How to make a huge truck disappear when it's surrounded by the audience on all sides? Easy! All you need to do is drape a special construction over the truck, create a fake audience with your friends, and ask somebody to drive the truck out of the construction. When you take the drapes off, the truck is not there anymore. Now you understand why this trick may be seen only on TV.
Unlike card tricks done on the streets or on stage and card cheating, cardistry is solely about impressing without illusions, deceit, misdirection and other elements commonly used in card tricks and card cheating. Cardistry is the art of card flourishing, and is intended to be visually impressive and to give the appearance of being difficult to perform. Card flourishing is often associated with card tricks, but many sleight of hand artists perform flourishing without considering themselves magicians or having any real interest in card tricks.
In 1983, David Copperfield made the Statue of Liberty disappear completely. The trick can be explained very simply. The Statue was draped with a huge piece of fabric or covered by a big screen put in front of the audience. The whole illumination of the monument was turned off except for the spotlights. This simple preparation created the illusion of hollow space, and the set of lights blinded the audience. After the monument was unveiled, people were not able to see it because their vision was temporarily blurred by the spotlights.
The magic here is when the magician, who is tightly grasping the coin, mysteriously makes it go through the table, just by banging it hard on the table surface. He then grabs the coin on the other side with his other hand before it falls down on the floor. Sounds easy enough, right? Well, it’s easy, after countless hours of practice and mastery. Here’s how to master this trick. You will have to really practice your hand speed because the whole trick rests on how fast your hands move the coin from the table. It’s a split-second affair. There are no holes punched on the table, and you don’t need long sleeves where you can hide the coin. It’s just a matter of how fast one hand gets the coin to the other. Like with most tricks, you will have to find a distraction for your audience. A good distraction that will shift their attention, enabling you to slide the coin from the table. Another important aspect of this trick is the performance. You will have to act like you are holding the coin, and banging it on the table. Here’s how it works. Ask an audience member to verify if the coin is real. Once the audience member gives the coin back, pretend like you want to get a good hold of the coin so as to begin the magic.
Sleight of hand during stage magic performances is not common, as most magic events and stunts are performed with objects visible to a much larger audience, but is nevertheless done occasionally by many stage performers. The most common magic tricks performed with sleight of hand on stage are rope manipulations and card tricks, with the first typically being done with a member of the audience to rule out the possibility of stooges and the latter primarily being done on a table while a camera is live-recording, allowing the rest of audience to see the performance on a big screen. Worldwide acclaimed stage magician David Copperfield often includes illusions featuring sleight of hand in his stage shows.
Now I wiggle the card to my shoe (No. 3: If you’re laughing …). When I lift whichever foot has your card, or invite you to take my wallet from my back pocket, I turn away (No. 4: Outside the frame) and swap the deck for a normal one from which I’ve removed all three possible selections (No. 5: Combine two tricks). Then I set the deck down to tempt you to examine it later and notice your card is missing (No. 6: The lie you tell yourself).
Spin a straw around the top of a bottle using only your mind. While no one is watching, take a paper-wrapped straw and rub your hand up and down its length a few times to generate static electricity. Be careful not to tear the thin paper wrapper. When you're ready to do the trick, lay the straw across the top of a bottle or another container with a narrow opening, with its center point directly over the mouth. Raise your hands over the ends of the straw and wave them forward and backward in a mystical manner. The static charge will cause it to rotate without you ever actually touching it.
I’m all for helping science. But after I share what I know, my neuroscientist friends thank me by showing me eye-tracking and MRI equipment and promising that someday such machinery will help make me a better magician. I have my doubts. Neuroscientists are novices at deception. Magicians have done controlled testing in human perception for thousands of years.
The Effect: I cut a deck of cards a couple of times, and you glimpse flashes of several different cards. I turn the cards facedown and invite you to choose one, memorize it, and return it. Now I ask you to name your card. You say (for example), “The queen of hearts.” I take the deck in my mouth, bite down, and groan and wiggle to suggest that your card is going down my throat, through my intestines, into my bloodstream, and finally into my right foot. I lift that foot and invite you to pull off my shoe and look inside. You find the queen of hearts. You’re amazed. If you happen to pick up the deck later, you’ll find it’s missing the queen of hearts.
Magicians use sleight of hand in a wide variety of tricks, but one of the most popular genres of sleight of hand is in card magic. The following are basic sleight-of-hand techniques that card magicians perform with playing cards, both freestanding and at the card table. Such card manipulation takes years of practice to perfect, but these card flourishes will open up a world of possibilities.
A magician needs specially cut screens to move a hand through mirror or glass. The back screen covers 2 mirror panels. When the performance begins, the whole construction shifts the real mirror to the back side, moving 2 fake mirror panels forward. Now there is a space to move a hand. At the end of the performance, the assistants shift the real mirror to the front side again.
This trick will make it appear that you have punched a hole in a bill with a pen, but the bill magically restores itself or was never punched in the first place. This trick can really have your audience on the edge of their seats. Ask to borrow a bill from someone's wallet (your least favorite uncle, perhaps?) and make them think you've ruined it and then fix it for them all at once. They're sure to be surprised, relieved, and impressed all at once.