My Favorite Card Tricks: Ian Kendall
By Alex Robertson - Wednesday, January 23, 2019
We asked some of magic's greatest minds to share with us their favorite card tricks. This week is the turn of Ian Kendall. You may know him from the Vanishing Inc Blog, or the Edinburgh Fringe Festival where he has been performing for an incredible 28 years! Over to Ian:
- Card Warp by Roy Walton. This was the second item I bought from a magic shop back in 1986 (the first was Rainbow Cascade, for information…). I’ve been performing it ever since, and I stick fairly close to Roy’s handling as detailed in the instructions. I’ve tried almost every other variant that’s been published, but I always return to the original.
About twenty five years ago I worked out a handling that let me set up on the fly, and use two regular cards. At one point I was in Roy’s shop in Glasgow, and did Card Warp for some poor unsuspecting shopper. When they left, Roy told me that I was the first person that he had seen use unprepared cards, and that it was a little known fact that Roy’s original handling also set up on the fly, but it was changed when the routine was published to make it easier to perform. It’s nice to think that I’m one of the very few people who know the original, original handling.
The Slop Shuffle by Sid Lorraine in Royal Road. I honestly don’t know how long I’ve been using the slop shuffle, but it’s got me into a fair number of heated discussions late at night at conventions and online. Here’s why: I maintain that it’s the best version of Triumph for working magicians. It needs no table, so can be performed standing and surrounded, which is how most working magicians find themselves. It’s very easy to follow, and takes about 90 seconds to perform, which means if the food arrives in the middle it’s easy to wind up. It’s completely impromptu, and can be done with any deck in any condition, even when missing thirteen cards.
Card on Forehead and in pocket by various. This is a mish mash routine that I’ll do if the conditions are right (in my working repertoire, about 90% is non card stuff). The core of the card to forehead part is from Mike Close, and the ending is David Williamson’s 51 cards to pocket version of Carlyle’s Homing Card.
This is an example of my mantra (explained in my Taking the Stage blog posts) that we should stop thinking about ‘tricks’ and concentrate on ‘routines’. On their own, each of these routines is exemplary, but by taking bits and bobs from each and connecting them, I found that I had a routine that better suited my own performing style and character. I used this routine in the Close Up room in the Magic Castle, since I felt I had to do at least one card routine, but I’ve used it on stage a lot as well.
To be honest, there were several candidates for third place; Three Found Cards, Card to wallet, or a gambling dem could all have taken the spot.
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