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Topic: I Could Do It With My Eyes Closed
Message: Posted by: crocodilewings (Jul 11, 2007 08:27AM)
After making the realisation that a number of tricks in my repetoire don't actually require me to be able to see, I'm currently weighing up the pros and cons of putting together a blindfolded card routine, and wondering if people had any experience of trying this before.

The main pros, as far as I can see it, are as follows:

- It looks cool.

- It gives the appearance of making the whole thing more difficult than it is. Not only are you doing card tricks, but you're doing them [i]blindfolded[/i].

- If you put emphasis on the blindfold, getting them to check it, asking them if they're confident you can't see through it, etc., it provides a certain amount of misdirectional cover for more underhanded machinations.

- It lets you engage a spectator as someone to assist you in your magic, ("obviously, since I can't see, I'll need you to help me with [whatever]"), making them feel a lot more like a participant than an observer.

All well and good, but there are some obvious cons that come with it:

- You can't see!

- No eye contact. This alone could spawn a whole other list of cons.

- There's less room for error and correction. If you make a mistake, unless they comment on it you might end up going through the entire routine with a significant card the wrong way up, or some similar disastrous piece-killer.

- You can't observe, or judge, the spectators' reactions.

- It probably becomes harder to judge angles and visibility. If someone shifts a few feet to the right after you put on the blindfold, you might end up treating them to an unrestricted view of your otherwise magnificent backpalm.

I do think there's some mileage in it. It just strikes me as a nice bit of presentation that lets you tie a number of otherwise-unrelated tricks into a cohesive performance.

I think I'm probably best checking my pockets after I'm done, though.

Message: Posted by: McAllisterMagic (Jul 15, 2007 11:28AM)
I have been thinking about doing this as well for quite some time. I was thinking of something like a good ambitous card routine,that would be cool to do blindfolded.
Message: Posted by: crocodilewings (Jul 15, 2007 05:10PM)
The possibility of having a spectator cover your eyes also occured to me. Provided it's not a problem to have someone viewing the effect from that angle, it's more audience involvement, and also a bit of fun.
Message: Posted by: erlandish (Jul 16, 2007 03:10AM)
If you don't mind cheating a little bit, there's a chapter in Corinda that can let you have the best of both worlds...
Message: Posted by: Andy the cardician (Jul 16, 2007 07:33PM)
My take on the idea - the very fact that you blindfold yourself gives the idea to spectator that you are working with sleight of hands and that you need to proof the opposite.

Appart of that, if is not very nice for the spectators to have no eye contact with the performer. If you stay blindfolded over a period of time, you might even invite spectators to play tricks on you . . .
Message: Posted by: Antony Gerard (Jul 17, 2007 08:21PM)
Back in the mid 1970's I was in an accident that caused me to go blind in both eyes. One eye for three months but six months in the other eye. Three months in total darkness was very difficult to say the least. I did manage to keep up with my magic and even did a few successful shows during the total blindness period. You learn to work with the cards that you are dealt. Today, the three months of dark are only a bad memory.

Since that time I have performed a number of routines blindfolded. Some of the routines include Ropes, Cards, Coins, Rings, and even a Cups And Balls routine. I have found that one routine is good, however, a full show is going overboard. Unless you are really blind. One of the key points is justification. i.e.; Why the blindfold? In one of my routines, a blindfolded poker demonstration (The real stuff, no gaffs), I state; "I am frequently asked if I cheat at poker. If I say no, the statement is obviously questioned. If I say yes, I am shunned. That's why I answer, I don't have to cheat, I'm a magician. Let me demonstrate what I mean with this deck of playing cards and a blindfold. With the blindfold on I can't possible cheat. I would have to see the cards to do that...".

I have found that my audiences were as entertained by the blindfolded routine as they were the non blindfolded routine. It's all in the presentation!

Take care and take cards
Antony Gerard

PS; Your sleights and misdirection must be impeccable due to the fact that you can not see where your spectators are looking. It's also a good idea to video your rehearsal so that you can see what works and what doesn't.
Message: Posted by: zwong (Jul 17, 2007 10:56PM)
I think it's a brilliant way to practice. If you can perform it blindfolded, you CAN perform it in almost any circumstances.

I used to know someone who practices his routines in the dark. He's pretty darn smooth.
Message: Posted by: Andy the cardician (Jul 28, 2007 10:30PM)

thanks for sharing. I am sure that the 3 month made you realize how precious our gift of sight is, despite the fact we take it as given.