‘How Did You Do That?!’ A Close Up Magician Reveals The Answer
I can’t remember the last gig where I wasn’t asked this question. Although I’d be very surprised if I attended a gig where no-one asked me, however – it’s an understandable question.
I’m Not Going to Tell You
Depending on which close-up magician you ask, you’ll receive any number of responses including, but not limited to, ‘If I told you, I’d have to kill you’, ‘Very well, thanks’ and the slightly more dull (but honest) ‘With lots of practice’.
Most audiences are happy with some variation on these harmless, tongue-in-cheek answers as the person who asked how the trick was done probably isn’t looking for an immediate, in-depth tutorial; it’s more a knee-jerk reaction to seeing something inexplicable.
No, Really – I’m Not
Unfortunately, the honest reply will, most of the time, give the trick away, which is why the flippant response of ‘Can you keep a secret? So can I!’ (this one’s a bit obnoxious) is commonly given.
Personally, I tend to lean towards the authentic approach of explaining exactly how many days, weeks, and months of practising I’ve put in to encourage everyone to marvel at my sheer dedication and determination. But done with charm and dignity, of course.
Yes, Even if You Ask Twice
Every so often, I’ll get a follow-up to the initial enquiry which is usually something along the lines of ‘No, seriously – I need to know how that just happened!’ In these few-and-far-between scenarios, I’ll explain, with a sincerely pitiful look on my face, that it’s much more enjoyable not to know the secret, and that even if I wanted to share it with them, I’d be thrown out of The Magic Circle forever if I so much as hinted at the method.
That usually gets the point across.
Oh, and if someone else in the group answers for me with something along the lines of ‘You can just Google it’, I’ll have to invest in some new cards as my current pack will have been launched across the table right at their forehead.