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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magic names and the media » » Do you consider Michael Close as an excellent card technician? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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love2laugh
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I love the work of Michael Close but it appears his name does not appear on many lists here on the Café for great card magicians. He prefers card magic above all other forms of entertainment so my quesiton is to you...

Do you consider Michael Close a talented card technician?

I'd love to hear your replies.

Take care,
L2L
Alewishus
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No. I don't.
Other people like him, so I could be wrong.


A.
Sack subs, ok Ross?
We miss you asper.
Daegs
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Card Technician?

Heck yeah, the old man(j/k) has some amazing chops!!!!

Think what you will of his opinions or presentations, but you cant deny he has chops and can handle a deck of cards extremely well.
Vraagaard
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Hi L2L

What matters is not his technique and level of such but whether his magic is astonishing which primarilly comes more from effect selection, routining, presentation and patter.

I believe people are referring to Michael Close mostly for his version of "Card Warp" (don't recall the name but you can easily do a search) and his effect "The pot hole trick" - but yes his card technique is excellent as well. If you like card magic, there is a lot to find from Michael Close.

But if you really love advanced card magic you should also pick up Larry Jennings, Dai Vernon (who makes advanced simple), Darwin ortiz, Bill Mallone, Steve Draun, Ed Marlo etc.
jcards01
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Yes!
Jimmy 'Cards' Molinari
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dead_man
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I thinke he talented, and I have a couple of his dvd, and yes, his card warp, and pothole trick are great. I just don't like his proformance style, but I respect him.
If the eyes are the window to the soul, you're not going to like the view.
Caleb Wiles
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He is one of the greatest thinkers in magic. His techniques are flawless. However, as a performer, I don't care for his style or much of his material.

Caleb
Check out my Main Event project (DVD or Download).

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love2laugh
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Quote:
On 2005-08-05 05:29, Vraagaard wrote:
Hi L2L

What matters is not his technique and level of such but whether his magic is astonishing which primarilly comes more from effect selection, routining, presentation and patter.

I believe people are referring to Michael Close mostly for his version of "Card Warp" (don't recall the name but you can easily do a search) and his effect "The pot hole trick" - but yes his card technique is excellent as well. If you like card magic, there is a lot to find from Michael Close.

But if you really love advanced card magic you should also pick up Larry Jennings, Dai Vernon (who makes advanced simple), Darwin ortiz, Bill Mallone, Steve Draun, Ed Marlo etc.

Excellent point! I totally agree with you. Overall, I think Michael Close is one of my favorite performers. I love his creativity and routine construction. He is such a perfectionist when it comes to routining. I also think he is very skilled technically yet I believe I'm getting caught up in the technical slight side rather than presentation. I was just suprised that on many posts here in the Café his name is not up there with the greats in card magic. I'd put him in a top 10 list due to some of his wonderful creations.

I appreciate all your replies.

Take care,
L2L
TheAmbitiousCard
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I have no idea if he sits around doing riffle stacking,
card manipulations, color changes, false shuffles, etc.

What he knows and does with cards he seems to do very very well.
Which is, in my opinion, the correct way to go about it.
You don't need to know everything.

He seems a bit arrogant in his style but that could be just how he comes accross on video (or lecture). I try to ignore that type of thing from a teaching video.

His routines also seem too long for my style and a several of them, I can't picture being using in a restaurant except in special situations. I'm wrong, though, as he apparently did.

I have all of his books and videos. Excellent material to study.

Sadly, the rankings of performers often ends up being "who's flashy" contest
or "who's funny" contest.
But that has nothing to do with good magic. I notice that he's smooth
and natural in his body language and slights. That is how I classify
a magician as good.

Rankings (voting) to me are a pure waste of time. Because they usually
take into account the wrong things.

Example...
I went to the Reno Magic Convention and there was
a "Strolling Olympics". A competition to see who the best was.
In other words... a ranking.

We (non-performers) sat at tables and waited for the contestants to visit
us one at a time. What a relaxing and enjoyable way to end the evening.


NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was like a tidal wave of obnoxious behavior.
I was horrified that many of the performers were more interested
in jumping onto the tables, yelling, screaming, and being obnoxious
than they were interested in performing magic.

In fact, as the ranking ended up, the most obnoxious got the grand prize.
Gee.... aren't we a thoughtful bunch.

I have no idea what the winner performed. I do remember things that every other person performed but not him. I just remember him diving onto the table I was
sitting at and almost making me get up and leave the building. Oh. And lots of yelling. I remember that too.

Maybe everybody was scared not to vote for him in fear that he might drop his pants and do something more obnoxious. No wait. He did drop his pants after he won the winning vote. My mistake.

um... what were we talking about? Sorry!
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Vraagaard
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Dear Frank,

I agree - I dislike the fact that "magicians" is getting more obnoxious, and that their jokes gets more and more "below the belt", and that they divert more and more away from magic. They call themselves magicians but hardly perform any magic - seem like they try do to s stand up comedy routine instead. However, on the good side - that simply makes me stand out to the audience like the old school, hopefully elegant and hopefully classy magician - that I strive to be. The young generation might call it boring - but they forget how much attention David Blaine got from simply focusing on the magic when he performed his simple street magic classics - I believe a magic performance beats the other stuff in the long run - at least they won't be remembered as magicians.
love2laugh
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Frank, I agree as well. It sounds like that must have been a frustrating experience.

Vraagaard, I think audiences do get mixed messages these days as to what constitutes classic magic vs. comedy. It is important to make our audiences laugh (I love to laugh) but retaining our magician identity is also of value. There is nothing wrong with being a comedian yet if you gain greater satisfaction from passing on the classics of magic then that is very noble.

Overall, I think Michael Close is extremely witty and funny. I saw him live in Vegas, on his videos, and in a recent lecture. He could probably be a stand up comedian if he wanted to be. I do see he has a flair of arrogance yet he incorporates this personality into his show and utilizes it which is great. I think Close is a great performer and I actually miss his reviews in Magic Magazine. I just was curious where his talents stood with respect to card handling technique. Thanks for your comments.

L2L
MField2000
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Instead of dissing a great magician, let's look at some of his positive points. He is unexcelled when it comes to combining estimation work with a memorized deck and Faro work. His reviews in Magic magazine were truly excellent (and he'll be reviewing books for Genii magazine next). He is a very intelligent man whose Pothole Trick and many others are first rate. His Workers series of 5 volumes are must-haves for the serious card magician.

It's easy to sit there and whine about what you don't like. Unless you're a paid reviewer or have achieved a measure of success yourself, think twice before putting down someone who has earned respect from many.

Go back and look at Jimmy Cards Molinari's eloquent statement.

Matt Field
rannie
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A fantastic thinker and a great musician. He is not the best technician , but he has the chops and he works very clean.

Rannie
"If you can't teach an old dog new tricks, trick the old dog to learn."

-Rannie Raymundo-
aka The Boss
aka The Manila Enforcer

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Euangelion
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What Mike Close does with cards he does so well nobody notices. I believe that makes Mike very, very happy and very, very good.

Quote:
On 2005-08-05 12:40, Frank Starsini wrote:

I have no idea what the winner performed. I do remember things that every other person performed but not him. I just remember him diving onto the table I was
sitting at and almost making me get up and leave the building. Oh. And lots of yelling. I remember that too.

Maybe everybody was scared not to vote for him in fear that he might drop his pants and do something more obnoxious. No wait. He did drop his pants after he won the winning vote. My mistake.

um... what were we talking about? Sorry!


Frank, maybe it was just his way of changing the moment so he could make his move. Just teasing. But he must really have a terrible pass to need that much shade.
Bill Esborn

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Review King
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I agree with Frank Starsini!
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

..........John Greenleaf Whittier
Richard Shippy
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Michael Close is VERY talented! I am a big fan of his card work and his Workers series is fantastic!

Take care,
Rich

P.S.
I agree with Frank as well. Smile
"They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they'd make up their minds." ~ Winston Churchill
Erdnase27
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1 word..yes
SOHA
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Good technician maybe, but not excellent. He may have some good material, but as a performer he makes ME sleepy.
wsduncan
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I think you don’t see much about him here on the café, because most of those who post here are hobbyist magicians who don’t work much. Hobbyists tend to like stuff that’s easy to do with moves they already know (like much of Sankeys’ work) or massively difficult macho card work (like some Marlo and Jenning’s stuff) that they can use to show off their “skillz”. Close’s stuff is very personal and designed for where he works. To use much of it you’ll have to think about it and adapt it to your performing circumstances. For me his work is more a source of inspiration than of specific material.

Close is an acknowledged master of the memorized deck, the faro shuffle and palming so I think it’s silly to suggest that he’s not a great technician. His most recent e-Book Closely Guarded Secrets contains some of the most interesting work published on the pass in a decade and a version of the Collectors that’s even harder than the Jennings effect it’s based on. His work on the Black Pass is ground breaking and he has one of the few turnover passes I’ve ever see that actually looks like you’re turning over the pack. When most “experts” do a turnover pass it looks like they’re juggling bricks.

So, in short: what Jimmy “Cards” said.

Everyone has different tastes but I’m amazed to hear anyone say they don’t like his performance work (vs. his technique). I’ve seen most of the “great” close-up magicians of the last twenty years and Mr. Close is probably my favorite all around performer. He’s a natural comic who works very hard to script his material so that he knows exactly what syllable will be spoken as a move is done. His close up for kids and adults is equally entertaining and when I think of the ten best close up tricks I’ve ever seen three of them are his:
The Frog Price
The El Cheapo Magic Club
The Big Surprise

I would be honestly interested in hearing from those who don’t care for his work, to cite the names of those whom they prefer so we could understand what you want out of a magic act?
Magicmatt1982
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Well I do not like his card stuff all the much. I love his thoughts about magic and magicians but his card is not the great to me. The only thing I like of his card work would be the perfect faro dvd . That is it
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