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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » Skill level for Mind Mysteries DVD's? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Regular user
113 Posts

Profile of philipmac
I was wondering how hard the material is to perform in each of Richard Osterlind's Mind Mysteries DVD’s. Would it be too hard for a semi-beginner? And if it is hard to perform, why is it hard. Is it hard to present, or hard to memorise etc. Also how hard is the Radar deck and would it be suitable for a semi-beginner like me.
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Elite user
Salt Lake City, UT
426 Posts

Profile of MisterE21
As with most mentalism, the moves aren't hard. It's not as if we're talking about perfect faro shuffles or classic palming 6 coins...

The difficulty is in the performance...Luckily, that's one of the strong points of Richard's DVD's, is you get to see a masterful presentation of mentalism.

I would definetely get them, even if you just work on them and chew on the information for awhile. That's what I've been doing since they came out...thinking, chewing, working on the presentations.

There is nothing that I would consider really difficult as far as moves go. Smile

Your EFFECT is only as good as its AFFECT.
mike stevenson
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Profile of mike stevenson
You'll probably get the methods and moves down in minutes, but it'll take you years to get the reactions that Mr Osterlind gets from them.
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Elite user
Salt Lake City, UT
426 Posts

Profile of MisterE21
Also, on a personal note...Richard is very some ways TOO good.

Allow me to explain...

You're new to this, as I am...I was a lot newer when when I first watched Richard's DVD. His presentations are may become almost depressing for you. ::grin:: I went through a phase where I thought "there is no WAY I can make that my own and get as good of reactions..." Honestly, for weeks after watching his first DVD I thought I was ruined.

I simply could not imagine any effects, any routines, that would be as strong as what he did. Since it's just not my style to copy an entire routine, from start to finish...I was...floored. I did some serious soul searching.

Honestly, for my money, his is the best performance of mentalism I have ever seen. It's the bar to which I aspire.

Just be aware of the tendancy to just take it, memorize it and do it the way Rich does it. It won't work...


Your EFFECT is only as good as its AFFECT.
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London UK
100 Posts

Profile of seanadl
Don't let anything daunt you ! Decide if you want to present mentalism in a serious slightly dangerous tone, entertaining and thought provoking, real,purely psychological....In fact the list is endless!
once you know how you would like others to percieve your mentalism then its a case of adapting and fitting into that role. The way I find comfortable is to present myself how I would expect such things as "real mind reading" or real "metal bending" or real "thought controlling" to be. Make it real to yourself and it might begin to wash with your audience. Richard seems to present his in a seemingly light hearted manner, but the revelations at the end are always understated and he lets the audience really take in whats happened and they react accordingly. Its like he knows whats about to happen and cant explain it himself and he wants the audience to experience this too. He is letting them in on something truely unusual.
I find all my time goes into presenting something in a suitable style for myself, then I work on the moves and the routine a bit more.
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Profile of Mesaboogie
It's always a very positive thing to see a performer that is so much better than you as it gives you a reality check and makes you strive to improve. If you believed there was no one better than you, you are masked into believing you cannot get better, or at least, not need to.

I remember 12 years ago when I first started playing guitar and hearing Eric Clapton pour out effortless adlibed solos thinking "Oh my god !! Should I bother even continuing". But I did, and, after years of practice, there are moments when I can belt out a solo close to his level. It takes a long, long time, but keep with it.

By the way, on a magical note, I was becoming quite content with my performance until I saw Derren Browns theatrical masterpeice last year...."REALITY CHECK !"


Everyday, in everyway, I am becoming better and better
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Loyal user
Sydney, Global
230 Posts

Profile of mOzerian
I found that osterlind in his series not only shares with you complete routines and effects. But if you treat all the information especially the subtle way he deals with people and aspects of the presentation as a complete learning aid that you can carry with you in every effect you do.

He gives much more than simple effects, techniques and routines. You can take as much or as little as you concieve.

I also noticed, he is not to worried about individual mechanics or techniques that you can learn anywhere...but much more focussed on RESULT EFFECT the ole MEANS to an END approach.

Some of his basic effects look simple...but they are brilliantly etched by a well worn path through the real world jungle
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Bude England
78 Posts

Profile of PinkGlove
I must agree with the overall sentiment here. Mind Mysteries is by far the best DVD purchase I have made. The routines are solid workers, very commercial and, in terms of actual work - very easy to do.

However - The thing that makes them so powerful is Osterlind's masterful presentation. I also found my self saying "S*** I've got work to do." after watching Mind Mysteries. In response to this - I worked harder and harder at my presentation, I became a better performer.

The same thing happened again last night when I saw Derren Brown on stage. I turned to my friend and said "S*** I've got more work to do."

Ultimately you can only gain from the purchase, he teaches so much to you - Enjoy the DVDs.

Trust anyone who has gone through it.
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974 Posts

Profile of Withnail
This has probably been said to death, many many times but...

Read Pure Effect. I bought it many moons ago, and skimmed through it. Not good.

I re-read it the other week (thanks to seing DB live) and the stuff he teaches you is priceless.

In my opinion, it taught me to think about how I wanted the audience to react (can I REALLY read their minds, or am I using some NLP-type trickery to influence them, or is it just a big trick), then think how can I achieve that.

The tricks are quite easy - it's getting the specs to react which is the hard part.

I think that's what Seanadl said too, although slightly better than me Smile
Yet again that oaf has destroyed my day
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London, England
286 Posts

Profile of Xia
Then after that pick up Absolute magic!!
"They say time is money...i say time is precious"
"They say the whole is much more than the sum of its Parts...Thats why a man is much more than the sum of his Past!"
Sven Rygh
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Inner circle
Oslo, Norway.
1945 Posts

Profile of Sven Rygh
What happened to the initial question???

It has been said tons of times before, and also in this thread; Much mentalism is not techniqually difficult. You have to master each move and every step of the routine to perfection, though.
BUT: Just mastering the technique and moves wouldn't make you able to more than tho show your spectactors "puzzles" or "just magic tricks".
Working on understanding Richard's (in this case) idea and philosophy on a routine, listening to his experiences and advices, and watching him doing the routines, the fine, often almost invisible details and bits and bites time after time will get you closer to your goals.
Then THINK some more.
Chew on it.
Digest it.
Follow what Richard several times has suggested; Pretend (just for yourself of course!!!) That YOU invented the routine.
In case you REALLY had, How would YOU have scripted and routined it to fit YOUR style and personality??.

THEN you could start the work.
To learn it.

Then script the routine and work on the presentation.

To give you an example; Even though not techniqually complicated, The Breakthrough Card System "Test Condition Routine" moved around in my mind for months before I showed it to a living soul.

By the time I felt that I was ready to perform it, I knew that I would give my spectactors a memorable moment with it.

And I do.

Each and every time.

Thanks, Richard!

So conclusion is, If you have the will and patience to invest in each routine you pick from Mind Mysteries (or any other material to your likings for that matter!)the time and work they deserve,

you will make mirackles.

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Inner circle
Portland, OR
3545 Posts

Profile of Turk

I couldn't say it better. Lot of wisdom in your last post. There is sooo much to learn from these DVDs.

The only thing I might hesitantly add is to suggest that a person replay the DVDs over and over again as he does this THINKING that you so correctly recommend.

As you watch and re-watch the DVDs and "think", I would respectfully suggest that you begin to ask yourself specific questions such as: "Why did Richard do that that way"? "Why didn't he do "this" instead"? "What angle problems was he encountering and how did he overcome them?" "What type of audience problems did he experience and how did he handle them?" "How did he recover from a mistake or an unexpected audience reaction/movement/screwup" "How did he introduce his prop(s) for each routine"?

I'd also watch his presentation to try to gain an appreciation and real insight for his timing, his body language, his masking and misdirection, his audience management and his audience instructions. Other than that, just sit back and enjoy the show. (grin)

And then, as you suggested, only then begin to try to incorporate the methodology (or a better methodology for YOU) with YOUR "patter" and presentation and begin to make your routine "yours".

I was fortunate to recently be able to borrow these videos from a friend and watch them. I was completely floored!! Richard's 4 DVD set has immediately shot up to the top of my list as my all-time favorite magic instructional videos. My own set of these DVDs are now speedily winging their way to me as we speak. When they arrive, you'll have to pry them from my cold dead hands to get them away from me.

Again, great advice, Sven.

Magic is a vanishing Art.

This must not be Kansas anymore, Toto.

Eschew obfuscation.
Sven Rygh
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Inner circle
Oslo, Norway.
1945 Posts

Profile of Sven Rygh
Thanks Mike!

Yeah, I ment to say what you so correctly emphasize; Replay....and replay again!!!...Many times.
Not many will get to the real meat of it after just one or two viewings.

I wonder how many hours (or days Smile ) I have spent spent watching the BCS routines...or the watch routine...or the magazine test...or... Smile
Each time I put the material away and watched it again, I discovered new details I didn't notice in the first place.

I didn't mention the bonus sections. To me they are pure gold!
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Eternal Order
High Desert
11989 Posts

Profile of Decomposed
To me, its all about being able to act. I love his approach. He seems so sincere and polished at the same time:)
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Profile of JudgeBean
I learned a lot by watching the dvd performances with out the sound.

the subtle way of turning and hand expressions....yes they are all Mr. Osterlinds.
I do think you can learn a lot of what needs to be there and what does not need to be there and what you can make your very own.

He uses jokes to misdirect a lot. He also uses jokes to introduce a effect. Now I am thinking how can I use my personailty and humor to get the same thing?

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