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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » All tied up! » » The Last One (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

MarkTripp
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Michigan
618 Posts

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I have always thought this, along with another trick, was a great opening for an escape show.

As this is my final gift to the room, and there is no way I can get people any more upset with me, let me state for the record that most escape artists I have ever seen, just don't get it.

WHY, and I really mean for you to reflect on that, WHY should I care if you escape or not from the death device, if I don't like you? If your come off as someone who thinks they are smarter than me, or with an ego, or any of the believed "Houdini" mannerisms, frankly I hope you drown. Your core job, is to make very sure they care what happens when you get there.

When I did "Houdini Lives Again", we opened with an Owen trick called "Through the Needle" (4165). This is a stage version of the trick where a ribbon threads itself on an examined needle. The presentation was to walk out with a copy of the Robert Houdin book (fake, I wasn't going to carry the real one around) and talk about young Eric Weiss reading this book as a child, and wanting to be a magician. I claimed this trick was in the book (yes, this is a lie, so was the movie), and did it. After the applause died down, I said "But Eric was thinking something else, Eric was thinking, if you can get this ribbon on the needle, you can get the ribbon, off the needle.

From there we used that sub trunk curtian yet again! (for the first time in the show really). Tarbell 6 is vital to the escape artist. Lesson 80 page 309 has the best spirit tie, and the one people like John Calvert used for years. The presentation was at that time many people were going to "speak to the spirits". Eric saw one of these shows too, and this is what he saw (yes, another lie, its a show).

When this routine was over, with a smile I would say "But Eric knew the truth. Eric knew that the spirits didn't move those objects, and he knew exactly how the objects moved. Now, he was ready to show the world.

From there we went into the escape act as presented by Viano with input from Burling Hull. Rope Tie, Siberian Chain, Handcuff Act, and Strait jacket were done with running comment by me as to where and when these things were first performed, stories about Houdini, and lots of jokes on me never the audience.

I should also point out we had an audience assistant finding the helpers for my next escape as I was doing the one before it. This "one ahead" kept the show flowing and ended stage waits.

We finished the first half of the show with Viano's Guilloteen (I know I spelled it wrong, kinda hard to write now), and if you have never seen it, it stops the show. I hope that the problems with me will not carry over. He is willing to come out of retirement and do this at the convention next year. You don't want to miss that.

After the intermission I did a quick trick to "get them back" and said that now I was going to show them exactly how Houdini did his show all those years ago. Everything I say will be as he said it. Mark Tripp will walk off the stage, but Houdini, will return.

I then did three tricks, the needles, the canvas covered box (more on that in a moment), and either the milk can or the water torture cell.

The sub trunk was a challenge as we didn't have a girl assistant or anyone trained to do the routine. I answered it by taking my jacket off and giving it to a specator. I was cuffed behind my back, put in the bag, in the trunk, in the canvas cover. The curtian was lifted and I sprung up, free, and said, "Thats MY jacket". I grabed it and went down. They droped the curtain and there was the still sealed trunk. Take everything off, and inside the bag my jacket is back on and I am still cuffed.

I then walk forward and "break character" to speak with the audience, this was the whole game....

"You know, this is a hard part of the show for me. Not just the escape itself, but how I feel about it. If I was an actor doing a show about Lincoln, no one would expect me to get shot at the end. But, do a show about Houdini, and people expect you to do this....."

Now we did either the milk can or the water torture cell, and never failed to get a standing ovation at the finish. At the end of the show I let people come up and examine everything, as I sat there and looked each one in the eye and honestly said thank you for coming.

People reacting with anger to my writing is nothing new. The amature magicians were so upset with my Oreo Report in Genii that they drove me from there. Such it is in here.

I hope some of these things help, I hope it makes at least a few of you to bravely look in the mirror of your soul and be better than you think you can be. Never forget, that "good enough", is the greatest roadblock to "best".

As for me, I shall return.... to the shadows
Harry Murphy
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Inner circle
Maryland
5370 Posts

Profile of Harry Murphy
I'm glad you're here, and glad you are sharing! You are saying what I have said from the beginning, it's all bout entertainment!

When can we expect the book?
The artist formally known as Mumblepeas!
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