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Potty the Pirate
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Funny, I find that most kids DO know what a "bandanna" is. In fact, when a yellow bandanna falls from the package at the end of my routine, there's almost always one or two kids who shout out: "That's the bandanna! That's what you were supposed to use!" To which, I reply: "it's not a banana, it's a yellow cloth....everyone can see it's not a banana!"
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I am thinking that especially tied into what kids know about Pirates that a Bandana is known.

My main concern, which has been wonderfully addressed here, is using both BECAUSE they both used a recording.

But you wonderful people have given me a way to do both (if I so choose). I have used one or the other in shows with great success, but didn't know which over the other to use because of the similar presentations (in essence).

Thanks so much!

Fraser Gould
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Tokyo, Japan
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I often use the Birthday Cake AxTrack at my 4-6 y.o. birthday parties, but I have edited a lot of it out. The track runs at 5 minutes now and that seems perfect for the age group. That said, anything over a 6 y.o. audience and the routine doesn't seem as strong. I was thinking of cutting it out of my 7+ y.o. show, but I think Curtgunz's short little vent routine might work out. Giving it a try this weekend. Thanks!
Fraser Gould
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Detroit Area Magicians & Mentalists (DAMM)
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Profile of Dapperdan
On Nov 6, 2012, curtgunz wrote:
You can get a lot of play from the Axtell drawing board without the audio track and without vent.

Do a lot (A LOT) of look don't see when the board's eyes are moving. This builds the anticipation and is where the magic happens. I find the talking at the end is just a kicker. It gets screams of surprise and delight but the longer it goes the less impressed people seem to be.

I start talking to the kids and get at least one kid to talk to me. I focus like a laser on the kid speaking and so does 90% of the audience. While they are speaking I move the eyes 1/8 of an inch. Just enough so someone gives it a second glance. They immediately start telling those sitting by them to watch the eyes.

I keep the eyes still while I ask another question and get a child to answer and then focus on the child. I let them talk 15-30 seconds before I do anything so that most of the attention is on them. Then, I again move the eyes about 1/8 of an inch (as slight a movement as I can).

At this point someone usually yells about the eyes moving.

I say, well yes, I'm moving the board around while I talk. The eyes and the whole board is moving. But if it is distracting you I will be very still. Then I ask another question. While the audience member is answering about 90% of the group is focused on the eyes. I move it as tiny as I can. Then EVERYONE is screaming that the eyes are moving.

Then it becomes "look don't see" it moves a lot when I am talking to the audience and then is still when I'm looking at it.

Like all tricks along these lines the kids get so animated.

I play that game nice and slow until I think anticipation is at a high.

Then I look at the board when the eyes are moving.

I ask the kids, "Why didn't you tell me the eyes were moving?"

They go crazy.

Then, and this is important, I speak directly to the picture on the board but I say this very quietly, "Hey, your eyes can move."

Of course most kids don't even hear it because they are going crazy. I say it again softly, "Hey, your eyes can move."

Keep saying it softly until the room gets quiet to hear you.


Say this as many times as necessary to get the room quiet and to build a strong sense of anticipation.

Then do the following short vent routine. You can say the following without moving your lips (even if you are not a vent). Do it in a high nasally voice and they will think you are a pro.


After you see the eyes move, you talk directly to the board.

You: Hey, your eyes can move!

Board: Uh course they can. (There are no "labials" which are just sounds that have to be formed with the lips. Be sure to say "Uh course" instead of "Of course" will sound the same and you can do it with still lips).

The audience will scream in shock, delight, and surprise. Wait until they get quiet again.

You: Well, we've go a lot of magic to do. Do you mind if I erase you?

Board: No, I don't care.

You: Boys and girls, say goodbye to our friend here.

(Audience response)

Board: See you later.


That's it! The real interaction comes with you moving the eyes. The mouth is just the big finish. I feel that a long routine after that is just anticlimactic and waters down the effect.

I know this is a very old thread... I only wish I had found it sooner! This routine is brilliant!
I have been using Art-o-Matic in my show with mixed success. I think I will test out a recordingless routine.

Thanks, curtgunz!... if you're still around!

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