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Topic: Barrie Richardson's THE IMPOSSIBLE KNOT ROUTINE from his book Act II.
Message: Posted by: Jamie D. Grant (Jan 26, 2006 07:19PM)

[b]The Effect:[/b]

The performer holds a length of white rope between his hands and, without letting go of the ends, he/she is able to tie a knot. This is repeated with the rope tied to his/her fingers. For the finale the knot disappears while the performer turns around in a circle.

[b]How It Went:[/b]

Well, let me say that Barrie is a genius. Not a genius in the, "I can make an autombile float and do loop de loops around my head with no threads or cables sense" but in a people sense. He is a genius with Interaction. I saw him lecture a few weeks ago and he truly blew me away. This routine was one he presented and it was simply fantastic. Okay, so how did I do? Weeeellll, maybe not so fantastic. I practised it, changed the patter to fit my style a bit better, test ran it for friends and fam and felt it was ready for Magic Friday. Um... it wasn't. Not that I performed it poorly-I am truly a Master of Mystery and my execution was nothing short of flawless but there were still, undoubtebly, flaws.

I guess it's like Twisting The Aces. Some people love this trick. In their hands it can be the most magical moment some people will ever experience. But I simply don't like it. I perform it and everyone (including myself) looks down at the cards and goes "hunh, that's kinda' neat. Are there any Oreos around here?" And that's the problem- I simply don't love it and it shows. Even though I have the most perfect smile and we're all laughing, perhaps my left eyebrow twitches, sending invisible signals to everyone saying, "he doesn't like this trick and neither do we..."

I personally don't really like ropes or silks either but was so impressed by Barrie that I thought I'd give it a go. Okay, so the first group was, by far, the worst. They were immediately suspect of the rope. "Where did you get a white rope?" While this seems like a bazaar question it is almost laughable when you think of what my honest answer would be, "Well, the Magic Shop, of course!" When I bring out a deck of cards everyone can relate. I mean who hasn't played with cards, right? And when I ask someone to simply think of a card and then I proceed to pull their grandmother out of my back pocket (without any wallets! Using only 1 grandmother! No moves, Nothing! This will be marketed as Grandmother's Surprised!) they think, "I sure as heck can't do that with a deck of cards so Django must be a great magician." But when I pull out a rope it gets suspicious. Believe it or not, a lot of people haven't handled a rope, especially a white one. So the first group was a disaster. Which is okay. We can't blow down the houses every day. My favourite lines, throughout the day, from people who hated it:

"Where'd you get that rope?"
"Is that the trick?!" After the knot appeared.
"You can learn how to do those kind of knots in a book!"
"I can do that!"
"Your hands are moving weirdly!"

Sigh. That said, however, many people were completely blown away. I wish I could say I changed the patter or did something different but I didn't. I performed it about 20 times and I did it exactly the same each time for testing purposes. Some loved it, some hated it. It was actually split about 50/50 (about 50 people a side). The people that loved it, however, were as impressed as I was.

[b]Best Line:[/b]

"That's incredible. You're incredible!"

[b]The Angry Bob Rating:[/b]

I have a co-worker (Bob) whose uncle was a magician and has a good working knowledge of how magic works. He's pretty grumpy but likes Magic Friday's because he can tell me how he figuered out how it was done...

[b]0/5[/b] - Angry Bob wasn't in today.

[b]My Rating:

3/5[/b] and I'll explain why. Whenever you read a review here at the Café you need to keep in mind that it is subjective to a lot of variables. It's not like buying a blender whether it works or it doesn't. Some people will totally destroy a trick and post a terrible review and then someone else will kill with the exact same effect. 1 man's 2/5 is another's 5/5, always remember that as you can use it greatly to your advantage. It gets a 3 from me because I don't like ropes. It's also not very impromtu (which I prefer) as I never carry rope around. That said, I'm sure many people would give this effect a 5/5, easily.

[b]The Django Tip:[/b]

You can actually not use the certain something that Barrie uses for the finale. If you simply tie the rope as he does, WITHOUT the secret move, a false knot will appear. Simply pull your left hand out first and tighten to a point where you can just get your right hand. Voila.

[b]Closing Thoughts:[/b]

Act II, the book, is brilliant. Actually both of Barrie's book are a must for a serious student of magic-I highly recommend them.

Whit Haydn is also a genius. Check out his website for a clip of how perfection can be achieved with Rope. I wonder how he likes Twisting the Aces...