For the serious beginner in magic, here are excellent tricks that are easy to learn and perform, inexpensive and can form an early foundation in magic technique and presentation. Three of the tricks: Professors Nightmare, Color Changing Handkerchief and Cups & Balls, are often performed by professionals.
Of course, purchasing a few magic tricks cant replace the value of learning magic fundamentals via books or videos. But if you master these tricks, they can become the foundation of a 12 to 15 minute show.
With this in mind, here are our five best magic tricks for serious beginners. All are available in magic stores.
This famous rope trick relies on a technique that is the basis of lots of rope tricks. And Professors Nightmare is often performed by pros in their stand-up and walk-around shows. In the trick, three ropes of different length are stretched to create three ropes of equal size, and stretched again to return to their original lengths. This one is available for under five dollars, and the trick is explained in lots of magic books so you may make your own from ordinary rope.
2. The Color Changing Handkerchief
This classic of magic is also known as the chameleon hanks. The magician places a red handkerchief in his or her hand, and when its pushed out the other side, it emerges a different color. I particularly like this trick because while it relies on a gimmick, it requires you to learn to work with your hands. And done right, its absolutely baffling to spectators. You may purchase versions of this trick for around ten dollars.
3. Svengali Deck
This gimmicked card deck allows a magician to quickly find a selected card and perform other impressive effects. At the end of the trick, it looks as if the entire deck has turned into the selected card. The effect is stunning and easy to learn and perform. Svengali decks may be purchased at any magic store for between five and fifteen dollars.
4. Stripper Deck
Another gimmicked deck of cards, a Stripper Deck lets beginners quickly find selected cards that have been lost in the deck and perform other effects. Stripper decks may be purchased for anywhere between five and fifteen dollars.
5. Cups & Balls
While professional magicians perform stunning, advanced versions of this magic classic--many consider it the worlds oldest recorded magic trick--beginning magicians can purchase simple, pre-packaged versions that result in a mystifying sequence. In its simplest version, a magician brings out three cups and balls and somehow makes the balls pass through the cups.
Compared to the other tricks here, this one requires the most time to learn as there is a set sequence to memorize. But the results will be satisfying to beginners and their audiences. Inexpensive plastic versions may be purchased for less than five dollars. Pro versions with metal cups can cost hundreds of dollars.
-Wayne N. Kawamoto