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Topic: Sponge Ball References
Message: Posted by: Rob Johnston (Dec 15, 2003 03:28PM)
Any advice on where to find a good reference on sponge balls? I have one dvd and a small book...but those are mostly for beginners.
Message: Posted by: Nicholas (Dec 16, 2003 06:34PM)
I'm not sure what a good overall reference would be. However, I have the video by Kenton Knepper (Close Up and Unpublished) that has a sponge ball routine on it called "Sponge Balls Like Never Before." I like the way Kenton handles the sponges. If you learn a couple of his basic moves, you can do almost anything with the sponge balls. It also gets away from the old ploy of..."here's a ball for you and one for me and, presto, they're both in your hand." The moves are also more natural than in other presentations I have seen. This has been the best source for sponge ball manipulation that I have found. Hope this helps.
Message: Posted by: Rob Johnston (Dec 16, 2003 09:56PM)
Thanks for your help. I have found that sponge ball references are not exteremely common.
Message: Posted by: Nicholas (Dec 17, 2003 06:20AM)
I would be curious what others (who have it) think of the Pat Page video on sponge balls. He did one on the thumb tip that I thought was excellent. The one on balls might be a good reference, too. As I think about it a little more, I believe there is a volume by Frank Garcia that has to do with Sponge Balls. I have a small booklet of his but was never able to get much that is usable out of it. Others might have an opinion about his work.
Message: Posted by: RayBanks (Dec 17, 2003 09:18AM)
Sponge Ball Magic - Gabe Fajuri

Sponge Ball Manipulation - Audley Walsh

The Sponge Book - Frances Marshall

Video: 25 Tricks with Sponge Balls ($10 great value)

There are others as well, but these should get you going.

Also do a search. There are many threads on sponge balls
Message: Posted by: GaryW (Dec 17, 2003 01:45PM)
I started with "25 Tricks with Sponge Balls" and it got me off and running.
Message: Posted by: Daniel Faith (Dec 17, 2003 08:58PM)
Mark Wilsons Complete course in Magic has a good standard routine perfect for any beginner.
Message: Posted by: DwightPA (Dec 17, 2003 10:11PM)
I would highly recommend Pat Page's sponge ball video. He gives you his routine but more importantly, various sleights and ideas that will help you further develop your own routine.

Even though I had been doing sponges for several years before acquiring his video, I certainly gained from it.

Dwight Powell
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Dec 19, 2003 01:45PM)
One thing I have not seen much on are color change moves with sponges. Dr. Sawa has a couple of brilliant routines in the book on him by Kaufman and two of the three use color changes, IIRC.

That was one big disappointment with the Goshman Encyclopedia of Sponge magic - no color changes, no size changes, but a LOT of great vanishes!

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.
Message: Posted by: Gary Dayton (Dec 19, 2003 02:40PM)
Slydini has a great sponge ball routine. You can find it in The Best of Slydini ... And More, by Karl Fulves (1976). This is still in print. You can get it from Tannens.
Message: Posted by: Bill Palmer (Dec 19, 2003 04:23PM)
The Encyclopedia of Sponge Ball Magic by Frank Garcia is a must.
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (Dec 20, 2003 01:08PM)
Bill, I agree that the Garcia Encyclopedia (which is out of print, last I heard) is an essential, but, IMHO, it is not encycplopedic in nature.

There is literally nothing on color changes, silk penetrations, size changes, switch outs, switch ins, substitutions or almost anything on the use of gimmicks like a dye tube or much on pulls.

IMPO, these are rather large areas that Garcia simply failed to address, and one which should be covered in any encyclopedic study of this particular prop.

It's like doing an encyclopedia of card magic and leaving out color changes and the diminishing cards, to be honest.

But, for all of that, it IS the seminal work on the subject, even so, and a superb jumping off point for anyone who is serious about doing sponge work.

It's just my quibble with the title, not the work itself. If someone is really interested in doing sponges, the book is essential.


Lee Darrow, C.Ht.
Message: Posted by: Scott F. Guinn (Dec 20, 2003 08:15PM)
However, it has been out of print for some time, is virtually impossible to find and costs a couple hundred bucks when you do find it!
Message: Posted by: Joshua Lozoff (Dec 20, 2003 11:50PM)
Anyone else like Eugene Burger's routine on his Magical Voyages video? It's got a complete routine that ends with 24 balls in the spectator's hand. I do it just about exactly as it's taught (technically, not presentationally) and it gets terrific reactions.
Message: Posted by: Rob Johnston (Dec 22, 2003 01:23PM)
Thanks. I will see what I can found out of all those suggestions.
Message: Posted by: Karl Miller (Dec 22, 2003 07:46PM)
One of the best routines for sponge balls is John Carney's "Current Classic" from "Carneycopia". I combined this routine with Roger Klause's "Sponge and Sleeve" from "Klause in Concert" or Michael Ammar's "Encore 3" (the better description is in the Kause book). This idea was mentioned in the Carney book mentioned above. It plays very well. Jay Scott Berry also has some fantastic sponge ball work in his lecture.
Message: Posted by: Tom Gaddis (Dec 22, 2003 10:54PM)
I put this in another a post, but it fits here as well.

Check out "Clones from Brazil" in Charllie Miller's "Magicana" column. (July 1983.)

The illustrations from "Magicana" are posted on http://www.thinklikeaconjurer.com/conjurers under FREE STUFF.

Best Regards,
Message: Posted by: Mike Walton (Dec 26, 2003 04:47PM)
I've been using Brad Burt's All About Sponge Balls video for the last week or so and have been extremely impressed with the depth of information. It's about 90 minutes. This is my first Brad Burt video and I only have good things to say about his teaching style as he is an outstanding instructor. He actually teaches rather than just shows and since a sponge ball routine is based on sleights, the slight variations are important. He gives different sleights, 4-5 vanishes, talks about using an empty purse frame, some switches, and gives 3 routines. There's some other stuff as well.

Also, Scott Guinn has a PB & J routine that has been reviewed in themagiccafe so do a search. It's a standard sponge ball routine with that uses a purse frame, vanishes, hand counts, and a Sanada gimmick.
Message: Posted by: doowopper (Dec 27, 2003 06:24AM)
I second what Jive-Turkey wrote about Scott Guinn's, "Peanut Butter and Jelly," routine. It's terrific. You can easily learn it from the manuscript included with the effect. However, even better is to see him do it (with instructions) on his video, "Great Scott! The only technical change I made to the routine is to have the first ball in my armpit (Ammar suggestion) and I steal it while they examine the purse frame by crossing my arms. This steal is not necessary, as Scott explains a very nice way to show both hands empty at the beginning of the routine.
Message: Posted by: Mike Walton (Feb 5, 2004 08:41PM)
I checked 3 other sources. If I would have purchased the Patrick Page video on sponge magic, then I would need no other if I was looking for a solid routine and instruction that covers the basics.

Kenton Knepper's sponge routine in “Klose Up and Unpublished” is excellent and I like his routine best as it is different. Knepper uses a classic palm a lot in the routine so it's taking much more practice so the routine can flow.

I also checked Steve Dacri's routine and it doesn't cover the basics, but hones a routine. He's an excellent performer.

If I could do it all over again, I would just need Patrick Page's and Kenton Knepper's videos, a sleeve of 4 super-soft and time for practice and I would be set.
Message: Posted by: DamienKeen (Feb 6, 2004 08:19AM)
I love Greg Wilson's Sponge Napkin routine, which is on his video “On the Spot” volume 2. You can use napkins like he does or just as easily - sponge balls. It does have the old 2 in their hand as a finish, but is there anything stronger?
Message: Posted by: JeffHall (Feb 16, 2004 09:39PM)
I just saw the Patrick Page video and I must say, it is excellent. It is will worth the price and I am so happy I have it. He has sponge magic that I have never seen before. Have any question, just ask.
Good luck.
Message: Posted by: TheAmbitiousCard (Feb 16, 2004 09:43PM)
Jeff is correct! In fact I use his retention vanish only.

Hi Jeff.

Message: Posted by: shane_delon (Feb 19, 2004 09:27AM)
Here is a compiled list of references, which may be good or bad. Some of them I added and some of them were what was compiled from here. However, that said, if you want the ultimate list of references visit this site:


There are only one or two of the newer things on this list that aren't on the site.

-Kenton Knepper (Close Up and Unpublished) that has a sponge ball routine on it called

"Sponge Balls Like Never Before."
-The Sponge Ball Video - 25 Tricks with sponge Balls
-Scott Guin - Great Scott - PB&J Routine
-Al Goshman Magic by Gosh
-Carl Andrews - Table Hopping Cups and Balls and No Jacket Required.
-Eugene Burger - Magical Voyages Volume 2
-Johnny Thompson - Commercial Classics of Magic Volume ? - Benson Bowl routine
-Daryl - Fooler Doolers - Vol 1 - Sponge Balls
-Daryl - Fooler Doolers - Vol 3 - Sponge Bunnies
-Carol Baker - Magic on the Menu - Sponge Bunnies
-Patrick Page - Secret Seminar - Sponge Balls
-Sponge Ball Magic - Gabe Fajuri
-Sponge Ball Manipulation - Audley Walsh
-The Sponge Book - Frances Marshall
-Mark Wilsons Complete course in Magic
-Jay Sankey - Earplugs
-Encyclopedia of Sponge Ball Magic by Frank Garcia
-John Carney's "Current Classic" from "Carneycopia"
-Dr. Sawa has a couple of brilliant routines in the book on him by Kaufman
-Slydini has a great sponge ball routine. You can find it in The Best of Slydini ... And

More, by Karl Fulves (1976). This is still in print. You can get it from Tannens. Name??
-Brad Burt's All About Sponge Balls video
-Greg Wilson's Sponge Napkin routine, which is on his video “On the Spot” volume 2
-Jon Jensen - Professional Sponge Ball Tricks
-Mark Leveridge - Master Routines Video 1
-Paul Wilson - The Restaurant Act
-Johnny Paul uses sponge balls for cups and balls on the Stevens video.
Message: Posted by: gerard1973 (Jan 1, 2006 05:51AM)
Bill Tarr has sponge ball basics and routines in his books Now You See It Now You Don't and The Second Now You See It Now You Don't. Also, Jay Sankey covers sponge balls in his DVD Earplugs.
Message: Posted by: landon (Jan 5, 2006 05:27PM)
No one has mentioned it, so I guess I'll add Routined Manipulation Finale by Lewis Ganson(book)

I also like current classic in Carneycopia as others have mentioned