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Inner circle
1264 Posts

Profile of Kaliix
I never had a problem with "finger cutting" rope. I don't see how one can argue that FC a rope isn't magical when magicians by their very definition do the impossible. It shouldn't be possible to pass a ring through a solid piece of rope. Neither is it possible to stretch ropes and make them even, nor is it possible to cut pieces off a rope and put them back on. It isn't possible to cut a rope and then restore it, or have knots dissolve off. But somehow, after showing a rope whole and then performing magic with it and the ring, it isn't magical to cut the rope with your finger??? Come on...

When I was trying to learn Williamson's rope routine, I practiced it on my sister-in-law. She is one of those types who like to catch magicians on stuff, to figure out how we do something and she would never hesitate to tell me how I did something if she figured it out. When I finger cut that rope, her mouth dropped. She had no clue how it was done and it was actually the most magical part of the routine for her. Finger cutting is fine. IMHO, YMMV...
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
~George Bernard Shaw
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old things in new ways - new things in old ways
8025 Posts

Profile of funsway
"Come on... " -- OK, since you asked.

I might agree to your view if you restored the rope AFTER the finger cut and passed the rope out.
Did you not use scissors before? Why if you can cut it with your fingers?

For me, one key to sustaining the illusion of "must be magic" is to avoid any action that might suggest something suspicious. (a tell?)

It is similar to using a wand in only one routine and not others. Do use it in only one trick draws attention the wand as a track.

You may do it differently, but I have never seen a finger cut offered as anything other than a flourish or humorous diversion.
Fine from the entertainment angle, but possibly diluting the desired "must be magic" memory.

Maybe the difference is that I don't strive for "magical." I desire a long term memory of "no explanation except magic."
I do not want the "cut" to be anything but a normal action and often let a spectator do it. The "inexplicable phenomenon" comes later.

I do not "do the impossible." I orchestrate conditions under which magic accomplishes results not normally possible.

"magical" is not part of any definition I know.
"the more one pretends at magic, the more awe and wonder will be found in real life." Arnold Furst

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Profile of countrymaven
To me, finger cutting ropes, after a penetration, is like
floating a lady, then making a support "appear" under her, out of the blue.
I just don't think it contributes to the realism of the effect. this is true for the cut and restored rope, for me too.
I don't really care if all the top magicians said this was the only right way to do it, for me it is wrong.
the people I work for are not stupid. I know audiences can differ. Normally, it is not the audiences' intelligence that differs so much, mostly it starts with the mentally challenged assumptions the performers make. I don't need to justify a move or routine to save a little rope. I can come up with another move or presentation that would achieve something else.

this is my take on it. If you want to finger cut and also reveal how you do it, that is fine. that is just not my style. I also don't like fancy flourishes. I am trying to diminish any way they could explain this other than magic. don't blow your Christmas tree bulbs over this, ok? Merry Christmas.
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