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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ever so sleightly » » New to sponge balls (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Larry Barnowsky
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In the book I say many times to use the routines I provide as a guide and change the script to fit your style.
As far as robotic scripted performances, that is a sign of a performer who cannot deliver lines properly. Some people do not have the theatrical ability to present a magic routine from a script. If you can't, then of course don't do that. Some of the best performances of magic I've seen were scripted word for word. That includes Lance Burton on stage at the Monte Carlo and Ricky Jay on Broadway and on TV. In fact one of the card routines that Ricky Jay performed on TV (I think on a Doug Henning Special) was the exact script word for word from Erdnase, The Exclusive Coterie. The key is to be prepared. Follow an outline, follow a script. Have a plan. If you are talented enough to improvise then do that. But the important thing is to know what you are doing in advance. To quote a line from my book, the audience should remember you as the star in the spotlight and not the deer in the headlights.

Larry
Dr_J_Ayala
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In search of Vlad Dracul and his
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Quote:
On 2011-08-20 20:55, Larry Barnowsky wrote:
In the book I say many times to use the routines I provide as a guide and change the script to fit your style.
As far as robotic scripted performances, that is a sign of a performer who cannot deliver lines properly. Some people do not have the theatrical ability to present a magic routine from a script. If you can't, then of course don't do that. Some of the best performances of magic I've seen were scripted word for word. That includes Lance Burton on stage at the Monte Carlo and Ricky Jay on Broadway and on TV. In fact one of the card routines that Ricky Jay performed on TV (I think on a Doug Henning Special) was the exact script word for word from Erdnase, The Exclusive Coterie. The key is to be prepared. Follow an outline, follow a script. Have a plan. If you are talented enough to improvise then do that. But the important thing is to know what you are doing in advance. To quote a line from my book, the audience should remember you as the star in the spotlight and not the deer in the headlights.

Larry


Right on, Larry! To add to this, has anyone ever seen Ricky Jay perform The History Lesson in person? The words are exactly the same, without change or variation in any way whatsoever, every single time.
KingNothing
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Oh, I didn't say to eschew a script or any type of plan entirely. I just said "make it yours." If you encourage changing the script in your book, that's definitely a good thing.
Larry Barnowsky
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We're in agreement. Smile

:readingbook:
Andy Gemini
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England
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This is one reason I enjoy using this forum,there is so much for me to learn about magic it is great to get opinions from you more experienced guys.

Many thanks for all the advice, I will let you know how I get on!
Decomposed
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High Desert
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Sponge balls still never fail to entertain, young and old alike. Smile
billappleton
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Los Gatos, California
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Quote:
On 2011-08-22 21:07, Decomposed wrote:
Sponge balls still never fail to entertain, young and old alike. Smile


People love sponge balls. Its hard to explain. If you had to give up cards, coins, or sponge balls, which would it be?
mago.niko
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Athens, Greece
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Hello guys.. I'm also new to spongeballs. I recently made an order whithout asking anyone more experienced and got some 2.5 inch spongeballs..
And guess what.. They are huge!! For routines like David Stone's or Greg Wilson's what size is the best??
My hands are medium size to large.
Searching for the magic side of life...
bowers
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Mago.niko 2" spongeballs are the most common
people use for your size hands.
ed rhodes
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If I had to choose, I'd give up coins. Cards are too versatile and, as it's been mentioned, sponge balls are just too entertaining.
I bought car wash sponges, cut them into six squares and started trimming corners until I had something between 1 1/2" and 2". So I have three sets of sponge balls in case I lose one or it wears out.

I use the basic sponge ball routine in Mark Wilson's book.

Here's a thought BTW. Wyler's fruit drinks makes a "no calorie" drink. The envelopes come in a plastic tube with a cap. My sponge balls fit perfectly in one and don't get dented in my case.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
VE Day
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Andy,
I don't know about the Spongeball Toolkit, it doesn't look like the sort of thing I would personally buy. I learned my Close-Up Spongeball Routine after reading the Chapter on Balls in Patrick Page's "Big Book Of Magic". You will learn a lot from Pat Page, he was a great teacher and talker and one of the kings of the spongeball. You can usually find plenty of copies of the Big Book Of Magic knocking around very cheaply and it is a very handy bible of magic to have.

As said above Pat Page's Secret Seminar 5 DVD - Sponge Balls has even more stuff in it than his book and you can polish the stuff you learned from his book or elsewhere and also he shows you various other great ideas and routines using spongeballs for both your Close-Up Act and your Stage Act. I'd say it is well worth the investment ahead of anything else on spongeballs.

Remember that you don't have to spend much money to learn or buy spongeballs. Just the material I've described above is more than plenty, and the big reactions they get from your audiences is worth a million.
jolyonjenkins
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I love Geoff Williams' "Hairballs". It's on his Miracles for Mortals DVD but for some reason the performance got left off the DVD so you can find it on Youtube. You can off course customise it - I start with purse frame and Sanada gimmick and finish with some stuff from Mark Wilson.
Jolyon Jenkins
Bill Palmer
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How you produce and dispose of the sponge balls depends largely upon the venues where you are performing. So do the balls themselves. For example, I have found that cubes work better in restaurants than balls. Cubes don't roll. So when you have the inevitable "ball drop to the floor" you don't have to chase the balls around under all the tables.

If you can find Frank Garcia's "Message from Garcia" pamphlet on sponge balls and the Magic, Inc. "Sponge Book" you will find some extremely practical material that you will use.
"The Swatter"

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My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

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dantitmussmagic
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This thread is a massive help! I'm starting up with magic and have only really done card stuff, and want to try coins and sponge balls next - coins is proving to be really difficult. I think I'm going to get the instant download 'World's greatest magic - sponge balls' download, unless anybody wouldn't recommend this or has a better instant download in mind?
Bill Palmer
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Seriously, get the two booklets I recommended. They will cost you about $20. There is excellent material in there. Don't be so impatient.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
dantitmussmagic
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Yeah, had a look at Patrick Page's sponge balls DVD (5), really like the routine he has on there - time to get practising! Bill Palmer, was "Don't be so impatient" directed at me?
billappleton
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I can't really recommend the "World's greatest magic - sponge balls" DVD. If you are trying to see everything about sponge balls then you have to have it, but for the most part this was disappointing. How many different ways can two balls jump to the spectator hand? The only thing I really liked was the Steve Dacri segment with Martians, which is incredibly well thought out. Watching Garcia and Thompson with the Benson Bowls was not what I was hoping for. The Goshman segment was way too short.

And at the risk of nasty PMs, I don't think the quality of the sleight of hand was where it should have been among these workers. There is flashing all over the place, even in this fairly controlled environment with lots of cute girls in the front row. You just wouldn't see Kenner, Dill, or Jones performing at this skill level. Maybe sponge balls are the problem, I don't think they get the attention they deserve, there just isn't the level of innovation and focus on sponge balls that I see in other branches of magic. Sorry, just keepin' it real.
Dr_J_Ayala
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I cannot recommend the World's Greatest Magic - Sponge Balls DVD enough; It was all very well performed and there is something on it for everyone. Magicians that have been doing sponge balls for a long time may not get much from it, but it is still fun to watch and there are still ideas they can use. There is a LOT of material on this DVD.

As for the posed question of, "How many ways are there to make a sponge ball jump from one hand to another?" That is like asking how many ways are there to make a coin, card or silk change color...the answer to which, for that matter (including sponge balls), is: More than you think. In the end, it is the presentation that counts.

I recommmend this video on top of the books that I have mentioned in past posts, as well as what Bill Palmer mentioned above. Take your time in the different genres and give each one the time and practice they deserve and they will all serve you well. It is absolutely true that sponge ball magic does not get the attention it deserves.

At any rate, avoid the Jay Noblezada DVD. That thing is HORRIBLE.

While I recommend books over DVDs any day, there is one more DVD on sponge work that I would recommend, which has yet again something for everyone, and that is the "Balles Eponges" DVD from Jean Pierre Vallarino. I am not sure if it is available with English dubbing or subtitles, but it is very much worth looking into. It has a lot of unique material on it.

I hope this information is useful to you.
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