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Topic: Gimmick to zombie question...
Message: Posted by: ruaturtle (Aug 19, 2005 04:35PM)
Ok... I have been practicing and practicing and it still looks pitiful but I knew it wasn't going to be easy. That's not where my question is... Can anyone give a suggestion for the "connecting" phase? Everytime I connect (using a mirror sometimes and a video camera at others for evaluation purposes) it always looks extremely obvious what I am doing. Should I already have it connected before I begin? What do you pros at the zombie do to mask it? Or is it that I just need a better made gimmick (Vernet and plastic)?
Message: Posted by: The Drake (Aug 19, 2005 05:20PM)
I never could connect without it looking ovious to me. I now use two balls. I do a little levi effect ( ala thumb ) with the first ball and then put it inside a basket. I then cover the basket with a cloth and voila...the ball begins to float out of the basket. PROBLEM SOLVED! You can see it on my video at http://www.timothydrake.ca./video.html ( the zombie video is at the bottom of the page )


Message: Posted by: Magic Monkichi (Aug 19, 2005 10:05PM)
For me, I always sanded the gimmick so it didn't have to fit very snug, just enough to keep it secure. That way you don't have to wedge the ball on. If the gimmick is against your right arm for example, try tackin the ball with your fingers on top, and them near the connection point. Then lower it to the gimmick your thumb can slip to the underside of the gimmick and behind the cover of your arm your thumb and fingers can give a little squeeze to set the gimmick. Hope this helps.

Message: Posted by: dark kard (Aug 20, 2005 05:52PM)
You could always just have it already connected and just coverd with a cloth on your table.
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Aug 20, 2005 08:56PM)
Get the Losander video on Zombie. He has the best handling I've ever seen for the Zombie, including the hookup. I saw his lecture and his routine was awesome! http://www.stevensmagic.com/shopping/shopexd.asp?id=521
Message: Posted by: Jeb Sherrill (Aug 21, 2005 02:07AM)
Everyone does it different, even the pros, but I'll tell you what I can. For a no troubles approach, I do teach people to have it attached from the beginning. Another common approach is connecting in the crook of the arm. Magic Monkichi has some excellent suggestions for making it easier. Another tip might be to add a small amount of hot glue or silicone at the bottom of the sanded gimmick. There is also a type of liquid rubber (tool handle covering) that you can dip your gimmick in. Just make sure you get black rubber :)

A lot of it will just be practice and ways for moving your body as you attach it. Keep in mind, it will always look a little funny to you because you know what you're doing.

PM me if you'd like any other suggestions. Zombie is one of my favourites.

Message: Posted by: magic4u02 (Aug 21, 2005 08:02AM)
I have founbd that you must give a reason for the movements that you are doing or that is taking place. If the movement you make is logical and natural, then your misdirection becomes appropriate as well and your move goes unseen.

With this in mind, I try to float the ball by itself as stated above. I show the audience that this has a mind of its own as it starts to move away from me. I pick up the gimmick and the fallard and drap it and let it hang by my one hand. My arm then comes up parralel to the floor as I start to seemingly hyptnotize the ball or get this ball just ever so closely under my control.

Because I have shown a purpose and a means for why the ball is hard to handle, any movement that is slow or deliberate at this point becomes logical to the audience because it makes sense to the storyline and to my character on stage.

I can then rest the ball on my arm near my elbow area. It falls slightly the first time and moves upward the next.. all in trying to contain this object. In this movement, it is easy to appear as if you are trying to simply have this ball rest on your arm. All while really making the "hook up" action take place. In this manner your hook up is logical in nature and the movement makes sense to the audience as well.

It works for me and I hope it may help others as well. Keep in mind that this certainly is not the ONLY way to do a hook up, but it does show you tat you need to look past the magical nature of the trick itself and build your movements and what you do to make sense to an audience. Create what I call 'Logical Misdirection" and use it well.

Message: Posted by: ruaturtle (Aug 21, 2005 08:35AM)
Thanks once again everyone. As usual, the Café family has come through!
Message: Posted by: kregg (Aug 21, 2005 08:53AM)
Instead of extending your arm to the side, try bending your arm in front of your body like you're cradling a baby. It looks natural and it causes the audience to momentarily look at the hand away from the ball.
Message: Posted by: magic4u02 (Aug 21, 2005 08:55AM)
Kregg. That is exactly how I do it myself. It does indeed look more natural and the audience can see more without it looking like you are hiding anything. Thanks for the share.

Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Aug 21, 2005 08:37PM)
I for yrs used to do a hook up under a cloth-unless this is done in 1 move with cork -natural move a Kyle mentions-forget it-its obvious

Timothy Drakes moves are excellent-use 2 balls-works well-youd never know!!

I do a float of the ball off my arm etc & have the gimmick inside of my r/ arm when cloth is picked up-Then load ball onto arm & ball moves with cloth out in front of you-Tim Wright method etc

Experiment with size of gimmick-most are too long -cut them down-replace corks regular & paint as well to suit your arm length etc

Keep the routine short-to good music- 60-90 sec max>I use this in cabaret shows 2-3 times a week-works really well

Beautiful Illusion-make the attachment on your arm rather than under the cloth & it works so much easier as your right by the action if you know what I mean!!

Good Luck