"I picked this up the other day, and was going to skim through it. 2 hours later..!
My (condensed) opinion as follows:
Material: Read Tim's post(!), and you will see there is a selection of material from strolling to stand up.
Difficulty: There is nothing here on par with a centre deal or 4 coin edge grip. The work will be in the practice. Take the razor blade or bill to anywhere routine, not technically demanding, but both would require reasonable rehearsal time to ensure that they are the 'effortless' performance pieces that they deserve to be (and to hopefully adapt to your own style etc.).
FASDIU?: Most of the items require set up / prep / a prop, but once that is done, are good to go for several or many performances. There is nothing here that asks you to go out and spend lots of money (phew!).
Real world rating: Should I, as a part timer, pass comment on the work of a very experienced full time pro? Yes! Hey, it's only my opinion! Luckily, (to me)everything here is aimed at being practical & effective in the performance environment the effect has been designed for.
Extras: The articles are funny, entertaining, and informative. Having just done a very tough strolling gig (much drinking, magician not expected), I was interested in Tim's thought on approach, and got me thinking about developing a couple of my own ideas.
Value: Sorry, but I have to say 'excellent'. A rounded product that goes further than 'just' routines.
Constructive cons: Well, at a push (what sort of review doesn't include constructive critique?!), I would have liked to have seen photos rather than drawings, for example in the instruction for the razor routine. The drawings I refer to are sufficient, and there are photos in the e-book. I would have also like to have seen a slightly larger font used, even at the expense of making the document a few pages larger.
Pros: Apart from what I have described already, I also really liked that there are links to videos to see some of Tim's perfomances. The e-book is easy to follow, engaging, and in a logical format.
Final thoughts: Deckstress is a hugely adaptable idea, the Shakespeare monte has helped inspire me with my own 'work in progress' in the hands monte, and.... To sum up, apart from being a good read, this e-book has / will help develop & inspire some of my own routines and thinking. Recommended, and very good value(when's 'Living next door to Ellis coming?).
At over 70 pages this ebook is filled with photos and illustrations is based on the hugely popular lecture and hit DVD of the same name.
Featuring detailed teaching of a dozen great tricks:
• Ultimate Blades
- Swallow six sharp blades, each one cuts paper and immediately goes into your mouth, no switching, and then bring them all out again threaded on a piece of string. Tim's method for this classic trick is diabolical AND practical!
"Tim's Ultimate Blades is an excellent method." - Magic Magazine
"...your work on the blades... great stuff, and by far the best routine I've ever seen." - Jeff McBride
• Credit Card Fax
- The photo on your credit card vanishes and reappears on the spectator's credit card! But now you, in the photo, are holding their selected card! Astonishing and original close up that leaves the spectator with a great souvenir.
• Candle Tips
- How to make a candle appear lit.
- How to take a flame from a candle in your bare hand then return it.
- Your new favourite card trick! Possibly the most commercial card trick ever created. The spectator names any card from a face up spread (4H for example). On the back of the card is written "I knew you would choose the four of hearts".
- Name Deckstress. On the back of the card is written "I knew you would choose the four of hearts David".
- Corporate Deckstress. On the back of the card is written "Xerox knew you would choose the four of hearts".
- A great piece of bizarre magic perfect for Halloween, haunted houses or seance effects. It uses spirit slates and two decks of cards to create one of the eeriest climaxes to an effect you've ever seen.
• 7 Keys to Paradise
- Finally a practical method for the class '7 Keys to Baldpate' plot. Absolutely foolproof with no gimmicked locks or electronics required. Plus you'll also get some great presentational ideas AND the truth behind the name 'Baldpate'.
• Jazz Cards
- A totally 'hands off' card trick where the magician never touches the card, yet a card chosen by the spectator, in a deck shuffled and cut by the spectator, is FOUND by the spectator! You'll hate the method (it's too easy!) but you'll love doing this trick!
• Cellular Thinking
- Mr Wizard gets an update. A two person telephone code that uses no codes! You can perform this IMMEDIATELY with electronics you already own. Imagine walking into a room, handing someone a business card with a phone number on it, asking them to choose or name ANY card then phone the number. The person on the other end of the line tells them what their card is - and more!
• Cash to Credit Card
- Borrow a bill or three, fold them up and they instantly become a credit card! Can even be done in reverse. Great visual magic!
• Bill to Anything
- Tim's solution to another classic plot. A bill is borrowed, signed, the serial number noted, THEN cut in quarters in full view of the spectators with no switching of pieces. They can see their signature and the correct serial number on the cut bill. Finally, three quarters are burned then found restored inside ANYTHING! Yes, the remaining quarter kept by the spectator fits!
• Shakespeare's Monte
- A Shakespearean patter for the Jumbo Three Card Monte. A beautiful piece for medieval fairs and evenings of classic magic.
---PLUS Bonus articles:---
• What if magicians were like...? (Humour)
• D'News (Humour)
• Magical Glossary (Humour)
• Thumbtip Tips
- Three great ways to end clean.
---BONUS features on:---
• Strolling Magic Openings
- Great ideas that you can use to break into any group with your close up magic. Practical, commercial, and proven methods you'll use straight away.
• Floorshow Tips
- Commercial advice on everything you could possibly want to know about performing a floorshow in virtually any venue. From Lighting, Sound, Video use, Dance Floors, Stages, Dressing Rooms etc. Drawn from over 35 years of experience.
• Magic Magazine Editorial by Tim Ellis - Magic vs the WWE
• Original Patter for the Tim Card Poker Deal by Rolando Santos
One of the book's I'm enjoying over Christmas is Ivan Amoedi's new collection: 'Magic's Most Amazing Stories - A collection of incredible stories from World Famous Magicians'.
Now it's not just because one of my stories is in the book that I'm enjoying it, it's truly a fascinating, entertaining and often hilarious read.
You can get your own copy (and even preview a few of the stories) at the official website here and, just to wrap 2009 up with a smile, here are a few of my stories that didn't find their way into the book:
When I was just starting off as a young magician, we
cut our teeth doing group shows in shopping centres. I remember one performance
where an audience member came up to us afterwards and said “That was quite a
show!” We were really proud of ourselves until he pointed up above the stage to
a mirror in the ceiling that was showing everyone getting changed in the
Andrew Gill, is a great friend but has been the source of
many funny moments. I remember setting up a flashpot on stage before the
audience came in and instructing Andrew what I wanted him to do to set it off. “Just touch this wire to the battery.”“Like this?” POOF! “…. Never mind…”
BEST. TRICK. EVER.
me to entertain kids in the toy section of a department store once. As the
climax to my egg bag routine I say I’ll make the egg vanish in mid-air and I
toss it high so it hits the ceiling where it explodes (it’s a confetti filled
eggshell) and it makes a great finish. Andrew watched my first performance of
the day and, when I announced the egg would vanish in mid air and tossed it out
a miracle occurred. The egg hit a ceiling tile, which opened up, the egg went
inside the ceiling, and the tile closed again all before the kids eyes could
follow the path of the flying egg. The kids were amazed and clapped
enthusiastically. Andrew was at the back of the room, on the floor, doubled-up
WHAT A STINK
Performing with Christof!! and Peter Gray at the Darwin Casino many, many years ago, I got really badly sunburned during the day and one of the guys in the crew told me the best thing to stop
the pain was yoghurt. So I went out and bought several tubs of strawberry
yoghurt and covered myself with it. The guys thought this was hilarious
(apparently flavored yoghurt doesn’t have the same effect), but the laughter
soon subsided as the stench of sour milk lingered for days no matter how many
showers I took.
The new book MAGIC’S MOST AMAZING STORIES is finished and are now available. There will be a LIMITED amount printed! Order today to reserve your copy of the most awaited and unique book on Magic and Magicians ever. This book has no effects, no tricks to learn and no moves to master. It's just amazing story after amazing story of pure entertainment. Over 75 contributors, over 100 stories, beautifully illustrated, completely in full-color and over 200 pages of fantastic stories, facts, anecdotes and tales from some of the top Magicians around the world.
Magicians of the past and current magicians including Mac King, Doug Henning, Dai Vernon, Larry Jennings, Charlie Miller, Tony Slydini, Jimmy Grippo, Martin Nash, Harry & Gay Blackstone, Billy McComb, Jeff Hobson, Mike Finney, Dana Daniels, Tom Burgoon, Tom Ogden, Gazzo and so many more.
Reports from the road, at the airport, technical problems, hecklers, lost props, fire, animal mishaps and anything else you can think of IS ALL HERE! Get an inside look to what happens to the pros while they travel and work in this exciting profession. Great entertainment and a fantastic read for the entire family.
You are all going to LOVEthisbook!
(And you'll even find some stories from me inside!) *Ships on 1/11/2010