asi one

Corey Martin is a regular contributor to iTricks Raves.


Some performers and those close to the art of magic well often say, “The most beautiful magic is done up close.” This of course is all hinged upon which style you like, what you perform (if that is the case) and the vast differences between the different magical styles. Every so often we find a performer who takes their style and makes it elegant and a pleasure to watch. Asi Wind has created ‘Chapter One’, a look into the “evolution of magic” and how he has contributed his ideas to that concept. You get very well put together 35-page book which includes five incredible close up card effects, three essays on various topics related to magic and performing, as well as the DVD which includes performances with or without cometary.

Somebody Stop Me, is a new twist on the “say stop” style tricks we see so often on the street. Mixing audience interaction and basic slight of hand, out comes this very powerful effect which Asi stresses the importance of brining out your character as a performer. The trick relies on the way you speak to the spectator which allows you to create a very strong piece of magic. In the first of three essays Asi speaks on his experience with spectator Dishonesty and how he gets around it. It happens to magicians all the time, and there is some very helpful advice for those looking for another way to deal with heckling spectators. Those familiar with the effects ‘Out Of This World’ and Paul Harris’ ‘Galaxy’ will find Red & Black one of the better tricks in the book. (I say this because the rest of the effects require the use of a memorized or ‘stacked’ deck. I find that even those types of effects can be very high impact, sometimes the setup is very tedious.) Having audience tested this trick, if done properly and with a stylistic twist, your reactions will be great. It is a very elegant way to split the deck by color.
Out Of The Blue (or red) is a nice effect similar to the ‘Invisible Deck’ in where the spectator names a card, and the deck is removed to find the only card different from the others (in this case, a different color back) is the spectators named card. I found some of the slights in this effect to be a bit troublesome, but with practice, like all things, it will become second nature. I really enjoyed the second essay in the book, The Oxygen of Suspense. Asi speaks at length about the importance of building suspense in the midst of an effect and relates to the creation of suspense to one holding his breath and how it is the oxygen of the effect. Another very good essay full of advice for beginners and pros alike. A.A.C.A.A.N is a clever twist on the ‘Any Card at Any Number” plot. Like ‘Out of The Blue (or red)’ it requires some complicated set up, but is well worth it. Subliminal is the final essay in the book that talks about why we, as magicians, use suggestions, and jokes to further our routines and how that may effect an audience in both a positive or negative way. The final piece, Transposition in Three Phases is a very strong transposition effect that envolves, like the previous effects some slight of hand, but nothing too difficult. It is rare to find a transposition effect done so well, with so many different moments of astonishment mixed in.

Overall, this book really interested me. I sometimes thought that the essays, although short, were the most valuable part of the book. You can never go wrong with great advice from a great performer. If you decide to use these tricks, I hope that you will take the time and give them the attention and presentation they deserve. I highly recommend this book for those who have prior knowledge of basic card techniques. Some beginners may find some things in the book useful, but you need to know your stuff before tackling some of the more advanced effects.

Until next time

~Corey Martin (aka C_Michaels)

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