Sleight of Hand.

Challenge #1 Ambitious Card Routine

Posted in Challenges by unseenforces on December 2, 2008

Every magician knows it.  Every magician has a version of it.  It’s the staple of any card worker.  Besides the routine being a playground to practice your amazing controls to the top, the routine has lost its magic.  Here are some problems I see with the routine in general.

  • Too many phases. I have seen magicians do up to 20 phases in a Ambitious Card routine.  First of all, It ruins suspense and surprise that we all love about magic.  Of course the card will come to the top… it has the last 19 times.  A friend of mine, Gary Au once told me in a drunken haze that in order for magic to become a miracle we can’t dilute it.  If Jesus H. Christ back in the days cured some person of their blindness (I know a method) it would be a miracle.  If he then turned and said “…and for my next act…” and performed the water to wine miracle (I know a method) then he would be lessening the impact of the first act.  I see it like this.  If the audience can only go from 1 to 10 on the WOW Scale®.  The first trick would usually be up to a 9 or 10 if they never seen good magic.  If you keep performing, then the audience will only have your other tricks to compare to on the WOW Scale®.  This is why I try not to perform to laymen when I have other magician friends around.  Instead of the audience saying “Wow that was great!” They say, “Tony Chang was clearly the best out of all you magicians.  Stop what you are doing please.”
  • The raping of the D.L.. Now don’t get me wrong this move is great.  It is basically in every crouch magic card trick known to man.  But the use of it in almost every phase of Ambitious Card?  I personally think using this sleight and showing the card coming back to the top is the BEST method there is.  Then why do it 5 times in a row?  You dilute the impact it has to give.

So here is my challenge.

Create a Ambitious Card Routine that only has three phases and the last phase is the standard D.L.. This means there is no D.Ls until the last phase.  I think it will be a good exercise to strengthening your magic without adding more phases.  Make those three moments last.  Make them different.  Make them connect together as a single piece of magic.

I will be posting my version in a week.  I have never given much thought to it, so it will be fun.  Also give some good patter with it.  If you talk about a puppy that lost his way home and the only way to bring him back to the “top” is to pet the deck like a dog… then I will kill you.  Magically of course.