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Topic: Color Monte
Message: Posted by: rtcooks (Aug 29, 2002 04:15PM)
I purchased the color monte and I am expecting it any day. One review I read listed this as an easy routine to learn with practice. Another review listed this as a difficult routine. What has been your experience with this routine? The cards are not gimmicked.

Message: Posted by: GlenD (Aug 29, 2002 05:48PM)
Hi rtcooks,
I would say that you will likely find it a bit difficult, even more so if you haven't seen it demonstrated. I purchased mine at our local magic shop and had a little lesson with it. The magician there classifies the tricks he sells into 3 categories ranging from beginner, to intermediate, to advanced. Color Monte has an intermediate rating, I think. In fact, I don't think I ever read the actual instructions. But the moves are not difficult, just takes practice and getting the story to flow smoothly. Good luck with it, it is a very good trick, great surprise finish! :giggles:

Message: Posted by: rtcooks (Aug 29, 2002 05:56PM)
Thanks for the information. I have seen it demonstrated on a video. I hope that helps me with the routine.
Message: Posted by: Peter Marucci (Aug 29, 2002 08:52PM)
One problem with Color Monte is that the moves look really unusual; and that's a sure tip-off for the audience that you're doing something "sneaky".
That's why I came up with my own Mirror Monte; the moves are straightforward and consistent; nothing "sneaky" about them.
All three cards (and there are only three cards) are seen and can be casually examined at the finish, assuming you want to get into that sort of crapola!
If interested, e-mail me and I'll gladly send you an e-mail flyer.
Peter Marucci
Message: Posted by: Danno (Aug 29, 2002 10:39PM)
I just received the Color Monte two days ago. I practiced it for 3 hours straight one night.

Now, I have to tell you, I am REALLY new to magic. I've never previously learned any sleights. In fact, I'm pretty sloppy with cards. Also, I've never seen it performed. But, I must say, I'm quite proud of myself. I've gotten pretty good at this trick in just a couple of days. The people I have shown it to seem to be baffled by it so I must be doing something right.

Either I'm a card manipulating genius and I never knew it, or this is a pretty easy to learn trick. (I'm guessing the latter)

Take your time to read the instuctions carefully. This is really effective when done properly.
Message: Posted by: BillParky (Aug 30, 2002 06:30AM)
I like colour Monte even if, as Peter rightly points out there are one or two 'iffy' moves. No-one has ever queried these moves with me and the strong ending and the fact that the cards can be examined makes this a valuable addition to your repertoire.
The part I found most difficult in learning this was coordinating the patter to the moves but once you've done it it's easy - like riding a bike!

Bill :bigdance:
Message: Posted by: MarkFarrar (Aug 30, 2002 04:10PM)
Bill's comment about synchronising moves with patter is interesting, and that is one reason why I loved the Emerson & West effects, because that is how they laid out their instructions.

I even take this approach when scripting my own presentations / effects, as I find it easier to learn and it makes you think a bit more about your presentation.
Message: Posted by: rtcooks (Sep 3, 2002 12:04PM)
I am learning the Color Monte. I read somewhere that someone thought that a Pinkey Buckle works great for this routine. What is a Pinkey Buckle, or where should I look to learn this.
Message: Posted by: Brian Proctor (Sep 3, 2002 02:02PM)
The only thing I ever found difficult about the effect was the written up instructions. They just were not clear enough for me to comprehend. I spent all night trying to figure out what it was describing. I was extremely tired, and my ex girlfriend was rambling on about something... I feel like an idiot after finally understanding how simple it is. I would recommend getting this effect. It's pretty fun with a nice ending. If your a newbie, you may want to have the Magician at your local magic shop help you out after you purchase it. :)
Brian :clownjuggling:
Message: Posted by: Margarette (Sep 3, 2002 05:12PM)
Bearing in mind that I do very little in the line of cards, Color Monte is one thing that I actually carry around with me (just in case I get "show me some magic"). Trust me, if I can learn Color Monte, anyone can! :bigsmile:

Message: Posted by: Uli Weigel (Sep 3, 2002 06:37PM)
I have performed a version of Color Monte (with a big spade pip, a big diamond pip and a green business card with large letters) for more than 15 years, and it was always a sure fire success for me. It's a real crowd pleaser. I have performed it for 5 people as well as for 100. The audience reactions were always great. One of the most practical tricks around. Technically, it's very easy. In my opinion (and speaking from my own experience) you must have some acting skills, you must be a good speaker and you need a good story. If you want to learn how to transform a card trick into a presentational showpiece, Color Monte is a perfectly suitable trick.
Message: Posted by: rtcooks (Sep 3, 2002 10:01PM)
I got my Color Monte in the mail today. It was not as hard as I thought it would be. After about 15 minutes of practice, I was performing the trick for my Wife & Kids. I even changed it up and used the Ace of diamonds, Ace of Spades and a Joker. This is a great trick.
Message: Posted by: GlenD (Sep 8, 2002 06:34PM)
That's great rtcooks ! Glad you're doing well with it and having FUN!
Thanks for getting back and sharing your results with us!!! :righton:

Message: Posted by: G-Diddy (Sep 9, 2002 10:17AM)
I always get great responses when I perform color monte.
Audiences are usually shocked at the ending.
The handling is difficult to get directly from the instructions, although most magic stores would be happy to demo the trick.
Message: Posted by: lesterkirad (Sep 18, 2002 03:28AM)
This is my most requested trick. It was never really a favorite of mine, but it gets such a great reaction. People remember it so well and ask for it more than any trick that I do. I have actually done the trick so much that I have worn the color off of 3 sets of my cards. Now I do it with regular cards. I think that it makes the trick seem much more impromptu and less suspicious.
Message: Posted by: Brian Proctor (Sep 18, 2002 04:17AM)
Has anyone seen the card effect "Two wrongs don't make a right"? The handling is identical to the Color Monte. It is hilarious infact. The play on words fits perfectly with the effect. Check to see if your local magic dealer has it. :sun:
Message: Posted by: black wombat (Sep 18, 2002 11:26PM)
I am brand new to magic and stuff. Color Monte is the very first trick I have ever attempted and it was so easy.
I also found the instructions easy as well.
Honestly, if I can do it, anyone can. :kermit:
Message: Posted by: copterchris (Sep 22, 2002 09:28PM)
Does anyone have any advice for how to make the "d***** push off" look natural? The only way I can do it reliably is to hold opposite edges of the cards which looks terrible - is there a good tip to handle them more naturally?
Message: Posted by: Drew from Spotlight (Sep 30, 2002 03:51PM)
Color Monte was on of the first Packet Tricks I ever owned. After many years I still have my original set of cards and I still carry them with me. Although some of the middle moves might be “iffy” in performance, I’ve never been questioned on them.

I’ve made my own set of cards up and even adapted them to working a trade show. If you come across the Paul Wilson video ‘Knock them Dead” he performs a version using tarot cards and less conspicuous moves. I like, and use, his version a lot.
Message: Posted by: Callin (Sep 30, 2002 05:11PM)
I get great reactions with Color Monte and have never once had someone question the handling. I think there are a couple of psychological reasons for this: First, I never challenge the spectator to find the blue card - I tell them I was challenged to find it. Then they are more caught up in the story than in the moves and if they see something "ify" they pass over it assuming its part of the story. As far as the d-pushoff, think of it as moving the bottom card to the top. I advise the same thing when I am teaching an Elmsly Count. Its a subtle thing, but you may be surprised to see the difference it makes.

Richard Green
Message: Posted by: copterchris (Oct 1, 2002 10:12PM)
Thanks Richard - I like your suggestion of treating the push-off as moving the bottom card to the top!
Message: Posted by: saheer (Oct 11, 2002 03:13PM)
My 2 cents is that you can get a lot of mileage out of a monte trick that looks like the real deal. I.e. you bend the cards and throw them (after all, the game is called "Monte" is because the cards are bent into little tentlike things - i.e., mountains). This is how the scam is played and allows for a lot of patter about hustling in general and monte in particular. That's one of the reasons to check out the school for scoundrels book (if you want a huge amount of info), or Anderson's "Last Monte."

For table hopping, Skinner's and Page/Kitson's renditions of Find the Lady are probably the best.
Message: Posted by: Callin (Oct 11, 2002 10:49PM)
I agree about the School for Scoundrel's book. It is the best general reference I have seen about the monte.

However, don't discount the impact of the color monte plot. The surprise ending is a wonderfully unexpected yet logical punchline to the story.

Also, before reading the School for Scoundrel's book, I would suggest starting with Erdnase and Vernon to learn a basic monte handling. The hype is not difficult to do technically, but must be well played in it's timing to really convince. And the bent corner con is very difficult to do without proper skill in misdirection.

So, though I like the classic monte (it is part of my regular act and has become one of the routines I am best known for) I believe the color monte is a great trick for beginners to learn. First of all, the sleight of hand required is fairly easy and forgiving. Secondly, the ease of handling allows the beginner to focus on the story and presentation - very important and difficult skills to perfect. Unfortunately, they are too often neglected.

Richard Green
Message: Posted by: saheer (Oct 11, 2002 11:57PM)
Callin brings up a lot of good points here about the ease of performance and impact of color monte in contrast to the time it takes to study up on the "real" monte scam in order to do it well. The scam also takes a particular character to pull it off - a type of character that I can't do convincingly. That's why I feel it's better to do a pseudo explanation like "the last monte." I am a little embarassed to keep plugging Anderson's routine, but it allows you to not have to be good at running a monte game since you're "explaining" elements of the con as you go along (including the bent corner ruse). However, you don't have to be really good at it. You just need to be good enough to look like you're familiar with what you're talking about. Like most gambling routines, and magic in general, it helps a lot to have actually seen the game played. You don't have to know about the many ways the scam can be played to get money off the mark. Only that this is what it looks like to a layperson.

That said, color monte and the skinner/page effects are tried and tested bits that work for those who practice and employ them properly. Callin is right to champion color monte as an effect that allows one to focus on performance. That's why magic doesn't come easy to most people - you have to spend a lot of time just being able to make the dang thing work, then you have to surround the effect with a presentation that YOU can make compelling/sell.
Message: Posted by: Anotherbeat (Oct 12, 2002 12:10PM)
I'm poor. Does eny one know where I can learn this colour monte trick for free? Thanx :bawl:
Message: Posted by: Chris Calabrese (Oct 12, 2002 04:03PM)
I'm poor. does eny one know where cani learn this colour monti trick for free [/quote]
Color Monte is one of the least expensive tricks out there, I picked it up for $6 at my local magic shop. Although you can use regular playing cards, the suprise ending will loose a lot of its pop without the special Color Monte cards, so it really is worth it to purchase the cards. You can also rest assured that you will get a lot of mileage for your $6--this trick is a crowd pleaser, and you will get a lot of fun and satisfaction out of performing it (I do anyway!).
Message: Posted by: Callin (Oct 13, 2002 02:05AM)
Sure, I'll tell you. (and I'm being only slightly sarcastic here) Just go to your local library or magic shop and look at some books on magic. You will find tons of stuff to learn.

Richard Green
Message: Posted by: Kraminator (Oct 22, 2002 06:37PM)
Well I finally could start to show the trick, I had some problems getting my hands to do the expected.

CardMagic is fun, but its a lot of work I found out. But now, I am getting to the point I want to know more about this.

I saw the ellusionist, http://www.ellusionist.com/html/clips/clips_index.htm and wonder, if I could ever learn those tricks.

What do you think. Is it possible to learn those very impressive tricks even if you're not the perfect hand-slider or should I stick with prepared stuff?


Message: Posted by: Apprentice (Oct 24, 2002 11:26AM)
Colour monte was one of the first batch of tricks that I bought. I was exposed to it early on by the magic shopkeeper where I live. A great trick, fairly easy to learn, but again timing it with the patter took some time - especially with the way the instructions were written.

But a classic trick that I have with me when I'm walking around.
Message: Posted by: dekerivers (Mar 1, 2003 12:57AM)
Check out the video Knock Em dead by Paul Wilson. He does the Color Monte using tarot cards, and calls it "The Gypsy Monte" this has a great story with it and a startling ending with the "death" card. Paul also gives some suggestions on the handling of the cards. Also check out Darryl's Full Monte video. His version is under Monkey Business. I like his handling the best plus he gives tips on how to make suprise ending cards!. :bikes:
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Mar 1, 2003 09:59AM)
Daryl does the full monte and has a version of the color monte on it, and he explains it well!
Message: Posted by: Mugician (Mar 6, 2003 01:29AM)
The Color Monte is one of my favorite tricks to perform. It's fairly easy handling and the patter is entertaining. The ending is great and unexpected.
Message: Posted by: marko (Mar 6, 2003 03:28PM)
Paul Wilson's Tarot card version is the best I've seen. It makes the effect more mysterious and evocative and has an emotional hook. I've always felt the original cards for Color Monte scream "I bought these from a magic shop!" (which is true)
Message: Posted by: Alan Wheeler (Mar 6, 2003 09:08PM)
I also highly recommend Peter Marucci's "Mirror Monte." The plot is very similar to "Color Monte" in that the cards are all shown to be face cards and then all shown to be jokers, and finally shown to be one joker, one face card, and one mirror--proving that the whole thing is "done with mirrors."
Peter Marucci's instructions are very clear with great patter and presentation suggestions, and the method is less based on sleights--which gives it a more natural look for me.

Don't get me wrong; I really like Color Monte too.

I also like an old gaffed three-card monte effect in which everyone tries to keep track of the three of hearts, except that the whole time the magician is saying "tree" of hearts. Of course, when the game is over and the last card is turned over, it really is a picture of a tree with hearts on it. (I think you can still get this effect in some of the toy store magic sets.)

Thanks everyone for these refreshing posts. What fun!

alleycat :kitty:
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Mar 30, 2003 09:50AM)
Check out Penguin Magics Demo video with Oz doing the Color Monte. He really does it well, and makes the moves look natural.
Message: Posted by: rvigon (Apr 1, 2003 05:48AM)
Anotherbeat, are you being serious? Did you really expect someone to just tell you how to do a trick?
Message: Posted by: Hernan (Apr 4, 2003 04:47AM)
Hey Another Beat,
Got a dollar? Come on, you gotta have a dollar.

There you go.... nice wallet, ooohh they don't make those any more do they? Aged vinyl, 'Faux threads' nice touch.

Ohh you have a five in there? You are sooo lucky....this trick has much more effect with a fiver! No No No forget the dollar, that five is too perfect!

If you werent such a handsome volunteer I would feel like I was pulling a tooth.

Let go of the Fin, bub, let go.
Breathe, then let go. Let go....there..that wasnt so bad was it??


Now I will do my famous vanishing act.......................................................................................

See you later........

Just kidding Anotherbeat.
It is a gift to be broke. If you had money you would spend valuable practice or performance time aquiring the 'flavor of the month'.

Maybe 25% of the magicians in the whole of the earth started in their local public library. "The Amatuer Magicians Handbook" was in all the library's I lived near. (I moved a lot)
Message: Posted by: AlexWong (Apr 6, 2003 06:11PM)
The color monte is great! I was doing it with a King of Hearts ( the final revealed card ) and Queen of Spades, and a Queen of Hearts.

At the end of the effect, I had my brother and my mother, trying to peel the cards, then finally trying to scratch at the indexes of the King and Queen of hearts. My brother even went as far as to rubbing the cards together really fast to see if heat does anything.... :rotf:
Message: Posted by: ChrisMagic52 (Apr 12, 2003 06:11PM)
I would have to say that I hated Color Monte. It was way too hard for me.
Message: Posted by: marko (Apr 12, 2003 07:25PM)
Then aspire to learn it. How can you dislike an effect simply because you have not mastered it? Clearly many others have and use this trick to great effect. Just practice.
Message: Posted by: Michaels (Apr 13, 2003 07:51PM)
Color Monte is a CLASSIC. It's up there with timeless classics such as Invisible Deck and Professor's Nightmare. For those that have trouble learning this classic may I suggest
memorizing the story line , then attempt to learn the moves.
I hope I'm not offending or stepping out of bounds with this suggestion. I had the same problem with this routine 25 years ago.
Message: Posted by: dekerivers (Jul 5, 2003 10:02PM)
Check out Paul Wilson's version called the Gypsy Monte. It's on his video called "Knock Em Dead." This version uses Tarrot cards. The suprise ending with the death card gives this effect a really eerie feel. Great story line!!! :band:
Message: Posted by: SOHartist (Jul 8, 2003 03:24PM)
I thought the double turnover was kind of hard, but over all it really is a great trick.
Message: Posted by: Dano (Jul 9, 2003 08:41PM)
Your DL setup is easy with Color Monte because it's your first move. Good luck! :bikes: :bikes:
Message: Posted by: daminfell (Jul 9, 2003 10:39PM)
Awesome effect! I have found it to get some of the best reactions of most of the tricks I do. I thought the hardest part of it was learning the patter
Message: Posted by: Sean (Jul 17, 2003 04:49PM)
I purchased Color Monte last week based on the recommendations from this board and I want to thank everyone who suggested it. I love the effect and I managed to fool the unfoolable wife with it the other night. She thought I had two blue cards and one red at the end. :bigdance:

Addendum: When I went to buy the effect at my local store, the following conversation ensued:

Me: Do you have Color Monte?
Store Owner: Yes.
Me: How come I haven't seen it here before.
Store Owner: You always ask me what's new, not what's twenty years old.
Message: Posted by: James Peters (Jul 18, 2003 01:42PM)
I suppose it just goes to show how easy it is to miss some of the older gems!

I've done it myself! :)

Message: Posted by: jarrod (Aug 10, 2003 09:50PM)
I love color monte. I was asked by someone to do a magic trick for them the other day. I had color monte with me so I did it.

Went through the routine and got to the very end, with the $14 card face down in the middle. I am just about to reach out and turn it over, when she grabs it really fast and shouts 'ITS BLUE', she turns it over and sees the $14 card, and laughs for a good 2 minutes. It was one of the best reactions I have gotten. She was so sure it was blue for some reason.


As for the difficulty. I don't think the moves are difficult at all. It took me about a week though to get smooth in terms of patter and telling the story well. It was worth it.
Message: Posted by: CLJ (Aug 11, 2003 12:51AM)
Paul Wilson's routine is great, but I'm surprised no one has mentioned the routine from Jay Sankey Live!- that is my favorite handling of the Color Monte.
Message: Posted by: Brad Burt (Aug 11, 2003 09:58PM)

I remember when Color Monte first came out. I was running a magic school/shop in Orange County and we couldn't keep that thing in stock and it was selling so well that Emerson and West were constantly out of it and in the midst of having 'more' made up! It was pretty funny in an irritating sort of way.

It really IS a classic and well worth learning. Some find the moves unnatural, but I always found them WHEN matched to the patter to be just fine and never once questioned by a lay audience.

Keep it moving in a good solid rhythm matching the patter to the moves and you'll be fine. In fact having sold a ton of them I can tell you that the biggest problem most people encounter IS getting the patter right. Go for it...

Brad Burt
Message: Posted by: Dano (Aug 12, 2003 08:01PM)
Ditto on the patter timing! :dancing:
Message: Posted by: PyroDevil (Aug 13, 2003 10:42AM)
This is a really easy trick to perform if you memorized the routine and practice the moves.
Message: Posted by: jarrod (Aug 13, 2003 06:42PM)
No one has ever questioned the moves when I have done it. The closest anyone has come to questing moves is someone thinking "how you pull the card out, determines what color it changes to". Another one thought that it was how the light reflected off of it, and couldn't figure it out after they were holding the cards. They just don't realize it could all be sleight of hand =)
Message: Posted by: GTDude11 (Aug 17, 2003 06:12PM)
I got Color Monte as one of my first packet trick (3rd I believe). I practiced it for maybe an hour and a half and was almost perfect. This varies for different people but for me it was an easy trick to learn, there is just a lot of patter to remember I think.
Message: Posted by: spatrick (Aug 20, 2003 09:06AM)
I have recently pulled this one out of the closet and started performing it again. My only trouble is the second sleight (showing the top card) as I just cant get it to be smooth 100% of the time. When I fumble it looks too much like a card move. The patter is timed right but it just doesn't flow real well at that spot.

S. Patrick
Message: Posted by: Magix (Aug 20, 2003 09:05PM)
I like to use regular cards. Has anyone come up with a good way to do color monte with regular cards? Here's how I do it.

I use a joker, the ace of hearts (the money card), and 10 of spades. I explain that I use the joker(s) because there are two to a deck.

I do the routine as written, up to the point where you say, "it can't be in the middle or on top" and then show the money card on top. You're up to five dollars now. Here's where I change it up.

I then say, "Well, I know it's on top now, you just showed me" I then fan the cards. "Then let's go double or nothing - if it's on top, we're even, if you're wrong you owe me ten" "I'll take that bet" "You owe me -" I turn over the top card (ten of spades) "- ten"

Any thoughts?