Reviews written by Dan Watkins
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New York Coin Magic Seminar: Volume One – Coins Across.
(This is a two volume DVD set. Both discs are included)
Click here to jump to the review of Volumes Two, Three, and Four.
Unless you just started magic yesterday or have been living in a small spider hole in Iraq for the past three decades; the names David Roth, Michael Rubinstein, Geoff Latta, and Michael Gallo will be practically synonymous with coin magic.
David Roth is considered to be the modern day master of the art of coin magic. Many became familiar with David's work with the 1980 publication of Kaufman's COINMAGIC wherein an entire section was devoted to David's work. To my knowledge Roth is the most published modern coin magician today with numerous instructional DVDs, a large hard bound book, Expert Coin Magic, and many other contributions in various print and video media.
Dr. Michael Rubinstein is very prolific teacher of coin magic (probably second only to Roth), with numerous DVDs, videos, and books to his name in the 1980's. Michael is a walking encyclopedia of coin sleights as evidenced by his DVDs, The Encyclopedia of Coin Sleights. After about a decade hiatus, Michael resurfaced after L&L re-released some of his prior videos in DVD format. With a re-début lecture at the 2003 COINvention in Las Vegas, NV, Michael is the driving force behind the recent New York Coin Magic Seminars, and seeing that this DVD project was made a reality.
Most of the world was introduced to Geoff Latta from his contribution to the aforementioned Kaufman's COINMAGIC. Most of Latta's published material was found in that book. While well known in the New York circles, Geoff remained pretty much underground until resurfacing again in 2003 at the COINvention in Las Vegas, NV. The LVMI Live 2003 DVD as well as the COINvention DVD were the first DVDs available that showed Geoff's work, publicly on video.
Michael Gallo hails from Buffalo, NY and has many routines published throughout most of the magic periodicals and many books in the last couple decades. He also has three videos published. Michael is one of the better known members of the New York underground.
This particular seminar featured a guest presenter, Kainoa Harbottle. Kainoa was first introduced to the masses in a guest appearance on Curtis Kam's video Palms of Steel, as well as Curtis's subsequent video, Palms of Steel 2: Fists of Fury. Kainoa has been featured on the LVMI Live 2003 DVD as well as the COINvention DVD. Kainoa has also authored four books on coin magic, Coins on Edge and COINTOPIA, and two books just released called Coinapalooza I: Shell Shocked and Coinapalooza II: International Deceptions on shell work and copper/silver work respectively. You can purchase Kainoa's books by visiting his website, www.kainoaland.com.
The NYC coin magic quartet have organized full day jam packed coin magic seminars open to members of the fraternity that have an acute interest in coin magic. The first one was in their home turf, New York City in 2004. The second one was at Marc DeSouza's lecture theatre north of Philadelphia, PA in 2005. I attended this seminar and my review of it is available HERE. The third one was in Las Vegas, NV in February of 2006 immediately preceding the World Magic Seminar.
Keep an eye on their website, www.newyorkcoinmagic.net for more news and upcoming seminar dates.
This two volume DVD set was filmed at Marc DeSouza's lecture theatre the day following the 2005 NYC Coin Magic Seminar. The DVDs are professionally filmed with studio quality cameras, lighting, and sound. The running time is over four hours.
The Coin Magic Seminars feature a plethora of teachings on coin magic technique, plots, history, and routines. One segment of the Seminar dealt with the plot of "Coins Across." For the aforementioned spider hole dwellers, the plot is loosely defined as coins traveling invisibly, by magic, from one location to another. Thus, the "Coins" have traveled "Across."
This DVD set focuses intensely on this one specific plot. I cannot imagine anyone other than the truly masochistic learning every Coins Across version on this DVD set. The true value of the set is to see how several of the best minds in coin magic approach the same puzzle, using various techniques, methods, and performance. Since the general plots presented on this DVD set are all very similar, I will dispense with my usual point by point description of each routine, and instead provide more of a summary of the trick, and the featured techniques of interest.
The David Roth Section:
The Victor Coins Across is better defined as the Edward Victor Coins to Cup routine. It was the precursor to Dai Vernon's Coins to Glass routine. I do not believe it is in any of David's published material before. This routine was an item that David discussed during the seminar. It is a unique routine in that it gains the benefit of the one ahead method without actually being one ahead. This allows an extremely visual vanish and subsequent transit of the last coin in the routine. This is very interesting since the last coin is typically problematic for most routines. The routine requires a table and the ability to conceal the pile of coins behind an object (such as a bunched up silk). One at a time a coin is picked up in one hand, and it magically travels into the cup in the opposite hand. After the last coin goes, the hands are shown completely empty, four coins are dumped out, and you are clean.
The Dr. Michael Rubinstein Section:
Technique wise Michael's routine is a little bit different in that it employs the Classic Palm (Kenner's used only Finger Palm) for a few moves in the routine, and a new move that Michael named "Tap Load" in other publications, but he calls it the "Drop Load" on this DVD. This move is used to secretly load an extra coin into the opposite hand under the cover of a tapping motion.
One of the technical highlights of the routines is that Michael gets two ahead (three ahead in version two) right off the bat, so the subsequent coin transits occur in a very clean manner. Version 1 uses the one ahead method, and version 2 uses a two ahead method. The benefit in version two is that it eliminates a move (the Drop Load) in the middle of the routine; the negative is that you have two extra coins to manage throughout the routine. However, the way Michael structured the routine, managing the coins is not problematic. Version two is more technically demanding, but it looks cleaner because you get three coin transits without your hands touching. For this reason, my personal preference is version 2.
Both of the routines are performed standing.
Michael's selection of routines really tips a lot of his newer techniques that he has lectured on recently and showcased at the NYC Coin Magic Seminars. These two routines feature his Purse Palm Subtlety. The Purse Palm Subtlety allows you to display a group of coins on your palm up hand while secretly concealing a coin (or two) in the same hand. This subtlety has no angle problems that back clips would have.
Another new technique taught is the ROPS Discrepancy Count. This is a false count with coins that has a similar look as a Himber Click Pass, but completely different in technique. It utilizes some of Michael's open palm steal techniques to steal a coin while another is dropping instead of stealing the coin that is actually dropping like the Himber Click Pass.
Michael also teaches his Drop Load again in version 1 (see Retro Fly).
To end version 1, Michael uses a Retention Spider Vanish, which is designed to catch magicians off guard. It looks like a retention pass (instead of a French Drop like a typical Spider Vanish), but it is really a sucker vanish.
To end version 2, Michael uses his ROPS (Retention Open Palm Steal) which is explained in pretty much all of Michael's publications, herein as well.
The routine highlights three of Michael's unique techniques. The first one is the "Pseudo-Himber Count, which is similar to the Himber Count with coins, but it is much easier and it is impossible to miss the steal. Also taught is a very natural click pass called Rubinstein Click Pass which has been published before as part of Michael's "Crazy Coins Across" routine. Lastly, a multiple coin vanish called the "Bronx Take" which has been previously published in Michael's 3rd lecture notes. Michael also teaches work on the "Angle Palm" and Geoff Latta's "Nowhere Palm" (3rd Finger Curl Palm). The routine is performed standing at a table.
For those not familiar with the original routine, two of the three silver coins travel invisibly from one hand to the other, while the last one first takes a detour and comes out of Michael's mouth, before successfully traveling to the other hand. Of the two versions presented herein, version 2 is the cleaner version and my preference. The differences between version 1 and 2 is that version two uses an extra coin to eliminate the Rubinstein click pass. The first two coins travel without the hands coming together. Michael also uses his matting technique in version 2 to ditch the extra coins so that he can show his hands empty when they should be. Techniques taught are the Pseudo-Himber Count, Rubinstein Click Pass, and Matting.
The routines are performed standing at a table.
The Geoff Latta Section
The only publicly available video footage of Geoff Latta up until this point has been from what he released on the LVMI Live 2003 DVD (he performed and explained "A Trick with Three Coins"), and his performance only pieces from the COINvention Inaugural Collection DVD. In my review of the COINvention DVD, I lamented the fact that Geoff's routines were not explained, even though the explanations were filmed at the actual event. In Geoff's section on this DVD set, he performs and explains "A Trick with Three Coins" again, and he does explain "Slippery Silver" which was one of the performance only routines that made it onto the COINvention DVD. This DVD marks the first time multiple routines are performed and explained on video by Geoff.
The difference between the two routines is that "Slippery" is gaffed, and "Not So Slippery" is not. The use of a gaff obviously enables more palm up clean shows of the coins. "Slippery" utilizes an off-beat tabled utility switch with the gimmick as the modus operendi behind the transits, whereas "Not So Slippery" utilizes the one ahead principle and a move Geoff calls the "Open Utility Switch" to effectuate the transits. The Open Utility Switch is a very deceptive tabled utility switch of coins. I liked this technique a lot.
The first two transits of "Not So Slippery" borrow heavily from Roth's "Winged Silver" routine, and the last phases mimic "Slippery" but without the gimmick. I personally prefer "Slippery" due to the cleaner "shows", but I especially enjoyed the "Open Utility Switch" teaching in "Not So Slippery."
Geoff presents a very practical solution here with a four coins, no gimmicks, no extras. Highlighted techniques include what Geoff calls a "Plus One Retention Pass" which is a technique to apparently place two coins into your hand, while secretly retaining one. This move looks very convincing. Also featured is Geoff's Han Ping Chien load into a spectator's hand to create the finale. The routine is performed standing with a spectator.
As for the technique, Geoff employs the "sliding a coin behind the fan" technique similar to R. Paul Wilson's and Gary Kurtz handlings as opposed to the Fingerpalm concealments ala Chris Kenner.
The Michael Gallo Section
Mike Gallo is very clever with his coin work. I happened to be present during the filming of Mike's section of the DVD, and was his spectator for a couple routines.
This routine is performed seated at a table and utilizes very clever work of an underutilized gaff coin set. This routine is easy, short, quick, to the point, and full of impact.
There are three excellent technical items that stood out to me in this routine. The first is a Fingertip Utility Pass to secretly switch one of two coins right at the fingertips. The move is immediately applicable to any routine that would use the standard Utility Pass from Bobo's if you are performing with coins at the fingertips.
The second is a teaching of Ross Bertram's versions of the Spider Vanish.
The last is an observation. In this routine, Gallo's Sliding Coins, as well as Roth's Shell Coins Across, Rubinstein's Impossible 4 Coin Trick, Latta's Spectator Coins Across, and M.A.Y.B.A.L.I.N.E., and Kainoa's Deja Flew routines, the final coin travels into a spectator's closed fist. Obviously the method is that the extra coin needs to be secretly added before they close their fist. The techniques employed to do this are different in each of those routines. Study the endings to these five routines for the education. Each technique offers a different convincer to "prove" only three coins are going into their closed fist, while four really go.
Those familiar with my Coin Man Walking DVD will know that I like stand up coin routines that are interactive with a spectator. This routine definitely applies for anyone looking for routines that meet that criterion.
The Kainoa Harbottle Section:
Kainoa is fond of difficult coin work that primarily employs Edge Grip and Mutobe Palm with multiple coins. The great bulk of his Edge work can be found in his book COINS ON EDGE. A word to of caution, Kainoa's Edge work is not for the feint of heart. Attempt at your own peril! All the routines presented by Kainoa are performed standing; table use is limited to a few brief set downs of a coin.
Other techniques taught is a way to use the Edge Flip move to steal a coin into Edge Grip of the opposite hand, while it appears as though you simply took a coin from the fan.
Kainoa teaches an Al Schneider one handed coin vanish, and lastly, the Fingertip Muscle Pass is taught which is a technique to make a coin propel from your fingertips with no apparent hand movement.
Four coins are shown in the right hand. One magically travels across to the left, and is immediately replaced in the right. It magically travels across to the left and is replaced again in the right. This time three magically travel across to the left, and they are replaced in the right. One travels across again to the left, but then the right hand is shown to have two. Which should mean the left hand now has two, but upon opening the hand there is three, and now only one in the left. The left hand coin is dropped into the right with the others, but it immediately travels back to the left hand. Kainoa attempts to have the remaining coin in the left magically travel to join the others in the right, but the opposite happens. The three in the right join the one in the left. To finish, all four coins magically travel from the right to the left.
If you were able to follow that description in your mind's eye it is apparent that it is quite an unconventional structure. Personally when watching the performance I would describe it as surreal experience where it is apparent that magic is occurring. You will lose track as to what is supposed to go where and why, but the point is that and both the magician and the spectator's are just going along for the ride.
The techniques Kainoa employs to create this magic carpet ride will probably be new to most people who are not familiar with Kainoa's coin work. Featured are Edge Grip multiple coin hand to hand transfers, a heel clip steal called the Action Heel Steal, a false count published by Michael Ammar, the Harbottle Steeplechase Discrepancy, a variation of a Ross Bertram multiple coin heel clip load, Derek Dingles get ready for a multiple coin silent steal, and multiple coin Mutobe palm steal.
The quick steal techniques include the Action Heel Steal, the Pointing Steal, and the self described Bad Ugly Steal J.
One of the bits that I liked from Kainoa's routine is the work before the third coin goes to the 1st spectator's hand. Kainoa makes a delayed coin travel to his hand first. Essentially, two coins are shown in the right hand, he closes it and only one is there. He opens his right hand to show that nothing has arrived. He then waves the remaining coin over his left hand and then the coin does arrive. I thought the delayed arrival idea was quite clever and it provides some nice time misdirection before making a coin appear in the 1st spectator's hand.
Lastly, Kainoa teaches a Retention Vanish to Jimmy Wilson, Sr. grip (JW Grip).
The Bonus Section:
Just when you thought multiple Coins Across routines from five guys was plenty for a DVD project… wait, there's more! The bonus section of the DVD contains the following items:
In this routine, you not only learn Geoff's original application of the aforementioned sight gag, but also the Pop-Up Move, the Charlie Miller Fliperino coin vanish, (when the Pop-Up move and Floperino are combined, you get a Flop-Pop) and the HPC. It turns out that Geoff originally used the sight gag to setup a justification for a subsequent HPC.
Geoff also teaches the Plus One Retention pass that was also taught in "Spectator Coins Across".
The only downside to this clip is that you have to turn your volume way up since the excerpts from the actual Seminar were shot with a camcorder in the back of the room without external microphones. Geoff is a soft spoken person.
The NYC Coin Magic Seminar Preview section gives a good sample of the type of teaching that is provided at their seminar.
As I stated early in this review, this DVD set focuses intensely on the Coins Across plot. I cannot imagine anyone learning every Coins Across version on this DVD set. However, the true value of the set is to see how several of the best minds in coin magic approach the same puzzle, using various techniques, methods, and performance.
You will learn Coins Across routines with extra coins, no extras, gimmicks, without gimmicks, in your hands, their hands, to glasses, 3 coins, 4 coins, streamlined or lengthy. I could not imagine anyone walking away from this DVD set without being able to pick at lease one Coins Across routine that strikes their fancy for their repertoire. It's almost Coins Across window shopping. If you don't pick one of the routines presented herein, at the least you are going to be armed with a plethora of techniques that can be used to cause coins to magically travel from one place to another. If you do learn a handful of the routines, you will obviously make your repertoire more versatile in various performing venues.
Coins Across aside, there are also plenty of techniques taught in this DVD that would apply to other coin plots. This DVD offers a good education on the application of techniques.
This DVD set belongs in the library of any serious student of coin magic.
It can be purchased directly from the NYC Coin Guys by following this web link for $55.00.
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New York Coin Magic Seminar Volumes Two, Three, and Four – Copper Silver
For information about each NYC coin magic magician, please see my prior review above of the New York Coin Magic Seminar: Volume One – Coins Across for some background information on not only the magicians, but the coin seminars themselves.
Volumes Two, Three, and Four as the title implies are three DVDs on Copper/Silver Magic. From my experience at the NYC Coin Magic Seminars, the “guys” provide a lot of coin instruction and use the “coins across” and various “copper silver” plots extensively. These three DVDs were filmed after Coin Seminar 4 at Marc DeSouza’s house in Philadelphia in 2006.
Even though the DVDs are titled “Copper Silver”, the routines embody more than just changing a silver coin to copper back and forth. The DVDs are broken up into major plot line categories:
Volume 2 contains:
Wild Coin – This plot typically has several coins of one color change one at a time to another. The plot often ends with the coins returning to their original state at the end.
2 Copper 1 Silver includes Copper Silver Brass routines as well. This plot usually involves various transpositions of the 1 silver coin with the two non-silver coins.
Volume 3 contains:
Spellbound routines are typified by visual color changes with the coins held at the tips of the fingers.
Copper Silver with Props are routines that introduce other objects just as a glass, purse, or handkerchief.
Volume 4 contains:
Copper Silver Transpositions as the name implies involves copper and silver coins magically switching places.
All three DVDs also contain Bonus sections that may or may not fall into the categories presented on the specific DVD. There are also some Easter Eggs on the DVDs if you look hard enough.
If you happen to have an obscene obsession with copper/silver coin tricks, this is definitely the DVD set for you! 3 DVDs provides a gigantic plethora of routines to choose from. In all seriousness, a big part of the value on the DVD is the teaching of various techniques that can be employed to create various different magical effects. While some of the plotlines may look similar from the NYC magicians, often the techniques behind the similar plots are very different. It is interesting to see the various ways they solve the same plotline.
Suffice it to say that I am a fan of the NYC Coin Magic magicians and enjoy their magic and the techniques behind them. Because of the sheer volume of routines, I plan on highlighting the content of the routines, but I do not plan on offering any detailed opinion/insight on them. After reading this review, you should have a good idea as to the content of the discs. If you want to know if I think the routines are good and the discs are worth your purchase, my answer is a definitive yes. Here are the highlights…
Plot: Wild Coin
Twilight Zone Wild Coin starts with 4 copper coins. 3 change to gold one at a time and are dropped into a cup. The last coin turns to gold, then back to copper at the fingertips. The remaining coins are dumped out to reveal they are all copper again. The routine is performed with a Twilight Zone patter and presentation. This routine has been featured on prior releases from Mike Rubinstein. The routine features invisible coin transfers and spellbound moves originated by Mike.
Merlini Purse Routine starts with 3 copper coins which change to gold as they touch the purse. The coins are then dumped into the purse. The last coin changes back to copper, and is dropped into the purse, whereby all the coins are shown to be copper again. This routine uses the purse as part of the method, and shares some techniques and plot from Twilight Zone Wild Coin, sans the 4th coin.
Wild Coin: Four silver coins change to Chinese coins one at a time and are dropped into a cup. The last coin changes back and forth a few times with a spellbound sequence before ending at silver, which is also dropped into the cup. At the end, all the Chinese coins are poured out to show they are now silver. This is one of David's many Wild Coin plots and is featured in is Expert Coin Magic book and video series. It is not terribly difficult to learn. It is extremely visual and showcases a very nice spellbound sequence with the last coin.
Wild Coin with a Purse: 3 silver coins change one at a time to copper and are dropped into a purse. The last coin changes back and forth with a Spellbound sequence ending with silver, and dropped into the purse. At the end, all the coins are dumped out of the purse to show they are silver. This is very similar in technique and presentation to the previous Wild Coin except it uses one less coin and a purse instead of a cup.
Workers Wild Coin: Coins start inside a purse. Instead of dumping them out, one silver coin is removed and changed to copper and replaced inside the purse. This is repeated 2 more times. At the end, all the coins are dumped out and they are all Chinese! This is a new, never before released routine of David’s. It is extremely easy to perform and has a great kicker ending. You could literally start performing this routine after viewing! It is one of the gems on the DVD.
Wild Coin 1: 3 silver coins are dumped out of purse. 1st one is tossed into the hand, changes to copper, and placed onto the table. 2nd one tossed into the hand, turns to copper, and placed on table. The two copper coins are placed into purse. The last silver coin changes to copper, then he taps it on the purse, and it changes back to silver. He places the silver coin onto the purse. Then Mike opens the purse to show that the coppers have changed back to silver. One very nice thing about Mike’s handling is that he gets two coins changed in view before they are dumped into the purse. I think seeing multiple coins changed at the same time adds to the deception.
Wild Coin 2: Same as 1, but instead of copper coins going into purse, they go into a spectator’s hand. I like the routines with spectator involvement. So I like version 2 better than 1 if I had to pick.
Wild Coin 3: 3 copper coins taken out of purse. Mike places one copper in his hand, reaches into his pocket and takes out a silver coin to act as a catalyst. It goes into the hand with the copper. He opens hand to show two silver coins. Mike repeats this by picking up the next copper coin, adding the silvers, and when he opens his hand, they are all silver. This is repeated one last time until all the coins are silver. I like this version a lot because the spectator gets to see every coin change while all the other coins are in view too. Since you end with four silvers, the spectators are likely to recall you changed four coppers to four silvers even though you brought the extra silver out of your pocket in the beginning.
Plot: 2 Copper 1 Silver
Cop Sil Brass was published in Kaufman’s COINMAGIC and was one of the early pioneering copper silver brass routine that did not utilize the standard CSB gimmick coin set sold today in magic shops. The routine is a three phase routine where a silver coin changes places with a copper coin and a Chinese coin. Each phase increases is apparent impossibility. Of particular note is Geoff’s HPC move to create a startling change of a silver coin for the copper and Chinese.
Copper Sandwich is a very quick routine. A copper coin is sandwiched between two silver coins and held at the fingertips. With a wave of the opposite hand, two copper coins sandwich one silver coin. Everything is examinable at the beginning and end. (No gaffs).
Triple Change is a 3 phase Okito box routine. Two silver coins and a copper start out in the box and are dumped out. The first phase involves the copper coin magically traveling into the box between the two silver coins. The second phase involves the sandwiched copper coin magically traveling out of the box leaving the silvers behind. The climax is that the two silvers sandwiching a copper change to two coppers sandwiching a silver coin inside the box. As an afterthought, the silver coin is vanished, to reappear again inside the box. This is a very clever routine that utilizes the properties of a specialty Okito box to help create the effect.
2 Copper 1 Silver Transposition is a 4 phase routine using two different copper coins and a silver coin. The coins start out in an Okito box. They are dumped out, and shown to the spectator. The two copper coins are replaced back into the box, the silver is vanished to reappear back in the box with the coppers. The second and third phases are in the hands transpositions of a silver coin for the two coppers. The final phase is a transposition of the two copper coins out of the Okito box for a silver coin in the hand. Very interesting thinking behind this puzzle – no gaffed coins or Okito boxes at all!
Volume 2 Bonus section contains:
Wild Pocket which is a performance only routine performed by guest Kainoa Harbottle. Essentially four silver coins are changed to Chinese one at time and placed into his pocket. This is a live performance from Seminar 2.
Geoff Latta performs and teaches Copper Silver Coins Across. The first part of the routine appears to be a standard coins across where 3 silver coins are attracted to a copper coin in the opposite hand. They travel one at a time. However, once all the coins go across, the silver coins are placed into a spectator’s hand; the copper coin is vanished, only to appear with the silver coins in the spectator’s hand. What makes this routine especially convincing is that both hands were seen throughout the routine, thereby eliminating any idea of an extra copper coin. How this is accomplished is very interesting! It is not secretly stolen either…
Mike Gallo performs and explains an alternate handling of Wild Coin 1 already presented on the DVD. The major change is a different way to deal with the last coin. This is live footage from Seminar 2.
Lastly, Mike Gallo’s Wild Coin Discussion consists of an explanation of a wild coin where 3 silver coins one at a time turn to copper and are dropped into a cup. At the end, all of the coins turn to gold. Mike also provides an extremely detailed teaching of his retention pass. This section comes from a personal teaching session break out group from Seminar 4.
I am not going to give away the Easter Egg, but look for it one of the introduction titles (not the menus) within the DVD. If you click it, you will be treated to a performance of one of David Roth’s classic showpieces live from Seminar 4.
Silver Lint 4 is a 3 phase routine consisting of a production of a silver coin, a Spellbound change sequence back and forth from silver to copper, and ends with a vanish. Mike teaches several innovative Spellbound changes including the very deceptive Wave Change.
Triple EG Spellbound is a very fast triple change. It starts with the production of a silver coin which is held in Spellbound position. When Mike puts two fingers on the sides of the coin from his other hand the coin changes visibly to copper. When he moves his hand away, the coin is Chinese. This is very quick, visual, and startling.
4 Change Spellbound is a Spellbound sequence where a silver coin changes back and forth from a Chinese coin. Then the silver changes to copper, back to silver, to Chinese, back to silver, then ends turning to gold! Mike utilizes the JW Grip to create some of these visual Spellbound changes. Interesting teaching.
Plot: Copper Silver with Props
The Substitution Trunk Mystery is a mini version of the sub-trunk. The silver coin represents Harry Houdini, and the copper coin, his wife and assistant Bess. The silver coin is placed in an Okito box and bound with a rubber band. Under cover of a business card, the copper coin switches places with the coin bound inside the Okito box.
A Trio of Effects. Mike performs three effects: Copper Silver Extraction, Silver Penetration (also known as the Magical Filtration), and a Copper Silver Transposition with a Spectator. CS Extraction is often followed up with Magical Filtration (David Roth performs these very same effects next as well) Mike offers a few handling changes to the routine, but it remains pretty true to the originals. CS Extraction is a copper and silver coin is placed into a handkerchief and at the spectator’s request, a coin is magically pulled through the silk. Silver Penetration is the magical penetration of a silver coin back into the silk while it is being held by a spectator. The last part of the routine is a transposition of a silver coin for a copper coin held by a spectator.
Four Phase Routine with a Handkerchief is exactly what the name implies. Essentially David starts with a production of a silver coin and a copper coin from a handkerchief and then pretty much does the same trio of effects that Mike Rubinstein just performed prior on the DVD: Copper Silver Extraction, Magical Filtration, and a Copper Silver Transposition with a Spectator. The handling a bit different than what Mike Rubinstein presented just prior to this one, but the plots are the same. The version of Copper Silver Extraction that David performs has one extra phase, and the transposition with the spectator involves putting both coins into their hand, and they remove one.
The Purse and the Glass is one of David’s classic pieces of magic. The really great part of this routine is you setup the entire routine right in front of your spectator through the patter and corresponding actions. When David is finished setting up, the actual disposition of the coins is so completely different than what the spectators will think, it is a great study! The plot of the Purse and the Glass is that 3 copper coins and 3 silver coins transpose. The coppers are placed into a purse, and the silvers remain in view. Every time, David will toss all but one of the silver coins into the glass, and the silver coin will change to copper. After all the silver coins are copper, the purse is opened to show that the coppers did indeed change place, the coins in the purse are now silver.
Which Way Wild is a multiphase routine that starts with the production of 3 silver coins from a purse frame, followed by the production of 3 copper coins. One at a time the 3 silver coins are vanished back into the purse frame and subsequently reproduced. The copper coins and silver coins are picked up into opposite hands. Suddenly all the copper coins magically travel over to the hand with the silver coins. The silver coins are removed (placed into the pocket). One at a time the 3 coppers change into silver coins. Mike drops all the coins into his hand, reaches into his pocket and brings out a Chinese coin. The Chinese coin is put into the hand with the 3 silvers. When he opens his hand, all the coins have changed to Chinese. A lot of magic takes place here!
Four-In Exchange is a very puzzling and straightforward effect. Four Chinese coins are placed into a black handkerchief. Four silver coins into a white handkerchief. Mike causes the coins to transpose. At the end the handkerchiefs are opened to reveal that the coins have indeed transposed. This is a very magical routine, very visual, based on an Ed Marlo routine. It is not difficult, and well worth learning.
Instant Purse, Coins, No Glass gets its name from Geoff Latta’s routine, “Purse, Coins, No Glass” (next on this DVD) which gets its name from David Roth’s “The Purse and the Glass” routine. If I were you, instead of watching the routines in the order presented on the DVD, I would watch David’s routine first, then Geoff’s, and then Mike’s instant version. It is an interesting progression. Even though Mike’s routine was not based on David’s or Geoff’s, the plot similarity is there. Mike dumps 3 Chinese coins and 3 silvers onto the table. He puts the Chinese back into the purse, picks up the silvers and instantly the silvers change to Chinese. The purse is opened to reveal the silver coins. It is quick, visual, and all the coins can be examined.
Purse, Coins, No Glass as I mentioned is based on David’s “The Purse and Glass” routine sans the glass. Similar to David’s routine, 3 coppers and 3 silvers are dumped out of a purse. The silver coins go back into the purse. One at a time the coppers on the table are changed to silver. At the end, the copper coins are dumped out of the purse. One advantage to Geoff’s routine is that it can be done standing at a table. I have always liked this routine.
Volume 3 Bonus Section contains:
A performance only 3 coin transposition by Mike Gallo from Seminar 4. This routine is variation of Mike’s “Okito Gone Wild” routine from his The Dynasty Continues video. It is a 3 phase routine where silver coins dumped out of an Okito box vanish and reappear back in the box. Eventually, the silver coins turn into copper, and the silver coins are dumped out. As a kicker, Chinese coins are also dumped out of the box.
Mike Gallo also performs an alternative handling of Which Way Wild from Seminar 2 using and Okito box with a double kicker ending. (After the coins turn into Chinese coins, Mike dumps Chinese coins out of the Okito box that are too big for the box).
Mike Rubinstein performs and explains his routine “Chocolate Coins” which is a Spellbound routine using a chocolate coin. The wrapper of the chocolate coin goes on and off via the Spellbound changes utilized in his Silver Lint 4 routine. At the end, the coin turns into a handful of M&Ms.
Guest performer Marc DeSouza performs and explains his Spellbound routine, “Werewolf Coins” which is a progressive transposition: Meaning as his fingers cover the coin in Spellbound, it slowly begins to turn from copper to silver. The progression goes from a crescent of silver, to half silver, to a crescent of copper, to all silver. It goes along with the story of Lon Chaney’s werewolf.
Lastly, David Roth explains various one hand coin switches from a break out session from Seminar 4 including the Palm to Palm Change and the Drop Switch. Also included is extensive history on the thumb crotch grip which David calls the Frickle Palm, and how it is used in the DeManche change.
Again, hidden within one of the intro titles on this DVD, you will find an Easter Egg, if you click the arrow that shows up you will be treated to an explanation of Geoff Latta’s Slow Motion Coin Vanish from a breakout session from Seminar 4.
Volume 4 is exclusively Copper Silver Transpositions.
Kaps Matting Copper Silver has several Copper Silver transpositions where the copper in one hand changes places with the silver in the other hand. Eventually Mike offers an explanation that he is using four coins and shows two coppers and then two silvers. He makes them transpose a few times again, and then shows that the four coins he supposedly had are all brass Chinese coins. As the name implies, Mike uses his matting techniques in this routine (as well as the next one). The matting technique is taught in the context of this routine and additionally in the bonus section of this DVD.
Standup Sucker Copper Silver 1 features a copper silver transposition from hand to hand followed by a complete vanish of the coins. This routine is also another application of Mike’s unique matting techniques.
Standup Sucker Copper Silver 2 features a few copper silver transpositions from hand to hand. Then the coins vanish and appear inside a coin purse laying on the table. This routine does not use matting like version 1. Only sleight of hand and un-gaffed coins are used, which makes this a good impromptu transposition routine.
Fourgone Copper Silver starts with a magical production of a copper followed by a silver coin, a transposition with the two coins in the magician's hands, a transposition of a coin held by a spectator. At the end the coins vanish and reappear inside a coin purse that was shown to be completely empty at the beginning of the routine. The ending of this routine utilizes an ingenious utility purse called a rattle purse, which is available through Mike Rubinstein at www.newyorkcoinmagic.net. The rattle purse adds one level of deception, but a regular purse would also work for the routine.
Seated Copper Silver Transposition is an extremely visual transposition. The copper and silver coins are held inside Mike’s left fist. The spectator pulls one coin out and places it on top of Mike’s right fist. Mike tosses his right fist up, catches the coin, and immediately shows that it changed places with the coin held in his left fist. On first watch that silver to copper change got me… but the title gives a clue as to what happened J
Copper Silver Classic is David Roth’s classic handling of the copper silver transposition. A few transpositions take place in his own hand, and then he ends using the Fred Kaps in the spectator’s hand ending. Very clean, very direct, very good.
Gold Kaps: Mike takes two silver coins and turns them both copper and back to silver. Then he turns one silver coin copper, causes them to transpose. After being accused of using four coins, Mike shows that he does, but they are four gold coins. This is an effect of Fred Kaps. It is very similar to Mike Rubinstein’s "Kaps Matting Copper Silver", without the matting.
The One Dollar Trick (Presto Chango) is a routine that was called “Presto Change-o Mike-o” on his The Dynasty Continues video. This is Mike's handling of Thomas H. Bearden's Presto Chango from Bobo's Modern Coin Magic. It is basically the same routine, where two silvers change into two coppers, and back again, and also one copper, and one silver, but mike dumps the coins out onto a close up mat after each change, and ends with a kicker multiple coin transposition into four Chinese brass coins. If you perform Presto Chango, you want to check out Mike's ending to it.
Fisted is a copper silver transposition in a spectator’s hand. Both coins are put into a spectator’s hand and copper is removed and placed on top of his fist. Geoff presses down onto the copper coin, when he moves his hand away it is now silver. The spectator holds the copper. This routine is very similar to the more recent variant “Coppa Silva” by Chris Korn, but Geoff’s original routine uses a different method to remove the gaff.
Sun and Moon is Geoff’s handling of the Sun and Moon except Geoff uses a silver Sun and Moon gaff as opposed to copper. The moon is represented by a silver coin, the sun represented by the copper coin. The routine starts with a closed fist copper silver transposition. Geoff talks about an eclipse where the sun makes the moon vanish – and he does so by showing the two coins together at his fingertips, and the sun vanishes. The sun is reproduced and the standard at the fingertips rising of the moon and the sun typified by Sun and Moon routines is performed. The hands are shown clean.
Deep Back Clip Copper Silver is a fast paced copper silver transposition that occurs with a spectator looking down at your hands. The coins are examined before and after the routine and throughout the routine the hands are shown palm up to only contain one coin each. Nevertheless, the coins transpose, turn into two coppers, two silvers, and continue on in a fast paced maddening flurry of transpositions. As the name implies, Deep Back Clip is used, Geoff teaches his excellent recovery techniques to bring the coin out of Back Clip and into Classic Palm.
The Bonus Section of Volume 4 contains several discussions from Coin Seminar 4 as well as a teaching by Mike Rubinstein on his matting technique from his 1986 lecture video.
Included is a discussion of Copper Silver Transpositions by David Roth. He focuses his teaching on the Copper Silver Classic routine previously taught on the DVD. He also discusses one hand switches again in context of teaching the Palm to Palm Change. Detailed discussion is also made about “in the spectator’s hand” endings.
Fourgone Copper Silver is performed and taught again by Mike Rubinstein using footage from the Seminar.
Geoff Latta also performs his Slow Motion Coin Vanish sequence, performs a copper silver transposition with a spectator’s hand. He explains the transposition, and then he also performs and explains Fisted.
The Easter Egg again is hidden within one of the DVD's intro titles, you will find an if you click the arrow that shows up you will be treated to a performance and explanation of Mike Rubinstein’s routine “Fusion”. I will let you find out what the routine is on your own J
There is some overlap on these 3 volumes where the same plots are performed and explained by different NYC Coin Magicians, and also sometimes again in the bonus section. So it may appear as though you are seeing the same things over again. However each magician tends to have subtle differences in handling, patter, and technique that provide a few different viewpoints to similar effects. But, who can complain that you are getting “too much” instruction? Too much is generally better than not enough.
There are several routines on this DVD that are already in my repertoire, and a few more that I definitely want to start working on. One thing this DVD prompted me to do was go buy an English Penny shell. I sold my old one ages ago, but there are a few routines on this DVD series that makes very ingenious use of that specific gaff.
For most routines on this DVD you will want to obviously have copper coins, silver coins, some Chinese coins, and at minimum I recommend a copper/silver gimmick.
If you are new to coin magic, start with David Roth’s Workers Wild Coin on Volume 2 it’s probably the easiest routine on the DVD and provides a great kicker surprise.
If you are a coin magician, these DVDs belong in your library, period.
Currently the DVDs can be bought only from www.newyorkcoinmagic.net for $35 plus $5 shipping and handling ($11 overseas shipping and handling), or all three for $90 plus $8 shipping and handling, ($15 overseas shipping and handling). They can also be bought by sending a check made out to "Coin Champions" and sent to:
c/o Dr. Michael Rubinstein
3616 Henry Hudson Pkwy. East
Riverdale, N.Y. 10463
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