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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Two person production (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

sly2272
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Need some ideas for a two person production, CEO and past president, at the same time,any thoughts,thanks.
Michael Baker
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Under what conditions?
~michael baker
The Magic Company
illusions & reality
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Modern cabinet as used for Things That Go Bump.
Lou
sly2272
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Three sided audience
Oliver Ross
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Tip Over Trunk.

Oliver.
Marshall Thornside
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My dad built a double dollhouse years ago.
It's mainly for two kids and a big fluffy dog.

But I know it fit Jay Marshall and a big fluffy dog.
And he and my father did it at columbus magi-fest and
Jay was dressed in drag (women head to toe) and they
won whatever trophy they won that year.

In saying so, you can build a slightly bigger dollhouse
that can produce two adults. Or a corporate building that
producing two adults.

Otherwise another idea is the top hat production that
thurston and dante did. Where several people came out of
the hat.

I don't know what its called but I know from seeing it.
you will remember my name

World's Youngest Illusionista
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Michael Baker
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I'll go with Lou on this one. The modern cabinet is self-contained. There are no bad angles, except when loading, so as long as you have curtains, backstage cover, or screening of sorts, that can be done. It can also be turned around, if built with casters, to let everyone get a view of parts of the action.

If rehearsal time is minimal, this is close to a no-brainer for most people to be a part of.

Most importantly, these corporate subjects can do this while standing the entire time. It's not always practical for some people to squat, kneel, etc. and then have to stand up gracefully. That can be the difference in a dignified entrance, as opposed to looking like a clown coming on.

You could also use a BA flash appearance, with a surrounding cabinet (curtains, etc.) for the "holding space". As well, it could be built upon a platform with casters, so as to make it turn around, but stationary is still good, and cheaper. The downside is you'd probably eliminate any audience members at extreeme angles from seeing much of what happens. That all depends on how much the audience wraps the stage.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Chris Stolz
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The modern cabinet is a great idea. Something like these that Rich Hill has would work very well too:

http://richhillsillusionshop.com/doubleflashappearance.htm
http://richhillsillusionshop.com/door.htm
illusions & reality
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A flash appearance can work well, but if the flash doesn't go off (it happens), the people you are producing don't appear very magically! Smile

When producing non-magicians, as Michael said, you want something that is very easy to do. A non-performer (CEO, etc.) won't understand the theatricality of a production.

Again, just my thoughts.

Lou
Michael Baker
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Quote:
On 2010-05-05 16:58, illusions & reality wrote:
A flash appearance can work well, but if the flash doesn't go off (it happens), the people you are producing don't appear very magically! Smile



Oh boy, have I ever been down that road... and I have the video to prove it! Smile This is a risk for any show, not just this application. But, there are certainly ways to prevent this... to a point.

1) Use double ignition devices - a standard electrical hook-up may be good when you test it, but you may never be aware that the test fire also blew a fuse or tripped a breaker in the main board (either in your system, or the venue circuitry). Because this type of firing mechanism is virtually instant, the person with their finger on the firing button should know immediately if there is a problem. A secondary battery fired squib will become the plan B decision. Of course it could fail too, but the odds are greatly in your favor.

1a) I have rigged flash appearances with the gimmick secured by a length of heavy thread that ran through the flashpot at ground zero. What this does is automatically coordinates the flash with the gimmick release. When the flash goes off, it burns through the thread and "Zing!"

The gimmick cannot be tripped too soon without the flash to cover. I have built these with the firing button inside with the CEO, so even that person was in perfect sync with the rest of the illusion. Nothing happened until they themselves pushed the button. Of course I can't guarantee this to be 100% failsafe, and flashpot failure would lead to a complete illusion failure with such a rigging, but I've never had that happen in many, many uses.

2) Do not use a typical flashpot (fire & smoke), but use confetti. These can be activated by CO2, or in its stone-age finest, a hard puff of air blown through a length of aquarium tubing by an off stage helper. Yes, it works well.

3) Similar to above, there are other forms of tangible and intangible covers, ranging from fog machines (did this to make Santa appear, the fog being the cold north pole wind rushing down the chimney), or a quick flash of lights surrounding the opening marquis-style, to a quick wave of a flag in front of the opening.

I have made no less than 10 different flash appearances over the years, and some were on extremely shoestring budgets. The most cost effective one (and considered to be a temporary illusion) was just a front framework with the necessary gimmick, made to stand freely with attachable legs (like a head chopper has). There was also a cabinet that stood behind, made of black curtains draped over a PVC frame.

The simplest design I've used for the gimmick was based on an idea of Paul Osborne that I read in one of his magazine contributions. It uses no roller, and works like a charm! Smile Well worth looking up.

Of course to be fair to the idea of a Modern Cabinet, it has many advantages. The main one being they are generally easier to move around, and a door or front curtain eliminates the need for any flash device. For reference, Paul Osborne has a version of this, also in one of the magazines, and is known as "The March of the Toy Soldiers". It is a beautifully designed, but easily and inexpensively built cabinet that is capable of producing up to six people. I confess, I have yet to make one, but I have no doubts as to its practicality and worth.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
illusions & reality
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Hi Michael,

I agree that there are ways around making a flash appearance more fool-proof. Thanks for the suggestions that I'm sure were helpful to many.

My only point was that when producing CEOs or other non-performers, it is best to remove as many variables as possible.

Lou
Michael Baker
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Hi Lou,

Absolutely! No arguement there! It is the best approach. I do tend to believe what I once heard... "Make something idiot proof, and the world will build a better idiot."

Best regards,

~michael (an actor sometimes playing the role of a better idiot) Smile
~michael baker
The Magic Company
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