Saturday, March 11, 2006

Four Dollars A Cup!

Greetings from all of us here at Hank Lee’s Magic Factory. It’s a wonderful world. Even as I write this week’s newsletter, I am sitting in a most comfy chair at the Starbuck’s on Huntington Avenue in Boston. Drinking an amazingly expensive cup of coffee. Connected to the Internet by the wi-fi that surrounds us all. Waiting for Lucas the Younger Son to finish a rehearsal for the play he is performing in tomorrow at the Huntington Theatre. No crystal ball is needed to see my future, at least until Lucas can drive. It’s not so bad, though. The music is nice. The people-watching is excellent. No complaints.

Last week’s sale was exciting, to say the least. Especially in light of the fact that we were also preparing the new Extra for mailing. But, we did it. The Extra is in the mail and should be in your mailbox (the one outside your house) in just a few days. If you are not on our snail-mail list, drop me a note and I will happy to add you right away.

The new FrediUp Silicone Thumbtips arrived this week. There is only one word to describe them. Unbelievable. Unlike other soft thumbtips, they are just stiff enough to be used in the bill switch. So, they are perfect on all counts. If you have not ordered one yet, now is the perfect time!

Now, let's take a look at the Hotlist at

Calling Card - If you have a cell phone with a built in camera, you must get Rodger Lovins’ Calling Card!
Ask a spectator to select a card. Suddenly, the face of their card becomes blank!.
Ask the spectator to hold the blank up near their face
You take a photo of their face and the blank card with your cell phone.
In the photo the blank becomes their card! Unbelievable! Really!
The blank card they are holding becomes the chosen card in the cell phone photo! Yes, the picture is of the spectator holding their chosen card!
“My cell phone right now is set up for Calling Card!” – Lance Burton $24.95

Sudoku – The Ultimate Mental Workout - The Sudoku craze is sweeping the nation. Even Bonnie, the wifely elf, who has not balanced her checkbook in 20 years, is doing Soduko puzzles! Performing a mind-blowing mental routine using a Soduko puzzle is just perfect.
A spectator selects a random Sudoku puzzle and copies it onto a large blank grid so that everyone can see the puzzle.
You study the grid for a few seconds and then turn your back to the puzzle. You then begin to call out numbers to the spectator and solve the entire Sudoku puzzle, “blind!”
As an extra challenge, the spectator can even be instructed to “lie” and mis-write the puzzle on the grid at the beginning of the routine - not only will you be able to tell which digits are incorrect - but also what they should be!
The spectator genuinely has a free choice of any Sudoku puzzle and every puzzle can clearly be seen to be completely different.
You instantly call out 'correct' answers to the puzzle. No 'fishing' or 'outs' required.
No mathematics or memory skill required to perform the trick. The secret is completely self-working, leaving you totally focused on presentation.
Packs small and plays big. A complete 10 minute stage routine with drama, suspense, intrigue and what appears to be great skill, that fits in your pocket. 6 x 9 inch paperback book. Full color cover, 140 pages, 98 puzzles. $139.95

Educating Archer DVD – John Archer - John is one of the funniest entertainers on the scene today. His comedy is funny and his magic is strong. What more could you want from a performer?
On this DVD you will learn some of John's favorite routines that have made him one of the busiest magicians in the UK.
If you like good, strong, entertaining and funny presentations accompanied by strong magic and mentalism, you will absolutely love this DVD.
Here are some of the routines performed and explained on this DVD:
John's Tossed Out Deck
This is John's comedy take on a classic plot with one big difference: the deck is completely examined and shuffled by a spectator before the effect! The chosen opener for many mentalists is now a whole lot better!
Tragic Square
John's opening effect. Under the guise of a record-breaking attempt, John rushes through a magic square at lightning speed (with a lot of humor along the way!) This really gets the crowd going!
Spelling Test (No Book Book-Test)
Wow! This is something really special. Comedy mentalism at its best! Your spectator merely thinks of a word (no force of any kind, no pre-show, your spectator never writes anything down or tells anyone the word that they have in their mind). Yet you have predicted in advance their thought of word! This is a fun-packed routine with one heck of a killer ending!
Komedy Killer
This is John's famous presentation for the Kenton Knepper classic. John's story will have you in stitches. The ideal trick to have on you all the time. A 10 min routine you can do anywhere!
The ultimate comedy presentation for the Koran Medallion. This routine is worth the price of the entire DVD. A lot of the magicians that were present at the filming of this DVD have put this straight into their professional act!
If the above routines are not enough to wet your appetite, this DVD also includes the following gems: Dodeckadeal: a great coincidence effect using a pack of cards; Spoon River: a great comedy spoon bending routine which gets people involved; Stapled: John's fantastic comedy torn and restored card routine; Chinese Choice: a fun-packed routine using 3 spectators and a night out at a Chinese restaurant, and A Clean Ring Vanish: if you need to vanish a ring at any part of your act, then this is the cleanest method you will find! $45.00

Esoteric Kennedy - Based on an original idea from John Cornelius, esoteric is a real fooler!
It can be done right under their noses!
Show an ordinary half dollar and place it on a playing card. Unbelievably, the coin begins to move by itself. It rises up from the card and stands on its edge. It twists and turns before returning to its original position on the card. They won’t believe what they’re seeing! Carry it in your pocket all the time and be ready to blow them away! $27.50

Spectrum – R. Paul Wilson - Spectrum is the ultimate color changing deck! A card is thought of (no force) and the deck is mixed, some cards face up and some cards face down. The spectator now reveals their card for the first time.
An odd colored back appears in the deck. It is removed and handed to the spectator to hold. The deck is clearly still mixed face up and face down. With a snap of the fingers the entire deck suddenly turns face down.
The odd backed card is turned over - it is the card the spectator simply thought of at the beginning of the effect!
To correct everything, the entire deck now changes color to match the thought of card and is shown front and back as the cards are dribbled from hand to hand.
Spectrum is a super-powerful effect in its own right but is also an excellent way to open a card routine. A simple effect that allows you to openly reset the deck in front of the audience is given at the end of the included step-by-step, full color photo instructions. $29.95

Hole In The Head - The one all the buzz has been about! Ben Harris’ Hole In The Head has been one of the art’s most closely guarded secrets of recent times. It has fooled, amused and delighted some of magic’s biggest names. Using no mirrors or reflective devices and no stooges, Hole In The Head is a radical and visual new plot, drawing on the mysticism and wonder of the mythically proportioned “Third Eye” legend. It’s an exciting piece of street theatre that simply mustbe experienced live! What’s more, it’s 100% practical! This is a one person—do anywhere—illusion.
In effect, the performer gathers a crowd around himself in a brightly lit, sunny spot. Discussing the amazing legend, he offers to open his own “Third Eye” allowing the sun to shine right through his head.
As this would be too dangerous to observe directly, he suggests that everyone focus attention on his shadow. After some concerted effort, a small blob of light appears in the centre of his shadow head. Amazingly, this blob of light then grows larger at his command.
To prove that it is no mere optical illusion and that the light does indeed pass through his head, a spectator is asked to wave her hand behind the performer’s cranium. Incredibly, when she does this, the actions are reciprocated in the shadow head— her fingers are clearly visible in the shadow hole!
The conclusion is inescapable. The sun is indeed shining straight through a hole in the performer’s head!
The process is now reversed and the hole slowly closed.
You can perform this stunner virtually anywhere the sun shines.
Complete with bonus handlings and clever ideas by Paul Harris and Michael Weber. You can even open a spectator’s own “Third Eye!”
Supplied as 12 page booklet with DVD and Performance Accesssory. $20.00

Mind Mysteries Guide Book, Volume One – Richard Osterlind - n an unprecedented event, Richard Osterlind has revisited his hugely successful Mind Mysteries video series and has written a definitive guide book that exponentially enriches the video material.
In this first volume, Richard takes Mind Mysteries Volume 1, which captured his professional act, and dissects it effect by effect, pointing out all of the subtle yet essential details to making these effects work for you as powerfully as they do for him. In this guide book, you’ll discover new, unearthed treasures regarding Mind Mysteries as well as important new additions such as:
* An expansion of the Miracle Thought Projection idea for use with larger groups
* An important new addition to the Perfected Center Tear
* A new facet to the Radar Deck
* New ideas for almost every routine in Mind Mysteries Volume 1 for presenting these effects for larger audiences
* New presentation ideas, jokes and patter lines
* How to turn what you do into a real show, including ideas on call backs, blocking, stagecraft and other theatrical techniques
Every piece performed in Mind Mysteries Volume 1 is part of Richard’s professional act and every line spoken and every gesture made is an integral part. In this book, Richard goes through the act line by line and shows you the real secrets of how to make your mentalism and magic more effective, powerful and entertaining. Even if you don’t perform these specific effects, the principles outlined here are fully portable and can be easily applied to the material that you do perform.
If you own Mind Mysteries, the Mind Mysteries Guide Bookwill be an indispensable tool in adding these powerful effects and sound theatrical principles to your own work. $29.95

Mint Edition - The latest incarnation of the classic Visible Color Painting! It’s a great effect using props the kids already know and love!
Talk about how much you love comic books. Doesn’t everyone? Explain that you have even tried your hand at drawing a comic book cover!
Show the kids your “in progress” work.
The only problem with your drawing is that it is all in black and white, no colors at all.
Place your drawing on a comic backing board and slide it into a Mylar coming bag for safe keeping.
Enlisting the help of the audience, you get them to call out colors, even throw invisible colors at the drawing.
Ask one of the kids to shout out a magic word. Remove the drawing from the Mylar cover, and, nothing has happened!
Of course not. You need everyone to yell out the magic word at the same time. Now, when you remove the picture, it visibly fills in with color. It is now a beautifully decorated comic book cover!
Comes complete with comic book cover, backer boards, and Mylar comic bag. $29.95

Xtreme Training Cards - Developed by John Martinez. XTC. iI rolls off the tongue. But it won't roll off your hands. In fact, it won't do anything unless you want it to. XTC is a separate solid that makes Extreme Card Manipulation cuts, passes, and throws easy!
Increase your learning power and drastically reduce the need for countless hours of extra practicing just for deck control. Speed your way to the big time!
Makes XCM a breeze! No more fumbling with cards! Versatile practice brick, easy to use! Go from Oh to Pro before you know!
XTC is a valuable tool for Extreme Card Manipulators and assumes you already know how to take advantage of the deck's awesome power. If not, check out the Extreme
Beginnerz DVD!
"What a great idea! These make those cuts a lot cleaner!" - Aaron Smith $9.95

And that, kids, is the Hotlist for this week. Pretty good, eh? You’re darn tootin.’

Thanks for reading this weekly newsletter. If you enjoy it, tell a friend to subscribe. The more the merrier. I hope you will find some time to spend with us online at We really do love the company. Especially yours!
Hank Lee