Harlan Tarbell - Post Graduate Course

June 1, 2016 | Author: Thierry L'Escale | Category: Types, Books - Non-fiction
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Tarbell Post-Graduate Service in Magic 1 by Harlan Tarbell Electronic Version © 2000 Lybrary.com


Allowed Usage: This ebook is for home use only. Renting or public viewing of this ebook is prohibited. Crime Watch: We reward any tips and information which lead to the conviction of illegal copying activity with 50% of the punitive damages placed to our credit. Please help us to identify criminals. At the end of the day illegal copying will increase ebook prices for you or make such products impossible altogether. Please contact us at [email protected] or any other of our email and mailing addresses. You can also fax us at (972) 509 4714. Please send error corrections to [email protected] history: 1st edition, 1926, Tarbell System Inc., Chicago

CONTENTS Tarbell Post-Graduate Service in Magic The Original Rope Release Three Silk Handkerchiefs Released from Ropes A New Ghost Ring A Button Off the Vest The Kick-Back Card Discovery The Turn-Over Card Multiple Slate Writing Extra Stunt - The Electric Match

3 5 9 12 17 21 23 26 31

Tarbell Post-Graduate Service in Magic SERVICE 1 This is a changing world. New things are being brought to light each day. To keep up-to-date one must keep in touch with the new ideas that are arising. The basic principles of magic are not many but the combination of the principles result in a tremendous variety of effects and routines. The progressive magician is alive for new material, greater showmanship and more interesting ways of interesting his modern day audience. New life is an inspiration to him. Prominent in magic today is the amateur and the semi-professional. They are more or less settled in a community and come before the same audiences from time to time during the year. To maintain interest at high pitch it means the introduction of new effects and surprises. In the changing of a program the cost must be considered. This has created a demand for effects that can be produced for little money and yet have the necessary value and punch to go over with a bang. This will always be an important point in the writing of the instructions in the Tarbell Post Graduate Service. There are many really wonderful magical effects that can be produced at very little cost. It is really amazing what a clever show can be presented with articles purchased in the ten-cent store. It is not our intention to confine ourselves to the ten-cent store, but we will try to keep down the cost of construction and presentation in the majority of effects. In magic we have some performers who are well fixed financially and who want the best of magic at almost any cost. These gentlemen must also be considered. 3

However, the best tricks in magic are not necessarily the ones that cost considerable to build and present. Some of the finest effects are done with the simplest of objects. To know the commercial value of an effect requires careful study and elimination; but it is only by knowing commercial values that we can sell our wares to our audiences. In the post-graduate work we will present only effects that have commercial value. You will find them gems of magic. Guard the secrets well, never forgetting that your power as a magician greatly lies in your ability to keep your methods of working hidden. You must mystify to build a reputation. Study each effect in this course carefully. Do not just skip over the surface. There is too much value that you can only get by careful reading to have a practical working knowledge. 4

The Oriental Rope Release This fine magical effect comes from Ottokar Fischer of Vienna. It gives us the release of various objects from a pair of ropes in an easy, mystifying manner without preliminary preparation of the ropes. It possesses that something that makes it an oriental presentation as well as occidental. Its impromptu method of working, even while the performer is surrounded by an audience, is readily appreciated by the modern day magician. It has been a favorite in the repertoires of Okito (Theo. Bamberg) and Fu Manchu (David Bamberg). EFFECT: Two pieces of clothesline are freely shown and held apart, one in each hand. A Japanese fan is firmly tied with a knot in the center of the ropes. One spectator is given two ends of the ropes to hold, and another spectator is allowed to hold the remaining two ends. A silk handkerchief is tied around the ropes at the left of the fan, and another silk handkerchief is tied around the ropes at the right of the fan. The handkerchiefs are pushed up next to fan and a knot tied in the cord above them. Performer tells assistants to hold the respective ends of the ropes tightly. Grasping the lower corners of the two silks in his left hand and the fan in his right he pulls them all clear of the ropes. The ropes remain stretched out between the two assistants straight without knots. The knots in the silk handkerchiefs still remain tied. PARAPHERNALIA: 1—Two pieces of white, soft clothesline, each about six feet long. 2—A Japanese fan about twelve inches long. 3—Two silk handkerchiefs, preferably 16 to 18 inches square. It gives a better effect if the silks are of different colors, for instance: one a bright red and the other a bright green. 5

PRESENTATION: Have two spectators come up from the audience to assist you. Have one stand at your left and the other at your right. Give the fan to assistant at right, first opening it for a flourish, and then closing it. Hold up the two ropes, one in each hand (Fig. 1). This move shows them to be just two pieces of rope.

Bring the two ropes together again and place over the fan which assistant is holding (Fig. 2). Stand behind fan so that

audience can see your movements step by step. Take the rope BB in left hand and the rope AA in right hand and tie a single knot (Fig. 3). This is the important basic move of the experiment. Be careful not to get ropes twisted. Grasp the ropes, two in each hand (Fig. 4), giving the two at left to assistant at left and the two at right to assistant on right side (Fig. 5).


Tie a silk handkerchief around the ropes at left side of the fan (Fig. 6), and the other silk at the right of fan. If desired, the knots can be made nearer the center of the handkerchiefs. Push the handkerchiefs close to fan.

Take one rope from the left and one from the right and tie a single knot above the fan and silks (Fig. 7). It makes no

difference as to which ropes are taken from each side, the big idea being to get the ropes over onto the opposite sides so that the ropes will be stretched out from assistant to assistant at the finish. You are now ready for the finish of the experiment. Grasp the lower corners of the silk handkerchiefs with the left hand and the fan with the right hand (Fig. 8). Pull the fan clear from the ropes and then the silks.


The result is that you hold the fan and silks released from the ropes (Fig. 9), the ropes being outstretched between the two assistants free from knots. The silks retain their knots.

Be sure to have each assistant hold one end of rope in each hand, and to hold as tight as possible so that ropes will not be jerked from hands at the psychological moment of releasing the fan and silks. Variations Rings, metal or wooden, may be substituted for the handkerchiefs (Fig. 10).

Or rings may be added after the handkerchiefs have been tied on, allowing the rings to fall on the floor at the finish of the effect. For impromptu work, various articles can be used as the principle permits of many variations. FOR AFTER DINNER WORK, wrapping cord, string, ribbon or tape could be readily substituted for the rope. A table knife could be tied in the center and a table napkin or handkerchief tied on each side. A couple of napkin rings could be added for good luck. 8

Three Silk Handkerchiefs Released from Ropes This is a pleasing variation and very mystifying. Nothing is used but three silk handkerchiefs and the two ropes. The handkerchiefs are tied onto the two ropes, one at a time, yet are easily released, leaving the knot in each handkerchief at the end of the experiment. TO PERFORM: Have one of the assistants hold the two diagonally opposite corners of one of the silk handkerchiefs (Fig. 11).

Pick up the two ropes and hold one in each hand (Fig. 1), then bring ropes together and place over the handkerchief, the ends hanging down about even. Grasping the rope BB with left hand, and the rope AA with the right hand, tie a single knot (Fig. 12).

Take the handkerchief from the assistant, holding it as in Fig. 13. The next step is to tie the handkerchief around the ropes into a knot.

Bring the right side of the silk around in front (Fig. 14), up over the silk in left hand, behind the rope knot and back to right side (Fig. 15). 9

Bring silk to front again and then up under loop A, forming a knot (Fig. 16).

To the audience, you have tied the handkerchief securely around the ropes. What you have really done is to tie a knot that can be easily slipped off the rope knot, leaving the knot in handkerchief and allowing the balance of the silk to be slipped through the rope knot and free (Fig. 17).

After silk has been tied in a knot around the rope knot, two ends of the ropes are given to the assistant at left to hold, and the opposite two ends are given to assistant at right. A second silk handkerchief is tied around the ropes at the left of first silk, and a third silk tied at the right of the first silk (Fig. 18).

Take one rope from each of the assistants and tie a single knot above the handkerchiefs so as to reverse the ends of the ropes as already explained in the fan and silk combination in forepart of lesson.


All is in readiness for the finish. Free the knot in the center silk from the rope knot. Grasp knot of center silk with right hand. With the left hand, take hold of the lower corners of the two other handkerchiefs (Fig. 20).

Pull the center silk free from the rope knot with the right hand, and the other two silks free with the left hand (Fig. 21). Be careful to warn assistants holding the ropes to hold tight so that ropes will not be jerked out of hands when you release the handkerchiefs. 11

A New Ghost Ring We have T. Page Wright and William Larsen to thank for this clever experiment in magic. The principle involved is quite ingenious, clean cut and different from other ring and silk or ring and string tricks. EFFECT: Two objects are shown—a pocket-size silk handkerchief and a small bone, metal, or celluloid ring, about an inch in diameter. Attention is called to the fact that there is nothing on the silk. Diagonally opposite corners are knotted, forming of the silk a loop. The performer again calls attention that there is nothing on the loop of silk, and that his hands are obviously otherwise empty. A hat is borrowed. The loop of silk is dropped into it. The ring is shown and dropped into the hat. Now, showing his hand freely empty, the magician reaches into the hat and pulls out the loop of silk; the ring has passed upon it. The loop of silk may be tossed out to anyone to verify that the ring is really upon it, and that the corners of the silk are tied with genuine tight knots. The hat is empty and all may be examined. PARAPHERNALIA: 1—A pocket-size silk handkerchief or a 16 to 18-inch regulation magician's silk handkerchief. 2—Two bone, metal or celluloid rings, about an inch in diameter. They must be duplicates of each other. 3—A borrowed hat. PREPARATION: The ring upon the silk is a duplicate. It is impossible for the spectators to follow the introduction of this ring upon the silk, for the reason that it is upon the silk from the beginning. The moves are most readily followed with a silk and ring in the hands.

A ring is threaded upon one corner of the silk, and this corner then tied tightly to the corner diagonally opposite (Fig. 22). 12

The ring is brought up against the knot, and the handkerchief laid out on table with knot and ring in the center (Fig. 23).

The bottom part of silk is folded over the knot and the ring, and over this is folded the upper part of silk so that the knot and ring are concealed as in Fig. 24. The appearance is that of an ordinary silk, upon which it is obvious that nothing is strung. The next step in the preparation is to tie an end of a linen black thread to the other ring (Fig. 25), allowing about six

inches of thread to extend from the ring. To the other end, tie a piece of black elastic of such length that a safety pin can be tied to opposite end of elastic and attached around the waist of body as a pull. The ring itself is placed in the right vest pocket and the thread and elastic extends around the waist to the right, and then behind back and over to left side of trousers, where it is fastened with a safety pin to the upper part of trousers. A ring or safety pin should also be fastened to the right side of trousers for the elastic to pass through so that when ring is released and allowed to fly back under the coat the ring or pin will protect it from dropping down below the edge of coat. The pull idea can be eliminated by merely palming an ordinary ring to vanish it and getting rid of ring in pocket or well of table at the psychological moment. In this case, ring can be examined beforehand. 13

PRESENTATION: Pick up the prepared handkerchief by center and allow it to lie against the palm of the left hand. It is freely shown. Then the two free ends are held as in Fig. 26. The openings

of the pleats are at rear and care is taken not to let handkerchief fly open and expose the ring and knot on the inside. Bring the two ends together and tie a false knot which will untie easily, as already explained in Lesson 32 of the Tarbell Course in Magic. The knot can be made into a genuine double knot, and by pulling one end out straight convert the knot into a slip knot. For safety, the third and fourth fingers of the left hand can curl around the center of handkerchief to prevent any trouble of handkerchief opening exposing ring prematurely. After tying knot, hold handkerchief up and show freely, so all can see that nothing is threaded on it, and that it is just a loop of silk made from a silk handkerchief. The hands are also shown empty. A borrowed hat is also shown empty and placed on the table opening up. Into this hat the loop of silk is dropped (Fig. 27).

As hand drops loop in the hat out of view, it slips the knot off the straight end of silk, untying the knot. At the same time, the silk is arranged in hat so that it is properly opened for the genuine knot and ring to be exposed so as to be readily handled at finish of the experiment. 14

The ring in right vest pocket is removed by right hand, care being taken that ring is shown without exposing thread or elastic attached to it. Attention is called to the ring. Then, fingers of right hand cover ring to hide same while hand moves slightly back to edge of coat and allows ring to fly back under coat. The right hand partially closed is brought over to hat and placed inside for a moment apparently placing the ring inside of the hat. It is shown empty, fingers apart as it is taken from the hat. In case no pull is used, and just an ordinary ring is utilized, it can be passed to audience for examination, and taken back by the right hand, and apparently transferred to the left, which makes the movement of dropping it into the hat. Actually, the ring is retained in the right hand, held in place against base of fingers by the thumb, and as the left hand seems to drop ring into the hat, the right hand drops it into the vest or side pocket, into a black art well or behind something on the table. The hands are shown quite empty. Reaching into the hat, you grasp the knotted corners and pull them out with a jerk. This jerk has the effect of sliding the ring down the loop of silk, upon which it is strung, toward the center of the loop. If it fails to slide down of its own accord, the fingers of the other hand casually grasp it and pull it down to the center of the loop. Fig. 28 shows position of the ring on the loop.

Attention is called to the fact that the ring is genuinely strung on the silk, the ends of which are securely knotted, as may be verified by anyone. Apparently the ring has penetrated the substance of the silk, passing through the loop of silk which was shown to have nothing upon it at the moment it was dropped into the hat. The hat, of course, is shown empty at finish of the experiment, to do away with any theory that two silks are used. 15

NOTE—A good ring pull can be made by attaching a watch clip to one end of a piece of elastic. After ring has been shown, the watch clip is secretly obtained and the ring snapped on. Upon being released, the ring flies back under the coat. Such a ring pull is also adapted for sleeve work. Variations An interesting effect can be obtained by vanishing ring at a distance from the hat and causing ring to invisibly fly about the loop of silk. Ring can be vanished in a small egg bag, vanishing apparatus, wrapped in paper or merely vanished by sleight-of-hand, or the pull. The effect can also be enlarged on for the stage by using a large silk and a large ring. 16

A Button Off the Vest Among the old-time effects in magic, one runs into some very interesting ones that the modern generation neglects to make use of. For instance, there is that always surprising effect of jerking a button off a spectator's vest or coat and then placing it back on again as firmly sewed as it originally was. The whole effect lasts but a few moments, but there is wallop packed into those few moments. Wallace, the magician, has a modern day way of working the effect and, as it is so much in the nature of an impromptu stunt, it can be worked on the spur of the moment. I have seen Wallace perform the trick time and time again and he creates considerable comment with it. He presents it without hesitation and with plenty of snap and deliberateness. EFFECT: Performer unbuttons the lower first button of a spectator's vest and, holding the left corner of vest, calls attention to the lower vest button. With his right hand, he grasps the button and jerks it off. The button is seen to be held in performer's right hand, while a glance at the vest shows that the button is missing. Performer with a throwing motion causes button to become attached to the vest again in its original condition. PREPARATION: All you need to carry is a black vest button for this experiment. You can carry this nicely in your vest pocket or little pocket on right side of coat. The average man's vest buttons are black, but for safety sake you could also carry a brown and a grey one, to be used as occasion demands. TO PERFORM: Hold the button secretly concealed in your right hand between the first and second fingers (Fig. A). The palm of


hand is held downward. Hand is held in just a natural, relaxed position. With the left hand, open the lower part of a spectator's vest and grasp it just below the lower button (Fig. B).

Bring right hand up to the button on vest (Fig. C), and pick at it two or three times, bringing the hand away so that button is seen each time hand is brought away.

Then cover sewn button with the right hand (Fig. D), and as you do so cover button on vest with the ball of left thumb.

At the same time, transfer the loose button from right hand between the tip of left thumb and coat just above the sewn button. Remove right hand and show vest button apparently in place as usual (Fig. E). 18

Reach over with right hand again and grasp the loose button between thumb and first and second fingers of the right hand (Fig. F).

Get the lower edge of loose button under the edge of thumb nail (Fig. G). Now jerk the button loose, but, in doing so, snap against thumb nail so it gives the sound of jerking a button loose from the vest.

Show the loose button held in the right hand (Fig. H), and also call attention to the button being missing on the vest. The eyes naturally travel to part above thumb which contains no button. In the previous movements, the button was visible

above the thumb. The final jerking and showing of button comes as so much of a surprise that the spectators' minds do not grasp the solution of slipping the thumb up over the sewn button. 19

Transfer loose button to tips of first and second fingers of right hand (Fig. J).

With a throwing motion towards vest, bring button back to position between base of thumb and palm (Fig. K). Thumb palm the button as in Fig. L.

The completed motion of throwing brings the fingers of right hand over the vest and tip of left thumb (Fig. M).

Slide the left thumb away from the sewn button on vest, and bring right hand away, showing the button back on the vest again (Fig. N). Show button firmly attached to vest and everything as good as in the beginning. In working do not forget that the effect demands deliberateness and there must be no slowing up or delayed actions.

NOTE: It is well to also carry a button or two of regulation coat size so that you can readily jerk a button off the coat as well. The coat buttons on the sleeve are the same size as those on the vest, so, by way of variation, one of those buttons can be removed and replaced. 20

The Kick-Back Card Discovery Here is a dandy surprise card location, extremely simple and impromptu, but possessed of that kick that puts it over in a mystifying manner. Wrinkles for locating a chosen card in a novel manner are much sought after by the magician. EFFECT: A card is freely selected from the deck by a spectator, looked at, and placed back in center of deck, which in turn is given a shuffle. While the deck is held on the palm of left hand, a part of the deck flies back suddenly and upon being turned over reveals the chosen card. PRESENTATION: Have a card selected and returned to the center of the deck. Bring card to the top of deck by simplified pass. Turn so that right side of body is towards audience and deck is in left hand, backs to audience. With right hand, shuffle cards so that at finish the top card is on the bottom. Place deck, with backs up, on the palm of left hand (Fig. 29), being careful not to expose the chosen card at bottom of deck.

With the first finger of the left hand, suddenly kick back the lower half of the deck (Figs. 30-31). Fig. 30 shows the position of fingers as lower half of deck is being kicked back. Fig. 31 shows the lower half being shot backwards towards the body.


The right hand grasps the lower half, and turning it over, reveals the chosen card on the bottom. "Is this your card?" Simple as this experiment is, the audience is under the impression that the cards are shot out from the center of the deck and do not suspect that the chosen card is on bottom of deck. The bunch of cards flying out together suddenly, and the surprise turning over of the cards, revealing the selected card, completely throws them off the track.


The Turn-Over Card The discovery of a chosen card by having it mysteriously turn over in the deck has been popular in the repertoire of magicians, and many have been the ways of accomplishing it. This method is just a simple, easy way of working the effect without complicated manipulative moves. EFFECT: A card is freely selected, looked at, and remembered by a spectator. It is replaced in the center of the deck, which, in turn, is shuffled. Performer says that an easy way to locate a card mixed up in the deck is to call it and have it appear on top of the deck. He shows the top card, but spectator says that it is not the card he selected. "Oh, well," says the performer, "if the card will not obey for me, perhaps it will for you. By the way, what was your card? The eight of clubs? Say 'Eight of clubs turn over'." When the spectator says this, the magician fans open the cards, backs toward audience, and, sure enough, the selected card, the eight of clubs, has reversed itself in the deck. PRESENTATION: A card is freely selected from the deck, returned to the center, and by means of simplified pass is brought to top of deck. Cards can be shuffled, if desired, still keeping chosen card at top of the deck. "A card has been freely selected, looked at, and remembered by the gentleman here. Somewhere among fifty-one other cards that particular card is resting himself. It is like a needle hidden in a haystack. However, cards are subject to call, and I have but to say 'Card, jump up on top of the deck and it jumps'." As you say this, lift up the two top cards as one. You apparently show the top card, but it is in reality the second one that you expose. We will say that the three of hearts happens to be the second card. 23

"Was that your card?" Show double card to spectator as one, and then place it on the deck face up. The deck is held back up (Fig. 33). Square

up cards, and then hold them so that the three of hearts is turned away from audience and the face card of deck proper is turned towards them. Spectator, of course, has said that the three of hearts was not his card. "No? That is strange. Ordinarily when I tell a card to jump to the top of the deck, up it jumps." As you are talking, remove the three of hearts (Fig. 34),

which leaves the eight of clubs exposed, facing you. Audience must not see the eight. The three of hearts is placed on the front of deck facing audience. "Oh, well, if the card will not obey me, perhaps it will you. By the way, what was your card? The eight of clubs? No wonder; you see the eight of clubs comes between the seven and nine of clubs in his relationship, and because he has troubles with his relations, he will not jump to the top of the deck." Cut the deck so as to bring the eight spot to the center of the deck. The eight spot, of course, is reversed among the other cards. "However, I believe you have the power to handle the eight of clubs even better than I, even to do something harder than jump to the top of the deck. Suppose we have him turn around in the deck. Say 'Come, eight of clubs, and turn around in the deck'." 24

When spectator has complied with the request, fan open deck with both hands so that backs of cards are towards audience. When you come to the eight of clubs (Fig. 35), say: "The eight of clubs has not only turned around, but it has also TURNED COMPLETELY OVER."


Multiple Slate Writing This is the method used by Barkann-Rosinoff. It is easy to perform and very effective. The principle is adaptable to many slates without any extra additions, outside of the slates themselves, than would be used with one slate. The flap method has been popular with magicians for clean-cut slate writing. A slate can be shown slowly on both sides to be blank and yet carry a message hidden upon it. Barkann-Rosinoff uses but one flap, whether he is performing with one slate or a dozen. This, then, means very little to conceal with the production of many messages. The principle is adaptable to miniature or large slates. It also permits of many possibilities, as, not only can messages mysteriously appear, but also numbers, answers to sums, names of cards, names of people, headings from articles selected from newspapers or magazines. An ingenious mind can work out some very interesting effects, once that the principle of working is made clear. EFFECT: The performer shows four slates, one at a time, to be perfectly blank on each side. He numbers each slate with a piece of chalk 1-2-3-4, respectively, and places them in full view of the audience. Upon turning each slate over, one at a time, a message has appeared on each. They may be serious or comic. PARAPHERNALIA: 1—Four school slates of the same size. 2—A cardboard flap painted black on both sides and colored to match the color of slates. A black silicate flap is also very serviceable. Flap must be such size as to fit loosely but snugly into frame of a slate to cover the slate proper: NOTE—An excellent way to prepare the slates and flap is to paint each with black lacquer. The lacquer not only gives the flap and slates the same color, but it is easy to erase chalk marks from the smooth lacquer. Only the slate part of a school slate is to be lacquered, not the wooden frame. 26

3—White school chalk. Fig. 36 shows the type of slate and flap to use.

PREPARATION: On one side of each slate write a message, a different message on each slate. Stack the slates one on the other, message side of each facing up. Place the flap on top of the upper slate so it will completely cover the message written upon it (Fig. 37).

PRESENTATION: Pick up the slates stacked together casually showing the bottom and top of stack. The flap is held in place with hand to keep it from dropping out. Slates should be placed on left forearm and one side held with left hand. Let the flap and message side of slates turn in towards performer so as not to be seen by audience from time to time. Lift up the top slate from the stack with right hand and slowly show both sides (Fig. 38).

Replace the slate on the stack, but with the flap side down, so that the flap will be against the message side of the second slate. 27

Turn the stack of slates to audience and on the side of the top slate write the number 1 (Fig. 39).

Remove the upper slate, but in doing so be sure that the flap correctly fits onto the second slate, so as to cover the message and cause no suspicion of trickery. In taking up the upper slate, be sure that message side is not exposed to audience. Place slate in full view against something. Three chairs could be used and a slate placed on seat and against back of each, or slates can be placed side by side against something on a table (Fig. 40).

Pick up the second slate, holding flap in place and using care in not exposing message written on the third slate. Show both sides of the slate and place on the third slate so that the flap comes between the two and covers up the message on the third slate. Write the number 2 on the upper slate. Remove slate, and place in full view of audience, similar to slate one. Lift up the third slate, keeping message of slate four towards body and away from audience. Show both sides of third slate, and place on slate four so that flap comes onto the message side of slate four. Write the number 3 on top slate and place slate against something as you did the other two slates. 28

Show slate four, the last slate, on both sides, and write the number 4 on the side of slate not containing the flap. The flap side covering message should be on the under side. Fig. 41 shows the line-up of slates.

Slate four is held in hand. However, it, too, can be stood against something, being careful not to misplace or get flap out of position. You work up the part that gives the reason for the messages to appear. This done, pick up slate 1, and, turning it around, show the message written thereon, reading it aloud so there will be no mistake on audience's part that a chalk message has mysteriously arrived (Fig. 42).

Place slate 1 under slate 4 that you are holding in your left hand. Square up the slates so that the flap will fall on slate 1. Lift up slate 4 from slate 1, turning flap side of the latter slate away from audience as you do so. Show the message that has appeared on slate 4. Place slate 4 back on slate 1 again so that flap comes between them. 29

Lift up slate 3 and, turning it around, show the message that has appeared on it. Place slate on the other two on left arm. Turn slate 2 around and also show message on it. Place on the other three slates and set slates aside. The fact that the flap is handled as it is, requires no special get-a-way or dropping on the table. For this reason, the multiple slate experiment is as adapted to close work in the parlor as distant work on the stage. 30

Extra Stunt The Electric Match Christopher Columbus would have performed this trick if he had possessed any matches, but being deficient of same, the effect had to wait until matches became the vogue as well as a knowledge of electricity. It is such a neat piece of impromptu work for after-dinner effects, that it should not pass by the uninitiated. EFFECT: Performer places a match on his upturned left hand, with match head projecting a short ways beyond the end of the finger tips. He takes another match in the right hand and, rubbing a moment on his left sleeve, brings the head of the match against the head of the other match with the result that some sort of an electric spark is heard and match on hand is propelled or shot high into the air. Even though the effect is repeated a few times, it is quite indetectable with a due amount of care in presentation. PARAPHERNALIA: 1—Two matches. PRESENTATION: Place one match on upturned left hand with head of match projecting a short distance from finger tips (Fig. 43). Hold the other match in right hand as in Fig. 43. Note that the finger nail of the third finger of the right hand comes

against the under side of the headless end of match. The match itself is held firmly between tips of first and second fingers and the tip of thumb. 31

The two matches are placed head to head without any result. Then the right hand match is stroked three times on the left sleeve and heads of matches brought together, the right hand head coming under the head of left hand match, or at a place on match itself near the head. As the two heads of matches come together, the third finger of the right hand suddenly snaps the headless end of right hand match upwards, freeing the finger (Fig. 44), and causing the

end of match to rebound back with such force as to force the head of the match up against the other match so suddenly that the match on left hand is shot high into the air (Fig. 45). The

sound of the finger nail slipping off the match is much like that of an electric spark. The effect is that the electricity generated in the right hand match by rubbing it on the left sleeve was strong enough to create an electric spark and shoot the other match up into the air. It will require a bit of practice to get the snap with the third finger tip just right to easily shoot the other match into the air, but a few attempts should show you the proper technique. The match must be held rather firmly between the first and second finger tips and thumb tip so as to act as an axis or leverage for the snap upwards with the third finger. 32


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