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Profile of Anatole
This pipe dream idea has been percolating in my mind for several years. It's a hybrid manipulation/stage illusion. At some point in his act, the magician begins to perform the diminishing cards. As he does, almost imperceptibly--the magician begins to shrink also.

Years ago I had an idea for a magic book called "Pipe Dreams" that would contain the seeds for truly unusual magic effects that sound great and do-able but are really off the wall.

Although as I said, it's a pipe dream--there is precedence for a similar illusion from a (believe it or not) Barbra Streisand TV special many years ago (like the 60's or 70's). I think it's available on video. Barbra "shrank" from adult-sized back to child-size for one of her songs ("I'm 5! I'm 5! I'm a big girl now--I'm 5. I'm even more than 4 and a half! I'm FIVE!")

You can see the principle of the Ames room at

It's basically an optical illiusion. Imagine now that the magician is standing on stage left and doing the diminishing cards. But--as the cards shrink in size, so does the magician!

I might have posted this idea years ago to the Electronic Grymoire. Still trying to access the EG archives without success. Did Bruce ever collect the EG and burn the archive to CD?

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
----- Sonny Narvaez
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Profile of trashmanf
I love the idea of changing in size as I stand 6 foot 9 inches tall... I have thought about using Marvey/Mayne's "shrinker" type illusion as a way to start a stage type show... but for now it is just a pipe dream of mine too! :-D

My dream effect would be to start as a midget, come out and drink some "magic potion" or something and grow to full height, as well as have some air-inflated type hook up all around your body so that your mass appears to grow several times (think inflatable sumo suit)

That would be really funny but, not very practical in reality!
Pete Biro
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1933 - 2018
18558 Posts

Profile of Pete Biro
Easy... you gotta look up videos of George Carl and other vaudevillians. It's simply wearing the right kind of coat and walking around the stage in a circle and as you go you either grow or shrink.
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