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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Books, Pamphlets & Lecture Notes » » Professional Secrets - A Life in Magic by Geoffrey Durham (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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magicmann
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I haven't been able to put this book down since receiving it last week. It is difficult is these times of close up to find a book with such a wealth of information for stage magic. The performance tips are also relevant for the close up performer.
This is a real winner.

Paul
StuartNolan
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Good idea paulyjr. I did and he is kindly keeping one aside for me. There aren't many left.

I've been rehearsing his handling of the Gypsy Thread for the last two days. It'll take me a long time to get this effect working for me because I feel it must be done elegantly, simply and smoothly or not at all. I'm not very elegant either by nature or by inclination. The handling here has helped me a lot.
"One should always be a little improbable." - Oscar Wilde
Nicodemus
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Does anyone know where someone outside the UK can buy the Chadwick's thread recommended for Geoffrey Durham's Gypsy thread routine?

- Nicodemus
" Res Non Verba "

" Deeds Not Words "
Carron
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Fantastic Book, great effects as well as great thoughts on, and between all of the effects
mesmer
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I just order mine......I know this will be a Good Read

Can't wait

anyone want to share their Toughts on this Book?


.........
ladirector
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Very nice autobiography / book of tricks from someone we in the States were not familiar with.
aussiemagic
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This is a fantastic book!

This book and Ian Keable's book on Stand Up comedy magic are absolutely wonderful.

Here, we have two great books from people who are out there doing it! That in itself is wonderful!

The thought and development behind the effects in Mr. Durham's book is a great insight into the "work behind the scenes". Mr. Durham's story is a great read and very inspiring.

This is a book that I am sure I wil go back to several times.
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MaxfieldsMagic
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I'm greatly enjoying this book right now. Mr. Durham offers his "real work" on many true classics of magic, including some that many magicians today probably wouldn't normally consider - such as the rice bowls. I, for one, never would have considered the Egg on the Fan before reading this book. And if I had, I probably would have gone with a quick and easy dealer version that was considerably less effective and convincing than the painstaking method Mr. Durham describes so precisely. In a thousand years I never would have come up with all of the subtleties he describes concerning that one effect.

He also shares many, many terrific essays on topics such as keeping your effects within the proper physical zone to ensure that your audience remembers you; how to successfully perform on TV (which should also be useful to folks shooting promo videos and clips for YouTube); selecting and tweaking effects for maximum impact; connecting with an audience, etc.

Throughout the book, Mr. Durham's tone is candid and matter of fact in regards to his successes and failures. It's clear he has somehow managed to retain his humility, work ethic and sense of proportion in the face of great success.

This book is a real treasure. I will definitely reread it periodically. Some of the advice is surprising (for me at least), which makes it all the more valuable as a source of fresh ideas.
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motown
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I'm Interested to hear more about his Gypsy Thread. Is it Unique in any way?
"If you ever write anything about me after I'm gone, I will come back and haunt you."
– Karl Germain
MaxfieldsMagic
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Don't know enough Gypsy Thread routines to say how unique Mr. Durham's is. He says of his method and presentation, "There's nothing revolutionary here, but it's simple and clean and you're left able to concentrate on being an entertainer."

When he began putting the routine together, he consulted the literature, as well as Sam Mallinson and Ian Keable, both of whom he identifies as "expert performers of the Gypsy Thread." Their experiences and Mr. Durham's curiosity led him to "try and change the usual methods" for something that would suit him better.

The goals he set, and attained, for himself were:

* The thread had to be visible from a distance.
* The thread had to be thick enough to be seen, but thin enough to be broken quickly and easily.
* He wanted to avoid a "figure-eight" set up.
* He wanted the final ball of thread to stay dead center as it unwinds at the end.
* He didn't want to use a cotton reel.

If that sounds good to you, then know that Mr. Durham describes his exact set up and method in minute detail, including brand of string, extra tools needed, how to proceed step by step, etc. As with most of the effects in this book, though, he does not give up his patter. Well, he gives you one descriptive line, but that's it.
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motown
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Thanks MaxfieldsMagic for so much information.

I'm a collector of Gypsy Thread Routines, the way Aldo collects Oil & Water routines. I posted a pretty extensive list here on the Café. So, I'm always interested in new approaches.
"If you ever write anything about me after I'm gone, I will come back and haunt you."
– Karl Germain
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