Monthly archives for June, 2015

Review of Contact Mind Reading – The Osterlind Approach

Hello all,

Before I get into this brief review, a bit of background. I’m a full time magician and have been 12 years, working primarily schools and corporate events. Recently I’ve gotten tired of hauling around big props so I’m adopting the pack small, play big attitude. Over the last few months I have purchased a ton of mentalism stuff in an effort to play big without hauling all the crap. In short, it’s taken me years to catch up to the most forward thinkers in our industry.

I’ve purchased a lot of Osterlind stuff in the past and always like his direct approach to mentalism. I’ve been wanting to learn Contact Mind Reading for years. I purchased a DVD from another pro years ago and struggled with it and failed miserably. When I heard about Osterlind’s new CMR book, I was very hopeful. The book is very well written and takes away a lot of the old classical ways of doing this art.

Richard spends some time outlining his history, several different routines, ways to practice, breaking it down into key components and much more. In short, it’s really a master piece on this performing art.

Unfortunately, I can’t seem to get it. It’s very frustrating to me as I’m an accomplished hypnotist, both stage and clinical, and I’m a full time performer too. ‘m beginning to feel as though this may be one of those things some people can get and others do not.

However, if you are curious and want to give this a try, Richard’s book will give you the best possible education, but know that this is not an easy skill to learn.

Recommended as a great teaching aid, but CMR is HARD, at least for me.

Review of Bill Abbott Pack Smart Show

Hello all,

Before I get into this brief review, a bit of background. I’m a full time magician and have been 12 years, working primarily schools and corporate events. Recently I’ve gotten tired of hauling around big props so I’m adopting the pack small, play big attitude. Over the last few months I have purchased a ton of mentalism stuff in an effort to play big without hauling all the crap. In short, it’s taken me years to catch up to the most forward thinkers in our industry.

I’ve purchased a ton of Bill Abbott stuff over the years and I’ve never been disappointed. with this new release, Bill hands you a complete show that can play for huge audiences or small ones. I almost didn’t buy this as I felt I had enough material, and especially I already owned the Five Card Repeat and Smart Ass decks.

rather than buy the entire kit, I just bought the DVD and book. There is so much good stuff here, but the biggest lesson is how Bill explains that a tic tac effect can play to the back of a huge theater and why. Simply great.

Additionally, his work on the center tear cleans up several issues I’ve had with this classic of mentalism for decades. I laughed out loud as Bill pointed out the issues I had – “Someone is actually SAYING it!” I thought. I’ve known how to do the tear for years but it was simply a mindset thing, and after watching Bill’s DVD, I did it the following day for a magician friend, one with very little experience in mentalism and promptly blew him away.

I’m not going to go into detailed descriptions of the effects – Bill does that on his trailer. I will say that any and all sleight of hand is minimal. Bill is more interested in entertaining and connecting with audiences and it shows.

When you’ve been a full time professional as I have for as long as I have (12 years) it can sometimes be a trap to fall into the “Oh, I know all I need to know” line of thinking. After watching this DVD, I’m not afraid to admit I can still learn a ton!

I’ve picked up a lot of great stuff in 2015, and this has to be at the top of the list. HIGHLY recommended!!

Docc Hilford Boudoir Bill Review

Hello all,

Before I get into this brief review, a bit of background. I’m a full time magician and have been 12 years, working primarily schools and corporate events. Recently I’ve gotten tired of hauling around big props so I’m adopting the pack small, play big attitude. Over the last few months I have purchased a ton of Docc Hilford stuff and the vast majority of it blows me away. The stuff that doesn’t blow me away is perhaps a little too ballsy for me at this time but it’s real-world practical stuff. Onto Boudoir Bill…

It’s available at www.ientertainer.net as an instant download for about $40. It’s an mp4 video that explains exactly how to do the routine. Some extra pdfs are included too. Docc is an excellent teacher and I was able to do the “move” if you can call it that very quickly.

I’ve been searching for a good bill divination for years and while I found many that would work, they just did not feel right. Many involved needlessly putting the borrowed bill into an envelope or two much direct handling by the mentalist.

With Docc’s technique, it appears as though you touch the ball for less than 1/2 second. Actually that is exactly what happens – you don’t have access to the serial number of the bill at all in that 1/2 second and even if you did, most could not memorize the bill that quickly. The “move” is easy as heck and looks completely natural. It’s a stage piece and serves as a brilliant opener that quickly engages the audience.

Here’s the BEST part – you need NO special props – no special envelopes, no thumbtips, and the meager amount of “preparation” for this piece can be done in just a few seconds.

The only caveat is that this is NOT a close-up piece, it is for a standup show, whether in a living room or large stage.

Those of you who may remember my Hocus Pocus review column will remember that I call ‘em like I see ‘em and this is absolutely brilliant. Docc adds a lot of great psychology, blocking, etc to this piece. Why this has not garnered more attention is beyond me. Some people consider Docc’s ad copy a little misleading, but trust me, this release REALLY delivers. Since I don’t know EVERY stage bill divination out there I could not say if this is the best, but it’s easily the best I’ve encountered out of the 20 or so other methods I’ve researched over the last 20 years.

HIGHLY recommended. Clean, easy, direct–lethal!

Docc Hilford Mirror, Mirror Review

Hello all,

Before I get into this brief review, a bit of background. I’m a full time magician and have been 12 years, working primarily schools and corporate events. Recently I’ve gotten tired of hauling around big props so I’m adopting the pack small, play big attitude. Over the last few months I have purchased a ton of Docc Hilford stuff and the vast majority of it blows me away. The stuff that doesn’t blow me away is perhaps a little too ballsy for me at this time but it’s real-world practical stuff. Onto Mirror, Mirror…

This is available at www.ientertainer.net so there is no waiting.Smile The release is an mp4 video outlining the physical handling (It’s not even “moves” as it’s so easy and so natural) and an audio download outlining the history of the effect, and all of the nuances.

Essentially, the effect is this; The mentalist says he can control a person’s thoughts and another person’s actions. The first person is mentally sent a card and the second person deals cards out of a shuffled deck (by the audience) and stops when he wants. Both cards (the thought of and the freely selected) match. On top of that, a prediction which has been in view the whole time is opened and it reveals the target card is what the two people selected.

This is BRILLIANT! Best part? You can do it with NO preparation. You can write the prediction in front of people and the freely selected card using a move which is the easiest, most natural looking and deceptive card moves I’ve ever seen. I don’t like a lot of card magic because the moves look like moves only a magician would do – unnatualistic. This move Docc has used is worth far more than the price he’s asking.

The mentally selected card uses a technique that Docc has taught for years and years. Most people were too afraid of it failing to try it, but the structure of this routine gives you several “outs” to bring the piece to a successful close.
The thing I really like about this is that the routine is impromptu but is strong enough for a formal standup show, plus the card move is sooooooooooooo diabolical! I also like the inception concept of the pice, of planting a thought into someone’s mind.
Highly recommended and way too cheap in terms of price!!

Docc Hilford Wizard Manual Review

Hello all,

Before I get into this brief review, a bit of background. I’m a full time magician and have been 12 years, working primarily schools and corporate events. Recently I’ve gotten tired of hauling around big props so I’m adopting the pack small, play big attitude. Over the last few months I have purchased a ton of Docc Hilford stuff and the vast majority of it blows me away. The stuff that doesn’t blow me away is perhaps a little too ballsy for me at this time but it’s real-world practical stuff. Onto The Wizard’s Manual…

the basic effect is that a spectator selects a page in a book and memorizes the first word or even details of the entire page, as well as the page number. they then close and hold onto the book.

The performer reads their mind, and reveals (in one possible presentation) that they never actually saw what they thought they saw…and the page is shown ripped out of the book and in an envelope that another spectator was holding onto! The spectator can flip through the book again and the only thing left of the page they swore they saw was a ripped jagged edge. the torn page’s edges from the envelope match perfectly.

I know I’m kind of a latecomer to this particular book test, but I still think it’s a timely review as Docc has recently made some changes to the old book test, making the work even easier and more natural in my opinion.

I love book tests, and currently have a 1/2 dozen or so now, having sold a few others that I just didn’t use. In terms of pure drama, nothing can beat this. Most books, whether funny or dramatic, involve the revealing of the information and that’s it. this one, however, has a great kick to the gut ending that no one will suspect, unless they saw somebody on TV do it.

To show the power of this, I’ll relate a recent performance: I was performing for 100 teens at a post grad late night ock in and when it came time to have the envelope opened, the teenage boy who was holding the envelope was so freaked out, it took a certain amount of persuasion on my part to get him to do it! And the entire audience of teens SCREAMED. It was soooooooooooo cool!

The beefed up version of this classic now comes with a DVD in which Docc makes learning the simple work even easier, and he covers several presentational ideas as well as an alternate to the headline prediction to garner publicity. Great stuff.

HIGHLY recommended. Probably the best mentalism prop I’ve ever bought.