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CONTENTS CONTENTS......................................................................................................................... 3 PREFACE............................................................................................................................. 4 Amazement with Money................................................................................................. 5 THE "LAST-WORD" NOTE ROUTINE ........................................................................ 6 THE MASTER "SILVER AND COPPER" ROUTINE ................................................. 10 THE MASTER "CLOSE-UP" COIN VANISH............................................................. 14 Cigarette Sorcery........................................................................................................... 16 PERFECT CIG-SWITCH...............................................................................................17 THE CHAPEAU CIGARETTES .................................................................................... 19 CIG SUSPENSION ...................................................................................................... 21 Thimble Amazement ..................................................................................................... 23 THE MASTER MOVE ...................................................................................................24 THE "PINCH" HIGH SPEED VISIBLE VANISH ......................................................26 THE "NO STEAL" THIMBLE ROUTINE .................................................................... 27 Pasteboard Parade ........................................................................................................30 KORAN'S MIRACLE CARD STAB.............................................................................. 31 THE EIGHT ACES........................................................................................................ 35 CORRESPONDING COLOURS ..................................................................................38 CUTE CUT.....................................................................................................................40 SLOW MOTION CARD CHANGE............................................................................... 41 FLASH FAN................................................................................................................... 43
PREFACE A well-known magician recently stated that if from the purchase of a large number of magical publications he obtained only one idea for use in his act he was satisfied. I endorse this statement and that is why I confidently expect that Mastered Amazement will readily appeal to the magical fraternity, for it contains not just one but many new ideas and effects that magicians are always looking for but rarely find. I cannot overstress the practicability of the effects for I have had both the pleasure and advantage of seeing them performed. Although some practice may be necessary to bring the reader to the proficiency of the authors, I am certain that not a single moment of it will be regretted. Those magicians who specialise in coins, cigarettes thimbles or cards will undoubtedly find something that will at once find its way into their repertoire. Of one effect I must make especial reference, and that is the Card Stab. With the Author's permission I have performed this on many occasions and although I should have liked to have obtained the exclusive rights, Al Koran is keeping a promise that he made to many magicians that he would disclose the secret in this publication. I have no hesitation in saying that for close quarter work or an intimate audience, it is the finest card effect that I know or have ever seen. EDWARD G. LOVE August, 1947
Amazement with Money
THE "LAST-WORD" NOTE ROUTINE KORAN-LAMONTE This amusing and amazing routine is presented with a borrowed ten shilling and pound note, the notes being held tightly in the clenched fists of the respective owners. Two potatoes, designated Percy and Peter Potato, are placed in full view of the audience. The performer explains that under these impossible conditions the notes will pass into the centre of Percy and Peter respectively. After some amusing by-play, the owners decide that their notes are still within their closed fists, and Percy is cut open—only to be found empty, except for potato. On investigation, however, the spectators discover that a journey has been made, though certainly not the one expected, for the owner of the pound note now holds the ten shilling note, while in place of his ten shilling note the other spectator holds the pound. The marks or numbers of both notes are checked. The ten shilling note is now placed in an envelope, which is burnt—to the horror of the spectator—with the note still inside. However, Peter Potato is cut open in a very fair manner, to reveal the missing note inside, which, on being removed by its owner, is found to be his original marked note. Everyone is amazed—or at least, satisfied! THE SECRET: This routine is dependent upon a subtle note switch, to be explained, which enables the performer to be one move ahead throughout the presentation; and when the two potatoes are placed in view Peter Potato already contains the borrowed ten shilling note—before the audience realise what is to follow, and before the transposition interlude takes place. The switch is based on the fact that a ten shilling note can be folded to resemble a pound note. When folded, only the white edges and a very small portion of the colouring can be seen. Thus, from a short distance the difference cannot be distinguished, and if the notes are placed in the hands of the assistants with tweezers the blade of the tweezers will effectively hide the small coloured portion showing. It is most important that the notes be folded correctly, and the following explanation should make everything quite clear. A folded duplicate ten shilling note is finger-palmed in the right hand, and the borrowed pound note is taken between the finger and thumb of each hand. The face of the pound note is towards the performer, and it is folded towards the body in the manner depicted in illustrations A, B, C, D and E.
When the note has been folded to the size shown in illustration D it is drawn over the finger-palmed note with the right thumb, and the two are taken as one, with the ten shilling note below, between the first finger and thumb of each hand, as shown in illustration F. In one continuous movement the hands are turned over to show the empty palms to the audience, while the fingers fold the note(s) to the size indicated in illustration E. This action brings the hands to chest level, and the movement is indicated in illustrations F and G. The ten shilling note is now on top.
The tweezers are taken with the left hand, and in placing the supposed pound note (really the ten shilling note) between the blades, the right thumb draws the pound note into the finger-palm position. (Illustration H.)
THE ROUTINE: The performer obtains the assistance of two spectators, one with a pound note and the other with a ten shilling note. They stand to the left and right of the performer, each holding his note. Each trouser pocket contains a potato. The one in the right-hand pocket has a hole bored into the centre, ready to receive the folded ten shilling note. The duplicate specially folded ten shilling note is, at the beginning, concealed in a position convenient to the performer to facilitate an easy steal. A note secured in a paper clip and attached behind the coat lapel with a safety-pin is an excellent way. The notes can be marked or the last three numbers of each recorded, in which case those pertaining to the ten shilling note must be memorised. The duplicate folded note is secretly obtained and finger-palmed in the right hand while pattering about the borrowed notes. The pound note is dealt with first, being folded and switched as already explained, leaving the duplicate ten shilling note between the prongs of the tweezers held in the left hand, and the borrowed pound note palmed in the right hand. The tweezers are withdrawn, leaving the note in the assistant's closed fist, with the request that he holds the note tightly. The assistant, anxious to safeguard his note, will readily co-operate, and will not suspect that the note has been switched. The fastidious performer may cover the assistant's hand with a handkerchief, secured with a rubber band round the wrist, which will well and truly prevent a suspecting assistant glimpsing the note. The same procedure is followed with the assistant on the right-hand side, which leaves the borrowed pound note in his closed hand and the borrowed ten shilling note palmed in the performer's right hand. The performer places his hands into his trouser pockets, the palmed note being introduced into the hole of the potato in the right-hand pocket. Both potatoes are then brought out, designated Percy and Peter Potato, and placed into tumblers in full view of the audience. The hole side of Peter is towards the bottom of the tumbler, and therefore cannot be seen. As far as the performer is concerned the trick is over! The comedy situation is worked up and Percy is found to contain nothing but potato, after which the transposition of the notes is revealed. The number or mark of the pound note is verified and it is handed back to the owner. The ten shilling note is taken by the performer, who reads out the memorised number, which the owner verifies. If the notes have been marked, the duplicate ten shilling note bearing an initial or similar mark is shown to the other assistant, who naturally assumes that the mark was originated by the owner. This note is placed into an envelope which has a slit in the back just below the flap, enabling the performer to gain possession of the note. The method is too well-known to need further explanation. The note is deposited in the pocket when a lighter or box of matches is removed therefrom. 8
After the amusing by-play with the burnt note, Peter Potato is cut open to reveal the missing original ten shilling note which is restored to its owner. NOTE FOR AMERICAN READERS: This routine can be adapted to use a five dollar and one dollar bill. Two very good methods for switching bills are given in Greater Magic.
THE MASTER "SILVER AND COPPER" ROUTINE KORAN-LAMONTE Six borrowed sixpenny pieces are wrapped into a ball of newspaper and placed in full view of the audience. Six borrowed pennies are shown on all sides and then placed on the back of the performer's left hand and covered with a matchbox tray. The tray is lifted to reveal the pile of sixpenny pieces, the hands being otherwise empty. A member of the audience unwraps the ball of newspaper to find the six pennies within! THE SECRET: This amazing presentation with borrowed coins utilises the old classic, the Stack of Pennies fake, and introduces a new move enabling the performer to show all sides of the pennies and handle the stack with ease. This added subtlety, to be explained before the routine, enhances the classical Stack of Pence, which, as Brian MacCarthy has said, is undoubtedly one of the best tricks ever devised. Six sixpenny pieces are placed into the stack, which is then covered with an extra penny. Dependent upon the thickness of the coins used, the sixpenny pieces should come flush with the underside of the extra penny. If this is not so, a small circular piece of paper or cardboard glued inside the stack will ensure a snug fit. This "set-up" is held in one of the many marketed coin holders, which is fixed to the inside of the right trouser pocket. A large safety-pin can be utilised instead of a coin holder, and is ideal for the purpose. (Illustrations A and B.) This stack can be displayed on all sides when held between the thumb and forefinger—a nice feature. (Illustration C.) The fact that there are seven pennies will never be noticed.
The coins are placed on the back of the left hand with the extra penny below the stack. While squaring up the apparently separate coins the stack is moved a little to the right, leaving the bottom penny in its original position. This extra penny is now picked up and 10
placed on top of the stack, leaving the sixpenny pieces inside in the correct position to be revealed. This move also serves to indicate that the pennies are single and ordinary. (Illustrations D and E.) The stack is now covered with the match-box tray, which is eventually lifted to make the amazing discovery of the stack of sixpenny pieces! The stack and extra penny are, of course, finger-palmed in the action of lifting and tossing away the empty tray. (Illustration F.) If the reader is not acquainted with the standard moves for the Stack of Pence he should refer to The Magic Wand for June, 1946, where an extremely effective routine by E. Brian MacCarthy will be found. Practice is necessary to prevent "talking" when handling the stack and extra penny. However, the good old stand-by Magicians' Wax will aid manipulation. A small dab on the bottom of the stack will keep the extra penny in position until separated, and another spot on top of the stack will facilitate easy handling in the final palm-off.
THE ROUTINE: The stack is fastened inside the right trouser pocket as already explained, or to the underside of the coat if preferred. A box of matches rests in the left trouser pocket and a duplicate ball of newspaper, containing six pennies within its folds, rests in the right trouser pocket. To commence, a six-inch square is torn from a newspaper and handed to a member of the audience who wraps six borrowed sixpenny pieces into it and screws the newspaper into a ball. Meanwhile, the performer has ample opportunity to obtain the duplicate paper ball, containing the six pennies, from the right trouser pocket. The performer receives the spectator's paper ball with the left hand, and apparently transfers it to the right hand in order to place it upon the table. Actually, the paper ball containing the sixpenny pieces is retained in the left hand and dropped into the side pocket when the
body turns slightly to put the duplicate ball upon the table with the right hand. This switch should be worked as smoothly as possible.
Since the balls of newspaper will be about the same size as a billiard ball, the standard billiard ball change could be adapted for the switch. The paper ball can be received between the first and second fingers of the left hand, and under the pretext of turning it round the right hand, containing the duplicate ball in the palm, passes over it, leaving the palmed ball in its place and taking away the ball containing the sixpenny pieces in the finger-palm. (Illustrations G and H.) Or, the spectator's ball may be taken in the right hand, which also contains the duplicate, and tossed into the air a few times. Finally the palmed ball is released and the original ball is retained in the palm. (Illustration I.) In both these methods the spectator's ball must be disposed of with the right hand. However, the best method to use is the one which suits you the best. Six pennies are now borrowed and received in the left hand, while the right hand secretly obtains the stack. As in the standard Stack of Pence routine, the pennies are apparently passed into the right hand, really being retained in the left while the right hand reveals the stack. The left hand goes to the left trouser pocket and removes the box of matches, leaving the borrowed pennies behind. Thanks to the extra penny on the bottom of the stack it can be freely displayed between the first finger and thumb of the right hand while the left hand empties the matches from the box. The right hand places the stack on the back of the left hand, moves the stack to the right in the act of squaring up the coins and places the bottom penny on the top, as already explained. The stack is now covered with the match-box tray, which is squeezed as it is lifted in order to take the stack of pennies away inside, revealing the six sixpenny pieces on the left hand. The performer proves himself to be a master of amazement by returning the sixpenny pieces, together with the ball of paper which is found to contain the missing pennies. Amazing! 12
Needless to say, when the match box is returned to the pocket the stack and extra penny go with it.
THE MASTER "CLOSE-UP" COIN VANISH AL KORAN Audacity will master this spot of amazement! A borrowed coin is placed under a borrowed handkerchief, through which it is held by a member of the audience. The handkerchief is flicked away and passed directly to its owner. The coin has completely vanished—only to be reproduced from a ball of wool—sealed match-box or nest of boxes—according to the fancy of the performer. THE SECRET: This is essentially a close-up item, and is one which the audacious amazer will make the most of. The secret, like all good things, is amazingly simple. A duplicate coin is sewn in the longer end of the performer's tie! (Illustration A.)
THE ROUTINE: The borrowed handkerchief should be as large as possible, to afford plenty of cover for the move. In working, the handkerchief is held in the left hand and the coin is received between the right forefinger and thumb. In passing the coin under the handkerchief the remaining fingers of the right hand grasp the longer end of the tie and carry it up to the centre of the handkerchief, through which the left hand grasps the duplicate coin. (Illustration A.) The right hand is withdrawn, together with the original coin in its palm. The spectator is allowed to feel the duplicate coin through the handkerchief, while the performer disposes of the original coin pending its final production. (Illustration B.) To vanish the coin the handkerchief is flicked away, the tie being allowed to fall into position.
NOTES: This principle can be readily adapted for vanishing any small article, e.g., a thimble, a ring, a note, folded playing card, etc. By utilising a small slit in the longer end of a double thickness tie, its wearer is ready at any time to vanish a small article by slipping a duplicate into the tie. By using a ring in this manner an excellent version of the old classic, The Ring on the Wand (or Pencil) can be performed. It is indeed an advantage to perform this evergreen effect with a borrowed handkerchief. The classical method utilising a duplicate ring sewn in the corner of a handkerchief is ideal, but how nice to repeat the effect when the spectator hands up his own handkerchief with the request, "Do it again!" [PUBLISHER'S NOTE. A similar coin vanish was published in the June 1946 issue of "Woodfield's Magicana," under the name of Jack McMillen. Later it was re-published in the January 1947 issue of "Magic is Fun" under the name of Harold Menson. In fairness to Al Koran we must point out that the rough draft of this book was in our possession before either of the above American magazines were published. As this is a clear case of two (at least) magicians thinking of the same idea, as it is a GOOD vanish for a coin and because few readers will have seen the above-mentioned magazines, we have refrained from asking for another item to replace this one.]
PERFECT CIG-SWITCH JACK LAMONTE This deceptive switch of a borrowed cigarette for the prepared duplicate has been designated perfect for the absolute naturalness of its performance, and the complete absence of false "moves" that might offer a clue to trickery. The secret of success for this most important move, in presenting the Torn Card (or Note) in Cigarette, depends on synchronism. Correctly timed, the illusion is perfect. The complete switch takes but a second, and the borrowed cigarette is left in the pocket as the left hand brings out a box of matches or lighter. In fact, to the audience, at the closest quarters, you have merely received a borrowed cigarette in the left hand, taken it by the end with the right fingers and thumb to tap the tobacco down on the left thumb nail (as smokers invariably do) and have transferred it to the lips whilst the left hand takes the lighting medium from the pocket. Every gesture is so natural that the layman will swear that the cigarette never left his sight! THE ROUTINE: The working is as follows: 1. The prepared cigarette is concealed in a dropper, holder or clip so that it can be easily and secretly obtained by the right hand as the left is held out to receive the borrowed cigarette. The prepared cigarette is held by the finger-palm, i.e., the ends of the cigarette are gripped by the second finger tip and the base of the thumb. 2. The borrowed cigarette is received in the left hand so that it lies across the palm at right angles to the fingers. (Illustration A). 3. The back of the right hand is towards the audience, and as both hands are brought together the left is turned so that the backs of both hands are towards the audience. (Illustration B.) 4. The right hand apparently takes the cigarette from the left, but in reality the palmed duplicate is propelled into the left hand and extracted therefrom, leaving the borrowed cigarette still in the left palm. This move is similar to that used for producing lighted cigarettes from the finger-palm position, but is executed under cover of the left hand. The right thumb presses against the top of the prepared cigarette while the forefinger pulls back slightly, causing the cigarette to rotate into view in a flash. (Illustration C.) 5. The supposed borrowed cigarette (really the prepared one), now between the right thumb and finger tips, is then tapped on the left thumb nail and transferred to the lips. (Illustration D.) 6. The left hand goes to the left trouser pocket for the box of matches or lighter, and leaves the borrowed cigarette behind.
NOTES: First practise the genuine action with one cigarette—then master a synchronising movement with two cigarettes, imitating the former actions to ensure a perfect illusion. There are many presentations for the Card (or Note) in Cigarette, and each performer will have his own pet method, but the success of every version is dependent upon a subtle switch. For a close-up Card in Cigarette routine, borrow a cigarette at the commencement—"cig-switch" it, leaving the borrowed one in the pocket as the left hand brings out a pack of cards. Continue with the forcing and tearing of a card, and vanish the pieces as suggested in Al Koran's Close-up Coin Vanish. Thus, the "borrowed" cigarette remains in view, between the lips, the whole time. The hands are free throughout, enhancing a natural presentation.
THE CHAPEAU CIGARETTES KORAN — LAMONTE Salutations! The performer greets his audience and removes his opera hat, which is seen to be empty. During his opening remarks he lights a cigarette and displays the cigarette packet containing the remaining nine weeds. Blowing smoke towards the hat, the performer picks it up by the brim and turns it over—a cigarette falls out. This is repeated, and cigarettes are passed singly or several at a time until eight have passed to the hat, which is seen to be empty each time a cigarette is produced therefrom. The packet is opened to show the one remaining cigarette, which is removed and replaced. This last cigarette duly arrives in the hat, and the packet is torn to pieces. The lighted cigarette can be used to lead into a lighted cigarette routine, or it may be disposed of via the thumb tip and handkerchief. The routine can also be used as a closing item, in which case the hat is placed on the head (cue for finale), the lighted cigarette swiftly becomes a smoking pipe—and thus adorned the performer makes his exit! THE SECRET: The innocent looking packet of ten cigarettes really contains eight quarter pieces, one real cigarette and one made from cigarette ends and paper—a la the Vanishing Wand shell. (Illustrations A and B.) The eight cigarette ends are, of course, glued in position. The hat has, fastened to its inside, a cigarette dropper of the "press anywhere" type, holding nine cigarettes. The model invented by Charles J. Diestel, stocked by most dealers, is the best to use for this effect, and should be covered with a
flap of black material to match the inside of the hat, as depicted in illustrations C and D.
This routine, being a non-sleight one, is extremely easy and effective in operation, though the sleight-of-hand artist will no doubt incorporate manipulations in his own presentation. THE ROUTINE: The hat is displayed empty and placed down. The packet is opened and the real cigarette removed therefrom, placed between the lips, and lit. In placing the hat on the table the holder is pressed, releasing one cigarette. The packet is casually shown to contain nine cigarettes and is then closed. Smoke is blown towards the hat which is taken up by the brim and turned over to allow the one cigarette to fall out upon the table. The hat is seen to be empty again, but in replacing it upon the table the dropper is squeezed once more, allowing a second cigarette to drop into the hat. The position of the cloth flap over the dropper prevents the cigarettes falling out of the top when the hat is reversed.
When eight cigarettes have been passed, the cigarette packet is opened at the other end, to reveal one remaining cigarette in a packet that is apparently otherwise empty. This is the shell cigarette, which is shown and replaced in the packet. Finally this "passes" to the hat, and the packet containing the shell is torn to pieces and thrown into the waste-basket or dropped into the pocket. If desired, the cigarette left between the lips can be transformed into a smoking pipe. The dealers have apparatus to bring about this effect. A simple method, however, is to have a pipe hanging by its stem under the coat. A small rubber band round the stem and a safety-pin through the band is an effective and inexpensive holder. This will hold the pipe firmly, until required, and a slight pull will release it. The pipe-bowl is finger-palmed in the left hand, with the stem running along the wrist. The performer puffs away at the cigarette, and retains a mouthful of smoke. The cigarette stub is immediately placed into the left fist, but really it goes into the bowl—in lieu of the usual thumb tip (Illustration E), and the pipe is produced and brought to the smoking position. The performer puffs out the smoke with nonchalance— and takes his bow!
CIG SUSPENSION AL KORAN A lighted cigarette is rolled between the fingers of each hand. With the right hand above the left, the palm of the left hand is slowly lowered. The cigarette is held between the finger tips of each hand. The fingers of the left hand are then lowered—and the cigarette remains levitated by the finger tips of the right hand. The final surprise comes when the right hand is raised, and the lighted cigarette remains suspended between the two hands. THE SECRET: The following moves with a small wire fake bring about the best presentation of this effective interlude. The wire fake depicted in illustration A is similar to that used for the popular Rising and Floating Match, and should be the length of the second finger of the left hand. The wire is very strong and very fine, and when painted a dull black cannot be seen against the black dress wear. The thickness of the wire has, of course, been greatly exaggerated in the illustrations for the sake of clearness. THE ROUTINE: The fake is secretly obtained in the left hand, and rests along the second finger. The cigarette is placed across the fingers of the left hand, and with the right hand on top it is rolled between the fingers. During this action it is rolled on to the pin point which projects at right angles from the end of the fake. The right hand has been omitted from illustration A, which shows this move, for the sake of clarity. The right hand remains stationary while the left hand palm is lowered, with the finger tips of each hand still gripping the cigarette, as shown in illustration B. It will be seen that the wire fake really supports the cigarette. The wire prong of the fake fits snugly around the fleshy base of the second finger.
Thanks to the fake, the fingers of the left hand can now be lowered, with the effect that the cigarette is apparently levitated by the right fingertips. (Illustration C.) The design of the fake enables it to be moved, if necessary, along the second finger until the wire prong can be gripped with the sides of the fingers alongside. Finally the right hand is raised, leaving the cigarette floating between the two hands—a pretty effect, enhanced by the smoke curling up from the suspended cigarette. (Illustration D.) The same series of moves is repeated backwards, and the cigarette is rolled off the pin point. The fake is dropped into the pocket or on to the floor in the action of turning to the left to drop the cigarette into an ash tray.
THE MASTER MOVE AL KORAN Four thimbles on the fingertips of the right hand are placed, one at a time, into the left hand. The manipulator then slowly opens his left hand to reveal that the thimbles have all vanished. With a flourish the right hand reaches out and discloses the four thimbles once again capped on each finger. THE ROUTINE: The first vanish is accomplished by means of the usual thumb-palm sleight. Many manipulators make the mistake of dropping the hand containing its thumb-palmed thimble at once. Others even thumb-palm the thimble before the finger has reached the hand into which the thimble is supposed to have been placed. The audience should first see the thimble tipped finger placed on to the opposite hand—then the closed hand, apparently containing the thimble—the finger, minus thimble, being removed from the hand—and finally the open hand, revealing that the thimble has vanished. This, then, is the effect the manipulator must produce when executing his sleight. The following explanation of the upward sweep of the right hand will provide a far more convincing method of performing the thumb-palm vanish than that normally used. All four fingers, each capped with a thimble, remain extended during the first sleight. The right hand forefinger with its thimble is placed on to the open left hand, which is then closed. The forefinger is withdrawn with an apparent tug, giving the audience the impression that the thimble is left behind in the left hand. During this action the thimble is thumb-palmed in the right hand. As the forefinger comes away, it is bent inwards to the thumb-palm position, and the hand is brought upwards, over the left hand towards the wrist, extending the now empty forefinger. (Illustrations A and B.) The second thimble, on the second finger of the right hand, is now pushed into the closed left fist. The action of withdrawing the finger with an apparent tug is repeated, but this time the second finger remains bent in towards the palm, and does not leave this position, thus concealing the thimble. The forefinger remains extended. (Illustration C.) The same procedure is followed with the third and fourth fingers and their thimbles, not forgetting the apparent tug as each finger is withdrawn and bent inwards with the thimbles still in place. From the audience view, the closed left hand apparently contains the four thimbles, with the right hand held naturally with its forefinger pointing to the left hand. (Illustration D.) Slowly open the left hand and show it empty, while the right forefinger is pushed into the thumb-palmed thimble in readiness to produce. With an appropriate gesture, all the fingers of the right hand are extended, revealing the four missing thimbles. According to his routine, the manipulator may extend the fingers singly, producing one thimble at a time from the air or from parts of the body.
The thimble on the forefinger should be a normal fit, but the other three must fit tightly. NOTES: Many well known London Magicians who have seen Al Koran demonstrate The Master Move can bear witness to its effectiveness, even though it appears somewhat "cheeky" at first reading. The reader is advised to give it a trial, and he will be amazed to find that it will even fool magicians.
THE "PINCH" HIGH SPEED VISIBLE VANISH AL KORAN Magicians who have seen Al Koran perform this startling vanish will readily support its apt title. THE EFFECT: A thimble is taken from the right forefinger between the forefinger and thumb of the left hand. The thimble vanishes in a flash as the finger and thumb simulate the action of sprinkling a pinch of salt!
THE ROUTINE: This sleight is an enhanced version of the thimble thumb-palm, elucidated in The Master Move. The action is precisely the same, except that the thimble is taken between the forefinger and thumb of the left hand instead of being placed in the left palm. (Illustration A.) To effect the vanish, the finger and thumb of the left hand tighten their grip, in fact they pinch the thimble at the moment of executing the thumb-palm. This deliberate "pinching" of the thimble facilitates and increases the speed of the vanish. (Illustration B.) Practise is essential to master this move. The right hand, passing upwards and over the left hand, affords misdirection while the left finger and thumb simulate the action of sprinkling a pinch of salt—as if the thimble had been crumbled away to nothing.
THE "NO STEAL" THIMBLE ROUTINE AL KORAN This is a new, short and snappy routine, designed for impromptu performance, or as an opening effect. Al Koran has used it for a number of years with outstanding success. THE EFFECT: The performer removes his breast pocket handkerchief and draws it over his extended right forefinger a few times, finally revealing a thimble on the fingertip. The handkerchief is replaced in the pocket, and manipulations with the single thimble follow. Then the same procedure is followed, resulting in a thimble appearing on each fingertip of the right hand. Manipulation with the four thimbles follow, and these are finally placed into the left hand. The empty right hand covers the left hand with the handkerchief—which is flicked away leaving both hands completely empty! THE ROUTINE: At the commencement four thimbles are concealed in the right hand, as depicted in Illustration D of The Master Move. The first thimble is produced on the fingertip from the thumb-palm position, under cover of the handkerchief, as shown in illustration A. The handkerchief is replaced in the breast pocket, and the thimble is vanished as in the initial vanish of The Master Move, and then reproduced on the forefinger. The same sleight is repeated, but this time under cover of the second and third fingers of the left hand only. (Illustration B.) The half closed left hand is now held with its back to the audience, and the right forefinger apparently pushes the thimble into the top of the closed left hand. (Illustration C.) Actually the forefinger bends inwards during this action, and the thimble does not leave its position. (Illustration D.) The left hand turns over to reveal its empty palm, and the forefinger of right hand passes to the back of the left hand to retrieve the missing thimble. The forefinger merely straightens out and comes away revealing the thimble on its tip. (Illustration E). This may be considered to be an audacious move—it is, but it is nevertheless a very deceptive one! The Pinch Vanish follows, and the right hand removes the handkerchief from the pocket to flick away the imaginary dust of the thimble that has been crumbled away to nothing. The handkerchief is transferred to the left hand, and is drawn over the right fingertip once or twice, as in the original move. Under cover of the handkerchief the forefinger engages the thumb-palmed thimble, and together with the other fingers (which are already capped with thimbles) is extended, as the handkerchief is drawn away from the right hand.
The handkerchief is replaced in the pocket, and the vanish and reproduction of four thimbles as outlined in The Master Move follows. The four thimbles are now deliberately placed, one at a time, into the closed left hand. With the back of the right hand to the audience the forefinger is pushed into the left hand and extracted, leaving the thimble behind. (Illustration F). Now the palm of the right hand is turned to face the audience while the second finger deposits its thimble in the left hand. (Illustration G). Once again the hand is turned over, so that the back faces the audience, and the third finger places its thimble into the left hand. (Illustration H). Finally, the hand turns over to reveal an empty palm once again, while the fourth finger disposes of its thimble. (Illustration I). Immediately the last thimble is in position (actually they have been stacked one in the other in the closed left fist) the right hand
begins to turn over again just before the little finger is removed from the left hand. At the same instant the little finger starts to come away, but this time the stack of thimbles is removed on the fingertip and the finger bends inwards to the palm, holding the stack of thimbles against the palm as depicted in illustration J. Attention is directed to the left hand while the right hand removes the handkerchief from the breast pocket, and in so doing the stack of thimbles is conveniently left behind. The audience will be awaiting the reproduction of the thimbles, as in The Master Move, but on flicking the handkerchief both hands are shown to be perfectly empty. Amazing!
KORAN'S MIRACLE CARD STAB AL KORAN Heading the parade comes the amazing effect for which many well-known magicians have offered large sums for exclusive use. Until the publication of this book only three London Card Men have been allowed to use it—the originator, Edward Love (author of Card Fantasies) and Frank Boynett (Chairman of the Merlin Magical Society and a prominent member of the London Society of Magicians). Once mastered, this effect with borrowed articles will create a reputation for its performer. THE EFFECT: A freely chosen card is returned to a shuffled, borrowed pack, under conditions which make its location seemingly impossible. A borrowed pound note is wrapped round the pack and a borrowed penknife is stabbed through the note into the edges of the cards. The pack is separated at the insertion—without a single false move—revealing the selected card above or below the knife. THE SECRET: Al Koran has repeatedly performed this effect for magicians throughout London, and everyone has been amazed at the discovery. It is based on an extremely subtle location—an adaptation of The Twenty-sixth Card Location, utilising the Crimp for a key card. By a subtle procedure the chosen card becomes the twenty-sixth card in the pack. The use of the pound note not only enhances the effect, but serves to indicate the exact centre of the pack, as depicted in the illustrations. It is now apparent that if a penknife is stabbed through a certain point in the design of the pound note wrapped around the pack, it will enter the pack at the twenty-sixth card, namely, the chosen one! At this point we must ask the reader not to be alarmed at the following paragraph, it may sound difficult, but in performance is by no means so. The success of the effect is dependent upon the manipulator's ability to cut twenty-six cards from a borrowed pack. This is not so difficult as it sounds, though practise is essential to gain confidence. However, it will be seen from the routine that it is not absolutely necessary to cut twenty-six cards when the routine has been completely mastered. It is possible to bring about the effect by estimating the number of cards in the initial cut. THE ROUTINE: A complete pack of fifty-two cards is borrowed, and while they are being shuffled thoroughly by a member of the audience the performer borrows one pound note and a small penknife (or nail file). 31
Immediately on receiving the cards the performer crimps the bottom card and cuts the pack at its centre, thus making the crimped card the twenty-sixth card in the pack. (Illustration A). The pack is placed on the table before the performer announces what he will do, and it not touched by him again until he takes it up to reveal the chosen card at the conclusion. It is a fact that afterwards the audience will say that the cards were not touched by the performer while the card was chosen and replaced. Some will even relate that the cards were not touched at all until the final discovery. When the pack has been placed on the table a spectator is invited to divide it into three roughly equal heaps. Invariably he will separate about two thirds from the top of the pack to the right, and further divide this packet into two equal heaps. In any case, the position of the packets must be noted. As shown in Illustration B, packet No. 1 is the original bottom portion of the pack; No. 2 (containing the crimped card) is in the middle, and packet No. 3 is the top portion.
The spectator is invited to touch any one of the two outside heaps. If he touches packet No. 1 the cards are shuffled and replaced. Packet No. 3 is also shuffled and replaced. A card is then removed from the chosen packet, and when the spectator has made a mental note of it, or initialled it, it is placed on top of packet No. 3 which is still on the table in its former position. (Illustration C). The pack is reassembled under the performer's directions by placing packet No. 3 on top of No. 2; and No. 1 on top of No. 3. Or packet No. 1 can be placed on top of No. 3, and both on to No. 2. The final result is that packet No. 2 is now the bottom portion, packet No. 3 the centre, and packet No. 1 the top. (Illustration D.) This position of the packets is important.
Explanations of card moves always appear complicated in print, but the above operation will be found simple in working. There does not seem to be any possibility of locating the chosen card, and an audience of magicians will realise that the shuffling of the two outside heaps does not allow the top or bottom cards to be used as locator cards. The cards are now taken by the performer who cuts them at the crimp. Any number of completed cuts may be made for effect, provided the crimped card is brought to the bottom of the pack after the final completed cut. This action will bring the chosen unknown card to the position formerly occupied by the crimped key card, namely, twenty-sixth in the pack. (Illustration E).
The pound note is wrapped round the pack in the manner depicted in the illustrations. Examination of the back of a pound note will show that part of its centre design is of the width equal to the thickness of a normal pack of fifty-two cards. The design also indicates a point which is the exact centre of the note and of the edge of the pack. (Illustrations F and G). With the necessary showmanship the manipulator stabs the penknife through the note at the vital point, into the side of the pack. (Illustrations G and H). The performer has plenty of time to exercise care in this action, for the audience assume that he is mysteriously ascertaining the position of the chosen card, the sides of the cards not being visible because of the note covering them. The pack is now split at the knife insertion to reveal the chosen card—either above or below the knife blade. Truly, mastered amazement! When fully conversant with the routine it is possible to dispense with the cutting of exactly twenty-six cards. In this case the cut is judged and the centre point of the pound note is used as a guide. The originator of this extremely effective item can make an initial cut and judge his final stab accordingly.
Practice will create the effect. Comme il faut!
THE EIGHT ACES AL KORAN It is inevitable that a chapter on card magic will include an adaptation of the Four Evergreen Aces! This effect offers something new however, and hence the title Eight Aces. It might be said that this effect bears some similarity to Scarne's Triple Coincidence. It does, in so far as a number of cards are transferred from one pack to the other in a similar way. But the method of controlling the cards is different, and in our opinion more convincing and easier, and the final effect on the audience is different. Moreover, the author has been using the wide card principle and the method of adding one extra card to the spectator's pack (both used in this effect) in his own version of Do as I Do for many years. The present routine was evolved from that effect in the early days of the war. THE EFFECT: Two packs of cards are employed in a subtle procedure to bring about a surprising effect, easy of execution. A spectator shuffles a blue-backed pack while the performer does the same with a red-backed pack. The performer places a red-backed card into the blue pack held by the spectator, and the spectator reciprocates by placing one of his blue-backed cards in the performers pack. This operation is repeated until there are four red-backed cards in the blue pack, and vice versa. With both packs in his possession the spectator extracts the four stranger cards from each pack, placing them face down on the table in two rows of four cards. The eight cards are turned over for the amazing revelation of the four aces from each pack! Amusing patter could be built around this routine by utilising five cards instead of the somewhat hackneyed aces—producing a Royal Flush for the performer, and for the spectator—four two's and the joker! Furthermore, a pack of Lexicon cards could be introduced with the ordinary pack, producing appropriate playing cards for the performer and lexicon cards to spell M-A-G-I-C, L-U-C-K-Y, C-H-E-A-T, for the spectator according to the patter presentation. THE SECRET: The working of this effect involves the use of two packs of ordinary playing cards made by different manufacturers. The cards made by Thomas de la Rue & Co., Ltd., Goodall, London, Ltd., and John Waddington Ltd., are slightly larger than those manufactured by The Universal Playing Card Co., Ltd.; The Canadian Playing Card Co., ("Stag" Brand) and most American bridge size packs. The difference is so slight that it is imperceptible to anyone but the performer, yet it is enough to provide "wide" cards. Thus, with a suitable
pair of packs, a card from the smaller pack placed into the other becomes a perfect "locator" card. The performer's pack, the red-backed one, must be the smaller of the two packs, and it has a simple "set-up" as follows. The four aces from the larger blue-backed pack are placed among the bottom cards of the red pack. One ace must be placed on the bottom, the next a card or two up, and so on, with one or two cards between each ace. The red-backed aces are placed on top of the pack. Thus prepared, the red-backed cards are placed in their case, and the blue-backed pack (minus its four aces) is also placed in its case. THE ROUTINE: Having removed the cards from their cases the blue pack is handed to the spectator for shuffling, while the performer false-shuffles the red cards. An ordinary riffle shuffle is all that is necessary, so long as the bottom and top "stocks" are left in position. The performer removes the top card of his pack (a red-backed ace) and pushes it, face down, into the centre of the spectator's pack. The spectator removes his top card and pushes it into the performer's pack. Actually, the performer, holding the cards in the left hand, pushes up the top half with his left thumb thus opening the pack like a book and making it easier for the spectator to insert his card. Both performer and spectator now cut their packs once or twice before exchanging the second cards. The performer's cut is important. The bottom card is a wide ace and in the centre of the pack is a wide indifferent card—just placed there by the spectator. Cut at the wide card in the middle and complete the cut, bringing the indifferent card to the bottom of the pack. Now the wide aces will be in the centre of the pack. Cut at the bottom wide ace, and complete the cut—thus bringing the pack back to its original order. Once again performer and spectator exchange the top cards of their respective packs. Again the performer breaks the pack and raises the top half with his left thumb. But this time he breaks the pack at the wide indifferent card, raising this card and the top half of the pack with it. Thus the spectator places his second card immediately under his first card. Then the top half of the pack is allowed to drop into position. Performer and spectator cut their packs again, the performer cutting twice at the wide cards, as detailed above, to bring his pack back into the original order. The third cards are exchanged and inserted into the opposite packs. This time the left thumb raises the two wide indifferent cards and the half of pack above them, the spectators third card being placed below them. The same procedure is followed for the fourth card. The position now is that the spectator has the four red-backed aces in his pack. The performer has the four blue-backed aces at the bottom of his pack and four indifferent blue-backed cards all together in the centre. Once again performer and spectator cut their packs—the performer cutting the four wide indifferent cards to the bottom of his pack. Immediately he reaches out and places his pack on top of the spectator's pack, thus
imperceptibly adding the indifferent blue-backed cards to the top of the spectator's blue-backed pack. All that remains is for the spectator to remove the stranger cards from each pack. These eight cards are placed face down on the table, leaving the two packs free for examination if required. The eight cards are turned over—they are the eight aces!
CORRESPONDING COLOURS AL KORAN Here is another effect employing red-backed and blue-backed packs. It is an extremely effective routine, is easy to do and has a surprising climax. THE EFFECT: Eight cards are counted from each pack and placed face down 01 the table. The packs are placed in their respective cases, which are placed in front of the two packets on the table. One card is removed from each case and placed on top, to act as a colour indicator. The packets are continually changed over, but each time a card is dealt the colour corresponds with the pack in front. Finally the packets of cards, which have been dealt in turn to correspond with the two packs, are changed over. On removing the packs from their cases they too are found to have changed over—the backs correspond with the packets! THE SECRET: Only one simple sleight is used in this routine—the "glide," known to all magicians. The addition of a simple "set-up" of each pack prior to the performance makes an effective routine. To prepare, seven cards from each pack are required. Five blue-backed cards are placed on top of the red-backed pack, and two are placed in the bottom. Likewise, five red-backed cards are placed on top of the blue-backed pack, and two on the bottom. Thus, the blue pack appears to be red, and vice versa. Each pack is placed in the card case which it resembles. Throughout the routine care should be exercised to ensure that the cards are kept squared-up. THE ROUTINE: The red pack (?) is removed from its case face down, and four cards are counted from the top face down on to the table. This leaves one red-backed card covering the blue pack. The pack is turned face up, and four cards are counted singly into the right hand. These four cards are squared up and placed face down on top of the four already on the table. This packet of eight apparently red cards contains four red cards at the bottom, followed by two blue cards plus two more red cards on top. The remainder of the cards (really the blue pack with a red card on top) are replaced in the red card case. Precisely the same procedure is carried out with the blue card case containing the other pack. Each card case is placed in front of the appropriate packet of eight cards. As it an after-thought, the performer removes one card from each case and places it on top of its 38
case to act as an indicator of the colour. This card is actually the top card from each packet of the opposite colour, and care must be taken not to expose this fact when removing the cards. First pick up the red packet and turn it face up. Deal one card from the bottom of the packet and place it face down next to the indicator card—the colours corresponding. Place the packet face up on the table, and repeat the above procedure with the blue cards. During all these moves the packets should be kept face up. The face-up packets are now changed over, and care must be taken not to expose the backs of the cards on the bottom. Once again the performer takes up one of the packets and deals the bottom card face down next to the indicator—but although the packets have been changed over the colours correspond. This is accomplished by "gliding" the bottom card of the packet and dealing the card second from the bottom, this being of the correct colour. The same procedure is followed for the other packet. The packets are changed over again and the bottom cards are dealt out face up to show corresponding colours. This procedure is repeated, the packets being changed over and the bottom cards dealt to show corresponding colours. Another change-over is made, and again the colours correspond. The three remaining cards of each packet are now shown to correspond with the cards and packs in front of them, and the audience imagine that the effect is over. The performer gathers up each packet, together with its indicator card, and changes them over. On removing the cards from their cases—the blue-backed cards surprisingly emerge from the red case—to match the blue cards now in front of it! Similarly the red-backed cards are taken from the blue case, and the two packs may be assembled for examination if required.
CUTE CUT JACK LAMONTE This is a simple sleight but is very deceptive as a false cut, which can be used to good advantage in many effects. The card worker should always utilise different sleights to put the suspecting spectator off the track. This sleight will serve him well as a variation when executing false cuts. THE ROUTINE: The pack is held in the left hand as for the standard pass, the little finger holding the break, as depicted in Illustration A.
The right hand apparently takes the top half of the pack, but in reality the pass is partially executed and the bottom half is thrown on to the table instead. This "move" should be executed smoothly and casually. (Illustrations B and C.) The cards remaining in the left hand are then dropped on to the packet on the table as in a genuine cut—which should be imitated to ensure a perfect illusion. (Illustration D.) As for most sleights, one should practise by cutting the cards normally. Then simulate the same action by introducing the procedure explained above.
SLOW MOTION CARD CHANGE JACK LAMONTE This sleight can be employed as a "sucker" move in the Ambitious Card routine, wherein a card repeatedly arrives on top of the pack after being placed in the centre. THE EFFECT: After showing the card once again on top of the pack, the performer obviously puts the second card into the centre, but when the suspecting spectator points out this fact he turns the pack face up to show that the protruding card was the top card after all, and offers to show it again in slow motion. The cards below the protruding one are placed on top of the face-up pack, and the ambitious card now on the bottom is removed and turned face down with the right hand, as the left hand, at the same time, turns the pack face down. The ambitious card—in the right hand—is slowly pushed into the centre of the pack, only to be shown back on the top again! THE ROUTINE: This effect should commence at the point in the Ambitious Card routine where the selected card is second from the top of the pack. (Normally, at this point, the performer places the top card—apparently the ambitious card—into the centre of the pack, and then reveals it on top again.) The second card is obviously removed in a surreptitious manner and pushed part way into the centre of the pack. As soon as a spectator draws attention to this fact the pack is turned face up to show the protruding card to be the correct one. Keeping the pack face up, all but one of the cards below the protruding one are removed and placed on top of the pack. The position is now as indicated in Illustration A. The right thumb presses against the narrow edge of the protruding card while the second finger of the right hand pulls down the edge of the extra card below. (Illustration A shows the spectators view, Illustration B shows the move.) Now the card is apparently pushed flush with the pack as both hands turn over, the right hand retaining the ambitious card and the left hand retaining the pack. Actually, the right thumb pushes the card flush with the pack and the right second finger continues to pull down the extra bottom card. As soon as the card is flush, the right thumb grips the extra bottom card and the hand turns over—the left hand turning over at the same time. (Illustrations C and D.) This move is perfectly deceptive, and it will appear that the card just pushed flush with the pack is now held in the right hand. At this point the card is held between the right thumb and second finger, the right forefinger resting on top of the card as shown in Illustration D. The right thumb releases the card, allowing it to be held between the first and second fingers. The card is pushed
into the centre of the face-down pack as in the normal routine, and is then revealed back on top again.
Used as a card change in any effect the actions depicted in Illustration B and C is followed, but when the position shown in Illustration D is reached the card is dropped face down on to the table or on to the spectator's hand—according to the effect being performed.
FLASH FAN JACK LAMONTE This pretty card discovery reveals a chosen card in a flash, and can be worked incidentally during a card routine or as a snappy impromptu effect. THE EFFECT: A card is selected and shuffled into the pack. The pack is fanned. Suddenly the fan is closed, revealing the selected card projecting above the pack. THE ROUTINE: The card to be revealed is brought to the top of the pack by the performer's favourite method. The pack is then fanned from left to right as shown in Illustration A. The pack is held in the left hand with the left thumb resting on the top card at the back. (Illustration B.)
As the fan is completed the right first finger and thumb remain lightly touching the top right hand corner of the top card, and under cover of adjusting the fan (Illustration C)
the top card, still held by the right thumb, is brought to the position shown in Illustration D. The right hand is removed and the flourish is completed with the left hand—the fan being closed in a flash. For those not familiar with the method of closing a fan with one hand a detailed description will be found in Edward Love's Card Fantasies. It will be found that the fan will close in a flash in the usual way, but owing to the position of the top card, held by the thumb, this card will remain in view when the rest of the pack closes. Illustration F shows the back view of the final effect. The writer makes use of this when having a member of the audience remove the four aces from the pack. He finds three aces only! The performer has, meanwhile, palmed the missing ace from his pocket, and offers to show "the quickest way to find the ace of _____." The palmed card is added to the top of the pack and the cards are turned over to show the bottom card—"Not on the bottom" ... "And not on the top" (double lift the two top cards and show as one). The cards are fanned as explained above, leaving the missing ace standing up from the finally closed pack. This presentation was suggested by Eric de la Mare, a veritable encyclopaedia of sleight-of-hand, member of the Magic Circle, and a resident of Colombo, Ceylon, with whom the writer spent many happy months. As an impromptu effect it can be enhanced by palming the selected card while the cards are shuffled. The one-hand top card palm is thoroughly recommended. (Card Manipulations Part I, by Jean Hugard.) Continue by adding the palmed card to the pack and showing that the selected card is not at the bottom or (apparently) at the top. Fan the cards and—flash— the chosen card remains in view, facing the amazed spectators!