All I have is patience

By Ben Hart - Saturday, April 11, 2020


Too often, we forget what Magic is. Magic isn’t a profession, or a pastime, or an industry. Magic is a feeling.

“There was magic in the air…”.

Magic is an emotion.

Humans have long grappled with the impossibility of attempting to render emotions into words. Magic, being an emotion is just as hard to describe as love or despair. Which is why the challenge of writing a book about magic seemed, at first, insurmountable. A long, long, time later, we finally have a finished book sitting on the shelf. I learned my favourite secrets from books and seeing my own book sitting on my shelf is a very surreal feeling.

There is a great privilege afforded to those who document and share their work… We are allowed to document only the finished product - the pain and failure that existed along the journey rots away towards invisibility.

It might be easy for someone to read this book of my ideas and assume that I have many correct answers and some unusual foresight. I do not. All I have is patience.

In the case of the material in this book, I have made all the mistakes and patiently conducted the scientific research on the tricks on your behalf. I have innovated new principles and dusted-off old ones. I have twisted them and turned them in the hope that they might alchemically transform into something powerful. What is left (after all the work, and shows, and failure), is a book of gifts for you, polished and gleaming, ready for you to take out into the world and onto your stage.

All of the tricks in the book are united by the same underlying principle of a respect for magic. Magic is not ours to devalue. Magic is the feeling that exists in the room during our performances. For many people, a feeling of magic is the most special one they could imagine and we must respect and protect that. With great power comes great responsibility…

I want to thank Vanishing Inc for their trust and endorsement of my work. I also want to thank the true author of the book Neil Kelso for his insight, patience and understanding. Without their encouragement and guidance this book would still be “that” stack of scraps of paper sitting in the corner of my office. They have produced a beautiful book that I am very, very proud of. I am emotionally moved by its very existence. I sincerely hope you find value within its pages. Collaborate with it. Disagree with it. Challenge it. I hope you find inspiration, for I can think of no more magical feeling than the idea that my work might inspire someone out there…

The Darkest Corners is available now.


Reader comments:

Elizabeth

Wednesday, 15 April 2020 18:32 PM - Reply to this comment

I can't wait to get mine and crack it open! Thank you for sharing your perspective of our art with us!

Ben

Thursday, 14 May 2020 00:43 AM - Reply to this comment

'Magic isn’t a profession, or a pastime, or an industry. Magic is a feeling.'

The simplicity of this statement belies its profundity.

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