With all the controversy about the high price of one-trick DVDs, it’s a bit of surprise for me to
review a three DVD set that deals with one trick. Or to be precise - one magical effect. Many
one-trick DVDs on the market detail effects that have not been properly researched or audience
tested and before the era of self-publishing would, at best, ended up as a magazine article.
Fortunately for you and me Steve Valentine is a pro and has done his research and this set is
well worth your investment in time and money.
My interest in the venerable Card Through
Handkerchief was piqued when I read Billy McComb’s Five Card Selection routine in one of the Ireland
Year Books. It wasn’t known as the Multiple Card Selection back then. Billy’s routine climaxed with
the Card Thru Hanky.
In Disc One of this nicely produced and edited set, Mr Valentine
takes us though the basic handlings and sleights and offers non-sleight versions as well. While not
encyclopaedic it is very thorough and teaches some of the best handlings and routines from the
A plethora of routines and techniques are shown, all basically being the same
plot, a card penetrating through a handkerchief. Sometimes it is the traditional effect, sometimes
it pops through, occasionally it rises through and even floats up a la Zombie.
assuming that Steve approaches learning a new trick in similar fashion to the way I do. Namely,
research everything you can find, work on it, delete bits, add bits, think about it, change it,
perform, change, add, edit and eventually come up with something worthwhile once you have visualised
the effect you want to achieve. In Steve’s case it was a short paragraph about Nate Leipzig that
spurred the development of his method.
Steve has done all that work for you, which is
literally a huge amount of research and I’d say, equal to a university semester.
disc alone you have your money’s worth if you are looking for a routine to add to your professional
repertoire. The Card Thru Hanky is an excellent way to finish a card set as it is visual and the
magic should happen at face level. If you are careful about your angles and blocking, you should be
able to do this strolling and table-hopping. I’d also refer you to Tommy Wonder’s books and DVD set
for some extra tips and handling.
Disc Two covers tricks, stunts and gags to do with the
handkerchief you carry with you. Steve prefers a white bandana rather than a men’s pocket
handkerchief as it is a little larger. Google ‘white bandana’ and you can buy them quite cheaply,
singly or in bulk. Steve covers a number of ideas and routines where the bandana’s corners are held
by participants, making a little stage, allowing you to do a range of tricks that would normally
require a table. He teaches a coins through handkerchief using the Little Hand gag - as sold by
Michael Ammar - as its premise. Another routine that would work well, though it isn’t mentioned on
the DVD is Bob Swadling’s Double Deception, sold by Mark Mason.
I was delighted to see
Hankyrise, a routine of Len Belcher’s. Len, a creative magician contributed many tricks to British
magazines such as The Gen and Abracadabra.
For further uses of a handkerchief or bandana I
refer you to Billy McComb or Charlie Miller’s routines for the ‘Seven Cornered Handkerchief’ or my
own ‘Five Minutes With a Pocket Handkerchief’ DVD, all of which is totally different to what is
Disc Three is dedicated to Cloth, Steve Valentine’s own routine. Three cards
are chosen by the audience and shuffled (by them) back into the deck. The first two cards penetrate
through in an amazing manner, the wrapped deck being shown on both sides and the material of the
handkerchief being checked by the audience. The third card is even more amazing, as it visibly
appears under the handkerchief before popping right through the material.
You need to make
some special gaffs for Cloth, all easy to make and fully detailed instructions are given. You don’t
have to do all three phases either if you don’t want to.
There are considerations for the
professional worker with regards to pocket management as the gaffs have to be introduced in
performance and stored when not in use. Steve covers palming and non-palming methods and strong
misdirection is built in to cover the moves. There is no heat on you as the audience are totally
unaware of the gaffs.
Would that all who rush to bring a DVD to market take as much time
and effort to research and teach as Steve Valentine has done with CLOTH. It will come as no surprise
that this set is highly recommended.
4 of 4 magicians found this helpful.
This the best card thru hanky I've ever seen. This dvd has an insanely hug bonus section. Its a
three disc (if you didn't know). This dvd does not come with the handkerchief and you do have to
make the gimmicks. But the gimmicks only take like ten min to make all of them and you could get the
perfect handkerchief at a lot of different craft stores.
Disc one: This is all the best
sleight of hand methods of doing card thru handkerchief. He gives you a whole bunch of ways to do
Disc two: On this dvd he teaches how to do routines that involve coins cards
and more. He also teaches his effect Han Time. Han Time is an amazing coins thru handkerchief. He
also teaches how to make funny animals puppets with the hanky.
Disc Three: Disc three is
the actual effect Cloth. The Cloth effect is you get three cards chosen and they get to shuffle the
cards into the deck. You then wrap the deck in the hanky and name out ALL three cards. Then on of
there cards visually penetrates thru the hanky but you can show all sides of the handkerchief while
it is penetrating thru. Then the another card starts to go thru you pull it all the way out. Then
you just totally put it back in! you give it to them to hold and they see about a fourth of the card
sticking out thru the cloth and totally visually pull it out in their hands. For the last card you
show the card thru the hanky but its not their card. You just wave your hand and the card CHANGES
THRU THE HANDKERCHIEF!!!!! Then right after you pull it right thru the fabric. He teaches everything
you need to know about the effect.
All in all it is an awesome trick. Its not cheap but it
is totally worth it. In other words PUT IN CART NOW!!!!
1 of 1 magicians found this helpful.
5 STARS - HANDS DOWN!!! Steve Valentine is very inspirational, well rounded, clever and so
generous! For the past many years that I have been doing magic, never once have I considered to
include a Card through Handkerchief in my bag of tricks. But now I do and CLOTH is on my next stage
show! Steve adds depths, dimensions and charisma to the presentation. He shows you that this is
more than a presentation of a solid object passing through a solid object. This is also about
*revealing* a selected card. If this were only a trick about a card passing through a hanky, it
would never be as entertaining as the Crazy Man's Handcuffs, in my humble opinion. Steve also
compares the many versions of Card through Handkerchief from past masters that makes you want to be
more selective and aware of what could elevate your showmanship and what could bring it down. And
as a bonus, when you get to see Steve's version of Card through Handkerchief, that just top
everything. CLOTH has been an eye opening and gave me a new trick that I cannot wait to show. 5
1 of 1 magicians found this helpful.
I just opened the dvd box and I saw not 1 disc but 3 discs ! When I bought Cloth, I didn't realize
that I was buying an encyclopedia of card through silk ! Now that I am beginning to look at those
dvd's... Wow !!!!!... much more than expected. A very old trick brought back to the modern world
! This is one of my best purchase !