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Credits & Inspirations

All great magic and mentalism is built on the shoulders of those
who have come before. It is important that we remember the
names of those whose work we find inspiration and joy in. Our
privilege is given to us in bringing those concepts, ideas and
techniques to life in our performances; our reward is the reaction
and applause from the audience.
This is, for the most part, applause those who have inspired us
can no longer hear. The applause is our reward, and remembering
their names is our duty and their reward.
This list of credits is far from exhaustive on each premise
contained on this DVD set; however I have done my best to
directly cite those people who have directly inspired me in this

Silent Communication
This routine is, as far as I am aware, a new premise in the world
of mentalism. It was developed in my exploration of the classic
E.S.P match-up sequence, informed by a desire to take the generic
nature of the ESP cards and transform them into something that
would allow for a demonstration driven by personal information.
The simple method of edge marked boards can be traced to the
early works on edge marked playing cards. However, with the
simple nature of the method, it is impossible for me to credit any
specific person.
This routine has been shared for the first time on this DVD set,
but was developed in the early part of 2012.

Dirty Secret Club

I developed this routine sometime in 2010 for use in cabaret and
comedy club settings. It was inspired by The OM Billet Box,
named after its inventor, Otis Manning, which was introduced to
mentalists in the 1940s by Theo. Annemann through his writings
in The Jinx, and later in his book Practical Mental Magic. This
routine allows the performer to secretly exchange a large number
of billets.
I had made The OM Billet Box and was searching for an
interesting use within a show I was performing at that time. The
premise came easily thanks to a continued focus on making all
mentalism driven by personal information.
This routine also takes inspiration from Banacheks Psychic
Portfolio which I first learned from his Escape From The Asylum
Convention - Lecture Notes, in which a handful of billets are
secrets exchanged to force a drawing.
From these two points of inspiration the routine came together
easily and quickly. I exchanged The OM Billet Box for a simple
switching envelope of my own design based upon the information
continued within Practical Mental Magic by Annemann. A version
of this routine was first published in my book Distractions in 2014.

Black Ball Location

This routine was directly inspired by the modern marvel of
minimalist mentalism, Kurotsuke by my friend and teacher, the
great Max Maven. This appears on Volume 1 of the VideoMind
series produced by L&L publishing.
My routining was simply an effort to take the fantastic premise
gifted to us by Max and make it focus on personal information.
It takes inspiration from the Tossed Out Deck and General
Card methodology (see Touching on Hypnosis for further
credits for these).
I am certain that my specific method for locating the black ball
(utilising a magnet) is something that has been explored by
many others, but I am unaware of the specific routines utilising
a magnet in print.

Shape Shifter Drawing Duplication

This routine was inspired by the classic drawing duplication
premise, dating right the way back to the very early days of
Spiritualism. My method and approach to use preshow work
was developed in total isolation from outside sources. I simply
developed this approach by actually doing preshow work for
real people. Each time I observed something working or failing,
and I made adjustments to the process. Eventually I developed a
reliable and trustworthy approach.
The concept of multiple out preshow work was something I
first developed in 2010 and first published in a limited edition
manuscript titled The Ink Blot Test in late 2012. It was clearly
inspired by the many magic tricks in which the performer forces
to a series of choices (for each of which he has an out). However,
as it pertains to this routine, no specific effect or method inspired
this preshow approach.

Touching on Hypnosis
Touching on Hypnosis is a continued exploration of my effect
Touching On Hoy, which I developed in 2006 and first published
in my book The Coral Fang. It takes inspiration from the Tossed
Out Deck principle, as popularized by David Hoy with his neoclassic routine published in The Bold and Subtle Miracles of Doctor
Faust. The basic principle of Tossed Out Deck dates back to
what is possibly the oldest card trick known: The General Card.
The earliest reference I have found for this is c. 1700, on p. 79
of the Pieper translation. Inspiration was also taken from the
mechanics of Banacheks PK Touches, which is a very different
The specific application to a false hypnotic demonstration was
influenced by the classic works on false stage hypnosis, and
specifically from the information contained within The Mental
Mysteries and Other Writings of William W. Larsen Sr. In that
book, he details the Dr Q Hypnotic Act in which spectators are
stooged in a very bold way to simply pretend they are hypnotised.
My outcome is very different and removed from each of these
sources but nonetheless, each of these sources have played their
part in bringing me to the present routine.

Modern Oracle
The modern oracle act utilises a flawless envelope to exchange
one billet for another. I first encountered this wonderful switch
on page 164 of The Secret Ways Of Al Baker published in 1941.
The manner in which I utilise information (by cribbing it on the
cards and introducing them into the stack) was simply a solution
that appealed to me due to its bold nature. It might be inspired by
the Q&A routines of old, in which the performer held out a crib
beneath a crystal ball. By hiding the information in the visible
objects in use the secret is hidden in plain site, much like the crib
hidden within the crystal ball or on the performers shirt sleeve.
My structure and handling came from repeated performance for
real audiences.
This routine was developed in isolation, but as with most of my
material, it was inspired by the thinking of Michael Weber.

Fools Journey
This simple concept was developed in isolation to any other
material. It just seemed like a really simple way to get a big
question answered without losing the feeling of mystery. I am
sure many readers have developed such things over the years,
however I have not seen anything like this anywhere else.

Using an iPhone as a Shiner

The blindfold deal was inspired by the great stories of Walter
Irving Scott, which I first read about in the wonderful Phantoms
of the Card Table: Confessions of a Card Sharp by David Britland
and Gazzo.
My use of a smartphone in place of a shiner was something that
was inspired by a desire to achieve the blindfold deal without the
difficulty of traditional methods. A shiner seemed like a great
option. After some thought, the smartphone options came to
my mind. I then explored this in depth, applying it to different
The history of a shiner is a long and detailed one. However, it is
impossible for us to say who first introduced a mirror to the card
table. One thing is for sure: this nameless card cheat deserves
thanks. The routines contained on this DVD set utilising the
iPhone shiner concept was developed in isolation. I continue to
explore the usefulness of the Phone Shiner concept.

Marked Personality
I developed this approach in my early teens, at a time in which I
was obsessed with marked cards. It was inspired by the personality
surveys that are so often found in womens lifestyle magazines
such as Cosmopolitan. A friend had me undertake one of these
personality surveys and I instantly thought about how useful
such a thing would be in the performance of a reading. I then
connected this to the idea of marked cards since they were never
far from my mind during that time. From here the rest unfolded
Many years later Joshua Quinn released a fantastic product called
Ascension which also used an approach in which an audience
member ranked various themes within their life. Joshuas concept
was developed in isolation from my own, since I had not shared
it with anyone on a wide scale. Joshuas routine is brilliant. I wish
I had thought of it. If you enjoy my routine I urge you to seek out
Joshuas routine; it really takes this concept into a great direction.

He Will Find You

This routine was indirectly inspired by the work of Rene Lavand
and Robert Neal. I love the scripting these two men have created
for their magic. After reading much work from the pair, I
developed this effect. I did this in an effort to achieve some sense
of the mystery that their words create in their performance of
card magic.
I make use of the first approach to Methods for Determining
a Card Thought of from the seminal Expert At The Card Table
by S. W. Erdnase published in 1902. I also make use of a push
off second deal; which also comes from the pages of the same
book. Both of these techniques can be traced back further than
the work of Erdnase. However, it was in his careful and clear text
that I learned of them.

Story Without an End

This routine was developed in my early teens while working at
the International Magic Shop in London. It was developed in
conversation with Kevin Baker, a fantastic and enigmatic magician.
I have continued to develop the presentation and the scripting in
the years that have followed. The concept of a duplicate stack was
a simple solution for my desire to allow the audience members
to shuffle the cards more thoroughly than would be allowed in
the classic presentation of Speller Stack routines. I learned of
the stack I use in the work of the great British magician Stanley
Collins but I believe it goes back much further than even Collins.
Sadly, I have been unable to find a definitive reference for the
creator of this stack.

Nailed ACANN
Here is a secret reward for those who have read this far. I would
suspect there will be very few of you reading this. Well done!
Please keep this between us. Dont go telling everyone about it,
or posting about it online. Instead, keep it as your secret reward
for your interest in the history of the routines contained on this
DVD set.
The Card At Any Number routine is accomplished by using the
multiple out preshow approach shared in the explanation for
Shape Shifter drawing duplication combined with a standard
preshow approach. I preshow one spectator to have two different
numbers in mind (which they can switch between during
performance). I preshow another spectator to have one card in
mind. Before the show I place this card and a duplicate of this
card in both positions. I use an impression device to capture the
information chosen by the audience members I work with in
preshow. I suggest having the spectators think of information
and write it down on the impression pad using the techniques
discussed elsewhere on this DVD. The premise was directly
inspired by my friend and teacher David Berglas and his legendary
Berglas Effect as well as from a concept of Dunninger and
Lustig. In their version, they performed the Invisible Deck with
the deck in its box nailed to the wall. I loved the visual and when
I considered the Berglas Effect I immediately knew the power of
the nailed deck visual would prove a wonderful fit.

Premonition Headline Prediction

My headline prediction was developed in isolation from outside
sources. I simply decided what I wished to achieve with the effect
and then approached the most obvious solution: switching the
prediction. Many solutions to switching a prediction have been
seen in the vast amounts of literature and teaching materials
dedicated to mentalism over the years. However, my switch
approach was not directly inspired by anything in print. I simply
wanted to create an approach that would allow me to make use
of normal looking objects that would appear as close to real as
After much thought, consideration, and testing, my method and
approach was borne. The headline prediction premise goes back
to the early days of theatrical mind reading. Its creator is, sadly,
lost to antiquity.

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