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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ever so sleightly » » Claude Rix - Beggar's Pearls (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Howard Hamburg
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Quote:
On 2005-11-30 13:18, Bill Palmer wrote:
It sounds like the Ramsay bean trick to me. There was a trick sold back in the 1970's called "The Pearls of Persia," which Brick Tilley used to perform.hey,bill brickandwalter@aol.com I'm still here under the rock


Howard Hamburg
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On 2005-12-01 23:58, Bill Wells wrote:
Thank you everyone for your continuing help on the "Five Little Pearls" routine. I really appreciate all your efforts.....bill,am still here brickandwalter@aol.com under a rock

Mike - odd you should mention the late Willis Kenney. It is his handling of this routine that has inspired my search for the Claude Rix source. Willis mentioned that he bought the routine "...from a fellow with a very short name." His handling is somewhat different than I remember Rix doing it.

Bill and I remember Brick Tilley doing the routine as well. Does anyone know if Brick is still doing magic?

Bill
Mark Ross
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Claude Rix performed this at FFFF last year, but used what apeared to be beans, or something similar.. A truly artistic presentation, in spite of the language barrier. He got a standing ovation.

Mark
Bill Palmer
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Brick was one of the contributing editors of the Mark Wilson Course in Magic.
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Lawrence O
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Claude Rix learned the routine from Rezvani. Hence the name of Persian Pearls. He does the trick with small ivory pearls and a small longitudinal black velvet mat.

The effect is fairly different from John Ramsay's Four Little Beans and Claude's performance is very magical indeed. The last time I saw Claude perform this routine was in Paris in 2009 the very day Ali Bongo had the stroke that would steal him from us.

Claude's performance is really extremely magical and, with his stack handling, it's one of his two signature effects. It's a beautiful thing to watch despite the common reluctance about things being brought to the mouth and back out (which Claude Rix is well aware of).

Claude's patter deals with this and makes the whole routine a moment of pure magic proving that when a magician does the same trick for 50 years, it becomes as smooth as silk and no one gets tired of seeing it.
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Bill Palmer
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Van Cleve used to perform a version of this called "The Ring Trick." It was mystifying, but it was also one of the funniest routines for the ball/bean/pearl trick that I have ever seen.

His closing line was "there is only one thing that is funnier than watching me perform the bean trick for the first time, and that is watching someone else watching me perform the bean trick for the first time."
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Leslie Melville
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I saw Rezvani's 'Beggar's Pearl' performed by French magician 'Horace'. It was at the final Supreme Brittany Super Day - I forget the year (around the 1980's)! But I do remember that it was one of the most magical presentations that I have ever seen.

I spoke to Ali Bongo about it and he sent me the complete package - wooden balls, velvet bag/performing surface and a booklet with the entire Horace routine which included the Claude Rix variations (including the 'elegant move' - a periodic sip of water from a champagne flute when placing each ball into the mouth). Ali had written it by arrangement and had translated Horace's work from the French.

I tried hard for some time but was unable to hold the balls in my mouth without 'gagging'.

According to Horace, the Persians (Iranians) learned it from childhood and were/are taught to carry small pebbles in their mouths for hours on end - speaking, eating and drinking etc. until the pebbles become un-noticed.

Ali told me that if I mastered it, I would have an exclusive - he knew of no one in the U.K. who have ever performed the trick. Ramsay's 'Five Little Peas' was based upon the same principle, but much simpler. Although even with Ramsay's version, you need to hold dried peas under your tongue!

Leslie
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Bill Palmer
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This reminds me of the classic Greek method of becoming an orator. The prospective orator would fill his mouth with marbles and practice speaking. Over a period of months, he would remove one marble from his mouth every day until finally, when he had lost all his marbles, he was a qualified orator.
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Leslie Melville
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Here's a YouTube clip of Claude Rix - How's your French?!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXIpoU_PeaA

Leslie
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Bill Hegbli
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Horace Bennett has a nice pearl routine in his book by Magic Mehods "Bennett's Best". Use a sea shell and pearls.
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Pete Biro
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Leslie... thanks for the link. It had been a very long time since I had seen Rix do his routine.
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Bill Palmer
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I recently received a very nice set of these from an old friend, whom I saw perform this many years ago.

I won't mention his name, but he was kind enough to send these to me after he visited the cups and balls museum.
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Leslie Melville
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Quote:
On 2010-07-04 12:39, Pete Biro wrote:
Leslie... thanks for the link. It had been a very long time since I had seen Rix do his routine.


I had never seen Claude Rix before and have to say that I was slightly disappointed, my memory of Horace was that he had more flair and flourish and even though he too spoke in French, I more easily understood the story about the street performer and having his hand severed etc.

But both performers displayed amazing skills!

Leslie
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Nicholas young
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The best presentation and performance I have seen of this effect came from a dutch magician by the name of Jean-Paul Mertens. He published the routine on tape many years back as well as in some of his lecture notes, I believe all productions were done through a local magic distributor called Mephisto. I don't know exactly how original his routine is technique wise, but the construction of the routine and the killer ending are, I believe, original.

I remember seeing him perform the routine for the first time. It was a very magical and well structured routine, but the success of the trick lies in the presentation, which in turn can only be done by a suitable character.

Much can be done with the effect in the right hands (and mouth). JP has been in the field for a very long time and the pearl routine is his pet effect. If you would like more details or have questions and can not contact him, send me a PM and I will dig out the old phone book...

Regards,

N
panlives
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Quote:
On 2010-07-03 17:03, Bill Palmer wrote:
This reminds me of the classic Greek method of becoming an orator. The prospective orator would fill his mouth with marbles and practice speaking. Over a period of months, he would remove one marble from his mouth every day until finally, when he had lost all his marbles, he was a qualified orator.


Hi Bill,

I think it was the Greek orator Demosthenes who, as the story goes, overcame a severe speech impediment by forcing himself to speak with stones in his mouth.

Has anyone to your knowledge used this historical story as the premise for such a routine?

It has a lot of human interest – overcoming a deficiency and becoming successful against all odds...
"Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?"
"To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time."
"The dog did nothing in the night-time."
"That was the curious incident," remarked Sherlock Holmes.
panlives
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A more “modern” version comes from “My Fair Lady.”

For those unfamiliar with the story, a linguistics professor in London named Henry Higgins makes a wager with a friend that he can rid a working-class girl, Eliza Doolittle, of her Cockney accent and teach her to speak like a proper lady.

In one of his many drills, he insists that Eliza fill her mouth with marbles and then read a series of phrases.

This reference might be more familiar to our audiences.
"Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?"
"To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time."
"The dog did nothing in the night-time."
"That was the curious incident," remarked Sherlock Holmes.
Lawrence O
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Claude Rix and Horace routines are the Rezvani's one

The routine appeared in print for the first time in 1877 in Sleight of Hand by Edwin T. Sachs as The Chinese Marble Trick

Louis McCord "Silent Mora" became famous before the first world war with his "Silent Mora's 4 Ball and Net Trick" (and his Chinese sticks routine). Silent Mora was famous for this classic routine, in which four white balls miraculously appeared and disappeared, dropping from his hands into a net held by spectators. In the routine Louis McCord also introduced what is now known as the Vernon Wand spin vanish (in the Professor's C&Bs routine). He was also doing away with placing the balls in the performer's mouth.

Then in 1946, Mehjid Kahn Rezvani wrote "Les Billes d’Ivoire" on p 84 of his book La Magie du Sorcier written by Maurice Sardina. A slightly different description appeared in the mammoth work of the Dr Jules Dhotel, "La Prestidigitation sans Bagages"

Also in 1946 in Stars of Magie, Series 1, issue 1 appeared a “Classic Ball Routine” by John Scarne. The routine can also be seen in Johnny Thompson's as "3 Ball Routine" (John Scarne / Oscar Pladic) in his Volume 3 DVD, Johnny Thompson Commercial Classics of Magic.

Maurice Sardina also described John Ramsay's "Four little beans" in 1952

Then Lewis Ganson in 1955 described Charles Harrison's Marvelous Marbles in his book A Magician Explains

In 1956, J.G. Thompson, Jr. released Tops Secrets of Magic, Vol 1 with, page 57, “Spheroid Skullduggery”

In 1957, Lewis Ganson on p p 61 of The Dai Vernon Book of Magic wrote the Professor's "Three Ball Transposition" doing away with the placing of the balls in the mouth

In 1975, Horace Bennett's book Bennett’s Best p 3 released The Pearl using seven pearls: four white, a pink one, a green one and a very large one and a large shell

Then came, in 1978, with The Real Secrets of the Three Ball Routines by Frank Garcia was released p 45 Romaine's routine “The Perplexing Persian Pearls”.

Richard Kaufman then offered us in 1993 Secrets Draun From Underground - The wonderful magic of Steve Draun with p 140 Steve’s Marbles

Thus the fame of the effect was really established by Silent Mora and Rezvani and is known by the new generations thanks to Dai Vernon and Lewis Ganson and more recently by the superb performance of Johnny Thompson

It is now a true and beautiful classic of the Magic art
Magic is the art of proving impossible things in parallel dimensions that can't be reached
Juno Temple
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Lawrence O - How can we thank you for your most excellent historical perspective concerning a curiously devlish 'trick'? Well, I for one will say that the Magic Café owes it's fine reputation to individuals like you, Lawrence O, and so I send my appreciation in a most personal way.
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JLemoine
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I've been doing Claude Rix's Beggar's Pearls for some time, now, and it's a really beautiful trick, but I'm having trouble to think about a patter that really suits me. First of all, I'd like to find a nice justification for putting the pearls into the mouth (Claude Rix says something like "to count ivory, you have to moist it". Everybody seems happy with that, but I'd like something more "true").
Any idea is welcome.
For example, I'd love to know if Revzani's patter was close to the one used by Claude Rix.
Thanks a lot.
Mr. Woolery
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Many years ago I read that thieves will rub pearl necklaces across their teeth to determine whether they are genuine. According to the book, there is a texture difference that cannot be replicated by any artificial means. Patter about pearl merchants checking them this way or pearl thieves would possibly justify the mouth.

Just a thought.

Patrick
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