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Scott Compton
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Hampton, VA
747 Posts

Profile of Scott Compton
Hello all,

I have recently become interested in adding some mentalism into my act. Where would one suggest that I start. John Riggs is a friend who used to belong to our ring in Knoxville, and I know that he has written some really great stuff. A friend suggested starting with the Osterlind series of DVD's but I generally start with books.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance,

Scott Compton
Magic is an art. I am merely a tour guide.

"You are the magic" Jay Ose to Albert Goshman
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Inner circle
3049 Posts

Profile of Necromancer
Hi Scott,

As you might imagine, this topic has been covered before.
Here's one link to get you started. After that, the Search button is a great resource.

Creator of The Xpert (20 PAGES of reviews!) and the Hands-Off Multiple ESP System ("Quality and design far exceed any ESP cards on the market"-Genii), and contributor to the ebook GOLD: When It HAS To Be Performance GOLD -- all at Penguin.
Tony Iacoviello
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Eternal Order
13151 Posts

Profile of Tony Iacoviello
Hello Scott

You've been around the magic scene for a while, is there an area in mentalism you are looking for in particular? I ask this, knowing that you are going to get 5 general responses (Annemann, Corinda, Annemann & Corinda, Richard Osterlind's books, and use the search function).

If you are looking for an overall introduction to the entire field, Corinda's 13 Steps is a great book. If you are looking for cabaret material, Larry Becker's books contain excellent routines that are very adaptable and easy to add to a mentalism or mental magic program (start with World of Super Mentalism). Next would be the Osterlind materials, the Riggs materials, Ted Leslie's book Paramiricles, and the Chuck Hickocks books. For mixed stand-up and close-up, Richard Marks, Mark Strivings, Greg Arce, the list goes on and on.

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399 Posts

Profile of HypnotizeAmerica
Compton -

I got the DVD of Osterlind coming anyday and based on the reviews it will be money WELL spent.

If you want a book I recommend the ebook (since the DVD is no longer for sale) of Stewart Cumberland's (do a search for the name and location). I have the DVDs, but I understand the book is just as good and at $45 it is a great bargain.

Best of luck.
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Allentown, PA
903 Posts

Profile of JohnCressman
I HIGHLY recommend the Banachek PSI series and Osterlind's Easy to Master Mentalism and Mind Mysteries DVD sets. Max Maven's DVDs are also good, as is Jay Sankey's stuff.
Dr Spektor
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Eternal Order
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Plus buy Corinda's 13 Steps - honest.
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Seattle, WA
4485 Posts

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And don't forget Henning Nelms's "Magic and Showmanship."
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
That Creepy Magician
"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
Phil C
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Ontario, Canada
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Without a doubt, get 13 Steps.
It is the best book that provides an overview of the field of mentalism.
It definitely helped me a lot when I just started!
Carlos the Great
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It's been a while so please forgive me if I am incorrect but doesn't Corrinda presuppose prior knowledge in the art (e.g., the one ahead principle)? It does give a really good overview but I seem to remember thinking beginners wouldn't get as much out of it (speaking of which, I am going to go through it again in the next few weeks, I find something new every time I do).

Cognite tute
Tony Iacoviello
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Eternal Order
13151 Posts

Profile of Tony Iacoviello
Have many of you guys looked at who is asking the question? Come on, rule 1 of presentation, "know your audience."
Scott has been into magic since he was a child, and he is, well, about my age. (Yeah, he looks a heck of a lot better, rub it in.)

John Nesbit
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United States
1421 Posts

Profile of John Nesbit
Why not start at the source from where it all comes down to today ? Annemann, Corrinda, "Mind,Myth and Magic" of course.
But the living legend of performer's that we have amongst us still, is Kreskin. Get his DVD's, watch what he does, and how he does it.
Then watch Max Maven and Richard Osterlind. Just to name a few. Ted Lesley, absolutely. The list goes on. But always go to the beginning of the craft's origin's. The old material on mentalist from the turn of the century. Dunninger, The Zancig's (Kreskin's favorite's). William Larsen Jr., Orville Meyer. Al Mann, Stewart James, Stewart Judah,Nate Leipzig,(these were Annemann's contemporary's and friends.... ect.
Simon Aronson is presently on the "Special Guest of Honor" forum. He has put up a list of reading material to reference the history of the "Two Person Mind Reading Act". He and his wife are also a living legacy to this field as well. His books are phenomenal for mentalism with cards. Visit this now, and pick his brains.

Also, for revolutionary New material. Go to Outlaw Effects.com and read the reviews for the new Pawnshop,Homicide and now "Sinister" books. These are making great waves in this field, and should not be overlooked. The threads on the "Tricks and Effects" forum are tremendously worth reading on these.

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