iCut Magic Revew

icut head

iCut is a package of videos by a renowned Australian magician which shows you how to easily perform mind blowing street magic. iCut will give you the skills and confidence to approach strangers in the street and perform magic using their headphones. The videos take you by the hand and show you everything you need to know to get started. The main trick is iCut and the bonus includes 3 additional tricks.

> CLICK HERE to go to iCut <

Videos

  1. Live Performances
  2. Explanation
  3. Alternate Handling
  4. Extra Tips
  5. Bonus Phases

Live Performances

icut-live-performanceMagician Josh takes to the street in a shopping arcade to demonstrate iCut. The video is of 3 groups we see in the promotional material. The difference is here we see him perform the trick start to finish so we can see exactly how he does it. Once you know the trick the demos become very useful as you can copy the subtleties of his performance to give you confidence to perform it.

Explanation

Josh explains the idea for iCut came from wanting to take strong magic effects and update them. He then goes on to show you his favourite method for performing iCut. He shows you how to make an inexpensive gimmick and how to present the trick, giving a detailed description of the method so you can really understand it. Why get someone else to cut the headphones? Why say ‘on the count of 3′? He gives instructions about misdirection, explains the importance of each component and the images you want to create in people’s minds’ to make a lasting impression.

Alternate Handling

alternate-handlingsNot every situation will be the same so Josh shows a further 3 ways of performing the trick. One uses the gimmick from the main explanation, another is done through the use of a thumb tip and one can even be done off the cuff with no props or gimmicks. Knowing all 4 methods will allow you to perform iCut no matter the situation. If you are at a party and someone says ‘do that trick!’ you’ll be able to pull it off.

Extra Tips

You can pick up extra tips by watching the 3 live performances. However Josh also uses this vid to go into a few frequently asked questions. He covers performing the trick from different angles, dealing with different coloured headphones and noise issues.

Bonus Phases

torn-restored-earbudThe bonus phases contain 3 additional headphone tricks. He shows you how to pull the headphones through your thumb, through your neck and how to pull off an earbud and put it back on again. Each of these tricks are explained so you can see exactly how to do them. It would have been nice to have some videos of live performances to get some of the subtleties however you will be left in no doubt as to how to perform them after the explanation and demonstrations.

iCut Deluxe Lite

One of the deluxe options, Deluxe Lite gives you a further 6 different tricks. All the tricks involve a set of headphones and some involve the use of rings and further spectator participation. Josh shows you how to thread headphones through a ring then pull the headphones through the ring, take the ring off the headphones and throw it back on again, pull a ring from through your back pocket with the headphones and more.

iCut Deluxe

Explanation-screen-shotiCut plus 10 additional tricks. Everything from Deluxe Lite plus 4 more tricks. Turn 1 ring into another on the headphones by shaking it, a second method to pull a ring through the headphones, throw a ring onto the headphones and pull the headphones through your hand and a ring at the same time.

Review

The product is called iCut however its much more than a single trick. The iCut package contains 4 separate tricks giving you the basis of a short routine which can be performed anywhere. All 4 tricks are suitable for beginners and the methods are quick to learn. iCut is a great set of tricks to get started with street magic or add headphone tricks to your routine.

With the Deluxe package you have just about every conceivable trick that can be performed with a set of headphones. There are tricks for beginners and more advanced tricks, plenty to choose from to build a complete street magic headphone routine.

From David Blaine to Dynamo all street magicians had to start somewhere. iCut provides a great jumping off point for beginners and for an extra $20 iCut Deluxe is the complete street magic headphones package.

> CLICK HERE to go to iCut <

Derren Brown, Tricks of the Mind Extracts. Audiobook Review

This audiobook is taken from the fantastic book Tricks of the Mind and teaches the basics of hypnosis, a couple of magic tricks and some powerful memory techniques.

Disk 1: Hypnosis

Derren says he thinks hypnosis is very safe but gives 7 rules to bear in mind just to be extra cautious:

  1. Don’t try to hypnotise someone who is clearly disturbed or has epilepsy
  2. Don’t attempt any therapeutic change unless you are suitably qualified
  3. Treat hypnosis as a gentle tool
  4. Everything you do contributes to the hypnosis. Don’t get flustered
  5. At end make sure person is completely out of belief that they are hypnotised
  6. Take it slowly and only try in a controlled environment
  7. Treat it first as a relaxation tool and move slowly into administering suggestions

What you learn:

  • In its simplest form hypnosis is pacing someone’s experience then leading them to behaviours you want.
  • Use presupposition. This means you presuppose something to be true eg. as your eyes get heavier/ you can wonder how deeply you are going into trance
  • Use double binds where the only options are 2 you have suggested.
  • Tone of voice – gentle and relaxed
  • Use imagery to involve all the senses
  • Don’t contradict yourself and don’t be specific

Framework:

  1. Prepare subject and induce light stages of trance, this may include eye closure
  2. Deepen the trance through a metaphor such as going down the stairs
  3. Carry out your hypnotic work
  4. Fully awaken the subject

Disk 2: Magic

Coin Trick – A Coin Slide

The trick involves sliding a coin off a table, pretending to pick it up and pulling it into your lap.

The trick is enhanced by using another coin for misdirection and placing the coins on the table in advance.

Card trick – A Sucker Trick

  1. Get someone to shuffle cards (need someone with basic overhand shuffle)
  2. Look at cardface then immediately turn away and spread the deck in your hands, showing everyone faces of deck
  3. Turn face down and place squared up on table
  4. Bottom card is key card
  5. Get person to cut deck in 2 and place top half to your right
  6. Turn away and remove card he cut to (top card of bottom half) and look at it
  7. Pick up bottom half
  8. Tell him to replace card
  9. Get person to shuffle cards again
  10. Say you will put cards face up on table and he is not to react if you see his card
  11. Turn over 1 at a time, card after key card is his card. Carry on after chosen card appears but make sure index of chosen card remains visible to you
  12. Stop then ask to bet that next card turned over will be the card
  13. Then reach for the card in pie and turn over

Magic tips:

  • Most of the magic is created after the trick
  • A state of amazement leaves spectators more open to suggestion
  • To make them look less foolish people will trick themselves eg. Think they definitely saw card in magicians hand
  • Magic is helped by people watching closely and using the off beat when both you and they relax
  • Conjurer creates false trail of events
  • Best to be simple and direct

Disk 3: Memory

No such thing as photographic memory. A few people have an idetic memory and can hold the image of a scene in their minds but it typically can’t be held for long and is prone to distortions. Individuals with great memories use rich mnemonic strategies.

Memory is a set of processes. We can remember 7 or so units after which point we instinctively want to break it down into smaller chunks.

Linking System:

  1. Use vivid images and attach strong emotions
  2. Elements should interact
  3. Picture should be unusual

Uses of linking system – shopping lists, tasks, speeches and for actors

Drawback – if stuck on 1 word system breaks down

Loci System:

  1. Use a route you know with locations on the way.
  2. Take a list of things and relate an item to each location.
  3. Place a strong visual representation at each location.
  • Memory palaces – Expand number of loci eg. In your house
  • Its better to have action take place inside something
  • You need to go through things in fixed order eg. Clockwise
  • You can use for permanent memory.
  • Expand loci – have a door from your house lead to another familiar building. Use places from real life eg. museums you have visited

Remembering Names

  1. When you meet with someone immediately think of someone you already know with the same name
  2. Imagine person in front of you has been made up to look at bit like the person you know

or

  1. Connect name with another image eg. Mike becomes a microphone stand, bill becomes an invoice
  2. Find something memorable about the person’s appearance. Better to be a physical feature
  3. Link the 2 together
  • Its best to make image as efficient as possible
  • Can put other info into scene
  • Importance of reviewing

Rating:

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Dynamo’s Concrete Playground Review

Dynamo’s Concrete Playground is the magicians first DVD release and its a cracker!

Starting off in Dynamo’s home town of Bradford, Dynamo performs tricks for the locals before taking to the road with his 2 best mates, dazzling the people of Birmingham and London with his modern style of magic.

Tricks include levitation of a £50 note, smashing bottles with his mind and Dynamo’s signature polo through the neck trick.

Dynamo’s slight of hand is impressive with him being able to place coins under peoples’ watches without them noticing and seemingly dropping coins through solid glass tabletops.

He is masterful with the cards, making the deck disappear, putting cigarettes through cards, and making cards appear out of his top pocket…. when he has no top pocket!

Mentalism Tricks

It has to be said there is not a great deal in the way of mentalism tricks in the DVD however the mind reading in a shop/ gallery in London gets one of the best reactions on the whole DVD.

As a modern magic DVD I would give Dynamo’S Concrete Playground (Dvd) [2006] 5* every time.

Rating:

Mentalist Profile: Dynamo

Dynamo AKA Stephen Frayne is a magician and mentalist from Bradford in the UK. Born in 1982, Dynamo grew up on the deprived Delph Hill estate in Bradford.

Dynamo says:

‘It helps to have a skill growing up around here (in Delph Hill), for some its breaking and entering, for me it’s magic’.

Starting Out

Dynamo began learning magic at the age of 11 to get school bullies off his back and started devoting more time to magic when he moved in with his grandparents at the age of 15.

His grandpa Kenneth used to perform magic in bars around Bradford and showed Dynamo some magic. Dynamo would spend night and day practising and reading every magic book he could lay his hands on.

Starting out he couldn’t even shuffle a pack of cards. If you see his skills now that’s hard to believe!

Early Career

Fastforward to 2004 and Dynamo was loaned some money by UK Charity the Prince’s Trust to buy a video camera. He moved to London and began shooting videos.

This was right around the time Youtube was starting to get popular and soon Dynamo’s street magic videos were getting 100,000s of views; millions of people around the world were watching him amaze people in the capital.

Dynamo’s increasing popularity gave him the opportunity to perform on the celebrity circuit, performing for such celebs as Coldplay and Paris Hilton.

Magician to the Stars

Now Dynamo bills himself as magician to the stars, performing at red carpet and other celebrity events around the world. He says playing to celebs like Pharell Williams, Paris Hilton and De La Soul is a dream come true.

Dynamo has also made numerous TV appearances. His first TV appearance was on Richard & Judy and he has since appeared numerous times including charity events, adverts and panel shows.

He has released 2 DVDs, based on his TV shows Dynamo’S Concrete Playground (Dvd) [2006] and Dynamo: Magician Impossible [DVD].

Style

Dynamo brings elements of bodypopping, breakdancing and MCing to his magic to give a modern urban style.

He performs up close magic and mentalism as well as larger pieces like the ‘walking on the Thames’ trick seen in Dynamo: Magician Impossible [DVD].

He still loves the energy of performing magic on the streets and the power it has to bring different people together and says that is the greatest buzz.

Dynamo incorporates mentalism into his performance using mindreading and hypnosis for some of his effects.

Interesting Facts

The stage name Dynamo was adopted after a magic convention at the New York Hilton in 2002. He was performing to a group of magicians when a member of the audience shouted out ‘That kid’s a Dynamo!’

Dynamo was diagnosed with Crones disease when he was a kid and was hospitalised several times with it.

Dynamo’s favourite place is Miami.

Quotes

‘Sometimes I wonder if my life has all been an illusion but if there’s one thing I’ve learned its that reality is only what you make it’

‘Everybody has the power to be extraordinary, no matter where they come from or what their circumstance, its just a matter of belief’

‘Some people think its impossible to change the future but in reality the future is only what you make it’