Another consideration, the props, which consists mainly of ropes and small restraints, do fit into a single case. With this DVD you’re free to select routines that may work for your own show (an escape can add variety to a magic show) or create an entire escape-themed act of your own.
The show begins and warms up with Knot Tied, a demonstration of knot releases. Harlan instantly ties a length of rope around his wrist. In the second phase, two lengths of rope that are tightly tied together a couple of times seemingly melt apart.
Off the Cuffs
In Jacket Off, two ropes are threaded through the sleeves of a borrowed jacket and the ropes are held by two spectators. At the end, the jacket is released from the ropes unharmed. Free Time offers a fast escape from metal shackles and padlocks. This relies on a well known magic prop that’s a dealer item and Harlan teaches you how to make your own for around $20. While Harlan doesn’t milk this one for all its worth in his presentation, this one can easily employ the humor that’s used in the earlier “Thumb Cuff” routine.
In the entertaining Thumb Tie Harlan's thumbs are tightly tied together with two shoelaces by a spectator, yet solid metal rings can pass through the tied thumbs and onto the arms. For the climax, the thumbs pass through the spectator's locked arms. At then end, the spectator has to cut off the shoelaces. This is a great take on a classic.
The routines vary in difficulty but none are hard to learn and perform. With his “Escape Artist Show” DVD, Dan Harlan accomplishes both of his goals. He performs and teaches an excellent act that features a variety of escapes. And the act can indeed fit into a single case and thus “pack small and play big” (although the strait jacket is a bit bulky and the largest item). If you’ve been wanting to add an escape to your act, you’ll find some great ideas here.