Monday, December 26, 2005

 
A Celebration and a New Beginning

Well, we have all made it to another year. I hope you have found the magic you wished for in your performances this year. If you haven't, keep tuned into this blog as I am currently chatting with some of my "Working Pro" friends to share tips and tricks for the New Year. Time flies fast so remember take the time and imagine and create new dreams for your audiences. This year I wish for you all your hopes to be the best performer your can be. I really need to hear from you and want to share with all of our readers things that work and don't work for your shows. Make it a Great New Year!!!

This Weeks Tips

In Stock and Ready For Shipping
Those of you who have been waiting....

Criss Angel DVD's back in stock
ReinCardnation
Mindreading 101
Pegasus
Icarus
Shocking
Rhinesense
Mind o Matic

Flame Thrower

This got to be the hottest tip ever on this blog. Imagine produce a comedy style flame (ala Jerry Lewis) 3 to 4 feet high. This has got to be the most amzing flame you can produce during the course of your act. Can be performed surrounded. To really see this amazing spot that you can do check out the on-line video. Please note no sale to anyone under 18...sorry that's the law.

100% commercial DVD Set "The Magic of Andrew Normansell

Those of you who read this blogknow that I am a big Fan of British magic and Humor. From England comes a 3 DVD set from Andrew Normansell, a 20 year vet of working big time companies and the U.K. comedy clubs. This 3 DVD set covers real world commercial magic with Mentalism, Comedy Stand- Up, Close-up Magic. The stuff on these DVD's is not for folks who don't want to put in the practice time. Andrew tips his personal well kept secrets that have made him of of England's busiest "Working Pros".

D'lite Morph

Just in time for the New Year comes D'lite Morph. What does Morph mean? Imagine doing the traditional D'lite by Rocco now with the power to have 6 (yes 6) different colors appear in your finger tips. Those of you may use a D'lite for just a quick bit, can now envision a stage performance piece that you can do creating different colors. Imagine this first produce a color of Purple then red , orange, green, blue and then pink. Over the years many working pro's have come up with so many different uses for the D'lite. Now do it in a rainbow of colors. An online video is on the site. Comes in Single and Pairs.

Drink Up

The ultimate is in your face magic. Show a silk, cover your hand and produce a full size glass fill with your favorite beverage. On line video (could have been a better one) give you an idea of the mind blowing effect that every magician wishes he could do. Comes with a video CD and a silk with the gimmick, Imagine the friends you'll make whipping out drinks out of now where. As the Brit's would say....Cheers Mate!

Kandu's Card in Balloon .....Almost

Over the years here at Hocus-Pocus we have been proud to present the work of Jeff Eaton and Don Arthur under the title of Kandu. Some of the greatest comedy kidshow props and routines follow the Kandu style of magic and fun. Now comes a Card in balloon effect for kids with lots of fun, comedy and mayhem. Search our website for all the Kandu Items...many now in stock. Jeff is a working Pro and is on the road for most of the year, so get them now while they are in stock. Don is a great magic inspiration and was actually my teacher in Ringling Clown College (I attended) in 1979. So if your putting a new show together read each Kandu item and you'll find something for your show.

Confusing Crayons

So many effects in magic have a great premise but then how could you think of doing them for kids. It just doesnt seem to be the type of effect for a school or kidshow. Now comes (Back again) Confusing Crayons, with its basic idea of Topsy-Turvy Bottle only with Crayons. This is a item that flies out the door when we had it in stock last time. Now in stock again for all you family entertainers and your imagination can work this with coloring books and painting effects. Get yours now!!

Sid Lorraine Scrape Book

One of the legends of inventive magic was Sid Lorraine. Now from our friends at Fun Inc. comes 5 books in one. Sid was the type of performer that thought outside of the box (before the phase was ever used) and came up with real world commerical magic and fun. I personally have been pushing to Richard Kaufman to do a Sid Lorraine Issue for Genii (about two years now) so this book comes back at the right time. Full of great patter, tricks, gags and entertainment insight. Paul's favorite is a talking skull routine, me I look forward to the Troublewit routine in the book. One hundred and sixty eight pages of the wit and wisdom that was Sid. Want to help yourself and your show get this and email Richard (at Genii Magazine) to do a issue on this creative kind'da guy.

This Weeks Tip

From my Family Show.

A Routine with Professor's Nightmare

If I told you this before forgive me, but the routine is getting better since I came up with it. One time a customer asked me on the phone for magic that has a motivation point. I said " All magic can motivate." Off the top of my head I used Professor's Nightmare (also know as three-way ropes) and told a story of 3 different people and how one is small, one is medium, and one is tall. Now in performance I get 3 kids of different heights and have them hold the different ropes. Now I point out that each is a different size (the ropes and the kids) then work the magic. All the ropes become the same size. Now the line..."But no matter what, we are all the same on the inside." This comes as you change the ropes to the same length. The oohs and ahhs that happen make a kodak moment. This is also a lesson to treat each other the same as we like to be treated. "Because remember we are all the same one the Inside".

Good thought and Inspiration for the children of today. So work that routine for the New year in your show....my gift to you enjoy.

Please do share some of your ideas and Tips with me for the New Year. Recommend a book or DVD you think we all should learn from. Thanks.

Thank you for reading each week. As Always please read the full descriptions of these items on the website (http://www.hocus-pocus.com) of this weeks picks I recommend for you to have for your show.

Some of the items I have recomended have videos to view also.I would like to hear from you so feel free to write to me at:Tony@Hocus-Pocus.com

or

snail mail me at:

Hocus-Pocus Magic Att.

Tony Blanco 2311 E. McKinley,

Fresno,CA. USA 93703

Remember one thing about the season, its for the kids. If you have a chance do something special for those who may have less and give them a magical Holiday.

Donate a show or just do a show somewhere for everyone to enjoy!

Best Magical Wishes and Happy Holidays to you and your family from ours,







Monday, December 19, 2005

 

The Spirit of the Holidays

As we all prepare for the Holiday Season one thing that comes to mind is that the real magic of this time of the year is for the Children. As Magicians the true magic is to find the child in all of us. When you entertain people (young and old) you should spark the child in all of us. Tonight as we start the New Year I wish to point out some of my style of magic...Family Magic. I remember when I lived in New York and had the luck to work for Macy*s Department store, as much as it was about sales the store had the spirit of Christmas all year long. As I have mention (before) they would work on the famous Parade all year long. Then was the magical Santa village that would be on the 7th floor as a fixture all year long but covered by fake walls till just after the Parade. This village would be about the size of a city block inside the store and had the old German woodworking village look. Trains, snow falling indoors, and then Santa's house to visit. What the public didn't know was there were actually 5 Santa houses so kids didn't wait long. I was a Toy Soldier (which sounded alot like C3PO from Star Wars). As you enjoy this time of the year, start to think about all the new magic you can perform for the child in all of us, you get to entertain in 2006.

This Weeks Tips

In Stock and Ready for Shipping
Shocking
Ultimate Finger Chopper (the finest chopper with great metal work)
Burning Up DVD
Advanced Illusions Projects Book (a super book of illusion ideas)
Icarus

As you read each week, I recommend items that I would use in my own show! These are honest and from my heart recommendations for you to look good as a performer. Thanks for Reading each week!

Magic For Under 5's

First when I saw this title of this new DVD, I actually went YIKES. I thought how young are we going to have to entertain kids since kids today are so hip and don't always believe magic after a certain age. Well I was wrong, and I was charmed by the magic of Terry Herbert. British magic has been an inspiration to many of the effects I do. If you don't know this I am a big Brit fan of things by the old Supreme Magic Company. Terry shares on this DVD not only a performance in front of children but tips his style for what I now see is the new market for children's entertainers, preschool show. As a kicker New York Children's entertainer Silly Billy sits down and interviews Terry. Terry shares his many years of knowledge and wisdom during this interview.



Confidential Dare Care Bookings Manual

Long time family entertainer Samuel Patrick Smith shares his knowledge In this new family market I have just told you about. Samuel tips his 17 years of knowledge in the Day Care Market. This book covers how to get started in this market, repeat bookings, themes, what type of shows to perform. One of the topics is not to believed, its called "The $100,000 Possibility". The knowledge in this book/CD is so valuable that the book is actually locked so no peeking inside until you purchase it.

Magic of Creative Thinking

One of my hero's in the family market is Barry Mitchell. His products, knowledge and wisdom for entertainer are one of a kind. The Magic of Creative Thinking is actually (purchased as two different items) is a DVD and the title of a Book. On the DVD he shares a 3 hour spot at the Kidabra Convention. This was a one of a kind lecture, because Barry showed some of the props, performed routines from his many years of school shows. So honestly I would purchase both the DVD and the Book. The book shows you how to build the props and includes ideas from folks like Jeff Hobson, Andre Kole, David Ginn, Trixie Bond, and Steve Kissell. A must for any one, who works for children!!!!!

Reading is Magic

To give you the best example of Barry Mitchell's genius, is Reading Is Magic. A pre-recorded playlet of the legend of King Midas with that touch of storytelling and magic with voice work by Terry Evanswood is part of Barry's magic. With all the props, including all things that become gold when King Midas gets his touch to them. This is what family entertainment is all about when you perform for family audiences. I know this is going to be one of my features in the new year and you should make it yours if you do any school, pre-school, library, or even birthday party. For your knowledge please be inspired by this great routine.

Lilly the Ladybug

One trick I grew up with was What's Next. Over the years I have made it into something else then a board with spots. I mean it looks like a flat die (single for Dice) so how can kids relate. Now comes Lilly the Lady bug based on the same trick with something kids can relate to. This time no magnets, or false moves. Cute and fun. Those of you with kid shows can find a spot for Lilly and even make up a funny story.



Chico The Mind Reading Chimp

For the working family show entertainer (Heck any entertainer really!) Chico the Mind Reading Chimp is a solid laughed packed routine. Bill Abbott gives you everything to present this reputation making act. You get a DVD to teach you the act, as well as CD for the music and sound effects. Chico has been the talk of many magic chat sites. Now Chico is here at Hocus Pocus & only here. Just think of inspiring continuous laughs from your audiences all in one suitcase. This is one of those packs small and plays big items you should have. If you work schools, malls, or even Vegas your crowds will fall in love with Chico and remember your name. Limited Run. Limited supply left act now!!


This Weeks Tip

Now after me telling of all the great family performers that we sell of I am tipping my pet routine from my show. First you will need a set of (another hero of mine) Bev Bergeron's Multiplying Wands (mine were the ones first made by him in Brass years ago), a Breakaway Wand, and a Rabbit Wand.
This routine has served me well from birthday parties, libraries, schools and the stages of Las Vegas.
The routine begins with getting a little girl on stage. I am usually wearing a Top Hat. "We are now going to perform one of the most famous acts that magicians perform, that is the production of a rabbit out of the Hat. I need you to show everyone that the hat is empty like this." Showing the hat empty running the hand inside and then say TA-DA. Give the child the hat and watch her do the same. Now have her hold the hat on the side by the brim. "Now we get the magic wand ( the break away one) wave and as I wave the wand a rabbit will appear and your remove it" "One, two, There....(tap, tap, tap) now pull the rabbit out." Lots of laughs cause the hat is empty.
Now hand her the wand as you check the hat for being empty. The wand breaks Laughs again. Do this again, she hold the hat and you wave the wand and again the hat is empty. Take the hat and give her the breakaway wand. Laughs No. 2
"Ok lets try this again this time you will be the magician and I will be the showgirl helper (laughs #3) " "Let put the top hat at your feet and I need you to put you right hand out (this can be fun when the wrong hat is put out by the child) " Now you need to use the Bev' Wands and do the routine with them. At this point a chil has wands under each arm and one under the chin. Remove the wands and get the final wand which is the rabbit wand. Have the audience say some magic words and unroll the banner and now the girl is the rabbit in the top hat coming out. This is always a Kodak moment (birthday child for sure) during the show. have her take a bow and don't forget a gift or Certicate for helping.
Now I didn't give you my jokes, so I hope lines will come to you if you use this routine that has and still serves me well.......theres my Christmas Gift to all of you for the New Year. Trust me work it out and it will serve you a long time.

Next week I will continue sharing another of my shows best routines as well as recommend more great props for family shows.

Please do share some of your ideas and Tips with me for the New Year. Recommend a book or DVD you think we all should learn from. Thanks.

Thank you for reading each week. As Always please read the full descriptions of these items on the website (http://www.hocus-pocus.com/) of this weeks picks I recommend for you to have for your show. Some of the items I have recomended have videos to view also.
I would like to hear from you so feel free to write to me at:
Tony@Hocus-Pocus.com

or snail mail me at:
Hocus-Pocus Magic Att. Tony Blanco
2311 E. McKinleyFresno,CA. USA 93703


Remember one thing about the season, its for the kids. If you have a chance do something special for those who may have less and give them a magical Holiday. Donate a show or just do a show somewhere for everyone to enjoy!

Best Magical Wishes and Happy Holidays to you and your family from ours,



Monday, December 12, 2005

 

The Long and Magical Journey

First of all, I wish to Thank all of you for the Support and Love you have give this week to our fellow brother of magic, Dean Dill. Dean was so surprised and Honored that this was done for him. Folks in showbiz can always be busy and sometimes self-centered. This week proved just the reverse. When it comes to someone we know getting a bad moment in life, show folks are always the first to lend a hand. So again Thank You all who sent a Tenner and much more Thanks to those who dropped a C note to help Dean and all the hospital bills and such. Look towards this as the reason you are part of our community of brothers and sisters that have a strong sense of purpose, understanding and magic for mankind.


This Weeks Picks
In Stock and Ready for Shipping
Wacky Worm
Shuftons Okito Coin Box (I think the finest ever made)

Appearing Pole Cue
Shocking Chair

Shocker


From the creative mind of Eitan Klever comes this years most talked about secret effect. Those of you who have seen those street magicians on TV that send a magical spark though a spectator, can now have that skill too. Shocker has been talked about and even Advertised but now is here at Hocus-Pocus (should be in stock on Tuesday). It truly is the power to electrify, with no threads, no magnets and you can even
wear short sleeve shirt. There is a video on the site to see. Can be worn safe and sound and ready to go in any performance.

Rhinesense

From the land of down under, Magician/ Surveilance Electronics expert Dave Everett comes Rhinesense. After several years of perfection Dave release his pet item which will make you truly the man with ESP powers. Using just 5 ESP cards, spectator has a free choice to pick one. Then the other 4 go in the pocket as you the magi feels the vibes coming off the card sandwiched between his hand. You can do this over and over again and always the correct card is told to your spectatator. A video is on the site and this is a "Pre-Order" for Mid January arrival here at Hocus-Pocus.

Burning Man



One of magic's newsest and hottest talents is Nathan Kranzo. Having seen and worked with Nathan at Michigan Magic Day (produced by our friend Chris Reesman of Encore Magic). I was blown away by his creative talents. This newest DVD by Nathan contains killer stuff for the close-up worker. Featuring effects with Cards, Coins as well as his pocket mangement theory (which) is worth the price of the DVD. Then if that wasn't enough his take on the Mercury Fold ( the way to fold a card in front of the spectator) is the icing on the DVD. Look for other items soon to be at Hocus Pocus by this young creative guy of close up magic.

Perfected Prediction

One of the icons of bizarre/pyschic is Kenton Knapper. Kenton is got to be magic's most prolific writers and thinkers. I have had the pleasure to chat with him and he is always creating. If you have never heard of his Wonder Words series (a must have for every performer that speaks) comes his latest (of many booklets) on psychic magic. This is truly the finally thought on the Ultimate Prediction of having a committee write a statement weeks before your show then during the show you predict everything written by the committee.No switching! No Stooges! No Forcing! Kenton has been doing this routine for years and fools layman and pro's alike.

Impressionable Mind Board

Since I seem to be on a Psychic Magic chat tonight, comes the long talked about (on the chat sites) from James Bliss comes the Imprsessionable Mind Board. Having played with this today with Paul, we both could not believe its simplestic yet decieving way to do a Impressional Prediction. Many magi's have come up with ideas to try to create what James has come up with the simplest of looking items. This has got to be the what could the final answer in Impressionable Prediction perfomances.

Tony's Tips: The Creative Mind

Well, since I seem to have chatted about alot of Psychic magic tonight, lets talk about the creative process. A good friend of mine once said, "You know if a Psychic performer needs magic supplies he just goes to OfficeMax or Office Depot". What does that mean? Well to me it means that this performer has knowledge in his head and just needs the supplies to make his magic. That's the way all magicians should think. Sometimes its not about some flash box or gimmacked prop. Its about the magic you create with everyday objects.

This is why we at Hocus Pocus offer some of todays creative DVD's by today's young creative inventors with just real world objects. We go out of our way to keep inspiring your mind. One such type of DVD that comes to mind is Rubber Band DVD's. Common object with many magic possiblites. This is how you need to look when just going shopping. be aware look at something being something else. Our good friend Barry Mitchell once looked at a portable bed unit at Walmart and turned it into a backdrop. So be it at Walmart, Home Depot, Target, you need to see everything in a different light and know how to use objects for our needs as a performer.

Here is a example how I have seen some magicians think outside of the catalog. For one idea, taking a remote control car's backends and make it into a card fountain on the inside of a box or top hat. To use many items in toy stores, office supply store's as a magical prop is the way to look different. Let me know what you may have come up with and share with all of us. Write me and share

My two favorite places to discover new magic from old or in stock items is Walmart and Home Depot/Loews. If you want to become a creative person look around these type stores. I usually love to look and shop and find stuff, but sometimes the noise of kids and parents take away from my focus. This is why I wear a headset and have CD player with music I like. Call me artisty fartsy but one needs to be in a creative mood so when a creative ideas are needed you know where you can get the supplies. Its like making yourself a living catalog. Sign up for Toy catalogs, Woodworking catalogs, get gift magazines all to inspire your creative forces. How do you think folks like Jim Steinmeyer come up with creative illusions if they don't know what man-made products are out in the real world. Real World magic with real world knowledge. So to use a dumb term, Stop and Smell the roses so you can know, see, and create your one of a kind magic. This way someday you can create something that maybe someday you might be selling to fellow magi's here at Hocus-Pocus.

Thank you for reading each week. As Always please read the full descriptions of these items on the website (http://www.hocus-pocus.com/) of this weeks picks I recommend for you to have for your show. Some of the items I have recomended have videos to view also.

I would like to hear from you so feel free to write to me at:

Tony@Hocus-Pocus.com or snail mail me at:

Hocus-Pocus Magic Att. Tony Blanco

2311 E. McKinleyFresno,CA. USA 93703

Best Magical Wishes and Happy Holidays to you and your family from ours,

Tony Blanco










Monday, December 05, 2005

 






Magic of Giving


One of our closest friends at Hocus-Pocus.com is Dean Dill (center) . He is one of the nicesest, humble, gentle souls in the magic family. Dean and his family were coming back from Las Vegas recently and got into a terrible car wreck. Dean and his family have been hurt very badly. Lots of hospital bills and possible operations in their New Year. Dean is a man of true pride and won't ask for help so his friends are reaching out for this help because we know he won't.

So Hocus-Pocus has put together along with many others in the magic community a way of giving a helping hand for him. First off, on top of our Hot New Items page what looks like a product is actually a way to give a donation to Dean's medical cost. So we are asking for all of our customers to lend a magic hand and make a donation of $10.00 (or more) to one of the good guys in magic.

You can also send checks directly to Dean. Make payments to "Dean Dill" and send to his home at: Dean Dill 2130 Fairpark #110, Los Angeles, CA 90041.

Our friends at Murphy's Magic have teamed up with us to donate some magic props for the fundraiser. Bob Kohler has alerted folks thru his site. Kenton Knepper has offered some items thru his site for fundraising. So we encourge all of you in your magic circles and Rings and clubs to help Dean Dill and his family. If you wish to give some magic for us to sell we can do that also.

Dean has been a creative force in magic. He has made many good friends as well as apperances on the old Tonight Show with his personal friend and student Johnny Carson.

This has been a very serious accident. Dean has broken Ribs & Pelvis and its going to be sometime till he is up and around. So in the spirit of giving please help Dean and his family have some hope and happeness for the Holidays by knowing how much he is loved and cared for. Please help anyway your heart tells you too.


New Items
In Stock and Ready for shipping
Appearing Pole Cue
Janis Pad
Rich Marotta's Fish Bowl


Icarus Effect

One of this years most talked about Illusions. From the mind of Arron Paterson comes a self levation effect and kit. With Icarus you can create the Illusion that you are floating up backwards to say a higher level behind you. Icarus has been compared to another floating magician's effect but I am here to tell you that the two illusions are totally different in method and makings. We at Hocus-Pocus were the first to premire Icarus and are proud to have it back on our website after much debate and chat room banter.

MindFreak Season One

Speaking of the most talked about on chat rooms is Magic Castle's Magician of the Year Criss Angel. This years most highest rate program on cable's A&E channel is MindFreak. Criss Angel brings a new twist and image on Magic. This generations most dramtic look for magic is MindFreak. Combining many different styles and looks are what fuel the 15 episodes of MindFreak on these 2 DVDs. Filmed around Las Vegas and on the streets of LA and New York its a in your face journey into the magic of Criss Angel. What is really the most cool thing of all is the low, low price this package is being offered for.

Crowdpuller

Since we are talking street performances, this week comes from England the street magic of Crowdpuller by Peter Wardell. Long time busker (the english term for street performer) Peter Wardell tips many of the secrets that have made him a very popular and a full time pro. Included in this 2 volume DVD are: How to gather the crowd, his top tricks (many his own personal secrets) and how to take street magic and bring it indoors for tradeshows. Filmed live on the streets of England's fame Covent Garden Market.


Miracles For Mortals Volume 1 and 2

Taking magic to the extreme seems to be the theme tonight. So timing is perfect for the premire of Miracles for Mortals. Geoff Williams has created some really off the wall magic. For full list of effects read his image on the site, but let me tell you they are truly wild sounding effects. Magic includes effects for the closeup, Street, Stage and platform performers. Clever ideas and inspired by some classic effects with a new age touch.






MindFreak 2006 Calendar

Here is a quick idea for the collector of magic as well as a look at the New Year via the images of Criss Angel. Great Idea for a stocking stuffer. Each calendar is autographed by Criss.





Those of you who have been lucky this year, help us spread that same goodwill and love to our friend Dean Dill and his family at this time of need. Watch the website for specials and deals to help raise money. Again on the top of the opening of Hot New Items is set up for helping a real gentleman of magic.

Thank you for reading each week. As Always please read the full descriptions of these items on the website (http://www.hocus-pocus.com/) of this weeks picks I recommend for you to have for your show.
Some of the items I have recomended have videos to view also.

I would like to hear from you so feel free to write to me at:
Tony@Hocus-Pocus.com
or snail mail me at:
Hocus-Pocus Magic

Att. Tony Blanco
2311 E. McKinley
Fresno,CA. USA 93703

Best Magical Wishes,
Tony Blanco



























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