The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Is a hoop necessary for levitations? (2 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page [Previous]  1~2
jay leslie
View Profile
V.I.P.
Southern California
9495 Posts

Profile of jay leslie
To capitalise on what George wrote:
There are a lot of back-stories or traditions the old illusions were based on, which are lost on todays performers. For them, the act of making someone float, vanish and reappear is exactly what it is and no more.

They have no reason to perform the effect other then they have seen it, bought it and do it.

In the case of the Asrah: Their entire motivation would be changed if they pretended they were re-enacting a human sacrifice, like ancient cultures, and the spirit of the deceased floats up to the heavens. The assistants reappearance is a relief to the audience, because the unsettling question of where do we go when we die, reveals itself in the form of a rebirth of the soul, when the assistant runs back on the stage.

I think what we're all trying to say is, there is (there should be) more theatre to what we do then read the instructions on Thursday and throw it in the show Saturday.
Kent Wong
View Profile
Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
With all of this being said, here is my presentation for the 3001 Blaney Suspension. I talk to the audience about some of the interesting customs and traditions within the Chinese culture. One of those traditions is our annual celebration of life. Once a year, everyone heads out to the cemetery to celebrate the lives and memories of those family members and loved ones who have passed on before us. It’s also at this time of year, that I think about my sister Helen. Helen passed on when she was just a baby and so, I didn’t get to know her at all. But during this celebration of life, I always imagine what she might have been like. I call this piece, “Imagining Helen”.

With this verbal lead-in, the music starts (Josh Grobin’s You lift Me Up). I take a candle from the altar that sits center stage. I bring the candle downstage center and ceremoniously bow to the audience. Then, I pluck a flame from the air and magically light the candle, placing it on a downstage-right table. From the table, I take a red cloth and proceed back to the altar. I use the cloth to cover a framed baby picture that sits on the altar. The covered picture is placed on the downstage-right table and when the cloth is removed, the picture of the baby has changed to the picture of a woman (my assistant).

It’s at this stage that I see the woman drift onto the stage. I don’t believe my eyes but, at the same time, I can’t take my eyes off her. From the red cloth, I magically produce a rose and give it to her. As she takes it, her smile lights up the room. Only then do I direct her towards the altar. I lay out a silk sheet for her to lie down upon and we perform the suspension. A hoop pass is performed during this routine, but the hoop has encircled a bouquet of flowers in an almost wreath-like fashion during the entire act.

After the suspension, I pick up the picture of the woman as my assistant hands the rose back to me. I’m confused. As I look back to towards the picture, I see that it has changed back to that of a baby. I look for the woman, but she has vanished, leaving me alone on the stage. With a feeling of wonder, I pick up the candle and bring it back to downstage-center. As the music ends, I blow out the candle and stage fades to black.

Note: During this entire routine, my assistant and me never make direct physical contact. This is like a dream or a bubble. If I touch the bubble, it will burst. Also, my assistant is dressed in white, while I’m dressed in a burgundy top (one representing death, and the other life). The entire sequence is meant to be “dream-like”, with me wondering if any of this really happened.

Note: This illusion literally sat in my studio for 18 months until I was inspired to create this piece. It conveys important elements of the Chinese culture and important elements of my personal background. It now has meaning for me as a performer; hopefully, it will be equally well received by my audiences.

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
<BR>______________________
<BR>
<BR>www.kentwongmagic.com
Lou Hilario
View Profile
Inner circle
2225 Posts

Profile of Lou Hilario
Thank you for all your great responses. Very interesting answers. The reason I asked is because I perform 2 levitations during my show. I do not wish to use the hoop on the other one anymore. It is too redundant. The hoop I have is the Great White Hoop but I modified it to look like an ordinary hula hoop for kids.
Magic, Illusions, Juggling, Puppet & Parrot Show ^0^
http://www.louhilario.net
Dougini
View Profile
Inner circle
The Beautiful State Of Maine
6924 Posts

Profile of Dougini
Kent, that moved me to tears!

I have been fascinated by the Chinese since I was a little kid. My earliest years were in San Francisco, and my favorite place in the city was Chinatown! In 1992, I met an elderly Maoist Chinese, that I fast became friends with. He owned a tiny Chinese restaurant called the Hong Kong Express.

I fished in the Caloosahatchee, and caught snapper, snook and crevalle jack. I gave him what I caught and just wanted one fish cooked. The snapper. OMG! Indescribable! He passed away in 2007/8. Really, I have never met anyone like Mr. Lam. This man was the PERSONIFICATION of honor! The man was a saint!

Every American should meet someone like that. Old School Chinese. Really learn the culture. Your magic will transcend. Here, Kent has a good reason for the levitation. It tells a story. A very emotional one. “Imagining Helen” is a perfect example of true theater. Reading that really touched me. Deep.

Doug
Kent Wong
View Profile
Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
Doug,

My grandparents and my cousins all live in Oakland. I spent many summers of my childhood in San Francisco and, believe it or not, I ate at Hong Kong Express on a regular basis. I think my uncle knew the owner of the restaurant as well, and he made some of the best tasting noodles I've ever had.

I'm glad you enjoyed the routine I developed for the suspension illusion. I know that sometimes my approach to magic goes against the grain. Even my stage manager gets frustrated with me at times, telling me to just "Do the darn trick!". Although I don't have anything against "tricks", I always try to inject as much meaning into my performances as possible. For me, that's what makes magic an art worth pursuing.

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
<BR>______________________
<BR>
<BR>www.kentwongmagic.com
Dougini
View Profile
Inner circle
The Beautiful State Of Maine
6924 Posts

Profile of Dougini
Kent, you are a TRUE artist. Oakland. Oh, man. I miss San Francisco SO much. I was at the Alameda Shopping Center when the BART System was first introduced. I sat in one of the first cars. I used to ride my bicycle in SF, holding on the the cable cars to go up the hills. Can't do that today!

And Walt...is RIGHT IN SF! I mean how lucky can ya get? Aww man. To visit Embarcadero, Fisherman's Wharf, eat at Aliotos's...look out at Alcatraz thru those coin-op binocular thingies...sheesh. How did I EVER wind up in MAINE? Smile

Doug
Kent Wong
View Profile
Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
Ohhhhh ... You're in LOBSTER country! To be honest, the best lobster bisque I've ever had was from a sourdough bread bowl at Fisherman's Wharf. In fact, there use to be a magic store on the Wharf right next to Ripley's Believe It or Not Wax Museum. That's where I purchased my very first magic trick. Ah the good old days!

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
<BR>______________________
<BR>
<BR>www.kentwongmagic.com
Dougini
View Profile
Inner circle
The Beautiful State Of Maine
6924 Posts

Profile of Dougini
I KNOW that magic store! Long gone now. I think I got my Nickles To Dimes there! That's probably one of my first tricks...wow. And yeah. Lobster is less than $5 a lb here in Augusta. 1 1/2 lb average. I make a killer Lobster Risotto. Hey, was that bisque in the sourdough bread bowl at Alioto's? My dad took me there for abalone. Best shellfish I have EVER had, including lobster!

Didn't mean to hijack this thread. I get to thinkin' about San Francisco, and I get all sentimental and stuff.

The question is "to hoop or not to hoop". Walt has a very good point:

“F**k You, I’m Merlin!” said the brave magician.
“And hoop need none to show no strings attached.
You see me conjure up amazing beauty.
Let it be art, a fairytale without a catch.”

I'm saving this whole page. There is some really VALUABLE insights here! Smile

Doug
Mike Maturen
View Profile
Inner circle
Michigan's Beautiful Sunrise Side
2726 Posts

Profile of Mike Maturen
Kent: I LOVE the presentation of your suspension. The theatrical form of magic and illusion (like what Copperfield does) is my favorite. I like to watch "tricks" performed...but I'd much rather be drawn into a story.
Mike Maturen
World of Wonder Entertainment
The Magic and Mayhem of Mike Maturen
989-335-1661
mikematuren@gmail.com

AUTHOR OF "A NEW DAWN--Weekly Wisdom From Everyday Life"

member: International Magician's Society
Kent Wong
View Profile
Inner circle
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
2458 Posts

Profile of Kent Wong
Thanks Mike!

Kent
"Believing is Seeing"
<BR>______________________
<BR>
<BR>www.kentwongmagic.com
jimgerrish
View Profile
Inner circle
East Orange, NJ
3209 Posts

Profile of jimgerrish
A substitute for the hoop that I used when I had an offset levitating bar was to have a female assistant form her arms into a hoop while holding a silk handkerchief that had been wrapped around her neck, one end in each hand. With this she passed from one end of the floatee to the other, then put the silk handkerchief back around her neck. It was the penetrating handkerchief performed with a r**l, but no one saw the handkerchief penetrate the bar because they were busy watching other things. It would be difficult to do with a center bar, but not impossible.
btedeski
View Profile
Veteran user
Pittsburgh PA
322 Posts

Profile of btedeski
I just purchased a pricess flying carpet at an auction, and it came with a hoop... LOL

I currently have 3 different suspensions to choose from depending on the show,
Flying Carpet
Chair suspension
Walk Away Super-X

I do not use a hoop. Why? because it does not fit the presentation.

I do not remember seeing a hoop anywere in Aladin..... Smile
Billy The Clown
www.BillyTheClown.com

Bill Tedeski
Pittsburgh PA

Were magic is just too funny....
SpellbinderEntertainment
View Profile
Inner circle
West Coast
3499 Posts

Profile of SpellbinderEntertainment
Aladdin did have a hoop… but the Genie took it from him *poof!*
Magically, Walt
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » Is a hoop necessary for levitations? (2 Likes)
 Go to page [Previous]  1~2
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2021 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.19 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