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Dark illusionist
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Hey. A good freand of mine tought me the basics of stage fighting for our production of shakspears 12th night. We would also like to through some of these skills in our magic show. If any body has any ideas about bizzare illusions that could be anhanced with sword play let me know. thanks Smile
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Caleb Strange
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One of the effects that I day dream about is an athletic, and deadly sword fight with an invisible opponent. Beside exemplary mimetic acting skills, you'd need the sound of metal on metal timed just right, and, desirably, sparks flying occasionally when the swords clashed. Not really pursued this, as it seems beyond my prop making skills. But a few clangs and a few sparks triggered from the sword, I'd guess is do-able.

With the right prop, and choreography, I'd routine this outside, at night, or late evening, in a suitably dramatic/romantic location. A castle wall, a barrow (Neolithic warrior inadvertently summoned), or a cliff top. The dark would add to the sparks, and help with any off timing. But I'd guess you'd want to do it as a surprise, have lots of movement in the fight so it was difficult to analyse, and not go on too long with it. Not practical for me, but somebody might be able to use it.

Regards,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
Dark illusionist
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I realy want to have my freand get possesed in the middle of the show and just attack me after a fast paced sword fight one of us would disapear and reapear. i posted this in this section cause I want some advice on presentation I will go to the grand illusion section for method info

also caleb your brilliant but high class idea remends me of a a bugs bunny cartoon that takes place at a haunted house. It was with porky pig and sylvester the cat. 2 frogs get into a pair of shoes and made it look like a coat was walking or something like that... it was one of those images Ill never forget.

keep dreaming you never know...

:bat: jonathan Smile
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Bill Fienning
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On the topic of sparks from a sword: When I saw Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen at the Met in New York, sparks flew as Siegfried reforged the sword Nothung. I don't know how the did this, but it was impressive. (There are some unsafe electrical methods that have been used, but I doubt that this was what the Met used.)
Bill Fienning

"It's More than Tricks"
Dark illusionist
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in haunted houses there is a divice that allowes you to make lots of sparks from a chickin wire cage etc. unfortionately you need to make contact with something to complete the electric current. so that wouldnt work. the only other thing i could think of would be a spark wheel. maibe if you wanted to have a sword shoot sparks you could email an illusion builded and ask them what they think Smile
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Caleb Strange
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Dear Jonathan, many thanks for your kind comments. Actually, the Bugs Bunny reference reminds me of another daydream effect I'd perform at the the same place.

There's an escapment near where I live, with a knarled standing stone and a huge grassy cairn on the moor above, and a legend that demands some bizarre theatre. It was the site of a bloody, and decisive battle between the Romans, and a local tribe, and the story runs as follows...

Seeing the approach of a well-armed and numerically superior force, the clan chief called upon his priest to do some magic. As the situation required the most powerful sorcery, the priest decreed that there must be a virgin sacrifice of royal blood. Now, only one unfortunate fitted this description; the clan chief's own betrothed, his beloved. Not surprisingly, the chief reacted violently to this suggestion, but seeing the graceful, devoted resignation of his girl to the idea, and thinking of his people, in an agony of spirit, the chief relented. So to the sacrifice she was taken, bound in flowers, and with the soft tears of the chief falling on her like rain. And with his soul rent by the same blow, the chief despatched his beloved to the next world.

The next day, the Roman's arrived, and most of the tribe was killed, but one warrior, the chief, fought with the strength of ten, and killed many foe. But with the blows of twenty men in his side, so the chief too fell. Now the Roman general was fearfully impressed by this great warrior, who fought as if death were but a little thing, and hurried to where the chief lay. And with his final breath, the chief spoke of the sacrifice of his beloved, and how he had hounded after death that day on the battlefield, so that he might join his betrothed in a better world. And so moved was the general by this story that he released the captured tribesmen from slavery, and in a great and solemn ceremony, buried the two lovers together.

Now, in daydream land, the invisible swordfight is with the clan chief as he rages against the idea of the sacrifice. Then further along the escarpment, we'd meet a frail, shivering young woman, anachronistically dressed, and raving in a strange tongue. A gallant cloak would be thrown around her shoulders, and a tender arm would lead her to the sacrifice stone, where one asrah later, she'd disappear.

This would not be the end of the beloved, as she'd pop up later in another star crossed lovers story, associated with a farmhouse on the moor. The evening would draw to a close by linking these different stories together. That, in fact, they were soulmates reincarnated through history, to be torn cruelly assunder by a wanton fate. And the theatre would end with my great personal anguish, as it became clear that my character was the soul of the clan chief and the star crossed lover, and that I was doomed to a fate as desolate as the moor, my spirit crying out ever for her, and my voice lost beneath a dark indifferent sky.

Hmm. Here's dreaming,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
Peter Marucci
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Caleb,
What a fantastic scenario!
Brilliant!
That's the stuff that movies are made of.
It would make a spectacular bizarre-magic playlet.
Smile
Doug Byrd
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Sounds like a magic scene that should play out well in a Black Art Proscenium.

Think about it.

Doug
"Sic gorgiamus allos subjectatos nunc"
Dark illusionist
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Hey thats a good idea doug. ive never used black art before. its a possibility
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ptbeast
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As a bizarre magician, haunt designer and former competitive fencer, this thread really intrigues me.

Caleb, with your kind permission, I would like to play with the idea of fencing an invisible opponent. I could incorporate it into a haunted house.

As far a method, it is very simply. You could simply run a charged wire at an angle from floor to ceiling. When the sword touches it, it would spark. Play a sound track with the clanging of blades that starts on queue. Choreography and acting are all that are needed. Blood appears on the actors shirt. Then his spirit is seen rising from his body (via pepper's ghost).
I really think this has all kinds of potential...

I thought that your other presentation was doable, memorable, and had a ton of potential. I would not give up on it too easily. It would make a great show.

Dave Smile
Wil Castor
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what a great thread! Im also a fencer and studying magi and could see a hundred different directions on this one...

Maybe you could go the route of forging a magical weapon and enchanting it... when the ritual is complete the sword dissapears then begins its attack weilded by an unseen adversary. The fight continues untill the magi (fighting with his own sword) strikes a fatal blow into thin air and the forged sword reappears mid stage as it falls to the floor.

I like the idea of the wire for sparks and the soundtrack but I think I have an idea on how to accomplish both with very minimal set up. First off sound could be accomplished by finding a small (preferably digital) recorder and setting it in the handel of the sword with a switch so it makes the noise when you press a button. If an amp is needed run it like a fencer runs his sensor wire. As for the sparks, what about using two swords that were similar but one larger all around... this would be the one you weild. the one you forge and dissapear seats parallel to it. It would look like one sword from a slight distance but could allow for two metal surfaces which with a battery on them and somthing inbetween to make the connection might get you nice sparks and ofcourse makes the reappearance of the sword elementary.

hmm I like this... I may have to get to work on this. Anyone like to continue this idea via email? please write me with what you think. Smile
Pain is the craft entering into the apprentice.
Caleb Strange
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Dear Dave, Will, and anybody else with an interest in the invisible opponent thing, go for it! I'd love to hear about what results.

The methodologies you suggest have got me thinking, too, so it might be time to dust this one off, and try again. As for the acting and choreography, it strikes me that greater realism could be acieved if an actual fight between two people was choreographed and filmed. Then the film(s) could be studied to establish realistic actions and reactions. I seem to remember a one-person fist fight near the end of 'Fight Club', there might be ideas there. Incidentally, any invisible fight/assault, sword, fist, or other might be useful interlude in a bizarre show.

I loved the forging ritual idea too. I remember seeing a blacksmith make a fancy poker at a historical tourist place. It was very pure theatre, without being 'dressed up', and everyone was rapt. The sparks, the noises, the process of making something, all combined to make something magical.

Regards,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
niva
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But on what type of sword fighting are we talking here? Because I believe that fencing is the Zorro type of sword fighting, right? With those thin swords. On the other hand, the medieval and fantasy swords are very different than these and they are handled differently too.
Am I right?
I would like to try and learn some sword fighting, some day. Perhaps very soon.
Ivan Smile
Yours,

Ivan
cfrye
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There are different types of fantasy swords, with sizes ranging from a greatsword/broadsword, which had 36-42" blades and were wielded with two hands, down to a short sword which had a 24" blade and was more of a thrusting or piercing weapon.

A personal weapon for an unarmored medieval noble would most likely be something like a rapier, which can be bought (in the U.S.) from http://www.amfence.com or [outdated link].

If you're in a city with a decent theater community, you may be able to take a stage combat workshop with a certified instructor from the Society of American Fight Directors. You can find them on the Web at http://www.safd.org/.
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