.:106/365: Over The Head:.
This routine is the ultimate demonstration of misdirection, and really requires an intimate familiarity with the subtleties of magic, despite the fact that clearly, the only person who witnesses magic at work is your volunteer.
Slydini does this one masterfully, and really has the spectator in the palm of his hands, as he successfully fools the guy for six minutes straight without him realizing exactly what is going on. It’s a very hilarious routine, and at times would even involve the infamous watch steal, but ultimately, what makes this routine very powerful is the fact that even though the magic’s “secret” is clear for all to see, it’s still a very disarming and expert performance by the great Slydini that you can’t help but marvel at.
This is one of those challenge routines that I would only perform if I were feeling confident. It’s not something I would even attempt on an off day, simply because the routine is better the longer you can keep fooling your spectator into believing the balls are just disappearing magically, while the audience is laughing like crazy over the truth, and not giving your volunteer the slightest clue what is really going on.
It’s amazing how deceptively good this routine is, and it’s one of the best ways to deal with a heckler. If you play it off a certain way, this whole routine can become a very humiliating experience to someone who has been trying to humiliate you, and everyone else gets to have a good laugh at his expense. This routine is a true worker, and is something I would not hesitate to use when pressed to do something impromptu at something like a coffee shop. As I’m not too big on cards, this particular routine certainly holds my attention a whole lot more.
There are a million and one variations to this routine, but the core principle is the ability to misdirect your spectator. It’s not very simple, mind you, because the minute the person sees what you’re doing, the jig is up, and it’s a lot more amazing if you can keep doing your routine indefinitely until you manage to end when you choose to end it, rather than being forced to end it instead.
Needless to say, any magician who successfully performs this routine always has my respect. It’s one of the bigger tests for any performer who wishes to really demonstrate his skills in misdirection.