The Magic Caf
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index Knots and loops The Great Grand Indian Rope Trick (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2
Paul Jester
View Profile
Special user
UK
759 Posts

Profile of Paul Jester
Just a note about the old Indian rope trick... apparantely someone, somewhere (I can't tell you who 'cus I forgot) has got a good way with it, at the moment he can get the rope to come floating out of the basket into the sky and set kinda rigid, then a small boy climbs up the rope. The reason he didn't get the money (from the Queen) was because he can't get the boy to disappear off the top of the rope yet... but I reckon it's still possible... after all, it is magic.
Jester_Juggler Smile
KingStardog
View Profile
Inner circle
2134 Posts

Profile of KingStardog
The rope is quite easy to prepare, but it
must be thrown up with force instead of rising slowly. 16-18 feet in as stated before, direct sunlight or campfire light at sundown.

The bottom of the rope must stay secured in the weighted basket with the stiffener gimmicks (I know this part too) hidden in the weights.

As I heard the story, the boy does not disappear. As he runs and jumps on the rope to start climbing, the Magi shouts at him and places a broadsword between his teeth.
as they both reach the end of the rope 16-18 feet, the magi's large ankle length robe has covered the view of the boy and a grisly battle ensues.

The limbs of the boy (4) two chunks of torso, and the head all fall straight down in to the wide mouth of the basket. The Magi throws the sword that he was wildly swinging in the fake battle and it sticks into the ground as the audiences attention goes to the fake blood on the sword, the magi slides down the rope to end up standing in the basket (on the body parts) with his head looking straight down at his feet.

As he looks up the boy pulls the magi's robe out of the way at his feet and climbs out of the basket. While the magi gets out he uses his foot to disengage the stiffener and the rope falls behind them as they take their bows. The magi closes the lid of the basket and puts a silken cloth over it and it is removed to a secure area while the two are mingling with the crowd and the boy is examined repeatedly.

The fakirs passed away many years ago but
the boy's great, great, great grandson still knows......

Least that's the way I heard it.

Smile

A quick follow up. I was in a bookstore and saw a book about magical history and magicians to present. I did not remember the name of the book but it was put out by PBS the publicly supported channel on TV. The book specificaly describes the version that I related. It also has information on magicians that performed it in the late 1940's. I just leafed through it briefly but there was a photo of a boy on the rope. I think it was Thurston. I don't "read for free" so that's all I got from it.
...think not that all wisdom is in your school. You may have studied other paths,but, it is important to remember that no matter who you are or where you come from, there is always more to learn.
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
I corresponded in the 1960's with John A. Keel, a writer and journalist from New York who wrote the book Jadoo about his travels in India and Tibet looking for magic. In the book, he describes what seems to be a believable method for the classic version of the trick in great detail. In our correspondence, he affirmed his belief in the method described and said that he had actually attempted it with mixed results. He admitted that some of the other feats he had described in the book were less effective in reality than in the book's description, but he insisted that the Hindu Rope Trick was probably very effective in the right hands.

He paid a retired and very old magician/jadoo-wallah for the secret, and the description seems extremely detailed and conceivable.

In this version, a Jadoo performs in the open air, either in a street or marketplace or out in the countryside. The performance is at dusk, lit by bonfires. A long rope with a heavy wooden ball attached to one end is shown to the audience and examined. It is tossed high into the air but falls back to the ground. Again it is tossed and this time it continues upward and out of sight, the loose end resting in a reed basket much like a sword basket. A young boy is forced to climb up the rope into the darkness. When the boy gets scared and refuses to come down, the magician climbs up after him carrying a scimitar in his teeth. In the darkness above the audience a great commotion is heard and screams. Suddenly, blood and body parts rain down, with the turbaned head of the boy falling and almost rolling up to the feet of the audience. The magician climbs down, kicks the rope and it falls down. He and his assistants pick up the arms and legs and various body parts of the dismembered boy and throw them into the basket.

After some magic incantations the magician kicks the basket and the boy comes jumping out unharmed.

All of this is explained in great detail in the book, Jadoo. I have always felt that it was probably the most believable and practical method ever published to accomplish this miracle the way it was described by many European travelers.

The book is probably available on Amazon or Barnes and Nobles used book section.

Hope you find this helpful.

Just picked up this further info from barnesandnoble.com:

24 copies available ranging in price from $14-$84.

JADOO: The Astounding Story of one Of Man's Search Into the Mysteries of Black Magic in the Orient.
Author: Keel, John.
Condition: Messner. Blue boards, very good, dj., 249p. Here is the truth behind the Indian rope trick, living burials, x-ray vision, two-headed snakes & other
"supernatural" phenomena; and here to is magic with no logical explanation that will intrigue even the most skeptical of men. The true report on strange occurances in the Roof of the World, of mystics, Lamas, Jadoo-Wallas, fakirs & co. The author sought them out, befriended them, learned their secrets. How to sur vive being buried alive, to charm snakes, walk on water, put pins into himself without bleeding, truth bearded cobras, two-headed snakes, how Tibetan monks confined in their cell knew immediately of an occurance in a distant village, of Lamas who sat cross-legged in midair balanced only on a staff. His personal meeting with Tenzing the Sherpa guide, hunted the "Abominable Snowman" & much more..
Format: Hardcover/Dust Jacket
Associated Dealer: RARE ORIENTAL BOOK CO., ABAA, ILAB
Our Price: $87.12

John A. Keel, by the way, is now 72 and the subject of the movie Mothman Prophecies. His character in the movie, Jack Klein is played by Richard Gere. For more info on Keel see:

http://www.magictimes.com/spotlight/2002......ight.htm
cheaptrick
View Profile
Loyal user
Wilmington, Delaware
251 Posts

Profile of cheaptrick
The Indian Rope Trick was first documented in a western language by Marco Polo.

He was known to his contemporaries as
"Marco, the Liar". You have to take A LOT of what he wrote with a large grain of salt.

Smile If he really saw what he described, he PROBABLY had A LOT of vino in his belly at the time or was smoking some pretty wierd stuff (perfectly legal, in those days.
"Pick any card. NOT that one!!!"
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
cheaptrick:

How did Marco Polo describe the effect?
cheaptrick
View Profile
Loyal user
Wilmington, Delaware
251 Posts

Profile of cheaptrick
Whithayne,

As I recall,

Marco and his crew were invited to a party thrown by some bigwig.

A magi showed up.

He threw a rope so far into the air that it disappeared from view.

He got some kid to climb the rope,

The kid climbed up, so far up the rope that he also disappeared from view.

Then, parts of the kid started falling from the sky. (I guess you can see why they don't do this much anymore).

Story has a happy ending, thou.

Magi restored the kid to his original condition. (Sounds like the typical "torn and restored" effect to me. Pretty novel idea using a kid instead of a bill or such.)
"Pick any card. NOT that one!!!"
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
Well that is pretty much the description of the effect as it appears in the book Jadoo, and as I said it could well be an accurate one.

John Keel explains the method for the trick just as you described it from Marco Polo, with the kid being cut to pieces and falling from the sky in parts and then being restored. His method explains the rope going up, as well as the disappearance and dismemberment of the kid.

Marco may not have been such a liar after all. One of the reasons he was called a liar by his contemporaries is that they did not believe that he ever really went to China at all, and of course, it is clear he did.
KingStardog
View Profile
Inner circle
2134 Posts

Profile of KingStardog
Different methods to perfom this may be found in: Tops Treasury of Illusions Put out by Abbots.

Was lucky enough to get a copy recently.
...think not that all wisdom is in your school. You may have studied other paths,but, it is important to remember that no matter who you are or where you come from, there is always more to learn.
Vibono Magic
View Profile
Special user
Vxj,Sweden
647 Posts

Profile of Vibono Magic
A couple of years ago a Indian magician preformed the CLASIC Indian rope trick at the Stockholm water festival outdoors at DAYTIME!

Vibono Magic
Sweden
:genielamp:
Vibono Mirage
Magic entertainer and Balloon artist
Pete Biro
View Profile
1933 - 2018
18559 Posts

Profile of Pete Biro
I have a fantastic video of the Indian rope trick taken by a friend on a trip to India.

I almost got him booked to come to Las Vegas to do this but he had to get too much money for our budget (to pay for about six assisants to come with him).

He shows a rope, tosses it into a large basket, the rope rises about 3 feet, stops. He picks up the basket with the rope sticking up out of the basket.

Sets it back down and the rope goes up about 12 feet... small kid comes over, climbs up about four feet, then slides down.

Rope goes limp and drops into basket.

Beautifully done.

Smile

Oh, this was out of doors on a beach near the water line.
STAY TOONED... @ www.pete-biro.com
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
Sounds great, Pete. Still it is not the original, Great Grand Indian Rope Trick. As far as I know, John A. Keel is the only writer to come up with a full, workable solution to the mystery, with the mutilation and restoration of the boy and everything (See my posts above). His description of the method seems workable to me.

Has anyone else read this book (Jadoo) and have any comments on the remarkable story Keel tells? Keel is a fascinating individual and a great read.
imagique
View Profile
New user
61 Posts

Profile of imagique
I have a version capability, with a tiny basket, and the Magella priciple of levitation. It's relatively easy to build, compared to most rising levitations, and requires no moving parts, although anyone seeing it believes that there is either the type of gimmick that's in a stool levitation or a Gamolo.

The magician comes centerstage with a large queen sized sheet. The assistant comes out, as well, and lays down in front of the magician, face up. The sheet is layed over the assistant, and the assistant rises horizontally almost 2 feet. The sheet is raised, still blocking the view of the assistant, and the impression of the head is seen rising under the sheet, to a standing position. The sheet is removed to show the assistant standing in front of the magician. There is no base or rug on the floor. The assistant reaches toward the basket, and then upward, and a piece of rope floats upward to her hand. It floats through her hand, and it begins to float upward, pulling her hand and arm upward. The magician shields her body from the audience view, and all that they see is her real head, no fakes. The sheet is raised in pace with the rope, and she rises with the rope, almost to the ceiling of a normal home, almost two feet off of the ground. The rope in her hand is rigid, standing straight up over a foot over her hand. The sheet is kept in front of her until the magician cannot raise it any higher, and the girl floats higher without it, until the sheet is removed completely, and she it suspended in mid air, with no cover or visible means of support. The rope is actually not touching the basket, it has also risen about a foot out of the basket. The sheet is brought up to about chest height on the girl, and the rope begins to wilt at the top, coming slowly down to the fist of the girl, until she begins to descend. As her face gets to the sheet, the sheet does not follow. She descends behind the sheet. The rope is left hanging over the front of the sheet and when the sheet is removed, the girl is gone. The tiny basket, which would never hide the girl in any way, is tipped forward, with the rope partially spilled out of the basket. The sheet is lifted off of the floor and held close to the magician's body, with no possibility of hiding the girl within the folds.

The sheet is opened out again, in front of the basket, and covers it, showing the form of the girl. The sheet is pulled away, and she's seen standing, crouched, in the tiny basket. She's made her reappearance!

The addition of the rope was aided by my corroborative efforts with Paula Paul on her stool levitation when we met in Vegas in 1993. She was trying to take the heat off of the stool. I've never liked the stool levitation, because there was only one possible way that it was working, and that always proved to be exactly correct. I suggested to add the rope, taking some of the focus off of the stool. The rope is being wilted by the Mark Wilson version in the course of magic book, if I'm not mistaken.

The Magella gimmick has been built, primed and painted, and is complete. It is a solid, portable, gimmick with no assembly or disassembly. It weighs 20 lbs. My wife and I are still rehearsing with the gimmick, and we don't have any smooth video quite yet. Rehearsal with this gimmick is more Cirque du Soleil than Copperfield. The sheet is also gimmicked, but no forms or masks are used. Everything is done by subtle methods, not like the Asrah. This is not capable of being done outdoors, due to wind issues with the sheet, but if these could be dealt with, and a thick enough sheet to not show through in daylight could be provided, then the effect could be done in any light situation. The effect would be similarly angle prone to a 3001 or super-X. It needs to be on stage in a theater if done for large groups, and, yet, it could be performed out of a corner of a home living room. One may have to nix the horizontal rise at first, due to space limitations, and just do the vertical standing rise.

Speaking with Walter Blaney about this, he seemed thrilled with the concept, and wondered if I was going to market the effect, but I'm just not that excited about marketing too much of anything in the current free-for-all marketplace. However, hearing of the gimmick, he had some safety concerns. It's also too specialized and difficult for the average local magic club magician to be able to look smooth. Taking the average magic club magician out of the equation leaves a very small market, as well.

My only wish is to try to make the gimmick out of aluminum and save some weight. If the aluminum ever broke, the assistant would be in a better position to protect herself that a horizontal levitation with a spectator.

Please feel free to add any thoughts to this topic concerning the Magella principle.

If anyone welds aluminum, along the line of aircraft welding, or just high end aluminum welding, and would be interested in participating in this project, please feel free to pm me.

Thanks,

Jimmy Fingers
Payne
View Profile
Inner circle
Seattle
4572 Posts

Profile of Payne
Just finished reading "The Rise of the Indian Rope Trick" by Peter Lamont. Good book and a fun read. It seems that this feat goes back all the way to the late Nineteenth Century and was born, not in India but Chicago Illinois.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
jolyonjenkins
View Profile
Inner circle
United Kingdom
1156 Posts

Profile of jolyonjenkins
Also, Lamont convincingly debunks the Keel story; which P C Sorcar recycled in his book "Sorcar on magic". I spoke to Sorcar jr a few months ago in Calcutta and he said that perhaps the rope could have been suspended on many threads of hair (as per old levitation idea). Frankly this seems unlikely. But I do think nowadays suspension of the rope would be a possibility with ITR. I've not spoken to anyone who has a good idea about how to achieve the vanishing bit.
Jolyon Jenkins
Whit Haydn
View Profile
V.I.P.
5449 Posts

Profile of Whit Haydn
Quote:
On 2005-02-25 06:28, rjenkins wrote:
Also, Lamont convincingly debunks the Keel story; which P C Sorcar recycled in his book "Sorcar on magic". I spoke to Sorcar jr a few months ago in Calcutta and he said that perhaps the rope could have been suspended on many threads of hair (as per old levitation idea). Frankly this seems unlikely. But I do think nowadays suspension of the rope would be a possibility with ITR. I've not spoken to anyone who has a good idea about how to achieve the vanishing bit.


I did not think that Lamont convincingly debunked the Keel story at all. He simply slammed Keel. I think that the method that Keel outlined would have worked fine for the levitation and the mutilation and restoration of the boy--and would have been in accord with the Indian magic of the period.
jolyonjenkins
View Profile
Inner circle
United Kingdom
1156 Posts

Profile of jolyonjenkins
I can't now remember how much of the method is in Keel and how much in Sorcar, but I think the Sorcar method (as described in "Sorcar on Magic") sounds very unlikely. What kind of gimmick is used to attach the rope undetectably to the thread? What kind of invisible thread is strong enough to support the weight of a boy and a grown man, climbing up the rope? Even with today's technology you would have difficulty. Hundreds of years ago, no chance. Wouldn't the rope look rather obviously suspended? (It would be motionless at the top, but sway around in the middle).

It's interesting that the three or four magicians in India who do it today all use the pushing rather than the pulling method.
Jolyon Jenkins
The Magic Cafe Forum Index Knots and loops The Great Grand Indian Rope Trick (0 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.29 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