Lawrence
50fifty by Brian Kennedy
Finn Jon's Esoterica: The Vanishing Cigar
In this effect, the magician enters the stage, puffing a cigar. But the cigar obviously does not taste good. The sour cigar is crumpled up into the magician's hand, continuously releasing smoke, and then disappears without a trace. I usually use this effect as an opener. The design of the fake cigar has undergone several steps of development. I conceived a cigar that could be operated with only one hand, as well as added a gadget to allow it to be smoked like a normal cigar for a short while. The new method is a good simplification of my first method, as it is easier to build, handle, and maintain. And the illusion is stronger, because the cigar is continuously giving off smoke until the moment it vanishes. Finally, a pure sleight-of-hand version might just be the best way to do this.
First Look: Out of Sleight
Cameron Francis is an actor and magician currently living in Orlando, Florida. He is well known for his offbeat, quirky style of magic. Taken from his new Big Blind Media release, Out Of Sleight, Sleightless Sightless is an amazing card experiment involving mindreading, clairvoyance, and precognition.
First Look: The False Deals Project
George McBride is well known as a card worker of devastating caliber. A respected and revered member of the Scottish magic underground, he is famed for his elegant style and flawless technique. This effect, Immediate Ace Spelling, is taken from his new Big Blind Media release, The False Deals Project, a four-hour class in the art of false dealing. Here, a spectator shuffles an ordinary deck of cards. The performer then immediately spells to three of the Aces. The deck is handed to the spectator, who spells to the fourth Ace.
Loving Mentalism: The Eye Of Horus
There's a rich cultural blend in "Loving Mentalism" this month: an Italian mentalist shares a routine about an Egyptian symbol, and it would play well just about anywhere! The mentalist is Luca Volpe, a full-time professional whose routines pack plenty of strong emotion into the proceedings; he's often known as the "senti-mentalist" for this reason. The effect is one of inexplicable divination. A participant from the audience successfully identifies the contents of a sealed envelope and has absolutely no idea how she did it. Simple to do, but very baffling!
Bent on Deception: Sound Advice
I've been using sound effects and music cues in my show for a long time and it hasn't always been easy. For years, I was in the terrifying position of relying on someone else to hit Play at the right time. The very memory of that sends chills down my spine. That someone was rarely a professional - it was usually a bartender, bouncer, club owner, or student - and the cues rarely went off without a hitch. Most of the time, there were miscues and delays, or there was no sound at all. Add all the other pitfalls - think lost cassettes, scratched CDs - and it just wasn't worth the effort. It was very frustrating. I had a taste of how sound could add to my act, but I had no reliable way of using it. Everything changed when I finally purchased my first remote-controlled sound player in the early 2000s. I was finally in control. I could plug in, test my volume, and know that I was set to go. What a difference it made, adding a whole new dimension to my act, a new tool in my creative toolbox.
The Monk's Way: The St. Louis Lesson
In this series, I've presented routines that appear to be easy versions of classic effects. The knuckle-busting levels have been down in the single digits. But it's easy to misunderstand the intent of these approaches. Our goal is never to simplify a method to make the trick easier to do. The approach I suggest - and it's not easy to nail down - is implicit in the first tenet of the Monk's Way Doctrine (a.k.a. How the Heck did Hamman Do It?): What is the audience assumption at any point in the actions of a routine? The answers to this question will help us find the balance between the method, the performer, the audience, and the effect/affect. In some ways, this approach can feel just as difficult as any advanced sleight.
Classic Correspondence: Francis J. Martinka to Clinton Burgess
Make no mistake about the contents of this letter being important. They're not. But I couldn't help but marvel at how the considerable research that it required led me to a single sentence that appeared in The Sphinx magazine nearly a century ago. If ever there was a splendid example of the saying "It's not about the destination, it's the journey," this was it. At the time of this letter, most magicians believed that George Little started Mahatma in New York City in March of 1895 and that it ran until February 1906. This letter serves to rewrite some of that history.
For What It's Worth: Selling Promotainment
I have looked into the lifeless eyes of casino marketing directors many times. Recently, as I extolled the virtues of a wonderful, exciting comedy and magic show to a bored marketing director, I sensed he was looking for some polite way to get me out of the office. "Wonderful" and "exciting" are unquantifiable qualities; they have no meaning to casino operators. Entertainment is a necessary evil, and casinos would rather lease space to you than get involved in the messy world of show business. It is a broken and dumb system. And just as bumps on my head were rising from banging on the proverbial brick wall - everything changed.
Walkabout Soup: DeMasi and the Dove
Melbourne magician Anthony DeMasi was always known for his unpredictable, madcap performances. You never quite knew what was going to happen in an Anthony show. Unlike most unpredictable performers, though, Anthony's shows were always solidly watchable. He was likeable, did good magic, and always managed to steer the chaos in an entertaining direction.About a decade ago, Anthony was workshopping a new routine by performing it at a magic club meeting. The routine was classic DeMasi. His dove, named Pepe, was placed in a Rube Goldberg-like deathtrap contraption. A candle was positioned to burn through a rope, which would drop a weight, crushing Pepe to death - unless Anthony could find a chosen playing card in time. Note that Pepe wasn't in any actual danger. The machine, while visibly chaotic and fearsome, had no chance of hurting the animal in any way. Pepe, however, didn't know that.