In September both Barry Mitchell and Karl Hein lectured to Ring 211. Barry was in early September followed by Karl in late September.
Barry Mitchell was formerly a street magician in the New Orleans French Quarter. He was formerly a regular opening act for country music stars and the featured comedian at Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede Dinner Attraction. He was formerly the Oreo Magician for the Southeast, a lecturer at the world famous Magic Castle in Hollywood, and the Magic Circle in London. He has formerly performed in almost every state plus England, Denmark, Australia, and the Bahamas. He has formerly invented magic tricks, written stories, books, and DVDs. He has formerly presented children’s ministry programs such as Upward, VBS, Awana, and Kid’s crusades in churches all over the United States. He has formerly spoken for large corporations, public schools, and civic organizations. All this former experience means he just can’t keep a job. Actually, he has been successfully unemployed as a humorist and children’s entertainer for over three decades. View more at www.barrymitchell.com. Also search “Barry Mitchell” on Google and watch You Tube videos of his magic.
The lecture was his “Think Different Magic Tour” His advertising for this lecture states the following:
“Get ready to think different about your magic. Look into the creative mind of Barry Mitchell for his unique ideas with children’s and family entertainment. Whether you are a beginner or a full time pro YOU WILL FIND USEABLE TECHNIQUES AND MAGIC here. Included are: Think Different effects for sponge magic, silk magic, and simple card magic. It’s all part of a fun and funny presentation that won’t just inform you but it will entertain you. Barry is also known for dollar store creativity and he will always share effects you can make right off the shelves for your store. You need to know this isn’t a card or packet trick lecture. There will be no complicated sleight of hand. This lecture is a study in thinking differently and simply and successfully ‘entertaining’ a family audience with magic. Magicians and clowns will equally love it. Even if you’re a dedicated ‘card trick only’ hobbyist you’ll still learn, laugh, and be entertained.”
He stressed to “play” with one’s magic so “ideas” will happen. He also creates and dyes his own line of silks.
Correction from Barry Mitchell: The silks I sell are Wonder Imagery. The ones with my name on them are my design but made by Wonder Imagery. If you would like to learn more about the silks go to www.wonderimagery.com or my site is www.barrymitchellproducts.com
Highlights of his lecture were:
- Fluffy the Frog, a silk routine involving a fly and a pod
- Smiles, multi-production of sponge balls known as “smilemakers” out of a bag along with an appearing cane
- Pop-Up Trash Can which produced sponge stars and balls and even jumbo balls
- A production of bags from a bag which also included productions of a ball, a silk streamer, the Dream Bag, and an appearing wand
- Bucket of Balls which he uses nesting cups by Fisher Price
- Heart Attack, a sponge heart routine with many scripts available
- Caterpillar to Butterfly, a silk routine
- Silk hand To Silk Eye
- A card vent gag routine which involved a multi-card selection, a comic Axtell mic prop, and a spectator
- Bag of WOW 2.0, a WOW silk vanish to a production of a larger WOW silk using his DIY Bag
- Jay Rumple’s What About The Fish routine
- Magic Box
- Mother Of All Diamonds
Barry had a great selection of his magic available for sale which included Pole Control, Pop Up Production, No Bleed Balls, and much more. DVD’s available were Bag O WOW, Think Different 3, Target WOW, DUH (vol 1 & 2), Comedy Magic 101, Truth & Treasures, Magic of Thinking Creativity (vol 1 & 2), and The ABC’s of Children’s Magic.
Ring 211 enjoyed Barry’s lecture and recommends him to any club.
Karl Hein is known world-wide for his amazing card handling abilities. His Heinstein Shuffle is widely recognized as the best false riffle shuffle with a bridge ever invented. Ring 211′ers looking for original card sleights, flourishes, and entertaining routines developed by an experienced professional magician were quite impressed. Karl used many of his routines to teach basic and advanced moves and principles of magic and misdirection. More importantly, we learned how to “Go With the Flow” (his title for this lecture) as Karl provided alternate handlings to meet varying skill levels and explained how to change routines depending on one’s audience and conditions.
For our club members who are not interested much in card tricks, were pleased to know that Karl makes the majority of his income as a family entertainer under the stage name of Karl Koppertop (visit www.karlkoppertop.com, www.extremeballoonteam.com, www.karlhein.com). We were not going to miss out on learning Karl’s commercial routines with coins, ropes, bills, and cream filled goodies. Even more valuable were his thoughts on performing and his tips on how to make a six figure income performing family shows.
Highlights of his lecture were:
- Heinsight – An open prediction with an impossible change and kicker ending with use of the Hoffsinger’s Spread Force
- Heinstein’s Dream – A named selection is signed, folded, torn into pieces and restored. His handling allows the versatility of performing a flash restoration, piece by piece restoration, or a restoration in the spectator’s hand. Easy, clean, versatile, repeatable, minimal setup, no placing pieces in one’s hands or pockets, and the restored card can be given as a souvenir.
- A magic square routine with a deck of cards — Karl demonstrated and explained his famous Heinstein Shuffle with tips and variations. This shuffle is in many of his card routines. He also showed the Charlet Shuffle, Zaro Shuffle, and a few others. He made reference to his DVD on false shuffles.
- Don’t Play by the Rules – One of the best full deck story routines ever created.
- My Favorite Opener — Karl’s favorite routine for the restaurant environment. This routine contained an amazing color changing deck sequence and a very baffling deck switch. The routine is segmented so that it can end at any point and still be a strong finish. It was also a great lesson in audience management, timing, and improvisation.
- That Would be a Freaking Miracle – An easy to do three card selection that gets everyone involved and makes a spectator a hero. Just when one thinks it’s over, the kickers keep coming, such as the production of a bottle of Ketchup.
- Heiny 500 – Karl’s variation of Patrick Page’s Easy Money and Greg Wilson’s Hundy 500.
- Just Say Twinkie – a very entertaining, very strong, easy to do bill routine that makes sense.
- Give Me Five – A quick trick using a little money that one will use all of the time, not just for fun but to also help increase tips in a very subtle manner.
- Hein’s Catch Up — a six phase three fly coin routine using copper, silver, and brass coins.
- Grandmother’s BLT — An easy to do sandwich effect that has made many top magicians feel that moment of astonishment they haven’t felt in years.
He concluded his lecture with a performance only of a Rubick’s Cube match and Three Degrees of Separation, a four card multi-selection in which the climax is the chosen cards are displayed by the fours of every suit and then in full deck order.
He had his lecture notes and many of his routines available for sale in DVD form plus Heinous Collection (vol 1, 2, and 3). We also recommend Karl to any club.
Photos by Pete Stobie