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Profile of stevenamills
On 2002-10-29 01:27, GarrettDN wrote:
If I had to start with a self-working effect, I would use Contact colors by Aldo Colombini.


Thanks for the tip. Somehow I missed that. Had to run it down.

What a nice self-worker!

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Profile of S2000magician
Daryl's "Dream a Card, Any Card".

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Profile of TheAmbitiousCard
On 2002-10-30 16:02, Andrew wrote:
On 2002-10-28 02:45, fstarsinic wrote:

I never perform a self-working effect and I think that advice is completely misgiven.

If you're worried about that, then you are not making enough eye contact with your audience early enough in the "show" or you really just need a lot more practice before you start performing.


Yeah, but you need practice at performing live as well. I can't believe that people don't get nervous about their first gigs; in fact I can't believe that a lot of people don't get nervous about most of their gigs to a degree. So go for it Indus, use a self-worker along the way. If you present it well the lay audience are none the wiser and entertained. Don't feel second rate about using a self-worker. Feel great about presenting a great effect well and use that positive confidence to take you forward.


If nerves are an issue then I suppose that if doing a self-working effect helps break the ice then go for it. The original statement said that "Several people recommended doing a self-working effect first" but did not indicate "because I'm a newbie". That's what threw me.

I agree that getting performance practice is the real practice that is necessary.

I think everyone gets a little nervous before they perform. I think some of that just comes from caring and wanting to do well. Hand Crafted Magic
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Profile of Indus
Well, I do seem to have caused a bit of an uproar here. I guess I took it to the extreme a bit by saying that you should perform a self working trick first. I did read it somewhere but cannot remember the source now. After having read your replies, it doesn't make as much sense as it did before.

Andrew does seem to catch what I was trying to put across, which is that the tension of the first trick would be best dealt with if you didn't have to worry about angles and a hundred and one other things. Then once your a bit more at ease you can settle down into your routine and worry about the nitty gritty.

I am kind of a newbie, I have been doing magic for about a year now. But I have been fiddling with sleights more than anything, and still get a few butterflies when I perform a few tricks for people
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"I have heard from several different people that you should start off a routine with a self working trick,"

This advice is generally given to beginners so they don't become too nervous when peforming moves, after the first trick you are probably more relaxed into things. Good advice for beginners but when you become confident in your abilities you can discard the advice. I wouldn't neccessarily say self working either, perhaps "less technically demanding" Smile

Suggestions like "Pre-Deck-Ability" are extremely strong, lol you'll have to think hard about material to follow it which will top it.

I had a variation on "Lips" in my book "TOTAT Rides Again". Fun trick, occassionally you get women that look at the card and say, "That's not my colour!" duh! Smile


On 2002-10-29 06:16, antonuccio wrote:
I forgot to mention in my previous post a killer effect from Martin Gardner that I've found in a Fulves' "Self Working Card Tricks" booklet. Briefly, it's a two-deck coincidence with a double climax. Believe me, nothing can follow it.

Andrea Antonuccio

But what is it called and which Fulves book?
I always like a good reference Smile

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Profile of Pavlo
I hope you'll agree, Self Evident. Always, always great reactions, and the spectator does all the work and I get the credit. I like that approach.
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Profile of 10cardsdown
I don't know that the idea of a self working card trick is as strong as the approach to performing a card trick with the deck in the spectator's hands. In other words, after they see you perform, they know you have the ability to find their card. But when the deck gets put in their hands, and the outcome is magical . . . wow, look out! Now there's magic nobody can explain. Anyway, I think that's the angle to look at this from. Smile
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Play it Straight from Bannon's Impossibilia. It's a triumph effect where every single of an entire suit winds up face up with the exception for the selected card.
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There's no such thing as a self-working trick in my view.
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Jay Sankey had a neat one in his "Secret File" DVD's called "Spontanious Combustion." Basically a spectator selects a card as the magi goes through the deck one card at a time. He puts the deck back into the box and has the spectator hold on to it. He then waves a lighter around it and when he opens up the box and takes the deck out, half their card is burnt off and there is some ash in the card box.

The handling can be improved, but I thought the trick would work well for laymen and it was a clever idea.

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Profile of phonic69
I like the quite excellent "come together" with a blank deck variation (called "kicker") but I think my favourite would have to be "Skinner's Ultimate 3 Card Monte"!

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Profile of Nicodemus
I use " Timely Departure " by John Bannon to very good effect.
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Profile of Jax
I like 'Spectator Cuts To The Aces' from Royal Road! - as well as being self working [and a killer effect] you have the aces out so it leads nicely into 'Twisting the Aces' or 'Dr Daleys Last Trick'!
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I think the advice to a newbie (or semi-newbie) to open with a self-worker is sound.

On the other hand, no one should run away with the idea that self-workers are easy. they're not, they're just less technically demanding. A trick like "Overkill", while good (even great) requires *extremely* firm spectator contol and a very polished presentation if it's to be anything other than a puzzle.

(BTW, Frank - Red Hot Mamma's hardly self-working! Although not exactly demanding, it still requires a double lift and a force which would freak out many a newbie...)

For the record, then, my fave selfers (and I usually use at least one in any performance) are (in no order)

1. Overkill (Art of Astonishment)
2. Lazy Man's Card Trick (ETMCM)
3. Daryl's Untouched (ETMCM)
4. Gemini Twins (Fulves)
5. Out Of this World
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Profile of PMVIVA
I like a lot "The Magic Carpet" is an effect where four cards are selected, and lost in the deck then you form a carpet made of cards and then the people start to tell you which card turn over and which not, until you have a packet of cards, then you spread that packet and four cards are reversed, those cards are the choosen ones.

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If you are including stacks or pre-arranged decks in the self working catagory, I think
"Chaos" by Pit Hartling, and "Neither Blind or Silly" by Juan Tamariz are very good self working tricks.

If the trick is to be impromptu, I enjoy performing the "Vietnam Card Trick" by Bruce Cervon, and the "Double Speller" that Eugene Burger performs.

And, I guess technically "The Haunted pack or Rising Card" are really self-working also.

As for the discussion on when to perform a self working card trick... I have found that it depends on that tricks construction or effect. A self working mind reading card effect (like the "Whispering Queens") can be an incredible finale if you are performing for a single person. An effect like the
"Double Speller" can be a wonderful middle or opener. I think it varies from performer to performer (just to state the obvious)

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I find that The Piano Trick from The Royal Road plays very well, especially if you come across someone who just wants to catch you out.

It wouldn't make much of an opener though.
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Vanishing pack-after the deck has vanished the routine flows right into the Invisible Deck
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Profile of Jax
I saw a magician do the Piano Trick from Royal Road as an opener..... instead of playing cards he used pairs of SOCKS! Very Odd but it got the audience interested!!
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