When you think of close-up magic, it’s usually a person doing card and coin tricks. Did you know that people have been doing this for hundreds of years?
Yesterday, Citizens of the United States of America celebrated the most important holiday in their calendar: The anniversary of the release of Roland Emmerich’s sci-fi epic, Independence Day.
There is also, I understand, some kind of smaller, less significant celebration of some minor event in the nation’s history? Something to do with tea. And lobsters play a role somehow? I’m not sure, it was never covered in history class here in England.
Still, a number of magicians took to social media to celebrate the 4th of July with charming, ‘MERICA-themed magic tricks. Enjoy:
— Blake Vogt (@BlakeVogt) July 5, 2018
The very talented Blake Vogt puts blue and red Bicycles to good use.
— Magic Evan (@nyckidsmagician) July 4, 2018
The flag theme continues with Magic Evan’s cute floating colors trick.
Happy 4th of July! ? ?? pic.twitter.com/xvCsgFJlot
— Kyle & Mistie Knight (@KyleandMistie) July 4, 2018
Kyle and Mistie Knight put a lot more effort into their Bicycle flag, but forgot to do a trick. Still, nice effort.
— Jen Kramer (@JenKramerMagic) July 4, 2018
Jen Kramer donned a patriotic hat for a patriotic card pop.
Do not be deceived. Murray Sawchuck is a canadian. They walk among us undetected.
— LADbible (@ladbible) July 5, 2018
This riff on a popular not-quite-magic trick that’s doing the rounds on social media goes wrong in such a perfect way it’s almost political satire.
— top kek (@natdatcat) July 5, 2018
And while this isn’t technically magic, I think a kid freaking out while dual-wielding fireworks is about as close to the spirit of the holiday as you’ll ever get.
Everyone here at Genii Online hopes you had a wonderful Independence Day day.
“Pop Haydn is not originally from this century, himself,” reads Pop Haydn’s website. “He is a Victorian gentleman who was suddenly transported into the 21st Century by accident–not entirely his fault–along with a bunch of other maroons stranded here from that time.”
Watching him perform in the video above, I’m almost inclined to believe that claim. Looking like he just wandered in from a saloon, possibly after taking part in a gunfight, Haydn entertained an audience at the Magic Castle with an absolutely immaculate take on All Backs, a routine popularised by Dai Vernon. Presented with easy patter throughout, the trick is an obvious hit with the crowd and especially the two volunteers Haydn has at the table. But of course it is – the trick is apparently irresistible to women, according to a slightly dubious passage in Expert Card Technique (1950):
“Magicians know only too well that women, generally speaking, are allergic to card tricks. This trick is an exception to the rule. Mr. Vernon has used it before all kinds of audiences, even those comprised exclusively of women and with complete success. The women are intrigued by it. It is one trick that they remember and talk about and invariably when another occasion arises it is the one trick they request to see again.”
At least the trick has aged incredibly well.
Jay Sankey is doing work with these trick tutorial videos. In this latest effort, he shows us how to make a marked elastic band disappear and reappear inside of a tuck box, and how to pull an elastic band through a pencil. The tuck box trick is quick and relatively low-key, but with the right set up it could land really well. The pencil trick is a lightning fast sleight that really pops close up, do it with a borrowed pencil for maximum impact.
Be sure to check out the rest of Sankey’s Magic tutorials.
The Rubik’s Cube is a lot like magic, now I stop to think about it. It’s kind of become a visual shorthand for intelligence. How many times have you seen some Hollywood genius showing off by effortlessly solving one? In reality, solving the cube is quite simple once you’ve learned the routines for moving a given square. It’s a trick. And people are slowly catching on. Solving a Rubik’s cube just isn’t that impressive anymore.
Solving a cube, having an audience member mark it, and then making it appear inside a tiny jar it couldn’t possibly fit into will still turn a few heads though. Such is the effect of Kieron Johnson’s Isolated, now available on Ellusionist.
The trick is easy to do, requires no duplicate signatures, and resets in less than half a minute. The tools you need to perform the trick as well as a two hour instructional DVD that covers Isolation and other Cube tricks cost $175. The tools are handmade and stock is limited to just 500 units.