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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » If right you win, if wrong you lose... » » Endless chain (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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NJJ
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To me, it is not the quality or style of props and costumes but the intention of them. You can look like almost anything as long as it looks as it is both intended and justified.

For example, if you turn up to a kid's party unshaven, with torn and patched clothing, with a broken shoe and a permanent frown on your face, you'd be a disgrace. But if you attended the same party as a tramp clown then suddenly you are a success.

If you have a battered old handbag as a prop you look unprofessional. If you borrow the handbag from a lady in the audience then no one cares that it isn't the nicest prop in the world.

Performing with bent playing cards if a sin but in a bent corner monte routine it becomes a vital part of the entertainment.

Its all a matter of context.
Dave V
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Quote:
On 2005-08-11 19:39, Nicholas J. Johnson wrote:
Its all a matter of context.


True, and in a valiant attempt to pull this back on topic, in my context a silver chain is appropriate. It matches the rest of my "look." For others a beaded chain or a leather lace is fine. I never intended to say that a beaded chain "cheapens" the act. There are technical reasons why the French Rope simply works better.
No trees were killed in the making of this message, but a large number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.
Euangelion
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Amen.
Bill Esborn

"Lutefisk: the piece of cod that passes all understanding."
NJJ
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Quote:
On 2005-08-11 19:39, Nicholas J. Johnson wrote:
Its all a matter of context.


Quote:
On 2005-08-11 20:17, Dave VanVranken wrote:
True, and in a valiant attempt to pull this back on topic, in my context a silver chain is appropriate. It matches the rest of my "look." For others a beaded chain or a leather lace is fine. I never intended to say that a beaded chain "cheapens" the act. There are technical reasons why the French Rope simply works better.


I find that beaded chain tangles easily and is hard to follow. That is, if beaded chain is the style of chain used to connect pens to banks.
Whit Haydn
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The worst problem with the beaded chain or with a necklace of beads (one of the props George Blake started with) is that these do not hold the shape of the figure well. A finger grazing the chain, or a slight bump of the table and the figure will lose its shape.

That is why Fred Lowe's flat-link chain was an improvement. The flat-link had problems of its own. It tended to kink up and not flow right, especially with the drop-off knot. Also, its simple design, like the beaded chain, made it too easy for the eye to follow the lay of the chain.

Chef Anton and I first suggested the French Rope design because it's more complicated design makes it hard for the spectator to follow the lay of the chain. It also is superior in its ability to flow and not kink up, and of course, like the flat-link chain, it doesn't roll out of position. We also find that because of the doubled sets of links, the French Rope is sturdier and will take more abuse than the flat-link chain.

I suggest that if you use string, rope, flat-link chain, beads, or beaded chain that you go for a slightly longer chain. The loop should be seven feet or more. This gives a larger figure which makes it difficult for the eye to take in the whole figure at once. You have to follow along the chain with the eye from one side to another. This makes it much more difficult to comprehend the layout--something that might be more possible if the whole figure is in the frame of vision at once.
saranacbo
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This thread is an example of why I like and pay close attention to the Magic Café: It goes all around the mulberry bush, but I learn from it. First, there's the issue of "the right" way to present a trick, or "the right way" to look or act like a magician, or "the right props," and so on. Of course, there is no right way--it's entirely personal and based on our experience (that is, our successes and failures). As for props? With me it's a variable--but I can explain what I have and why, which to me is the important point. For instance, I have a set of P and L rice bowls. They're beautiful to look at and handle, and I think the audience unconsciously appreciates their beauty. I got them years ago for a very good price, and I know they have not lost their value. So in that case, I have a top-of-the-line prop. I also do chink-a-chink and uses bottle caps. It's no accident--the point is it demonstrates "magical powers" with everyday objects. If the prop there was really fancy, it would also be suspicious, as if it itself was doing all the work.
As for fast and loose: I just ordered the S4S chain and book. My reasoning there is I want to learn it well and while I could use shoelaces or light chains, I know S4S's chain will be the best (and thus easiest and most impressive) to work with. Plus it's guaranteed against manufacturing defects. And if worse comes to worst, I'm sure I can sell it--especially since I've seen posts here talking about not being able to find a really good chain.
So the issue is really specific to the person and their wants and style (and budget). Similarly, I do the Don Alan chop cup routine--end all my close-up with it. But I won't buy a $125.00 chop cup--mine I got from Al's magic years ago for 15 bucks, as I recall. Not that the Don Alan cup isn't a work of art, but it's just not something that I feel would add anything to my presentation.
This type of argument rages about Gazzo's pouch. It costs over $300 and is considered perfect--if you're going to do Gazzo's cup and balls. I don't, and my apron came from the Apron Man (found on Magic Café). It was custom made, is nylon, is perfect for my needs, and cost twenty bucks (including postage, I think). Gazzo's pouch would be a complete waste on me. . . and on my complete waist.
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