The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Cups & Balls Advice (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3~4~5~6~7~8 [Next]
Carlos Hampton
View Profile
Veteran user
360 Posts

Profile of Carlos Hampton
Jim David Regal in his recent videos I believe vol 2 performs a beatiful variation of the cups and balls. He starts with the cheapest plastic set that you can imagine as he tell a story that suits the presentation. Then he moves to a set of professional cups, and at the end of the routine the final loads are the plastic cups of the beggining, and if I remember well they carry a load as well.

Very nice, specially for magic friends.

Also I have herad only good things about the Johnson set. The only bad thing I've heard so far is the tarnish thing. On top of that Johnson have just released a matching chop cup that can be added to this set along with a wand that matches the cups and is gimmicked at the same time.

If you want to get the whole set talk to Howard of Magic warehouse and he'll put together a nice price for the set.

Regards,
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
I think that a 1" ball will work fine, though it might look a little small on top of a large cup. Gazzo uses a 1 3/8" white silicone ball, and that is what comes with the Gazzo Street Cups.

My personal feeling about the Gazzo Cups, and that may be biased since my company produces them, is that they have a magic feel, a specialness about them. They just feel magical.

I think Simon was talking about that feeling. They look mythic, and feel as if they came from some long ago story. You feel like you are touching something from the ancient past, you some how feel a part of that tradition. It is hard to explain.

I think part of it is that Gary Animal is a sculptor with an eye for design, and Gazzo is an artist as well--quite good at line drawing. They both had loads of experience with the cups and knew what they had to have.

Part of it is that the cups are hand-turned by an artisan, and they have a completely different look and feel from a machine-produced cup. They are a much heavier copper than you can get machine spun.

I think that the copper cups look best when they are shiny but deeply tarnished. That rich milk chocolate color is gorgeous. Plus the balls stand out so much better against the dark cups.

The balls are the star of the show, not the cups. Really bright, shiny cups seem to detract from the performance. They make the balls hard to see and thus confuse the eye.

BTW, we may soon be coming out with a new version of the Gazzo cups made of silver-pewter. These will have a dark silver sheen that never tarnishes.

Oh, and we now have the Gazzo Poacher's Pouch in stock and ready to ship. They are really nice. We'll have them up at WMS.
Danny Hustle
View Profile
Inner circle
Boston, MA USA
2393 Posts

Profile of Danny Hustle
Whit is right about the balls. I just held one of my supposed 1” balls next to a 1” knit cork ball and my baseball is bigger. I’ve held the soccer balls that Gazzo uses and they are the same size as my baseballs. That would makes them a bit bigger than 1”. Whit’s also right about the big Gazzo cups. They scream magic. They are awesome.

Hey Whit are the new pouches leather? I’m sure you are going to sell a zillion of them!

Best,

Dan-
Image

"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
ASW
View Profile
Inner circle
1864 Posts

Profile of ASW
Quote:
On 2003-01-10 18:35, mslj wrote:
Also if a routine finishes with a melon and a hat I'd suggest that the Johnsons would not be the ideal choice. I think that the balls and final loads and thus the melon have to be congruent in size and the small balls used with the Johnsons along with the small(ish) lemons (for example) would really not match a melon production. Just sticking with the final lemon production, either three or four, is the stongest finish for the Johnsons.




Simon,

I have to disagree with you on this point. The idea is not to produce final loads that are congruent in size - the idea is to produce a series of climaxes that tops the earlier climax. Thus the audience are shocked when you reveal a bunch of lemons (after doing a series of passes with the small balls) and blown away when you reveal a huge melon. The melon has to top the lemons. It's the old dramatic idea of build, build, build...

This reminds me of the story Pete Biro tells of Ken Brooke arguing with Ricky Jay over whether it's the size of the final load that mattered or merely the change. Brooke takes Biro and Jay to a pub and does the cups and balls with some very small limes as final loads and the audience are blown away. Brooke says to Jay, "See: it's the change".

I agree that it is the change that creates the shock value. But any analysis must conclude that an audience are going to be more impressed if you produce larger incongruous objects rather than slightly larger objects. In the case of the latter it's only a small leap for the audience to say, well they weren't that much bigger and he is fast with his hands (or whatever) so he must have just slipped them in. But with HUGE lemons or grapefruits, while the audience MUST always conclude that you are skillful - they will be struck by the immense difficulty in sneaking a huge, brightly coloured object under a cup they believe they have been watching intensely. Laymen appreciate conditions - so why not maximise the impact by producing objects that they know intellectually must be difficult to sneak past a wary audience?

The problem with Brooke's 'proof' is that it can't be tested against the same audience. You can't say, "okay now - that was the small limes. Now I'm going to do the trick again with lemons!" It would also be difficult to do a controlled survey of audiences. How do you measure amazement? Not applause. Some people will applaud - but some people will gasp and others will become stony silent when their brains go into freefall. I think, though, that if you were to overhear two lay audiences discussing shows that occurred simultaneously, and one member described the cups and balls and to show how amazing it was pulled a lime out of his pocket (a souvenir) and said, "Then he produced three of these from under the cup!" - I think that a member of the other audience would say, "That's nothing - the guy we saw produced six grapefruits fom under his cup and then had a melon under his hat."

In the end, magic isn't sports. But I think it pays to really consider the way a lay audience interprets an effect...

As a final note - I think that Johnsons would be fine for the street if you have good site lines. Even for a pretty big crowd. If they can follow the action they'll be impressed by you producing 3 or 4 or 6 lemons - then you'll slay them if you end with the melon.

Best
Andrew Wimhurst

Boy you can't shut me up.

Just to add weight to my belief that it's okay to use smaller cups if you know what you're doing: you should consider the fact that monte crews occasionally pull larger crowds using very small props. Though they prefer to close out spectators and concentrate on a single mark, I've seen a crew outside Caesar's palace (the irony!) working with about 40 people standing in the round. (They were rough as guts, but they didn't care about the crowd - and everyone could see and was hooked on the action).

Given a choice though - I would prefer a heavy duty, solid and large set like the Gazzo's or Biro Galli cups because they allow you to produce a stunning large load sequence of oranges or grapefruits...

Which reminds me - Whit's point about the balls being the stars of the show is right on the money (and another reason why he should write that book). Worrying more about whether you have stunning looking, polished cups is a failure to recognise that fact. Indeed, if the audience have trouble following the balls you will have more trouble concealing the final loads, since the ball sequences in the cups and balls are designed to condition the audience to watch the space on the table where the cups rest (but not the cups themselves) so that you can load the fruit backstage...

Cheers
Andrew
Whenever I find myself gripping anything too tightly I just ask myself "How would Guy Hollingworth hold this?"

A magician on the Genii Forum

"I would respect VIPs if they respect history."

Hideo Kato
mslj
View Profile
New user
Bradford, England
95 Posts

Profile of mslj
Hello Andrew

I agree with you regarding the notion of 'build, build, build' but don't think that each step has to be to something physically bigger. Putting the melon production aside some strong cups routines don't need an ending that depends on the revelation of a large object. The traditional 1-2-3-4 ending usually ends with a fourth production that is often of the same size as the other three. For me the final climax can be a dramatic change and not just a size difference.

In saying that the melon ending is the stongest I've seen and while I feel ok doing that with a large set of cups it just doesn't feel right for me as a performer if I'm using a smaller set like the Johnsons.

On the size of balls, I had some initial problems using the balls provided with the gazzo cups but stayed with them because they matched better both that set of cups and their larger loads the balls I was used to. One thing that really helped here was moving away from what was almost an obsession not to flash a ball. I saw Gazzo a couple of years ago and he exposed the fourth ball - the first time I'd seen that done. It took me a bit of time to get there but after soaking up the audiences reaction the lightbulb flickered on for me!

Simon
cmwalden
View Profile
Regular user
Cedar Park, TX
148 Posts

Profile of cmwalden
Speaking to the original post:
I have a set of Johnson cups and I've been very happy with them. I'd set aside the cups and balls for a while, but this set was so beautiful that it refueled my enthusiasm.

The cups are brass and perfectly shaped for what I do. They are heavy in the hand and stay put. They look beautiful, feel beautiful and make me feel special when I use them. They are very pricey, but once you touch them, you may be hooked.
"There are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in our reality."

- William Shakespeare
ASW
View Profile
Inner circle
1864 Posts

Profile of ASW
Quote:
On 2003-01-12 17:14, mslj wrote:
Hello Andrew

I agree with you regarding the notion of 'build, build, build' but don't think that each step has to be to something physically bigger. Putting the melon production aside some strong cups routines don't need an ending that depends on the revelation of a large object. The traditional 1-2-3-4 ending usually ends with a fourth production that is often of the same size as the other three. For me the final climax can be a dramatic change and not just a size difference.


Hi Simon,

I have to say I disagree with what you're saying. It stands to reason that it's going to be more impressive if you produce a melon which dwarfs the final loads and the cups. Most magicians would agree with that - in fact it's a claimed feature of the Paul Fox design, that the cups are shaped so that if you place the final load on top of the cup it almosts looks too big to have come out of the cup in the first place.

To put this in perspective - imagine producing three grapfruits then waiting for the applause to start to die and then producing... a strawberry! Big deal, right?

By the way, I feel that the 1,2,3,4 ending is a distinct climax. The 4th load doesn't have to be bigger because it's all about incongruity - "where the heck* did those three no oh my gosh* FOUR potatos come from?" It's about battering the senses with rapid productions that are asymmetrical (where did the fourth load come from?!).

In any case it's okay to disagree - that's what the forum is all about.

Best
Andrew

* Translated from the original to avoid the ire of the trigger-happy and VERY conservative moderators. ;-)
Whenever I find myself gripping anything too tightly I just ask myself "How would Guy Hollingworth hold this?"

A magician on the Genii Forum

"I would respect VIPs if they respect history."

Hideo Kato
Danny Hustle
View Profile
Inner circle
Boston, MA USA
2393 Posts

Profile of Danny Hustle
Andrew,

In my opinion size does not matter insofar as the cup goes. You should use the appropriate size load for your receptacle.

The giant street cups will produce no more of a reaction from a close up audience than the much smaller Bertram cups will with a smaller (but appropriate to the size of the cup) load. The difference is the bigger cup can play for a larger audience.

My reasoning behind this is I do sometimes 20 or 30 shows per day. Depending on the place I am working I bring the appropriate size cup. My smaller cups get a huge reaction; my larger cups get the same reaction from more people. The trick in and of itself is not any more impressive.

As far as the melon goes, it is not so much that it is big as it is the appropriate for the size of a hat. Bob Read does it with two hats and a loaf of bread. It is a stunner! But it plays for a smaller crowd. If you did it with a shoe and produced a can of coke from it, it would floor people. I have done this close up with Bertram cups and a shoe basically doing the Gazzo routine. It kills a close up audience.

Even Gazzo when he works in a close up venue not congruent his big routine will drop the melon and the reaction is no less fantastic.

I have also found that three final loads and not the now standard 1-2-3-4 plays just as big. This is also something Gazzo taught me and after trying it, it’s true.

This is another thing about street performing that I love. If I have thoughts like this I have the opportunity to go out and test it on hundreds of real people almost immediately. I have spent a lot of time on just this topic and these have been my findings. They also coincide with what my teacher taught me. I think Ken Brookes was right. Smile

Best,

Dan-
Image

"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
Carlos Hampton
View Profile
Veteran user
360 Posts

Profile of Carlos Hampton
Quote "I have also found that three final loads and not the now standard 1-2-3-4 plays just as big. This is also something Gazzo taught me and after trying it, it’s true."

I've seen this work both ways. When the performer reveals the 4 loads in a succesion manner it does get the same reaction as the 3 loads as stated by Dan, I think the audience does not have the time to register the amount of loads, reference the amount of cups. But I've seen a few permormes that do the 3 loads revelation leaving the 4th one under the cup, letting the audience register what just happened an putiing each cup behind the loads. This picture registers in the mind of the audience, of 3 equals 3. Then when the reaction is dying PUM!!!! another one. In this scenario the performer also finish with 4 loads but the reaction of the audience is a lot stronger.

Once again like almost everything else in Magic and life, it boils down to timing.
Danny Hustle
View Profile
Inner circle
Boston, MA USA
2393 Posts

Profile of Danny Hustle
Wow,

That is a great point. I can see that being a real stunner. Thanks for sharing that Carlos. I'm glad you decided to check this site out. You have had a lot of great input!

Best,

Dan-

For a little experiment I went out and did 4 shows in the subway on my lunch hour. I did a routine with 4 final loads using the 1-2-3-pause-pause-4 method you describe. It tore the roof off the place. It is so interesting how such a very simple change can completely change the dynamic of a trick. I also used a different type load for the fourth revelation. I wonder if that adds to the impact. I’ll have to try it again later in the week with 4 loads the same. What a great tip Carlos. Thanks again.

Best,

Dan-
Image

"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
ASW
View Profile
Inner circle
1864 Posts

Profile of ASW
Hi Danny,

As to agreeing with Brooke - here's what I wrote earlier:

"I agree that it is the change that creates the shock value. But any analysis must conclude that an audience are going to be more impressed if you produce larger incongruous objects rather than slightly larger objects."

Thus I see what he is saying, but I can't agree that size (of the loads doesn't matter). I also agree with you that smaller cups produce an equally good reaction depending on the audience, see above.

In regard to the change - I can't imagine why he would think that it's ONLY the change and that size doesn't matter. On your next lunch hour, why not do a routine where you produce three objects smaller than the balls you use - say three peas? Actually a better way to disprove the theory would be to produce three cork balls that have a different crochete colour. Say red to blue? I personally think audiences may react, but there's no way they'll react as well as if you produce three or four baseballs (or whatever).

Okay so I'm being tongue in cheek about all this, but I think Ken was wrong - about size anyway.

Hate to disagree with Brooke (his egg bag routine is the best) but there it is.

Cheers
Andrew
Whenever I find myself gripping anything too tightly I just ask myself "How would Guy Hollingworth hold this?"

A magician on the Genii Forum

"I would respect VIPs if they respect history."

Hideo Kato
Carlos Hampton
View Profile
Veteran user
360 Posts

Profile of Carlos Hampton
Hey Dan,

I am pretty happy that everything worked out for you. Not bad tip after all, from a guy who doesn't even perform the cups and balls.(yet) Send me a cut of the hat. Smile

I am learning lots of things and I am taking lots of notes, since I am only in the development of my street act. Just picking out the repertorie and trying to define the character.

Thank you guys for sharing.

Smile
Danny Hustle
View Profile
Inner circle
Boston, MA USA
2393 Posts

Profile of Danny Hustle
George,

Ahhh... Yeah, see, I misunderstood completely. You are saying the final load has to be bigger than the balls you start with. Not necessarily the bigger the cup and load the better. No, I don’t think I’ll be trying the peas anytime soon thanks. Smile I usually like to make money when I’m out there. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

Speaking of Mr. Brookes and his egg bag routine do you remember what book that routine is in?

Best,

Dan-
Image

"MT is one of the reasons we started this board! I’m so sick of posts being deleted without any reason given, and by unknown people at that." - Steve Brooks Sep 7, 2001 8:38pm
©1999-2014 Daniel Denney all rights reserved.
Harry Murphy
View Profile
Inner circle
Maryland
5283 Posts

Profile of Harry Murphy
Danny, The Ken Brooke Malini Egg Bag routine can be found in the book “Ken Brooke’s Magic Place” by Anthony Brahams.

The routine can be found in manuscript form as “Ken Brooks and Friends on the Malini Egg Bag”.
The artist formally known as Mumblepeas!
JamesinLA
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3399 Posts

Profile of JamesinLA
My current cups and balls routine also ends the way Carlos described and it gets a great reaction. I produce three racquetballs as the final loads, and, as I lift the cups, I stack them in preparation for the fourth racquetball (sometimes I use a fruit for the fourth final load). I like to stack the cups to the left and a little in front of where the three cups had been arranged. After revealing the "final" three loads, I let the audience react and take that in. Before their surprise completely dies down, I speak up over their mumuring (I have to speak up to be heard!) and I say, "I just noticed that my magic wand still has a little magic left in it. And you never want to leave a magic wand loaded!" (That gets a good laugh, especially from the girls) I tap the stack of cups and there's the fourth final load. What do you guys think?
Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
JamesR
View Profile
New user
51 Posts

Profile of JamesR
I'm working on developing a cups on balls routine, and I have been studying as many resources as I can. I see that some routines call for a wand, and some do not. I was wondering what people thought about the use of a wand for the cups and balls, and for the rest of the show.
ASW
View Profile
Inner circle
1864 Posts

Profile of ASW
Thanks Harry for the info.

Danny - I have the little yellow booklet, "Ken Brooke and Friends on the Malini Egg Bag". Many pros use this as the basis for their routines but some also add different climaxes. The booklet is available from Denny Haney - Denny does the Brooke routine BEAUTIFULLY.

Anyway, enough on the eggs - don't want to hijack what has been a pretty interesting thread...

Cheers
Andrew
Whenever I find myself gripping anything too tightly I just ask myself "How would Guy Hollingworth hold this?"

A magician on the Genii Forum

"I would respect VIPs if they respect history."

Hideo Kato
kasper777
View Profile
Regular user
142 Posts

Profile of kasper777
Is there anything wrong with going out and doing cups and balls with coffee cups or plastic cups, using foil as balls and something bigger for the final loads on the street?
Carlos Hampton
View Profile
Veteran user
360 Posts

Profile of Carlos Hampton
Jim,

Try revealing the 4th load without staking the 3 cups, see if you get a different reaction.

Cheers
JamesinLA
View Profile
Inner circle
Los Angeles
3399 Posts

Profile of JamesinLA
Carlos,
Which cup would you suggest I try putting the fourth load in? The first one I reveal, second, or third? Thanks.
Jim

By the way, does anyone know what size/type of cups Sonny Holliday was using in the Cellini tape? Thanks.
Jim
Oh, my friend we're older but no wiser, for in our hearts the dreams are still the same...
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Cups & Balls Advice (0 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2~3~4~5~6~7~8 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2019 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.25 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL