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Profile of jhudsy
Hi all,

I've gained enough confidence to start doing a few short coin routines. One problem is that the typical response I get from any spectator is ``you must have had it in your other hand'', or ``you've got another coin hidden there'', or the like. Which is true. It's not that they know how I did the routine, but by using a process of elimination, they can see how its done. They still seem to enjoy themselves, and I never say ``yes'', or ``no'', but I feel like with coins, its very hard to get a routine that will appear, for want of a better word, magical.

As a concrete example, as part of the routine, I do a french drop and production, they say ``you must have hidden the coin in your original hand''. My response (in my head): Argh!

Any suggestions for how to better deal with this situation?
Josh the Superfluous
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Inner circle
The man of
1881 Posts

Profile of Josh the Superfluous
Read either Darwin Ortiz books "Strong Magic" or "Designing Miracles". They both cover that sort of thing. Basically, you need to ad time and distance from the transfer, and something to convince them of the coins location after it is gone.

Feints are also good. Have it not work the first time, and be genuinely surprised. That will condition them to believe the initial placement.

Motivate your actions. Don't place a coin in your hand to make it vanish. Place it there to free up your other hand to do something.

Learn a move that allows you to show the original hand empty in a subtle way.

Michael Ammar's book shows a way to wipe your hands against each other, after a vanish.
What do you want in a site? "Honesty, integrity and decency." -Mike Doogan
"I hate it, I hate my ironic lovechild. I didn't even have anything to do with it" Josh #2
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Eternal Order
11209 Posts

Profile of JamesTong
This is normal and the audience's reaction to your performance is expected ... if you are just performing a single vanish and reappearance and then pause and do another effect. There is just to much time given to the audience to deduce what is happening.

But if you are to string a few effects together logically it can throw the audience off.

An example would be ...

* Show your hand empty
* Appear a coin
* Multiply the coin to 2 coins
* Coins across
* Coin through table
* Vanish both coins ... and show your hands empty again.

The actions of the above example should lead sequentially from one to the other and with proper timing and pacing and a good presentation script.

Hope this helps.
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Inner circle
NJ, U.S.
6112 Posts

Profile of Jaz
Great tips from Josh S..

Use your gaze, body language and acting to follow the 'coin'.
Focus your attention on where the 'coin' is supposed to be and believe it.
Father Photius
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Grammar Host
El Paso, TX (Formerly Amarillo)
17198 Posts

Profile of Father Photius
This happens a lot if you do only one move, like the French Drop. Most coin tricks move on at that point and involve other moves and productions. This keeps the spectator off ballance because there is so much to follow. A simple French drop or Retention vanish on it's own is pretty well going to be obvious to most people if it stops at that point.

So once the original coin is vanished time to move immediately into something else, like picking up a new coin, or reaching into your pocket with the empty hand and pull out a duplicate coin. Don't give them time to think about what just happened.
"Now here's the man with the 25 cent hands, that two bit magician..."
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New Zealand
1311 Posts

Profile of Yellowcustard
When a hand is holding out it is guilty. So you can make that hand look less guilty by holding something like a wand or a sharpie. Taking, holding and putting away these items can help in many ways.

If you look at the resources already mentioned and work this all into gather with your natural way and style all will be good.
Enjoy your magic,

and let others enjoy it as well!
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251 Posts

Profile of scaevola
I would repeat the above advice, definately follow Jaz's advice and concentrate on the empty hand. You really have to believe you have the coin in the empty hand for your spectators to believe it to. The key is directed attention. People are going to look where you are looking.

Yellowcustard's advice is good to, just make sure you don't overdo it. The key is naturalness. I really suggest relaxing your hand with nothing in it and studying what your "relaxed position" looks like. Your palm should look the same. Also study in a mirror what it looks like when you casually put one coin in one hand to another. Your false transfer should look just like your real transfer.

Also make sure you have a sufficient time delay between vanishing and producing the coin so they have time to understand that it is the hand it isn't.
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Inner circle
Chattanooga, TN
1909 Posts

Profile of DWRackley
Great advice here already.

If you’re getting a lot of comments like these, you might want to video yourself performing and watch the style. Some very simple principles can be forgotten after doing magic for a while.

Don’t rush. I’ve seen many performers do their “move” quickly. This tips the audience that “something” has just occurred, even though they may not have actually seen what happened. Keep the same pace throughout your execution.

Practice passing the coin with and without your secret move. Both ways should look as identical as is humanly possible.

(This can help to “fake out” an audience as well, if you REALLY pass the coin a few times while talking, they will come to expect that you are simply changing hands.)

Remember that a large move covers a small one. In this case, after the drop (or whatever sleight) the hand holding the coin should NOT move right away. Instead the empty hand should “pull” the coin away.

Your eyes should follow that hand, as if you yourself believe it to contain something magical.

Don’t do the reveal right away. Spend some time (maybe only a few seconds, perhaps much longer) play acting with the “hand holding the coin”, long after you’ve ditched the goods. The audience’s minds go back to whatever happened “just before”, so you don’t want them to have a clear memory of anything “special”.

Reaching into a pocket for a “wand” (I use an ink pen for this purpose) serves to help you ditch the coin. You can then show both hands empty. Note that a coin can be difficult to retrieve from here, unless you’re planning a Nest of Boxes or similar. The coin is pretty much gone.

Finally, you might also consider purchasing a “hooked coin”, which allows you to discretely position the coin in a location they would most certainly NOT suspect, thus showing both hands empty. It also allows you to bring the coin BACK into play with a minimum of fuss. (This is NOT examinable!)

And then sometimes you might run up on an audience that just "gets it". I took my kids to a magic show this weekend. In the lobby a few magicians had tables set up and were demo'ing their wares. One unfortunate fellow showed my nine year old how a coin could vanish, and the boy immediately reached for his OTHER hand. Ah, well...

Good luck to you!

...what if I could read your mind?

Chattanooga's Premier Mentalist

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Inner circle
old things in new ways - new things in old ways
9003 Posts

Profile of funsway
In all of my coin effect eBooks I stress a concept called "Preemptive Doubt," which directs the display of the 'dirty' hand empty before revealing the vanish in the 'hold' hand. This can mean 'apperently empty' by various palming methods or wand misdirection methods already mentioned; or by 'idling' the coin in some way to show the hand actually empty but keeping the coin in play.

The real answer is to never just vanish a coin (or any small object) followed by a reveal. Make your vanishes part of a larger effect.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

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The Burnaby Kid
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St. John's, Canada
3114 Posts

Profile of The Burnaby Kid
The short answer is "proper routine construction". In other words, just because you can do a wicked false transfer, doesn't mean you've done enough to make the entire trick deceptive. Start with David Roth's work and go from there -- don't just pay attention to technique, but look at why the tricks are constructed the way they are.
JACK, the Jolly Almanac of Card Knavery, a free card magic resource for beginners.
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