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SLMANN Zonts POST OFFICE BOX 14a» FREEHOLD, NEWJERSEY 07728 POST OFFICE BOX 14a + FREEHOLD, NEWJERSEY 07778 MAGIC CASTLE, HOLLYWOOD Sunday, January 14th, 1979 LECTURE by Al Mann MINDELOW Mexico City, July 14th, 1978, in the magic den of paige Snader Jr. of "Sounds of Magic” fame. "Al, I want you to listen to this David Berglas tape. It contains an effect that will blow your mind." Graige. I did listen to the tape and the card effect in it really puzzled me since apparently, discounting stooges and prearrangement, it had no magical solution to the listening audience. The effect is one of the top mysteries of the day. I had been told about this amasing card effect before back in New York and I had heard that some of the top names in Europe were doing it. In Effect: A deck of cards is placed in front of the spectator and the deck is never touched again by the performer except for taking it out of the case and placing it on the table. Spectator is asked to call out the name of any playing card, Next he is told to choose any number from 1 to 52. Lastly he is given a choice of counting from the top down in the deck or from the bottom up. When the spectator, with the deck in his own hands counts to his chosen number he finds his chosen card theret That is the effect as seen by the spectator and by many magicians and it is a fabulous effect to say the least. I asked Craige to play the tape over again. He played it a second time and then a third time. On the third play I caught something that Mr. Berglas said that seemed to be out of context. It puzzled me but I had no solution for the mystery. But that night as I rested in bed I recalled the words that Mr Berglas had said that'let the cat out of the bag.’ In the taped presentation, the spectator chose to count from the top down, So Mr. Berglas told him, "Very well, please take the deck, and of course you must turn the deck over to count from the top down.” In order for Mr. Berglas to have said that, he had to place the deck face-up on the table, unknown to the listening audience, So the spectator's choice of counting either from the top down or from the bottom up was strictly a magician's choice! If the spectator had chosen to count from the bottom up, the magician would have told him to take the deck in hand face-up and deal the cards from bottom up, which in essence MINDBLOW MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann he would actually be counting from the top down, So that part was solved. But what about the rest of it. Here was indeed a taxing puzzle since the deck was apparently not handled by the magician except for taking it out of the case to place it in front of the spectator, in a most natural way. Back in New Jersey, John Smetana, Bobby Hughes and I put our heads together and came out with a method of our own. Since we do not know the method used by Mr. Berglas we can only say that our method is very close to his if not the same, METHOD: 1. As suggested by John Smetana, the deck placed in front of the spectator at the beginning is just an empty card case! The spectator is cautioned not to touch it. The case may be placed in front of the performer for the time being. The important thing 1s that the deck 1s appsrently in sight at all mes. 2, The magician must sit across the table from the spec- tator, with his hands and part of his arms under the table. This is a natural thing when the magician is entertaining casually in a relaxed fashion. Please bear in mind that some of the greatest magic in history has been done under the table. That type of magic brought world fame to Home, Malini, Slade and Keeler just to name a few. 3, The magician has a deck of cards on his lap arranged as per Jinx #115, "The Instanto Deck" or any other arrangement so that any card called for can be brought to the top of the deck without looking at his hands, instantly. With just a little practice and study, the reader will discover that bringing any card to the top of the deck is quite easy. 4, After the card is named, the magician while pattering brings that card to the top of the deck. 5. Next the spectator is given a choice of any number from 1 to 52. When the number is called, magician simply cuts **» that many cards to the top minus one. This is all done while pattering. Magician then places the deck on his lap and, 6. Brings his hands above the table and takes the card case (which is empty) and goes through the moves of opening the case and taking out the cards. This is done just below the edge of the table while pattering and looking at the spectator in the eye. The cards are then placed in front of the spectator face-up! This move is most natural and no suspicion should be directed at it. The spectator assumes that the empty case did contain the cards and that the cards have been in sight at all times. However the next bit of psychological business will add the finishing touches to the mystery. 7. The spectator is given a choice of either counting from the top down in the deck or from the bottom up! *** sec Ly thumb or finger counting the cards cre eeencerenreereneninererereceertememetii tenet cater = ie ee 2: MINDBLOW MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE * ~ by Al Mann The rest is quit simple. The spectator is forced to count from the top down in the deck no matter what his choice is, If the choseneard is the five of spades and the number chosen is 22, the five of spades will turn up in position 22 from the top down, In the end the magician is clean. There is only one deck in use! -THE_SHATTSRED LINK “ - David Berglas, Zngland's prominent mental performer, wowed a BBC audience using welded steel chain (which however had been carefully inspected before) and breaking it at the specific link called for." from The Magic of Uri Geller page 220 by Randi. It has been said many times that it is not what you do that baffles your audience but what they think you do. I say to you that if you want to become world famous, it is not what the audience in front of you think but what the world reads in the papers about you, that will give you fame! The above statement by Randi is a good example. After reading the effect in Randi's book or in the pa- pers, the reader will imagine a very strong chain with thick oval links of welded steel breaking quite easily at any link chosen by the audience. Such is the power of the printed word and the enchantment of a magical effect well presented, How did magician Berglas perform this amazing miracle? From a magician's point of view, we know that it was done by clever trickery, We also know that some known magical principle was used that escapes us at the moment. But we look for a solution, After much thought we come to the conclusion that only two avenues are open. 1. First, the chain although ‘inspected’ contained a weak link ready'to break apart by a slight pull, and the num- ber of the link chosen by the audience was either forced or a stooge was used. A chain composed of steel welded links which may be only 1/2 inch long or a trifle longer, can be ‘inspected’ and even though one of the links is gimmicked, it will not be seen even if given a visual inspection. The chain may contain 100 links, The spectators can examined most of them and be satisfied but missing the gimmicked link since they do not know which one it is. The chain can even be tested by pulling it from the ungimmicked end, since the prepared link is among the first 15 links which the magician holds in his hand, Or the chain can easily be switched after an ungimmicked pneiae inspected. That solution takes care of the welded-steel chain! MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann The Shattered Link .... cont, Let's proceed a bit further and do the effect so that it can be repeated and the audience is given a free choice of any link. Sounds like a tall order but is quite easy to do The principle suggested here is “The Gypsy Necklace This effect, using a weakened link, is quite well known, It sells for about $3.00 and is sometimes called “The Million Dollar Necklace." To apply the principle to a metal chain, we need a metal chain (ean be soft metal) with links shaped like a figure 8, These are obtainable in any hardware store and are inexpensive, About four feet of chain is sufficient To Prepare: One of the links is weakened by bending it back and force with a pair of pliers to a near-breaking point. To avoid marking the link with tooth marks, a cloth is used. This weakened link mst be the fifteenth link from one end of the chain. If the link breaks, it will be necessary to discard it and try another The other fourteen links at the end of the chain are next opened just enough so that the chain can be broken at any one of the links. The chain is then connected into a continuous loop or circle. The magician can tell by looking or feeling just where the weak link is. What you now have is a length of chain about four feet long formed into a continuous loop with all the links tight and sound except for one weak link and 14 opened links. The Presentaion: The magician passes the ungimmicked end of the chain out to some one and the chain is tugged to test it. The spectator may be asked to examine the links, the ungimmicked ones. The gimmicked links are held in the perfor- mer's hand, Then the performer secretly links the chain into a loop and holds it so that the seventh opened link from the weakened link is held between the tips of his first and middle fingers of his right hand. Now anyone is asked to call out a number from one to fifteen, OR the magician may have some- one write down a number secretly and then get knowledge of it via the center tear or any other means. - If the number called is a seven, the magician parts the chain where he held it between the finger tips. If any other number is called themagician counts extra links to the left or right of the held link accordingly. The gimmicked end of the chain is then given to the spectator and the chain pulled until it breaks. The spectator is left holding the same number of links as the number called by the audience! The effect is the same as the "Gypsey Necklace" but the resulting publicity should be greater MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann The Shattered Link ...... cont. ADDENDA: Using a welded steel chain, the link can be broken completely and then cemented together with glue so that it will come apart when the chain is tugged. If the link is to be minutely examined then it has to be switched for another broken link, BOOK-TEAR This effect appeared in Bascom Jone's magazine Magick under the title “fest Conditions." Mentalist Jerry Fulton from Canada wrote in to say that the effect was superb and that he had immediately incor- porated it into his program as the closing item. Jerry sent in his own improvements which will be dealt with later. In Effect: A spectator is given a paper-back book and told to tear it down the spine at about the center of the book He is then given a free choice as to what half to throw away: He is next told to open the remaining half at about the middle again and tear that section off and discard it. The same thing is repeated with the remaining quarter of the book and finally all the pages are thrown away except one. Magician then divines or has predicted the chosen page That is the effect on the audience. It is strong. The audience assumes that there is no way in which the mentalist can control the actions of the spectator when in reality the opposite is true. The mentalist is in complete control of the situation although the spectator seems to have a free choice of what pages to discard! Even more amazing is the fact that no matter how slop- pily the spectator tears the book, the force page will be the same one, PREPARATION: Get a paper-back novel that has about 200 pages or a little less and: 1. ‘tear off the front and back covers and discard em 2, tear off all pages in the front of the book up to but not including page 1. 3. tear off all pages in the back of the book back to Page 190, You now have a book without covers showing page 1 in front and page 190 at the back, 4, Next make a prompter list for the first few words of pages 15 and 16 and also pages 175 and 176. MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann BOOK-TEAR ....... cont. Jerry Fulton writes his prompter list on the 5th page down on his scratch pad. Then he uses the top 4 pages to de- Monstrate to the spectator how to hold the book and open it and tear it, The top four pages of the scratch pad are dis- carded thereby exposing the prompter list to the mentalist! THE PRESENTATION: Ask a muscle bound young man up on stage to assist and give him the book. Then tell him to open it at about the center and to tear the book down the spine and then to discard either half, Performer should emphasize the fact that the spectator has a free choice as to what half to throw away. A waste paper basket should be handy. That is the last free choice that the spectator has but the presentation can be varied in a number of ways so that it appears that the spectator has a free choice every time he tears the book as to what part to throw away. The following routine is recommended: Let us assume that the spectator is right handed and that he threw away the last half of the book, keeping the first half with page 1 showing. The performer must pretend that he does not know and does not care what pages remain! But in fact he mast know what half was retained. In this case the force page will be 15 and 16, due to the fact that the first half of the book was retained by the spectator. The spectator is now holding in his hands about 96 numbered pages or about 48 sheets numbered on both sides. The reader should follow these instructions with a book in hand. Next, spectator is told to part the remaining pages at about the middle again and to tear them down the spine as before. Performer then asks the spectator to hand one section to him, in which case the performer tears up the pages given to him IF spectator handed him the right hand pages. IF the spectator handed him the left hand pages then performer tells spectator to please tear up the pages he is holding and throw them away. In any case the spectator is left holding about 46 or 48 numbered pages from 1 to 48 for example. This makes a package of 24 sheets numbered on both sides. The same proceedure is repeated a third time leaving the spectator holding sheets from page 1 to 24 or less. The spectator is holding about 12 sheets or less. Next he is told to eliminate pages by throwing away page 1-2 and placing page 3-4 on the table. Next he is to throw away page 5-6 and place page 7-8 on the table in front of him. This is repeated until all the pages are dealt. The pages on the table must now be turned over so that page 4 is showing uppermost. MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann. BOOK-TEAR .,..... cont. ‘The same proceedure is repeated. The top page is crumpled and thrown away. That was page 3-4. Page 7-8 which is the next page is placed on the table. Same is repeated until all pages are dealt, Remaining in front of spectator should be about 3 sheets approx. These sheets must be turned over again so that page 7 is showing uppermost. After the next elimination the spectator will be left with either one or two sheets, whatever. But the final sheet left in his hands will be pages 15-16, the force pages! It is very important that the pages placed on the table must be turned over every time before continuing the elimination process. FORCE PAGES 175-176 Now let's assume that at the beginning the spectator threw away the front half of the book and kept the last half which contains page 190. The performer must make sure that the spectator keeps the highest numbered pages to the last so that at the end the spectator will be holding about 10 or 12 sheets the last being pages 189-190 with page 190 showing uppermost. For the elimination process, page 190 must be at the top of the heap and it is the first page that is discarded while the next page 187-188 is placed on the table. When all the pages are dealt in the first dealing, the pages mst be turned over_ so that page 187 is uppermost. The spectator in this case must deal the pages from the highest numbered page to the lowest, in reverse of the first example above when working with the front half of the ook. In the end the spectator will be holding the force page 175-176! Amazingly enough, it matters little how many sheets the spectator is holding before the elimination process is started, the spectator could be holding as little as 8 sheets (numbered on both sides, 16 pages) or as many as 15 (30 pages) provided the force page is among the sheets and provided there are no more than 15 sheets in the bunch. However the best presentation is one where the spec- tator only has to eliminate from the fewest pages, say about 10 sheets or 20 numbered pages. It is very important that the book used has only 190 numbered pages or a bit less. If the test is done with a book of many pages then the final page will be one of two possibilities, That will lengthen the presentation and will bore your audience, MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann Book-Tear .. + cont, Jerry Fulton's Presentation: Jerry uses three dif- fernt books and prepares three prompter lists on three se- parate scratch pads and simply picks up the correct pad from his table after the book is chosen by the audience! Jerry writes out his prompter list in light pencil on the fifth page from top of scratch pad. Then in demonstrating what is to be done the top four blank sheets are crumpled and discarded exposing the 5th sheet with the prompter list. Jerry then uses this sheet to make notes with bold ink pen and then tears that sheet up and throws it away. The divined words are then written on a clean sheet TIPS: As stated before, the presentation has room for many variations. PLEASE NOTE that after the spectator starts the elimination process of throwing away the top sheet and placing the next on the table, the fourth sheet placed on the table will be the force sheet! That means that you can just tell the spectator to throw the rest away after tearing them to bits. This will shorten the spectator's task and keep the effect from becoming boring. ‘The elimination process should be disguised as much as possible. That can be done by telling the spectator to si- lently read the page number but to not tell you what it is. He just concentrates on it. Then you say, "No that page is no good, Please tearit up and discard it." For the next page say, "That one is alright. Please place it on the table." After the fourth page is dealt on the table ask the spectator if he wishes to stop there or go on. No matter what his answer is, tell him to tear the remaining pages up and throw them away. The force page is now facing him on top of the pages on the table. So the performer can proceed as he wishes. If the spectator stated that he wishes to continue then the elimination process is continued with the four pages. If not then tell the spectator to concentrate on the top page of the pile! It is page 15! And there is no need to turn the pages over! If you are partial to self flagelation, you can use the other three pages also to do some mindreading simply by preparing a prompter list for pages 3/4, 7/8 and 11/12 NOTE: The force page for the last half of the book will always be 175-176 if the book has 190 pages. For any other number of pages you must subtract 15 from the last page to arrive at the force page The force page for the front half of the book will always be 15-16 when the book has 200 pages or a bit less. MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann THE CHAIN-OP-THOUGHT HERE AGAIN IS A MOST UNIQUE BOOK TEST. This book test was touched on lightly in my book “Of Words and Wizards.” It is offered here in a truly dynamic dress. Here are the conditions: 1. Three ungimmicked books are used. 2, The audience has a free and secret choice of page number unknown to the performer! 3. Spectators choose any line on the page and any word on the line. 4, Yet, the performer can divine the three words chosen and'even predict the words before the page is chosen! Read the above again and you will see what a profound mys- tery it is to anyone in the audience. THE SECRET: This uncanny display of ESP is accomplished by a combination of principles. First, the three books used are totally ungimmicked and are different in size and color BUT have the same contents! Shopping around the second-hand book stores, your author located a book that fitted the requirements. The book is, "The Broken Wings," by Kahlil Gibran, This book was published in four different sizes and colors. Three of the sizes were hardbound, 44 by 74, 54 by 84 and 6 by 94. The fourth book was a pocket edition in soft covers, The books look radically different from just a few feet away. Books by Gibran are very popular today and can be found in almost any 'Poetry' or Religious sections of stores. These books were printed with the same plates, but just reduced to the requiered size, Each page is the exact duplicate of its counterpart in each book! THE CHATI HOUGHT READING Effect and Presentation: Performer displays the three hard- bound books in his hand in a fan, He states that for this test he will use three books. He then passes out one book to anyone on the right side of the audience, a second book to anyone in the center of the audience and the third book to someone on the left. Spec- tators are told to please hold on to the books. Another person is given a pad of paper and pencil and is told to secretly write down a page number, 1 to 100 and then to show it to the three persons holding the books, but to no one else. Persons holding the books are asked to please turn to that page. If the page is blank they are told to go to the next one, etc. Another person is told to please call out a line, say 1 to 10 and some one else to call out the number for a word on the line, say 1 to 8. (Unknown to the audience all three persons are looking at lo MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann. THE CHAIN-OF-THOUGHT READING ..... tees cont, the same word.) Each person is now told to write down their word on a piece of paper and to fold it twice. Performer next approaches anyone of the three persons and takes the folded billet from him and tears it up and throws the pieces into the air and tells the other two persons to do likewise. Performer has of course stolen the center piece with the one word on it. Performer then reveals any two words plus the chosen word, All three persons concede that their word has indeed been divined! THE GOLD-BUG PREDICTIONS In this prediction effect, we will use the three books mentioned above (or any three books all alike but under different dust jackets) Plus three slates (or art boards) and just about the same working. Most experts on cryptography (see the Gold-Bug by Poe) agree that the following words appear most frequently in any English text the, and, of, to, in and that in that order, For our purpose we will use the words "the," "that" and “there.” We do not know ahead of time what word will be chosen but if any one of the three words is chosen you will have a miracle! The reader can use any three words he wishes as it makes little difference, The words “the,” “and" and "of" are just as good. Effect and Presentation: Performer passes out three books and cautions the spectators not to open the books yet as he is going to attempt a prediction. Performer takes up the three slates and writes on the top half of the slates, one word on each, The slates are then placed on display writing side down, Since the performer has already committed himself by making predictions, it matters not if he knows what page has been chosen, So anyone in the audience is asked to call out a page number, 1 to 100. The three persons holding the books are then told to turn to that page. Two more persons are asked to call out a line number, 1 to 10 and a word number, 1 to 8, All three spectators holding the books now concentrate on the chosen word. Performer must now get the chosen word either by the use of the center-tear or the use of a prompter. Performer next picks up the three slates together and se- eretly draws a line through one of the words and writes in the correct word in the act of talking making believe that he is just tracing the word! The three slates are then displayed and all three spectators see their chosen word chalked on them! If, by chance, any of the three words chalked on the slate are chosen then you indeed have a miracle and make the most of itt eats aa MAGIC CASTLE LECTURE 1/14/79 by Al Mann THE GOLD-BUG PREDICTIONS ........ cont. ...+ Getting the Word: While hunting for the books to be used with this effect care should be taken to choose books that are small and with about 100 pages. More than three books should be bought. One of the books can be used to cut out the first 10 lines from each page and paste them on a paper back book to be used in the act of demonstrating how to get to the chosen word, The performer then gets the one word instantly while the spec- tators are still looking for their word! In writing the words on the slates at the beginning, the performer can make believe that he changed his mind on one word, wrote a line through it and then write another word, That way when the slates are shown they will look normal, Instead of using the center-tear with these effects, a billet switch may be used (see Acidus) and the billet (7) is given back to the spectator and all three are asked to tear up their papers and throw them away. If the three Gibran books mentioned before are used, then the paper-back edition can be used as the prompter after removing its cover and replacing it with the cover from another paper-back of the same size, At this writing efforts are in motion to hunt down some of these books and make them readily available to the profession. Best Wishes, ifr Pp. tn/tm/xt NOTE: The method used in Chain-of-Thought Reading and the Gold-Bug Predictions is known as "Impact." All three spectators have chosen the same word but do not know it. Since all three persons see their word revealed all three acknowledge that thier word has been divined.