Sorry this review is late....It's been a back-breaking week as Wifey and I have been installing new flooring in the salon. Rolling around on my knees, side and butt snapping Pergo flooring into place is rough work, but the progress is paying off as the place is going to look gorgeous!
We've ordered the first batch of equipment, and are both really nervous but excited. I've been doing as much clinical work as I can, including assisting my chiropractor with her fear of heights.
On another note, I'm having another contest! Here's the skinny...I've been doing a lot of repeat middle schools this year. At least in my experience, middle school kids (grades 6-8 in the U.S.) are often the toughest audiences. It's taken me several years to fine-tune my middle school show to the point where every routine is rock-solid and audience-pleasing.
Everything's going so well that, as I mentioned earlier, I'm doing more repeat middle schools than ever before. As with most audiences, no one wants to see the same effects, so I need new effects.
Some of the effects from my current middle school show include: Bowl-A-Rama, Taste, PK Touches, Money Morph ($100 Bill Switch), Bobby Motta's Alive and the Pro Viper. For my second show, I've ordered The Moment, The Appearing Ladder and a few others.
So, my contest is simple. If you have any experience performing stage magic for this age level and can recommend some rock-solid commercially available stuff to me, email me at email@example.com. If I like your suggestions, I'll send you a FREE digital copy of either "Cause & Effects Vol. 1" or "Cause & Effects Vol. 2" your choice....they each retail for $24.95.
Just a few conditions...when I perform for middle schoolers, I'm usually in front of 200-400 kids, so most close up stuff is out. Also, because of the politically correct nature of performing in schools, geek magic (anything with sharp objects and/or blood is out.)
Also, the latest issue of the free ezine is coming out soon. Again, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On to this week's review...it's Redonkulous! It retails for $60.00 from Hocus Pocus. Here's the link: http://www.hocus-pocus.com/magicshop/product_detail.cfm?item=16381
EFFECT: Before the show begins a spectator is asked to merely think of any word from either side of a large broadsheet from the local daily newspaper. She has a free choice of literally hundreds or possibly thousands of words. After mentally selecting a word the performer seals the newspaper in an envelope and the spectator takes it with her back to her seat.
During the show the performer asks for the envelope from the spectator tears it open and removes the newspaper. The performer explains that the spectator is concentrating on a word from somewhere on the paper and it will be the audience’s job to find that very word. As impossible as it may seem.
Tearing the newspaper into two pieces the performer asks a random audience member to choose either half to discard. The choice is made and the performer tears the remaining piece in half and asks another audience member to select a half to discard. The selection is made and the performer again tears the remaining piece in half asking an audience member to select either half to toss away, yet again.
Left with a piece about four inches square the performer calls on a final helper from the audience to join him on stage. This spectator is asked to close his eyes and raise a finger and to drop it somewhere on the piece of paper. The spectator does this and is asked to open his eyes and without saying a thing to remember the word that he pointed to.
The spectator is then handed a white board and marking pen, and asked to write the word in big bold letters on the board and keep it concealed from the audience’s view.
While he is doing this the performer engages the original spectator thinking of a word and asks her to stand and for the first time call out her mentally thought of word in a loud voice. She states her word is, for example, “Flytrap!” The performer asks the spectator with the white board to turn the board around and show everyone the word he pointed to...it is also “Flytrap!”
WHAT YOU RECEIVE: An incredibly detailed DVD that explains the routine in minute detail. You also receive a detailed script walk-thru on a folded 11 x 17 sheet for easy reference.
QUALITY OF INSTRUCTION: This is insane in that Anthony Lindan gives an incredible amount of detail, including the background of the effect, history of development, credits, the pre-show work and more.
Let me focus briefly on the pre-show aspect of this DVD. First of all, what I REALLY LOVE about this routine is that you don't hide the fact that you met briefly with someone before the show. This is openly mentioned in the beginning of the stage routine. To me, this is so much better than using 'double speak' to conceal that you met with someone because, let's face it, in a corporate setting, people can and will talk to each other and reveal that yes, he met with you.
Secondly, this DVD has done something I myself have never seen before...Anthony has secretly recorded the pre-show work! This is NOT a recording for an L&L video, but a live gig that Anthony was being paid to perform.
Seeing this REALLY made me have confidence to actually do this routine. Anthony explains and teaches the routine is detail, but there's just something comforting and 'real' feeling by seeing him do his preparations "in the field," as he describes it.
The rest of the routine is taught in just as much detail. Little details are revealed and explained, revealing that Lindan has done this routine hundreds of times over the years and was NOT created just as a "lecture piece." As a real-world worker, I appreciate the value in such things!
This gets an easy 10 out of 10 in terms of instructions.
MARKET: I believe this is best for adults. I do plan on testing it in my high school shows, but my instinct tells me adults is the way to go.
DIFFICULTY: In terms of the live stage show performance there is only one real "move" and it's not difficult to hide or execute. The rest of the routine really comes down to confidence and spectator management. It's not difficult, so I'll give it maybe a 3 out of 10.
MY OVERALL RATING: I can't help but give this a 10 out of 10. It's a stellar effect, a drastic improvement over prior methods, that gets incredible reactions, as seen in the two live performances filmed at two of Lindan's live shows.
I had high hopes for this after Anthony's Incredible Suit Jacket Escape was my favorite new routine for last year. This new release does not disappoint and just the fact that I intend to work this into my shows shows how impressed I am as I do not like routines with pre-how work.
NEXT WEEK: Imagine by G.