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The Connoisseur’s

Compendium

No part of this publication may be duplicated or


transmitted in any form without written permission from
the authors.

All rights reserved.

Copyright © 2017
Content
PREFACE by Tom Wong.............................................................3
CLOSE CALL by Simon Caine.....................................................5
DO YOU NEED TO ASK? by Simon Caine.................................9
DIVERGENT by Craig Logan....................................................17
EXTRAORDINARY PERCEPTION by Andreu...........................22
NO LUCK NEEDED by Ever Elizalde........................................36
THE EYES OF THE SEER by Paul Voodini...............................44
NUMBER STEAL MIND READING by Nico Heinrich..............81
MNEMORPHING by Nico Heinrich..........................................84
PREFACE by Tom Wong
Hello and welcome to this exclusive, free taster
ebook! Within these pages lies simple, direct,
impactful, published and unpublished mentalism
material written by a selection of authors who
are considered, by many, as experts in their
respective fields. These authors each have their
own style; their own outlook on the art form and
so, in theory, there should be at least something
for everyone contained here. Please take your
time to read each piece thoroughly, practice and
put in the effort and you will most definitely reap
the reward. The pieces, presentations and plots
that follow are not to be simply disregarded;
while the cost of this collection is zero, the same
cannot be said for its value.

Why? If the information, encompassed in this


compendium is so elegant; so beautiful, why give
it away? Simple. My love for this art immensely
exceeds any desired monetary gain. Mentalism
and its community has provided me with so
much, opened so many doors and fulfilled so

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much of my own personal meaning. It is about
time I began returning the favor; all with the help
of my amazing team at AZMentalism.

My hope is that you, the reader, will take the


most from this as you possibly can. A hope that
you will flourish and thrive, both ensuing and
becoming what you dream to be. Read between
the lines, using what is taught here wisely.

It is with great pleasure and humility that I now


pass you on to our first author.

Until next time,

Tom Wong (November 2017)

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CLOSE CALL by Simon Caine

THE PRINCIPLE
Close Call is a method by which you can
determine a number thought of by a participant,
even after they potentially change their mind.
This number is never said aloud and can be a
completely free choice.

There are, of course, some compromises need to


be made. Close Call does require the use of a
deck of cards. Essentially, the participant
generate two numbers, one through a free
choice, and the other through cutting a small
packet of cards, which can be easily discovered.
Then, by covertly comparing the two numbers,
the first number is found!

THE METHOD
To begin, you need a pinky break below 20 cards.
This get be done live in performance, but given
that you are likely to do this before your

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performance proper begins, you can take
advantage of the cards being in a prepared
state. Place a reversed breather crimped card at
the 20th position. When coming to perform, lift
up at the breather and get your break. I generally
prefer breathers over other gaffs, but similar ends
can be achieved with thick or short cards.

Explain to the participant that you are going to


pit his conscious and subconscious mind against
each other. Ask them to think of a number
between 1 and 20. Once they have a number,
invite them to reach to the deck, and without
thinking too much cut off some cards. They
should either cut directly at your break, in which
case you know they are holding 20 cards.

More often, they will cut above your break, and


be holding less than 20 cards. Ask them to
secretly count these cards, demonstrating by
pushing off and keeping track of the number of
cards above your break. Subtracting this number
from 20 will tell how many cards the participant
has removed. E.g. If you have 6 cards remaining,
the participant is holding 14.

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Ask the participant, “Did you get to the number
you were thinking of?”

Occasionally, they will say confirm they are. You


now know they are thinking of 14. Comment that
their conscious and subconscious minds are
working perfectly in unison and that they would
be great for your next effect. Ask them to keep
their number in mind, which you can now use to
your advantage.

More often, the number of cards they have will


differ from their thought of number. Now you
have them compare these numbers.

“Did you cut off too many or not enough? Really?


By how many?”

Judging by the answers to these questions, and


your knowledge of the number of cards they
have, you can easily work out their thought of
number.

E.g. If they had 14 cards, and commenting that


they were 3 too low, you know they are thinking
of 17.

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So, there’s some difference, but that’s fine. What
we’re about to do needs you to focus on one of
these, so do you want to stick with your original
thought, or use this new randomly generated
one? However they respond, you are prepared to
use that number in your next routine.

You can perform this without a break and


predetermined number of cards. You just need to
peek and remember the bottom card of the deck.
Once they are done counting, have them put the
deck back on top of the cards. Ask the same
questions about whether they were too high or
too low and by how many, and whether they wish
to use this number or the new number.
Remember these responses.

Engineer a moment to run through the deck


during your routine, and simply count the
number of cards that appear before your key
card. If they chose to use the new number, this is
it. If they chose to use their original thought of
number, apply their answers to this in order to
find the original number.

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DO YOU NEED TO ASK? by Simon Caine
At the time of writing, my day job is teaching in a
high school. As you can surely imagine or recall,
teenagers can be very complex to manage
effectively, and a large part of training is learning
how to deal with and avoid common ‘conflicts’
that can arise day to day.

One of the first things you learn is that if you


want a specific response from someone, you
should not ask questions. For example, if a room
of students needs to get their books out, the
worst thing to say is “Can you get your books
out?”

Questions invite speculation and ask the recipient


to compare all the possible outcomes. They could
say no. If our hypothetical teacher wants the
students to get their books out, he should just
say, not ask, “Get your books out.” Now they
have to do what you ask (or not, as is the whim of
teenagers).

Consider the two following queries that you may

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have - in one form or another - asked your
audience in order to seek confirmation of the
fairness of your less-than-fair actions.

“And that was a completely free choice, right?”

“So there is no way I could know the


card/number/word you are thinking of right
now?”

If the job has been done correctly, and the


force/peek etc. performed deftly enough, the
audience will of course believe their choice to be
free and their information to be secret. That fact
should be appear clear to the audience without
discussion. By further asking for agreement, I
believe we are instead arousing suspicion and
doubt.

For example, take a standard book test. The


participant looks at a word, remembers it, and
you say, “Could anyone else know the word you
are thinking of right now?”

Imagine the potential internal monologue for our


participant:

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1. I think my information is mine alone.

2. If he wanted me just to think of a word,


why did he ask me to stop him riffling
through the book? He could’ve just asked
me to think of a word. (See also: Why did
he ask me to write my secret thought down
on paper and then hand it to him, only for
him to rip it up?)

3. Maybe he stopped at a specific page.

4. Well, he did say we could do it again if I


wasn’t happy, maybe not. Maybe he just
knows all the words on the tops of each
page?

5. There was that moment where maybe he


could have seen into the book. Why
couldn’t I handle the book myself? (See
also: I put the card back where he wanted,
not where I wanted)

6. There are a few ways he could know what


word I’m thinking of.

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This is, of course the extreme response. However,
by asking the question, we are allowing our
audience the opportunity to entertain these
thoughts, and even if any of their assertions
about how you spied their information are false,
the mere fact that they know it might be possible
may be enough to derail the illusion.

We can keep these moments to give ourselves


small checkpoints, but when scripting our effects
we can just change them from questions to
statements and shift the responsibility over to the
audience.

There are a number of ways to avoid this issue.


Indeed, we could examine our method and
address each concern with an adjustment to the
workings of the effect. Use a more subtle peek,
use a borrowed deck etc. Indeed, we should
always endeavor to use the strongest, most
covert methods for any effect. Perhaps there isn’t
much room for adjustment here, and any further
change to the method may compromise the
effect, inviting more complications.

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Assuming you are already using the strongest
version of the method available to you (Note that
in the discussion below, I am not suggesting
using a transparent method and trying to brute-
force agreement from your audience that it is
fooling), there is an alternative solution:

Say what you mean (and if you want/need


confirmation, change the question to something
they cannot disagree with).

I believe that a lot of these confirmation


questions come from an effort to fill time whilst
our brains process what needs to happen next to
conclude the effect successfully. They add
nothing to the routine other than to give
ourselves breathing space.

I don’t feel that for the majority of cases, we


really want to know that the audience feel fairly
treated, we just ask out of habit because it’s a
Thing We Say (“I’ll just give these a shuffle”). That
is not to say their presence is a bad thing, but
often their contents could be better.

Consider the first example of the teacher and his

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disruptive students. The question “Can you get
your books out?” doesn’t force the students to
take any action, and doesn’t say what the
teacher intends. He means to say “Get our books
out,” which gives the students a clear action to
take and puts responsibility on them. We can
leverage this same technique to still have
everything we do appear fair and above board,
without the troublesome matter of our audience
picking at loose ends.

When you ask if anyone else can know the


participants secret information, you probably
mean “Keep this information secret (even though
I probably already know what it is).”

So say what you mean.

“Great, just keep it locked in your mind alone.”

“Make sure you keep it secret, don’t show anyone


else.” “Make sure no-one can see what you
write.”

These are direct commands that a willing


participant will not question. Best of all, we can

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append a question to this action.

“Have you done that?”

They HAVE to agree. Implicit in this agreement is


the confirmation that your process is fair and
beyond suspicion, without the opportunity for the
audience to consider other outcomes, because
they are examining what they have done, rather
than what you could have done.

“Is there any way I could know the


card/number/word you are thinking of right
now?”

The responsibility in this question is on you. They


don’t know you or what you could do, so they are
forced to speculate, “What has this mindreader
guy done that I haven’t seen? Maybe he knows
what I’m thinking of already.”

“Make sure you keep it secret, don’t show anyone


else. Have you done that?”

The responsibility in this question is on them.


They will know what they have done, so can

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answer absolutely, without need for deeper
thought, “Have I done what I’m supposed to?
Yes, good. No one could know what I’m thinking
now.”

Both have the same outcome in suggesting


fairness and the impossibility of anything
untoward, but one invites much much less
suspicion.

So, in short, consider the questions you ask of


your audience. If there is a chance that your
question could cause them to make assumptions
about your method (even if the assumptions are
false), change the question.

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DIVERGENT by Craig Logan

EFFECT
The performer introduces the idea of divergent
thinking. He then remarks the most common
“test” of divergent thinking is the paperclip test.
The spectator thinks of any unorthodox use for a
paperclip (aside from holding papers together)
and the performer is able to, after asking several
unrelated questions, tell the participant what he
is thinking.

PRESENTATION
“Are you familiar with divergent thinking? It is the
idea that by exhausting as many solutions as
possible to a particular problem, the best ideas
are generated. The most popular test of
divergent thinking is known as the paperclip test.
The person is sat down with a piece of paper, a
pen, and a paperclip. Their task is to write down
as many uses for a paperclip as possible. From
clipping paper to picking locks, the participant

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would write as many uses as possible in a
particular time frame. If you don’t mind, I’d like
you to take part in this little test. But don’t worry,
I will only ask you to think of one “divergent” use
for a paperclip.”

The performer produces a packet of business


cards held together by a paperclip. He removes
the paperclip and hands the participant a
business card from the small stack along with a
pen.

“Take a moment and think about a use for a


paperclip; other than clipping paper of course.
Please print one use for a paperclip. For
simplicity, try to distill the use to maybe one or
two words.”

Once the participant does this, the performer


asks them to place the card face down in the
stack of business cards. The performer then
paperclips the cards together and continues,

“Now, to gauge how you approach problems and


hopefully understand a bit of how you think, I’ll
ask a couple of questions if I may. What is your

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favorite color? Green... That’s very interesting. So,
you might be a calculated person. You take risk
when necessary, but you prefer a solid
foundation. One more question; do you consider
yourself an introvert or an extravert? So, you
enjoy other’s company, but you need personal
time to recharge your battery? I get that. More
importantly, I get you; at least I believe I do.”

Shifting attention back to the paperclip test, the


performer states,

“People solve problems and approach solutions


very differently from one another. That is why
there’s so much value in having people work
together. You started off thinking of a rather
mundane use for the paperclip, but changed your
mind to something more unique. I get a sense it
has something to do with one’s appearance.
Does that make sense? Honestly, I wouldn’t have
thought of that! See that’s why people need to
work together to find solutions. You never know
who holds the best answer. But you are thinking
on an earring!”

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METHOD
The method is boring and unimportant.

If you must know, however, the effect makes use


of a windowed business card. The bottom card of
the stack has a large window cut out of it.
Therefore, if someone were to place a business
card with a word written on it second from the
bottom, the word or words could be easily read
through the hole cut out of the business card.
The paperclip also provides the perfect
justification for looking at the cards. After all, you
need to look at them to secure the paperclip. In
that brief moment, you simply glance at the word
written in the window.

The theatrical dressing of asking a couple of


unrelated questions is designed to not only
engage with the participant (and, if it fits your
style, give them a brief “reading”) but also gives
you an opportunity to make the premise more
plausible. In these questions, you’re looking into
how they think. This information is supposedly
cluing you in to how they would answer the initial
question of a unique use of a paperclip.

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CREDIT
The catalyst for this routine was Max Maven’s
“Ghostwriter.” His concept of having a windowed
business card paperclipped to legitimate cards
was in fact the genesis for this routine. I wanted
a reason for the paperclip, and thus the script for
“Divergent” was born.

As Max Maven mentions in his Penguin Live


lecture, his inspiration was J. G. Thompson’s
“B’tween.” The “window” has existed in many
forms and on many props from an envelope
made by Annemann, to a deck box (Theodore
Deland’s “X-Ray Deck”).

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EXTRAORDINARY PERCEPTION by Andreu
The mentalist shows up a set of ESP symbols.

He allows the spectator to mix them freely to


make sure they aren’t ordered in any way. Now,
the performer starts making several random
piles.

The participant is asked to discard several of


them, leaving only one of them on the table.
These decisions are 100% hands off and made by
the spectator.

The spectator is asked to look at the card below


the final pile… the mentalist reads his mind,
divining the exact ESP symbol!

SECRET
For this effect you will make use of a marked ESP
deck with 20 cards (5 ESP symbols repeated four
times).

Ask the spectator to shuffle them until he or she

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is satisfied.

Take the cards back and deal four piles.

“I will start dealing randomly, please bear with


me for some seconds.”

The spectator should see this as a random


process, but in fact you will use the markings of
the cards.

1) As soon as you deal the first card face down,


notice the marking and notice how many cards
you need to complete 5.

Now, deal this number of cards on top of the


card you just dealt.

Let’s take a closer look at this.

Follow the usual number correspondence for ESP


Cards:

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For example, if you deal the circle first, you will
see its corresponding marking (1). This means,
you need to deal 4 more cards on top of it, as
four is the number needed to complete 5 cards in
total.

This forms up one of the piles, and you need to


repeat this process until you get 4 piles in total.

As another example, if you deal the wavy lines (3)


first, then you need to lay 2 more cards on top of
it, as you need to complete 5 for each of the piles
to be complete.

Proceed to deal the rest of the cards in the same


way to form the piles. I like to make 4 piles as it
makes the effect really simple to do. Once you
finish dealing them, put the remaining
(discarded) cards inside your pocket.

IMPORTANT TIPS
Take your time to deal the piles slowly.

Setup a slow, calm pace. If you put more or less

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cards on top of the initial card of either one of
your piles, the effect won’t work!

Avoid making piles of only 2 cards (or less!).

Try to make piles with at least 3 cards. Less cards


may look odd. If it’s just one pile of 2 cards, it’s
fine though.

You can’t make a pile with just a star, and it can


never be on the bottom of any pile.

If the symbol is a star (5), the pile of five is


already “complete”, so you can’t really deal just
this card as it would look strange (you said you
were forming piles!).

In case you see the marking of the star, keep


passing cards from one hand to the other and
look at the marking of the next one. If you notice
it’s at least the marking of a three - wavy lines (3),
then place this card on the table, then put the
star you saw - as well as any other random card -
on top of the wavy lines! This will guarantee that
you have at least 3 cards on this pile and that
you used that star successfully.

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If you see that the next marking is a Circle (1) or
a Cross (2), even better. You will be able to place
that star on top, as well as the cards you need to
complete five in total.

Make sure to place them in the correct order (the


star can never, ever go at the bottom).

When you’re almost done dealing, sometimes


the cards remaining in your hand are not enough
to complete five. If this is the case, discard
them.

Let’s say you’re feeling adventurous and trying to


make 6 piles (I personally like to keep things
simple with just 4 piles, but you’re free to
experiment).

So, let’s pretend you only have three remaining


cards to deal, and then you deal a Circle (1). This
implies that you now need 4 more cards to deal
on top to get to five and you don’t have enough
left.

In this case, just discard all four cards and say


out loud: “Ok I think we have enough, we don’t

26
need to use all of them”.

Now that you’re a master at dealing cards, let’s


proceed with the next step.

2) Ask the spectator to place the hand on top of


any pile. Explain that this pile will be discarded.

Look away while you do this and say you will


count to three to let the spectator decide. This
will actually give you time to secretly count with
your thumb the cards that were discarded in your
pocket: memorize this number. To count them, I
just feel one by one as I slide them with my
thumb: practice this!

Turn to face the spectator again and instruct him


or her to hand you the pile which he discarded.
Once you take it, pretend you’re aligning the
packet before placing it in your pocket: peek at
the bottom card.

Remember the following “inverse” equivalence


and sum the corresponding value to that one you
counted:

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These values are obtained by subtracting 6 from
each original value. So, you can memorize these
inverse values, or, every time you see a symbol,
count how many units you need to get to six. E.g.
You see the circle, so you need 5 units to get to
six: therefore, the value of the circle is 5, etc.

3) Ask the spectator to turn two of the piles face


up.

Allow the spectator to turn two of the piles face


up. Notice the cards and mentally add 2 to their
corresponding values.

Remember this result.

Finally, to calculate the card below the remaining


(face down) pile, subtract this final result from the

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one you initially calculated (number of discarded
cards).

If you’re not following me here yet, don’t worry. It


will all be explained in the following example.

EXAMPLE
The performer finishes dealing several “random”
piles and counts 6 discarded cards inside his
pocket.

Now, the spectator freely discards a pile and


hands it to the performer, who glances at the
bottom card before placing it inside his pocket.
It’s the square.

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For showmanship purposes, the mindreader now
displays the cards in a triangular layout (as
shown below):

Finally, the spectator is asked to turn face up two


of the piles.

30
He proceeds to turn face up the two bottom
piles. This is the situation after such event:

The mindreader proceeds to make a drawing


that will hopefully match the entire display!

What figure should the performer draw on his

31
board?

Don’t read any further, try to think of the correct


answer!

If you thought of the CIRCLE, congratulations!


You’re on your way to mastering this effect!

This should be the drawing on the mindreader’s


board:

32
6 (Inside Pocket) + 2 (Square) = 8 (Total of
discarded cards)

Now, get the second value, by adding 2 to the


face up cards:

2 (Constant) + 3 (Wavy Lines) + 2 (Cross) = 7

Finally, subtract the second value from the first


one:

8 – 7 = 1 (Circle)

CLOSING THOUGHTS & CREDITS


This effect has been taken from my Intimum
Sacrarium book, which I released as a limited
edition on 2016.

Extraordinary Perception is a superb effect that


can be played out as telepathy anytime and
anywhere. After you tell the spectator to look at
the card below the final pile, proceed to read
their minds!

After I saw Brian Bushwood used a similar

33
concept with playing cards, I thought that ESP
symbols would make everything more convincing,
powerful and mysterious.

IF YOU DECIDE TO USE 25 CARDS ...


Deal 5 piles, or more. As explained before, every
time you get a discarded pile, add the “inverse”
corresponding value of the bottom card to the
number of discarded cards, and finally add 7 to
the two face-up cards. Then, do the subtraction
and it will work!

IF YOU WANT TO PERFORM IT COMPLETELY


IMPROMPTU ...
You will still need an unmarked ESP deck; peek at
the top and bottom card as you overhand shuffle
or as you show the cards are in a random order
and remember several figures that suit you best
to deal piles.

You may also just peek the top card (pulling it


with your thumb for few seconds), deal a pile with
this card if it’s good or in case the bottom card is

34
better, overhand shuffle casually until this bottom
card gets to the top, keep dealing piles while you
shuffle … voilà!

This is a very direct and entirely self-working


effect. I have fooled very knowledgeable full–time
performers with it, so just imagine how good are
the reactions from laymen.

Do not underestimate its power, if you sell this as


just being one in five, then you’re falling into
what a great performer once categorized as:
“magician’s thinking”.

Bonne chance!

35
NO LUCK NEEDED by Ever Elizalde

EFFECT
The magician asks his participant to name three
random words and then focus on one of those
three words. The magician shows that he
predicted that word.

METHOD
Follow the next instructions.

Take one of your business cards, hold it in


portrait orientation and fold it in half. The printed
side of the business card should be in the inside.
Now you have a folded business card which is
blank on both sides.

Open the business card back up and, on the


blank side, write the following message:

36
The lower half of the business card is left blank
for the time being.

After you have done this, fold the card back in


half just as you did before. The printed side of the
business card should in the inside and what
you’ve written should be facing away from you.
You should be looking at something like this:

37
Next, take a stack of around 10 of your business
cards and wrap a rubber band around them. Like
this:

And write the following message in the lower half


of the top business card of the stack (the one
that is facing you, like in the above image)

You should have something like this:

Now, insert the folded business card (the one you


prepared before) under the rubber band, like this:

38
As you can see, stack looks completely normal
but now we have the prepared business card
folded and ready to be used.

Start the routine by asking your participant to


name three random words. Let’s say, for the sake
of explanation, that the words are Cheese, House
and Shoe.

You now take the stack of


business card prepared with
the out to lunch principle and
write those three words on
the upper half of the
business card, like this:

Show it to your participant.

39
Now, pretend to write this:
“Random Words” on the
lower half of the business
card. In reality, you will write
the second word mentioned
by your participant, in this
case, the word “House”.

Take out the second


business card (the one where you wrote the list of
words) and give it to your participant. Everything
looks exactly as it should.

40
Now, on the stack you have this. Which is a
business card that, when unfolded, will look like
this.

At this point your participant is holding the card


with the random words he named. Put the stack
of business cards in your pocket (the folded
prediction still there)

And call attention to the list of random words


your participant is holding. Say:

“Is there any reason why you thought of those


words? They just popped into your mind?
Interesting.”

41
You are going to choose one of those words at
random. When I say of the word “random” a pair
of dies always pops into my mind.

Imagine that you have two dies in your hand.


Shake them in your hands and let them roll! Look
at that! They both landed on the same number!
What number is it?”

Let him answer. Let’s say he says the number “3”

“Three… they both landed on the number three.


That’s six! Good, a random number, right?”

It doesn’t matter what number he says. By


adding both numbers we always get an even
number, and that’s all we care for.

Now, using the pen, count the words until you get
to, in this case, the number six. To better explain
this, look at the following pictures!

42
As you can see, no matter what the number is. As
long as it’s an even number, it will always force
the word in the middle!

Now you’ve successfully forced the word “House”


and you have in your pocket a stack of business
card with a folded and accurate prediction.

Just put your hand in your pocket and palm off


the prediction. Now you can produce it from a
wallet or just from your pocket. This routine has
got me booked a lot of times!

Have fun with this and use it wisely.

43
THE EYES OF THE SEER by Paul Voodini

INTRODUCTION
By the 1870’s, the phenomena that was Victorian
Spiritualism was in full swing. The general public
had, since the 1850’s, been awed by the likes of
the Fox Sisters, the Davenport brothers, D. D.
Home, Madame Blavatsky, and Florence Cook.

It would be a mistake to believe that the


combined populations of the USA and the UK
believed en masse in the truth of Spiritualism. As
today, the thought of spirit communication and
discourse with the dead caused much
controversy with supporters and opponents
attacking each other in the strongest terms.
However for the general public, the subject of
Spiritualism was seen as little more than a
fascinating side-show. A gaudy yet mesmerising
form of entertainment.

And, in truth, who could fail to be entertained by


such phenomena as the Fox Sisters’ rappings, the

44
Davenports’ spirit cabinet, D. D. Home’s
levitations, and Florence Cook’s overtly sexual (for
Victorian sensibilities) spirit manifestations?

Each of these mediums and psychics had their


own specialities – a signature routine as it were.
Such specialities were important to mark one out
from the crowds of other mediums, each
desperate for their own time in the limelight.

One of the UK’s lesser known mediums of the


19th Century was Emma Meyers. She worked
primarily in small London theatres and displayed
more psychic based abilities than many of her
contemporaries. That is to say, she did not
communicate with the dead but rather sensed
the feelings, emotions, and most importantly the
memories of those in her audience. She did not
claim that this information came from the spirit
realm, but rather that it was her own heightened
sense of intuition that brought forth these
images and this information.

45
Emma Meyers circa 1900

Little is known of Miss Meyers background. She


seems to have almost appeared on the London
circuit as a fully formed performer, working at
small to medium (sic) sized theatres as the
headline act without the years of struggle that
other up and coming performers had to endure.
Certainly Emma Meyers was an attractive
woman, and perhaps she was lucky enough to
have garnered influential patronage that enabled
her to go from unknown to headline act almost
over-night. But such ideas are mere supposition,
and we can only guess at the truth. The only fact
that we can be certain of is that we shall never
know!

46
THE ACT
The year is 1900. Spiritualism is somewhat in
decline, although new mediums and new
psychics with new 'gifts' to demonstrate can still
expect a full house. Such a full- house has
gathered at the Alhambra theatre in London,
eager to witness the powers of British
Spiritualism’s latest bright star, Miss Emma
Meyers.

The house lights dim and the audience are


hushed. An expectant silence falls on the theatre.
The stage is bare except for a simple wooden
chair located in the centre. By the chair is a small
table upon which is placed a single glass of
water.

From stage left two females appear, walking


slowly and carefully across the stage and
towards the chair. One female is dressed in red
with flowers in her hair. The second is

dressed in mourning black and is blindfolded. The


more gaily attired female supports the arm of her
blindfolded associate, leading her carefully to the

47
chair into which she tentatively sits.

The woman in black is Emma Meyers. Even


though a heavy black blindfold is cruelly twisted
around her eyes, it is obvious that she is young
and attractive. She seems unsure of herself and
trembles slightly. Unsighted, she fumbles for the
glass of water and almost knocks it over. The
audience gasp. Her friend takes Miss Meyer’s
hand gently and kindly places the glass of water
into her grip. The hearts of the audience melt;
they are struck by both shame at voyeuristically
watching this woman’s obvious discomfort, and
intrigue as to where this fascinating display will
lead.

Miss Meyer’s red dressed assistant leaves the


stage and walks out into the audience.

“Are we ready, Jane?” Emma Meyer asks her


assistant who is standing mid-way along the
middle aisle.

“We are, Miss Meyers,” replies Jane, the strength


and clarity of her voice belying her small stature.
“Ladies and gentlemen, in a few moments Miss

48
Meyers will enter her reverie.” The audience
crane their necks to catch a glimpse of Jane as
she speaks. “When this happens I’m afraid that I
must insist of absolute silence. Unless you are
directed to speak, please be hushed. Any sudden
loud noises or shouts can be very dangerous
while Miss Meyers is in her altered state of mind.
As ladies and gentlemen, I trust that I can expect
such a small request be observed?” Mutterings of
agreement rumble gently through the audience.
“You will notice that Miss Meyers is blindfolded.
This is to ensure that no information from her
sense of sight may interfere with the information
being gathered by her third eye, the eye of her
soul.

Sadly it is not possible to effect such restraints as


easily upon her ears and her sense of hearing,
and so it is for this reason that we must insist on
silence. Once Miss Meyers is deep in her reverie,
she will begin to speak. She will be sensing
memories

and emotions from those of you who are here


tonight in this audience. It is of utmost

49
importance that if you understand what Miss
Meyers is talking about, if her thoughts and
images and emotions make sense to you, if you
feel that the person she is intuitively connecting
with is you, that you raise your hand and let me
know. If you think the person being described is
you, raise your hand and I will approach you.

Please bear in mind that for Miss Meyers this is a


procedure that is not without danger. Therefore it
would be doing her a great discourtesy if you
knew she was addressing you but you did not
acknowledge this. I implore you, if you
understand the message being passed on,
acknowledge as much. Simply raise your hand. It
is not too much to ask, is it? And as this is now
understood, I think we may begin Miss Meyers.”

All eyes return to the stage. Emma Meyers sits


silently, hands placed upturned into her lap. After
a few moments she sighs deeply and her head
lolls forwards. She sighs again, and then a low
moan emanates from her mouth. Another few
moments pass, and then Miss Meyers takes a
deep breath inwards and her head is lifted up

50
again.

There now follows a full transcript of the first 15


minutes of the 60 minute show.

Miss Meyers (her voice faint and almost childlike):


I’m in a school playground. I can hear laughter.
Children playing and shouting. There seems to be
a lot of joy, I can sense it all around me. But I am
not happy. I feel on the outside of this joy. I am
not even really in the playground. I appear to be
hiding almost, around a wall or behind a
building. I know that I should be in the
playground, I should be with the other children,
and that I will be punished if I am found skulking
away down here. But I simply can’t bear to be
with them all. I want to be alone. I’m desperately
sad and I don’t want to mix with the other
children. The fear of being caught hiding here by
the teacher is nothing compared to my desire to
simply get away from them all. If I could hide
here for the rest of my life, I think I would.”

Jane (calling our from the middle of the


audience): How old are you Miss Meyers? What

51
age are you sensing?

Miss Meyers: Oh I’m young. I feel that I’m


perhaps 6 or 7. No, perhaps a little older, 8 or 9
even. But there’s a desperate sense of being on
the outside, of not being a part of the school, of
wanting to escape. And I’m hiding, definitely
hiding, behind a wall or around the back of a
building. Somewhere I shouldn’t be. The person
who this memory belongs to will remember this,
particularly the feeling of being alone and of
wanting to hide from the rest of the school. I do
hope they will remember...

To the right of the auditorium a woman’s hand is


lifted aloft. Jane, who has been scouring the
audience for any movement, notices the raised
hand.

Jane: We have somebody, Miss Meyers.


Somebody has kindly raised their hand. Jane
makes her way along the aisles to be as close to
the raised hand as possible.

Jane (to the volunteer): Would you be kind


enough to stand up for me? Thank you. And

52
what is your name please?

Volunteer: Mary.

Jane: Thank you Mary. And you understand what


Miss Meyers is talking about? You understand
the situation that she is describing?

Volunteer: Yes. I mean, it sounds like something


that I went through as a child.

Miss Meyers: Mary, my dear, there’s a very strong


sense of sadness here. But looking back on it
now, I think you may wonder why you never
talked to anybody about it.

You certainly kept all of your emotions inside.


There’s a sense of grief almost, but of

wanting to be left alone. This was something that


you didn’t want to share, that you wanted to deal
with on your own. You took yourself away and
hid, like an injured animal almost. Does that
make sense?

Volunteer: Yes, I suppose it does. I’ve never

53
thought of it that way before, but yes. Miss
Meyers: And do you still think about those days,
Mary?

Volunteer: Occasionally, yes. Sometimes.

Miss Meyers: Yes, I thought so. The pain may


have healed, but the memories are still there. Oh!
How odd! Mary, are you still there?

Jane: She’s still here Miss Meyers.

Miss Meyers: Mary, you had a friend during this


period didn’t you? But it was a friend who was a
little odd. I think that the other children shunned
her? She may have been a little slow, not as
intelligent perhaps as everyone else, but for some
reason you became friends with her. It was like
the two of you didn’t belong, or felt like you didn’t
belong, and so you became firm friends. Does
that make sense?

Volunteer: Yes actually! Yes, it does.

Miss Meyers: I don’t want to go too deep with


this, but at some point this friendship ended. I

54
feel that years later, when you were feeling
happier about yourself and your life, you ended
the friendship. Not in an awful way, I don’t think,
not bluntly. But you just let the friendship die.
You felt that it was holding you back, that you
had to spread your wings and increase your circle
of friends. I don’t want to upset you, but hopefully
what I’m talking about makes sense?

Volunteer: Um, yes. Yes.

Miss Meyers: Thank you Mary, I feel I have to


move on now. But thank you for helping and
thank you for your honesty.

Mary sits down and Jane instigates a round of


applause for both Miss Meyers and her volunteer.
Following the applause, Jane continues...

Jane: And so again I must ask for silence as we


allow Miss Meyers to once again enter her
reverie.

The audience are hushed and Miss Meyers enters


her altered state of mind.

55
Miss Meyers: A child again but this time a boy. I
believe I am 9 or 10 years old. I am in the family
home. It is night time. My sister, younger than
me, is close by. We are alone. So very dreadfully
alone. We are worried. My younger sister is crying
and there is a knot of fear in the pit of my
stomach. Our parents are out of the home. They
went out what feels like many hours ago. They
said they wouldn’t be long, they said they’d be
back shortly and we were to go to sleep and not
to worry. But that has been so long ago and now
my sister and I are so worried. We are looking
out of our bedroom window and staring at every
person who walks by, every carriage that passes
by, hoping that it is our parents. Oh, where are
they? Where are they?

Gingerly a man’s hand is raised in the centre of


the auditorium. Jane calls over to him.

Jane: Thank you sir for raising your hand. Miss


Meyers, we have a man who has kindly
acknowledged your words. Could you please
stand for me, sir?

56
The man stands, looking a little embarrassed.

Jane: Sir, would you mind telling us your name?


Volunteer: Reginald, Reginald Blackstone.

Jane: Thank you sir. And the words that Miss


Meyers spoke, do you recognise them.

Volunteer: Yes, they seem to be describing a


situation that occurred to me and my sister many
years ago now. My parents had gone out with
friends for the evening, leaving us alone. They
told us to be brave and go straight to sleep, but
we didn’t. We sat waiting for their safe return,
and as the night dragged on we became more
and more concerned for their safety. In the end I
had to go down to the servants quarters and
wake up our housekeeper, a kindly old soul who
came and sat with us until our parents returned.
My father in particular wasn’t very pleased with
us, I don’t think he ever understood quite how
terrified my sister and I were.

Miss Meyers: Thank you sir, thank you for sharing


that with us. I can certainly appreciate how
scared you poor lambs were. I still have a knot in

57
my stomach. Thank you for sharing.

Jane once more instigates applause for both the


volunteer and Miss Meyers, and the show
continues.

30 minutes and several demonstrations of her


psychic ability later, Emma Meyers removes her
blindfold to rapturous applause. Perhaps it is the
house-lights or perhaps it is the strain of having
the blindfold pressing upon her eyes for close to
an hour, but she appears to be crying. But if
these be tears, then they are tears of happiness
as she smiles broadly and thanks the audience
for their time and their indulgence. Several
usherettes appear among the aisles and begin to
hand out red roses. A red rose is passed to each
lady in the audience, a gift, Emma Meyers
explains, to signify the love and compassion
experienced that evening in the theatre. Miss
Meyer’s associate, Jane, hands out roses along
the theatre’s central aisle.

With the show over, the audience streams back


out onto the cobble-stoned streets of Victorian

58
London, the ladies clinging to their red roses,
excited chatter passing amongst the crowd.
Horse-drawn carriages make their way steadily
along roads illuminated by gas-lamps. A roast
chestnut seller hawks his trade on a street corner
as a thin fog begins to roll in from the Thames. A
bill poster on a near-by wall announces the
imminent arrival in the Empire’s capital of Harry
Houdini, direct from the USA. Tonight, in the year
1900, the residents of London can rest assured
that magic still hangs in the air.

But war is coming. In 14 short years, shots will be


fired in far off Sarajevo that will mark the
beginnings of the Great War. A war that will
claim the lives of forty million men, women and
children and will change the world forever.
Wither then the magic?

HOW IT WORKS
One of the most important tenets of the skill
known rather crudely as 'cold reading' is the
knowledge that all human beings share similar
experiences, situations, and emotions in their

59
lives. This is a tenet that is often overlooked in
favour of other techniques.

Human beings tend to think of themselves as


true individuals. Living a life that is completely
different from the lives lived by others.

The rather humbling truth is that as a species


(and I’m speaking here to a Western audience
obviously), we are more alike than we are
different. What I have experienced in my life, you
will have experienced also. There will be small,
subtle differences of course, but in general we will
all have shared experiences. We will all

have shared similar joys, sadness, happiness,


sorrows, successes and failures. We have all
experienced the same ups and downs in all
aspects of our lives – love, family, friends, work,
money, ambitions, health and hopes. And these
shared experiences express themselves in our
memories.

If we tap into our own memories and recount


those details in a nicely vague fashion,
concentrating more on emotions than on

60
concrete facts, we can be sure that our own
experiences will be shared by most if not all of
the population around us.

Let us consider the two examples used by Emma


Meyers in the above story. I was quite impressed
to realise that despite the fact that over a century
separates us, I could empathise with both
experiences that she recounted.

Firstly the child feeling lost and alone at school,


hiding from schoolmates, not wanting to be
involved, and feeling very sad. Around the age of
8 or 9, I experienced this for myself. I also made
friends with a boy in class who was shunned by
everyone else because he wasn’t 'normal'. If this
story had been recounted to me as a
demonstration of intuitive ability, I would have
been impressed. Could this story fit with you? I’m
sure that most of us, to a greater or smaller
degree, could think of some school-yard
experience that was similar to the one described.

Likewise with the story of the 2 children being left


home alone while the parents went out. I’m sure

61
that things have changed a lot since Victorian
times and perhaps now in the 21st Century most
parents wouldn’t leave their children at home in
an evening while they went out to a dinner party
or similar. But those feelings of worry about
parents disappearing or not returning when they
said they would must be fairly universal. I can
think of two examples in my own life when my
parents left and didn’t return as quickly as they
had promised to. Or perhaps they were just
trying to get rid of me!!

It did make me smile that the gentleman in the


example cited in the story had to take refuge
with the family’s housekeeper! He wasn’t really
'home alone' – he had staff to look after him! I
only wish I’d had a housekeeper to run to!

So what was Emma Meyers’ great power? It was


the knowledge that experiences from her own
life, recounted in a vague and general manner
but laced with very specific emotions, will “hit”
with a large percentage of the population,
particularly in a theatre setting where there
would be 100 – 200 members of the audience.

62
Let me reiterate that – memories recounted in a
vague manner but laced with very specific
emotions. The specific emotions are universal
(love, hate, fear, joy), but they help to make a
vague recollection sound specific. Vague facts +
specific emotions = a story that sounds specific.
Emotions trump facts, and if the emotions are
specific then the whole story sounds specific.

Let me reiterate that these are NOT Barnum


statements. These are actual memories,
recounted and retold. To produce similar results
yourself, you do not need to learn anything or be
able to recount lists of 'shared experiences'. All
you need to do is remember your own life and
the events that have shaped you and that
influence you still.

I decided to make a list of events that I could


remember from being a child and a teenager.
Events that for whatever reason stick in my mind
and that I seem to have attached great
emotional importance to. I did not want to purely
concentrate on sad emotions, so I included many
happy and joyful ones as well. The Victorians may

63
have been a darkly Gothic bunch, but there’s no
law these days against smiling!

Here is my list. See how many could apply to you


(even if you need to 'tweak' them a little bit).

Aged around 12, being madly in love with a girl


at school but being too embarrassed to do
anything about it.

The first time I properly kissed a girl and messing


it up completely! In fact, due to incorrect face
positioning on my behalf, I think she actually
kissed my nose more than my mouth.

Breaking a bone as a kid while playing football


and going to hospital.

Experiencing a power cut and having to crawl on


my hands and knees to find my way from my
bedroom to my parents’ bedroom. As a ten year
old I found the experience quite traumatic,
although my parents were quite nonchalant
about the whole thing.

Aged around 12, shop lifting something stupid

64
and inexpensive. Being caught and being
terrified, and/or not being able to enjoy whatever
it was that was stolen because of the fear of
being found out. In fact, throwing the stolen item
away in panic!

A sporting disappointment. Not achieving what I


felt was my potential, and feeling hurt and
cheated and as though I had been over-looked
by those who selected a certain sporting team at
school.

I need to point out right now that the above list


was compiled as I wrote them. No fore-thought
went into their selection. They were just the first
memories that popped into my head as I wrote.
Another day, another time, and a totally different
list would have popped into my head. And this, as
you will see, is an extremely important point...

THE REAL SECRET


The real power in this technique is to trust your
own instinct, intuition, and subconscious.

65
Whoa! That may be a pretty tall order for some
magicians and mentalists to take on-

board, particularly those who may not have come


across my work before. I guess I’d better explain.
So here goes...

With this technique I do not advocate the use of


a set list of memories to be trotted out at each
performance in a similar way to how some may
use Barnum Statements. The real strength of this
particular technique is the fact that you are
relying on your own memories. You will have
literally thousands of possible memories to
recollect and use as inspiration. Why limit
yourself to a set list of perhaps 20? Trust your
own mind, your own intellect, and your own
memories to work for you when you need them
to.

Standing or sitting in front of an audience and


then waiting for a memory to pop into your head
may seem to some a daunting prospect.
Personally I find it exhilarating and I enjoy
working without a safety net. But it goes deeper

66
than that. With a technique like this, and many of
the techniques I outline in my previous PDFs,
there is no secret to be spotted by eagle-eyed
members of the audience, no impression devices
to fail, no nail writers to fall off at just the wrong
moment, no electronic gizmos to screw up. There
is just you, the audience, and your memories.

If you can get over the fear of being 'wrong'


(whatever that may be) and overcome the belief
that it is gimmicks and gadgets that create the
wonder (when the wonder is really you), then a
whole new breath-taking vista opens up for you
as a performer.

My previous PDFs have outlined many different


techniques for this propless 'naked' mentalism.
The use of memories outlined here is just one of
many naked routines I have released over the
past few years.

Working naked (metaphorically of course!) is


nowhere near as daunting or fraught with perils
as you may believe. With regard to this memory
technique, the real secret is that in an audience

67
of 50, 100, or more you are guaranteed a hit with
each of your statements. Remember, we are all
more alike than we are different. You are bound
to find a match for your own memories in almost
any sized audience. The only trick to perfect is
keeping the description reasonably vague while
highlighting precisely the emotions experienced.
It’s worth reiterating yet again – keep the
description vague but really go to town on the
emotions.

The hardest parts of this routine are a) keeping


the audience entertained and b) getting the
audience to put their hands up and volunteer
themselves as the owners of the memories you
are describing. Point a) and point b) are really the
same problem.

To be entertaining with this routine, you have to


be engaging and interesting. The audience have
to like you and have to want you to succeed. We
shall be discussing the subtleties employed by
Emma Meyers shortly, but from my own
standpoint I engage the audience and win them
over by appearing to be both interesting but also

68
very down to earth.

If we consider stage mediums such as John


Edward in the USA and Colin Fry in the UK, we
will notice two things. Firstly they are interesting
characters who display amazing talents
(whatever your thoughts may be about
mediumship, and we’ll discuss this shortly). But
secondly, and perhaps most importantly, they
portray themselves as an “everyman”. They are
just like you and I. They have no inflated egos,
they’re success hasn’t gone to their heads, they
are still down-to-earth guys who have just been
blessed with this amazing gift. The public can
identify with them and empathise with them.
John Edward does not set himself apart as some
kind of super-man. He portrays himself as being
from exactly the same stock as his audience.

This means that his audience want him to


succeed. The audience has no desire to see him
fail.

Compare this with the images portrayed by the


old school mind-readers of the vaudevillian era.

69
The classic image of the mind-reader is the darkly
brooding man in top hat and cape, with an
arrogant self-important manner, who gazes out
upon these ants known as 'mankind' and reads
their minds as easily as if he were reading a page
upon a book. The Great Greebo knows all, sees
all, tells all! Immediately a barrier has been put
up between the performer and the audience. The
performer has projected himself as being greater
than the common man, and therefore the
common man has no wish to see the Great
Greebo succeed. In fact, the common man will
cheer heartily when the Great Greebo gets it
wrong! And furthermore the common man may
even conspire to ensure the Great Greebo fails!!

There is a reason John Edward and his ilk project


the “everyman” image. It’s to ensure the
audience want them to succeed and will
endeavour to ensure that they do succeed. So
when John Edward starts to pass on a message,
the audience want to make the pieces fit and will
happily put their hand up in the air and say “Yep,
that’s me!”

70
My opening script when starting a show goes a
little like this:

“Welcome ladies and gentlemen, it’s really great


to see you all here tonight. My name is Paul and I
would describe myself as an 'intuitive'. Some
people call me 'psychic', but I wouldn’t be so bold
or so vain as to describe myself that way. To me,
using a word such as 'psychic' is a little too bold
and sounds a little too much like a challenge. I
far prefer the word 'intuitive'. And I believe that
we are all a little bit intuitive, ladies and
gentlemen, We can all do what I do, to a greater
or lesser degree. I’m just lucky that I seem to
have been blessed with quite a large amount of
intuition and I’ve also been very lucky to have
had the opportunity to develop this intuition until
it is fairly well honed.

“But we all have a degree of intuition inside us.


I’m sure many of you here tonight have stories of
the telephone ringing and knowing who it is
before you pick up the receiver, or knowing
something was going to happen before it did.
Perhaps some of

71
you have seen ghosts or heard weird noises in
the night - that would also be an expression of
your innate intuitive ability.

“Some people of course are slightly sceptical of


the whole intuitive/psychic thing. They think it is
all rubbish, and that’s fine. But they will happily
tell you about a friend who always wins at the
casino, or the fact that they have a good gut
instinct, or that some people are just born lucky.
But it’s all the same thing! However you dress it
up, psychic, intuitive, gut instinct, lucky guesses,
it’s all the same thing. And we can all do it, ladies
and gentlemen, all of us.

“So what I need from you tonight is lots of


energy. I need you to be upbeat and to want
things to work tonight. Without your energy and
your input I will fail. There is no doubt about that.
I am only human. Tonight is all about teamwork,
about us all working together to create an
evening of wonder. So whether you believe in the
psychic, whether you’re on the fence, or whether
you are a sceptic, I ask you now to put all of
those thoughts to one side and just enjoy the

72
next 90 minutes for the entertainment it is meant
to be. If I get an intuitive flash and you think I
may be talking about you, put your hand in the
air. Let me see you, and let’s work together to
make this happen! Let’s have some fun, let me
show you how you too can be intuitive, and let’s
read some minds! Okay? Let’s do it!”

What my opening spiel does is to establish that I


am just like my audience, that they can do what I
do, that the evening will require their input, and
that if things go wrong, well it’s probably their
fault. I’ve enthused the audience to become
involved, but I’ve also made them want me to
succeed. I’m a nice guy. Why would they want me
to fail?

ON MEDIUMSHIP
I am not a medium. I do not talk to dead people
(except when I visit the in-laws). I do not promote
or sell myself as a medium. My stage persona is
'intuitive', and the reason I use that word is
because I genuinely believe that intuition is a tool
that we as humans use all the time. I do not have

73
the space or the time to delve into this too deeply
in this PDF, but I just wanted to put that out there
so you know where I’m coming from. Morally I
have no qualms about using the word intuition
because I believe in it. I’m fully aware that others
may have a different stand-point, and that’s fine.
Mentalism is a large house with many rooms.

I like going to see mediums at work and reading


about the techniques of old mediums. The reason
I like this is not because I have any interest or
belief in the 'talking to the dead' bit. I don’t. The
reason I like seeing mediums at work and
reading about their exploits is because I am
fascinated by the fact that they can walk out in
front of an audience of hundreds, with no
gimmicks, no props, just themselves, their voice,
and their audience, and provide a full show of
'mystery entertainment' (for want of a better
phrase). I enjoy taking the techniques used by
mediums, stripping out the 'talking to the dead'
bits, and seeing how these techniques can be
utilised and employed by mentalists. With Emma
Meyers this was easy as she made no claims to
mediumship. Although surrounded by the cloak

74
of Spiritualism (a sign perhaps of her times), her
act was essentially that of a mind-reader.

THE SUBTLETIES OF EMMA MEYERS


In the account of Emma Meyers’ show outlined at
the start of this PDF, we can see a few subtleties
employed by her and her assistant.

1. She is young and attractive, thereby making it


easier for her to gain the interest of the male
members of the audience.

2. She is blind-folded. The blindfold is there purely


to make her seem more vulnerable and helpless,
despite the esoteric explanation used by Miss
Meyers’ assistant. The use of the blindfold also
provides an underlying sexual tension.

3. She trembles and requires assistance to pick


up a glass of water, again reinforcing her
vulnerability. She is getting the audience on her
side. They want her to succeed. It would be a cold
hearted bastard who would want to see this
attractive, vulnerable young woman fail.

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4. Jane is employed as her eyes and ears
amongst the audience. The assistant is ready to
spot trouble, to encourage involvement from the
audience, and generally to steer the proceedings
in the correct direction.

5. The ladies in the audience are handed roses at


the end of the show. This ends the performance
on a real high, with everyone feeling good about
themselves and about the show. It is accepted
knowledge that a show should end with the
performer’s best 'trick'. The roses trick is a simple
way to buy the love and good will of the
audience. Who isn’t going to leave the
auditorium without a smile on their face? Unless
they’re allergic to roses of course. I saw a similar
tactic employed by a medium once. After each
'message' that he passed on to members of the
audience, they were invited onto stage and
handed a red rose as a memento of the love the
spirits had passed on to them. With all the roses
being handed out and the shaking of hands and
hugging, the whole performance became one big
love-in. There was barely any time for any actual
mediumship!

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WAYS OF PRESENTING THIS ROUTINE
Although the routine outlined here made up the
entirety of Emma Meyers’ show, I personally
would see this routine as making up just one
element of a larger show. Perhaps the routine
outlined here would form around 20 minutes of
an hour or 90 minute show.

The way you would present this routine would of


course have to be totally congruent with the rest
of the show and tie in with your stage persona. I
do see this routine as being very flexible in the
way it can be presented. Although its roots are
very

definitely in the esoteric, there is no reason why it


has to stay there.

The three main presentation angles that spring


to mind for me are as follows (and of course you
are positively encouraged to come up with your
own angles):

1. A display of psychic/intuitive ability. By


standing or sitting in front of an audience, the

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energy of the people in the room cause images,
ideas, thoughts, and emotions to flash into your
mind.

2. A display of commonality amongst human


beings. How we all share the same hopes, fears,
dreams, and even memories.

3. Straight out, good old fashioned mind-reading.


How does he do it? You decide!

IN CONCLUSION
This is a very simple routine. You are basically
standing in front of an audience and recounting
some memories that you have. But don’t let that
simplicity fool you. This is highly powerful stuff,
and when framed in the right way will hit hard
with any audience.

There’s no need to be afraid of using this routine.


Because human beings share many common
experiences, in any given audience there will be
people who will understand the story you are
passing on. It may not be fail-safe, but it’s as

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good as. The real trick is getting the audience on
your side so that they are willing to put their
hands in the air and claim ownership of the
memory. But even that isn’t too difficult. Just
encourage them to like you. It’s not rocket
science after all.

I would encourage you in the strongest possible


terms not to simply have a list of memories that
you recite parrot-like at each performance. Trust
your intuition/subconscious to allow real, genuine
memories you have to float to the surface of your
mind at each and every show. This may sound a
touch scary, but it’s not. Just have a little faith.
Trust your subconscious to show you the relevant
memories each time you perform. I dare you!

A final word on this – you wouldn’t, when


providing a reading, employ a stacked deck of
tarot cards. At least I kind of hope that you
wouldn’t. So if you wouldn’t use a stacked deck of
tarot cards, why use a stacked deck of memories
in your mind? Just let those memories float to the
surface and see where they take you.

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The fact that they are genuinely your memories
will add extra potency to your performance. The
audience will pick up on the fact that you have
an emotional investment in what you are saying,
even if they only pick up on it subconsciously. It
will be obvious that you aren’t just making this
stuff up or reading from a pre- prepared script.
As you remember the memory, new details that
you had long forgotten may begin to materialise
in your mind. That makes your performance very
potent, very emotional, and to all intents and
purposes, very genuine. You have memories
coming into your mind, you aren’t dictating which
memories they are, and hopefully they will mean
something to other members of the audience.
What wonder! What mystery! And all done
without an impression pad in sight!

Love & light,

Paul Voodini April 2012

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NUMBER STEAL MIND READING by Nico Heinrich
This effect is part of Nico’s ebook PURE
MENTALISM, which is available at
azmentalism.com

This thought revelation is just different. It is not


only unexpected but clever, flirty, amusing,
memorable and fun to perform. Although it could
be done on stage this is ideally suited for more
casual settings. So imagine you’re in a bar seeing
this beautiful woman. You introduce yourself to
her and ask her to THINK of her favorite drink.

Then you state: “What would you say if I give you


a number to call, and the person on the other
end would be able to describe exactly what you
look like and what drink you are thinking of right
now?”

Of course, she doubts that, but you insist on her


to call a certain number that’s written on a file
card. Above that number it says “mind reader”.
So she puts the number in her phone and presses
the call button. After a few seconds YOUR phone

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rings.

“Hey this is [your name], you’re wearing a blue


dress with black shoes, you have shoulder-length
blond hair, your eyes are brown with a hint of
green and your favorite drink is ... a
Cosmopolitan.”

The great thing about this concept is you have


lots of freedom - be playful and improvise! Of
course, she doesn’t have to think of a drink - it
could be anything. Have a book handy? Do a
word force. The playing cards are always at your
fingertips? Force/peek a card. Use whatever is
around. If you can’t find anything have her think
of a pretty flower (rose) and if the force fails: fuck
it - you still got her number!

If you own the ParaWallet by THOMAS HEINE and


RAINER MEES (PARALABS), there is a great way of
peeking the information, using the concept just
described: Stick the monitor foil to the back of
the file card with the number on it. While they are
reading and typing you have plenty of time to
peek.

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Here are some subtleties you should consider:
When you tell them what to expect, play it up so
it sounds totally impossible, but don’t lie to them
by saying it’s “a friend” of yours that they are
going to call or something. They must generate
the false expectations themselves and then
realize they did. Only then it’s funny. Another
subtlety is to mention their eye color last while
describing their appearance, so you
automatically have eye contact when you reveal
their thought.

If you want to perform this for people who


already know you can read minds, do the
following: Take three or even more file cards with
a different phone number on each one and force
yours. For three to five cards use equivoque - if
you use a whole bunch of cards, do a riffle force
for example. So it seems even more impossible
and they are less likely to expect you on the other
end.

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MNEMORPHING by Nico Heinrich
This is a novel technique for memorizing lots of
information. It is actually a very different
mnemonic association method, which can be
used alone or combined with other classic
techniques.

The huge advantage of MNEMORPHING is that


you link the information, using the exact same
pattern every time. You have to think less, which
simplifies the whole process of association.
Furthermore this technique is extremely easy to
learn and to teach to others.

The basic idea of MNEMORPHING came to me


when I was only seven years old and it was
released twice since then – in a huge
underground reference work for memory
techniques by VOLKER DITTMAR and in my own
German book A Peek Into My Head. Nevertheless
it is pretty much unknown.

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THE TECHNIQUE
Imagine being able to memorize a long shopping
list (in order) within a few seconds. Imagine
becoming invincible at “I Packed My Suitcase”.
Imagine teaching those things to a random
person within minutes.

The secret is to connect the information in your


head, creating a chain. Let’s assume the first
three things on your shopping list are:

1. apple

2. coffee mug

3. candle

Actually, you can use whatever association


method you like – but for now we concentrate on
the MNEMORPHING method.

If you don’t know already what “morphing” is,


you should google it. There are tons of videos on
the internet, illustrating this perfectly.

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In essence, it is a seamless transition from one
object/shape/image into another. Important is
that at some point of the “metamorphosis” there
is an image containing half of each object.

To connect (and thereby memorize) the


information on our shopping list, we simply
morph through it.

We either begin with the first object (apple) or a


favored initial object, we can’t forget. Let’s put we
start with the apple though. To link it to the
coffee mug, you just have to visualize the apple
becoming cylindrical and its leaf transforming
into a handle. Really see it changing in your
mind! In the beginning, this visualization process
takes a few seconds, but with a little practice you
will only need one second or even less.

To associate the mug with the candle repeat the


procedure as described – just imagine the mug
changing into the candle this time!

Yes, it is that easy. You don’t even have to focus


on memorizing the particular object, simply
visualize it changing into the next one.

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If you don’t believe me, try the whole list:

1. apple

2. coffee mug

3. candle

4. bread

5. wine glass

6. bicycle

7. fish

8. chair

9. headphones

10.sunglasses

11.shoes

12.chocolate bar

13.jacket

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14.teddy bear

15.toilet paper

16.socks

17.toothpaste

18.umbrella

19.orange juice

20.hat

Now take pen and paper and recreate the list.


Just think of the first object – everything else will
come to mind automatically. Remember that a
chain is only as strong as its weakest link. So
don’t rush while visualizing the morphing
process. Try to become confident at it first – then
try to speed it up.

OTHER SENSES
If you are an ear-minded person, you might like
the idea of using sounds instead of images. Of

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course you cannot morph sounds like images, but
you can create a sound that consists of the two
you want to connect.

Let’s use the apple again. In your mind hear the


sound of someone biting into it repeatedly. Then
imagine “clink” sounds of two coffee mugs
banging together. Now hear the biting sounds
fading, while the clinking sounds kick in to create
a link between them.

Others will prefer smells or tastes over sounds or


imagery – it works almost the same way.
However, you don’t need to limit yourself to one
option. Rather combine the senses to make
stronger links and as a result a stronger chain.

HYPNOTIC MEMORY TEST


In order to perform this feat, you need to teach
the MNEMORPHING technique to one of your
spectators in advance (pre-show work).

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During the show you “hypnotize” the participant,
so that they would be able to memorize a long
shopping list. While the participant must assume
that you are just trying to help them concentrate,
the audience will believe it is due to the induced
“trance” that she remembers everything on the
shopping list. Hypnotists call that phenomenon
“hypermnesia” by the way.

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