November 2012 | Volume 22 | Number 3

COVER: Korea, Community of Magic

By Gregory Bracco

Korea, Community of Magic

During FISM Blackpool 2012, the international magic world saw firsthand some of the fantastic new award-winning acts coming out of South Korea. At the end of the day, the South Korean magicians happily took home a total of eight FISM awards, including a first, second, and third place sweep of the Manipulation category, with Yu Ho-Jin winning the prestigious Grand Prix Stage Magic award. It was this strong showing by the Korean magicians that left many with a lingering question: "What is going on in South Korea that is enabling them to produce such amazing acts, especially in the field of manipulation?"

Bernstein’s Unreal

By Gabe Fajuri

Bernstein’s Unreal

Bruce Bernstein has spent over three decades creating, refining, and developing dozens of devious feats of mindreading and mentalism with cards, prediction tricks, cold reading, and techniques that have become standard operating procedure for thought-stealers of every stripe. He has been a trusted, go-to consultant for many of the world’s top psychic entertainers, enjoying an enviable reputation in the field. If there is one hallmark of Bernstein’s work, it is simplicity of method. All of his routines are within the grasp of the thoughtful performer. The two tricks and technique presented here give a flavor of how he constructs effects and how his mind works.

Jan Rouven: The Man With Nine Lives

By Rory Johnston

Jan Rouven

Jan Rouven is known as “The Man With Nine Lives” because his act features death-defying illusions, and his onstage persona is that of a man who enjoys taking dangerous risks. Interestingly, this is also an apt description of the career path of Las Vegas’ newest magic headliner.

Ta-Da! The SAM Hall of Fame Reappears

By Alan Howard

SAM Hall of Fame Reappears

It’s a classic magic plot. A living, healthy being is apparently dispensed with — cut in half, dismembered, cremated, vanished in a cloud of smoke — but then rises to live again, fully functioning and seemingly no worse for the experience. Onstage, it happens regularly to assistants, doves, and other animals. Offstage, it happened to the Society of American Magicians Hall of Fame and Museum.



“Electrified: One Million Volts Always On” was the full title of Blaine’s latest stunt, which placed the “endurance artist” atop a twenty-foot-high platform erected at the end of Pier 54 in New York City. Blaine remained standing on his perch for 72 hours. But he was not merely remaining awake and waving to the crowds who came to watch — he was surrounded by an array of seven Tesla coils, subjected constantly to electricity that arced down toward his body. The whole event was streamed live on YouTube as a promotion for Intel Corp.

Lost Magic Decoded

Lost Magic Decoded

Robert-Houdin’s Light & Heavy Chest. The miraculous chess-playing Turk. The infamous Bullet Catch. The legendary Indian Rope Trick. These fabled magical effects and more are explored by Steve Cohen in a new two-hour television special, Lost Magic Decoded, which premiered Thursday, October 18, on the History Channel.


David Copperfield analyzing trick football plays on NFL Top 10, Michael Grandinetti performing at halftime at a Carolina Panthers’ game, the buzz on the Genii Bash, as well as the latest on IMX, Magic-Con, Columbus Magi-Fest, and a lot more.


Edited by Gabe Fajuri

Random Big Revelation

Nineteen products are reviewed this month by Peter Duffie, Gabe Fajuri, Brad Henderson, Jared Brandon Kopf, Francis Menotti:

Random by Peter Nardi
The Big Revelation by Wayne Dobson
Childsplay by Chris Congreave
Repair Bill by Bob Solari
Making the Cut by Ryan Schlutz
Monster with Mott-Sun
Element 80 by Jason Reed
Tricky Bottles by U.F. Grant
Wunderbar by Steve Dusheck
Hole by Mickael Chatelain
Visions from Vegas by Steve Gore
Poor Man’s Cups & Balls by Stephen So
Show Cues by Carl Andrews
Recall with Tom Crosbie
Noteworthy by David Gabbay
Enigma Card by Bob Solari
Sticky by Kevin Schaller and Oliver Smith
Professional Children’s Magic with Tony Clark
The Perfect World by Mago Migue

Talk About Tricks

Joshua Jay

Talk About Tricks   Joshua Logan One Man Issue

This month, we feature an in-depth examination of the repertoire of California’s Joshua Logan. Logan is a professional magician in Santa Cruz, and he joins us to share several interesting moves and sequences, along with what is sure to cause a stir: his controversial Freak Out effect, which has a method befitting its title.

The Almighty Dollar

Gregory Wilson

The Almighty Dollar Defaced

You borrow a $1 bill, fold it in half, and clearly tear Washington from the center. With a snap of the bill, this gaping hole is fully restored, and the bill is returned to the suitably stunned spectator.


Joanie Spina

Directions #10. Let There Be Light

Lighting is key in creating mood, tone, sculpting, and landscapes. Lighting transforms an ordinary scene into an extraordinary composition. The lighting should enhance the overall dramatic presentation of your act or show.

Loving Mentalism

Ian Rowland

Loving Mentalism An Ancient Game

Everyone has played the game of Rock, Paper, Scissors at one time or another. It’s a simple game and everyone knows that it’s fair. This month’s routine is a bare-faced swindle based on this game. First, a spectator makes three random choices and achieves an extraordinary result without knowing how. You then show that you predicted his three choices exactly, via a printed prediction that was in play from the start!


Larry Wilson

For What It's Worth MAGIC: Tiger Beat for Finger Flickers?

In the August issue of MAGIC Magazine, one stalwart reader questioned why so many photos of Neil Patrick Harris accompanied the cover story, and he asked whether MAGIC was a magazine for magicians or a fan mag. He implied that the editors had stars in their eyes when it comes to Neil Patrick Harris and that starlight had blinded them to their duty. An argument can be made that Neil Patrick Harris is the most important person in magic today — more important than Criss Angel, or Penn & Teller, or Copperfield.

For What It's Worth

Mark Kornhauser

For What It's Worth A Personal Letter to My Millionaire and Billionaire Friends

Money. Most magicians don’t have much. That’s where you come in. With disproportional power comes disproportional responsibility. You can alter magic history. You can be a legend. And I’m sure we can work out some tax breaks, as well.

I recently surveyed some of the most respected minds in magic (I was saving you until now) and unanimously determined that the current state of the art of magic (The Age of the Stooge?) can be thoroughly renovated! There can be a magical renaissance! The “made for TV” doldrums can end; a rush of wonderful ideas and live shows can flourish!

It’s just going to take a little cash. Some lucre. Moolah. Scratch. Spondulicks.

How much for a renaissance? According to our calculations, 4.3 million dollars would be sufficient for a Magic Stimulus Package.

Paynefully Obvious


For What It's Worth The Play’s the Thing

Many magicians appear to be unaware of the valuable tool set one can acquire by participating in a theatrical production. Understanding how to move onstage or how to effectively use one’s voice is just as important to the performance of magic as knowing how to control a card or palm a coin. I often hear “I don’t want to sound mechanical or stilted” used as an excuse for not scripting performances. Delivering scripted dialogue in a natural and extemporaneous-sounding manner is one of the first skills that theatrical artists learn.

Bent on Deception

Mike Bent

For What It's Worth Shameless Promotion Paper Tear

Here’s a way to burn your web address into your audiences’ retinas and brains at the best possible time — while they’re having a blast during your show. That’s right, build an infomercial right into the middle of your show, and entertain your audience while you do it!

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