The NEW Sands of the Desert HYBRID changes everything!

Stage Flying, PK Magic, and Viral Coin Video

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Grid loft above the Coleman Theatre stage. Much of this was installed in the 1920’s, including the 2×4 slats where I was standing over fifty-feet in the air. The Coleman is on the National Register of Historical Places.

Last month, I completed the design and overhead install of a fly rig at the Coleman Theatre for a large MLT production of The Wizard of Oz.

The fly was a single point pendulum line set. I used CMI for the pulleys and continuous slings at a 15:1 safety factor and 4:1 mechanical advantage, 500 feet of KMIII half-inch black static line, 3/8 inch wire rope slings at the rigging plate, locking steel carabiners and Crosby three-ton shackles for the connections. Each component proof tested at the factory.

It took four techs to operate the lines, one lift line and two traverse lines.

It was an intense six weeks. Crawling around on the grid seventy feet above the stage like Spider-Man before every performance, numerous municipal board meetings for contract negotiations, and the mental exhaustion of strict cues on a three-hour show with over one-hundred actors and crew over the course of four-nights—a total of twenty stage flights plus two weeks of rehearsals.

Add to that pyrotechnics and smoke effects. I definitely have a feeling of accomplishment, but I also have bruises, blisters, and torn ligaments in my fingers. Now that the nightmares have stopped, I can’t wait to do it again!

But first, Halloween. As the manufacturer of the STAT brand of products—one of the most popular lines this time of year—my focus is in the workshop. I get there early in the morning and stay until late at night. We ship gallons upon gallons of stage blood every October. Our FedEx driver finally asked, “What’s with all these First-Aid kits?”

Commando Trick: What’s in Your Wallet?

Jeff McBride famously promotes the benefits of a “commando act.” An act you can perform in any venue, for five minutes or an hour, silent or patter, for any demographic. Jeff’s commando act made him a star. But what about a “commando trick?” A trick you can easily keep with you and perform for anyone, at any time—individuals, groups, children and adults. For this I keep a Folding Coin or a Bite Coin in my wallet. They are cheap, don’t take up much space, and I always have something ready to go; an amazing closer to some impromptu magic.

How to Make the PK Match

IMG_2113My inbox was flooded with questions about the matchstick pic on Instagram. What you are really seeing in the picture is a cut, squared toothpick with a dab of PK Putty Magnum on the end. It isn’t stuck to my finger, but rather moving back and forth under the control of a PK Power Strip, part of the Shimpossible PK Power Pack (you can also set it on the spectator’s finger or palm). PK Putty is an easy way to shim objects on the fly. If you want a PK Matchstick, cut the end off a regular match and mold a new head with some Magnum. A complete box of these “matches” creates a whole new PK prop. You can make the matchbox stand on end, twist around, or even come to your hand.

The PK Palm Beetle Revealed!

IMG_2118Speaking of the Shimpossible PK Power Pack, another question I get all the time is if magicians can use the PK Palm Beetle to replace their PK Ring. Yes and no. The Beetle is worn like a PK Ring, but there are some differences. Instead of being disguised as a ring, it is rubber coated and includes flesh strips for camouflage. The Beetle is dense, very strong, and easily loaded and ditched during performance. I thought the best way to help you visualize its uses is to simply post a picture of it. Currently, it is only available with the Shimpossible PK Power Pack.

 

Make Your Mark!

Whenever I watch Rick Jay perform, it seems like I cannot put my marked deck down for the next two weeks. The impromptu demonstrations I have seen him perform—even on national television—are usually marked deck demos with a story. I prefer a quick-read system versus having to learn and decipher a code, which is why I use the Ted Lesley Marked Deck. Ricky Jay’s “Deceptive Practice” documentary is on Netflix and has been going non-stop in our workshop all week. Grab a deck of cards and watch the master explain his passion for card magic.

 

 

Young Mueller Performs Viral Coin Magic

This video of Moritz Mueller is going viral right now and I think you can see why: the young man is extremely talented. Even the mainstream media has recognized his gift. Important for beginners to note is his confidence and sincerity. This kid is going places.

Will this liquid revolutionize your closeup magic?

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This innovative liquid transforms one of magic's most popular tools into an even more versatile method. When the liquid is applied and allowed to dry, it removes the gimmick's telltale shine and replaces it with a light-absorbing, flat-black … [Continue reading]

Ultimate Test: Magic Worth a Salt

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Our new HYBRID Sands of the Desert treated sand is a combination of both Waxed and Synthetic Sands. But how is that possible? It's all thanks to our innovative "wetsuit" technology that envelopes every grain of sand, mimicking the traditional … [Continue reading]

Free Magic DVD Instantly!

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A full-length magic DVD converted to instant download, YOURS FREE! Place ANY SIZE paid order and get the DVD free, instantly. This DVD was a bestseller by a known magician. But I cannot advertise it by name for less than wholesale. A $34.95 … [Continue reading]

Gambling Demos Made Easy with Speed-Reading Marked Deck

Billy McComb: "I must congratulate you on producing the most readable 'Reader Deck' I have ever seen." Click here to read more.

There are many ways to locate and identify a chosen card without a gimmick or gaff. A marked deck for those routines would be overkill at best. At worst, a marked deck can get in the way. However, for an out-of-the-hands "fairest of them all" … [Continue reading]

Something More Convenient than Mentalism…

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Magicians are drawn to mentalism for two key reasons... First, a great deal of the material can be performed impromptu or with very little setup. Second, mentalism is scalable from an intimate one-on-one setting with a single spectator to a powerful … [Continue reading]

Five Steps to Corporate Gigs

The most successful corporate magicians have corporate knowledge, or at least a corporate attitude. They are performers with experience speaking with and to business owners, merchants, and fellow entrepreneurs. Don't worry if that doesn't describe … [Continue reading]

Keep it Simple Sands

Sands of the Desert sales increase dramatically this time of year. Magicians who perform Sands of the Desert regularly tend to refresh their supply right before the onslaught of summer festivals and stage/parlor opportunities. Those magicians are … [Continue reading]

A Secret that Fools Magicians…

Yin-Yang Red & Blue Sheen Daub. The perfect amount of red and blue daub, side-by-side, Yin-Yang style.

When I perform for magicians, I fool them best with one "gimmick" above all others. There is this one little secret—though extremely famous and well known—that flies right by seasoned magicians. I think they just don't expect it. And it's not only … [Continue reading]

Best Kept Secrets Four – Wand Scrolls!

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Here is this week's Best Kept Secrets video blog featuring Magic Wand Scrolls, Suit Up, and the new Cybergician magic chat! (click here to watch the video on YouTube) Covered in this week's vlog: Suit Up - The Corporate Card … [Continue reading]

The Magic Chat is BACK!

Chat with magicians from all over the world. Visit Cybergician.com

For years, I sponsored the world's largest magic chat. It ran for years and it had nearly 1000 members at its peak. Now, THE CHAT IS BACK! I have helped start a brand new online magic community called, "Cybergician." There are some big things … [Continue reading]

Best Kept Secrets Three: Mental Marker!

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Here is this week's Best Kept Secrets video blog featuring Mental Marker! (click HERE to watch this video directly on the YouTube website) Covered in this week's vlog: Secret Powers: A Principle for Better Magic Impromptu Magic … [Continue reading]

Secret Powers: A Principle for Better Magic

From a very early age, we learn what secrets are, but we have an uncontrollable urge to share them with others. (photo by Clara Rico)

Think about the last time a friend entrusted you with a secret. Remember how it felt? You possessed exclusive information. Knowledge given to only a select few. And good or bad, a secret is a powerful thing. If the secret concerned another person, … [Continue reading]

Best Kept Secrets TWO: The $100 Billet Catch!

Aaron Smith's $100 Billet Catch is the easy way for closeup magicians to perform on stage. The perfect addition to any Commando Act.

Here is this week's Best Kept Secrets video blog featuring The $100 Billet Catch! Click HERE to watch this video directly on YouTube. Here's what is covered in this week's Best Kept Secrets video: Picture Perfect: Make Impromptu Photos … [Continue reading]

Picture Perfect: Make Impromptu Photos Magical

Neil Patrick Harris always strikes a nice pose. You can see in this photo all of the tips outlined in Picture Perfect.

For decades, magicians have used pictures of themselves to entice potential clients to book their show. The final selection—the best photo out of a hundred professional studio stills—would appear on the magician's business card, flier, brochure, and … [Continue reading]

Best Kept Secrets Video Edition!

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Here is this week's Best Kept Secrets video blog... … [Continue reading]

Jeff McBride: Magic Come to Life (interview)

Jeff McBride with one of his iconic masks.

Have you ever watched Jeff McBride walk into a room at a convention or lecture? The crowd stops what they are doing and everyone turns in his direction. The air shifts. The phrase, "That's Jeff McBride," echoes from wall to wall. There are very … [Continue reading]

Can you dribble and fan your PK Deck? (Demo Video)

Can you dribble, fan, and spring your PK Deck? You can with the PK Deck Slimline! This amazing PK Deck features a tiny secret that plays big. Use it for all the PK Deck effects you perform now, or create new tricks you thought were … [Continue reading]

Join Me on Twitter…

Join me on Twitter. My username is @magicdepot

I am a huge fan of Twitter. It is a window into the amazing lives of my magician friends, worldwide. At times, we all come together to talk about one subject. Other times, we are splintered, each discussing our own unique experiences. Please, join … [Continue reading]

On the Shoulders of Giants…

Howard Thurston by Aaron Smith

After announcing my drawing of Howard Thurston last year, I had several magicians asking for prints. High quality prints will be available down the line, but in the meantime, I thought of a fun way to share the great magician with my friends here at … [Continue reading]

Count Deckula Claws Out from the Underground!

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The newest addition to the Pro-Magic Wand Scroll series is Count Deckula. I like to say it's Hamman's Signed Card, REVAMPED! His famous trick has always been one of my favorite plots, and now this version has my attention because of the pop-culture … [Continue reading]

Open Sesame: Magic Castle Performance Review

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The release of my Old World Siberian Chain Escape met with tremendous success. I am very thankful for the support I get from the magic community—humbled by the response. But it is a double-edged sword. I make each Escape by hand with … [Continue reading]

Sands of the Desert Buyer’s Guide!

I am a little biased when it comes to Sands of the Desert. In my opinion, it is one of the greatest magic tricks ever invented. It isn't my trick—it isn't anyone's trick—it belongs to the community as a whole. It may have been invented by magicians … [Continue reading]

Best Kept Secrets…

The purpose of Best Kept Secrets is to provide new magicians with a firm understanding of the magic community and magic products that will help them develop advanced skills. Best Kept Secrets is also a platform where I announce my new product … [Continue reading]