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The Master of Misdirection
by D. Angelo Ferri


(3 reviews, 9 customer ratings) ★★★★★

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The Master of Misdirection by D. Angelo Ferri

#1 in Theory, Articles & Reviews top-reviews

I believe that Dennis Barlotta will soon be known as the foremost teacher of Slydini's system of misdirection. There have been others before that have tried to explain and teach Slydini routines, but nobody could capture the essence of what made Slydini the master of misdirection the way Barlotta has been able to.

Dennis has studied eight years under Slydini and has spent a lifetime mastering the Slydini method. Dennis told me: "While many magicians admire Slydini, they don't understand what made him unique or how his approach can be employed by them." This is the ebook that will help you understand Slydini's way of doing magic.

This ebook is a very serious study of the thinking, the how and the why Slydini's System of Misdirection is so different from traditional forms of misdirection. This thinking, this manipulation of perception, is clearly demonstrated in his 'Coins Through the Table'.

Dennis writes:

The Master of Misdirection is an intensive study of Slydini's System of Misdirection. When I started my lessons I told him I wanted to begin with the Coins Through The Table. He smiled. "Good... the coins are the gateway to my magic." Those were his exact words to me. To perform the Coins as Slydini intended the student must understand how to control the thoughts of his impromptu assistant and how to exploit that provocation to his purpose. The Coins teaches this. This manuscript also covers The Knotted Silks, The Torn and Restored Cigarette, The Helicopter Card, The Paper Balls Over The Head, and The One Coin Routine. It is 216 pages in length and includes well over one hundred instructional photos. All of Slydini's guiding principles are covered here from the perspective of the student and the answers of his master.


Section One Principals

1. Mind/Body/ Movement
This chapter deals with the principal ‘The Body Takes The Hand’ and complementary psychological principals. Slydini’s Sponge Ball Routine is used to introduce his system of movement.

2. Arousal/Suspicion/Justificaton/Reason/Proof/Acceptance/Amplification
This is a study of the technique Slydini used to influence thought patterns and there by create a justification for accomplishing necessary mechanics. The chapter highlights the use of this psychological misdirection in his Coins Through The Table.

3. Timing
This chapter offers a definition of Slydini’s Timing and specific examples of Timing Sequences and their practical application. If your intention is to perform the One Coin Routine, The Torn & Restored Cigarette, and apply the principal of performing a necessary mechanic when the audience is mentally at rest, a complete understanding and ability to perform within Slydini’s Timing Construction is absolutely necessary.

4. Belief
Without exception, in every lesson, at some point Slydini would tell me; “You must believe what you are doing. If you believe it; they will believe it.” To achieve perfection in our misdirection we must perform each movement; unconscious of technique; with complete belief.

5. The Misdirection Sleight
This is a study of Slydini’s Misdirection Sleight, the move he used to vanish the ball in his Paper Balls Into the Box. This chapter takes a close look at what Slydini is thinking to himself as he performs the move and therefore what he projecting to his audience.

6. Guarding Your Center
This is a study of the physical relationship of the seated Close Up Magician to his impromptu assistant. A functional awareness of this relationship is necessary on a routine by routine basis.

7. Some Technical Considerations
A brief review of technical concerns that must be understood and addressed in this system of Close Up Magic.

8. Definitions
Review and Definitions of Principals and Techniques.

9. Formulas
An Outline of Psychological Misdirective Techniques.

Section Two Routines

The Torn & Restored Cigarette
The Torn and Restored Cigarette is being offered to illustrate several principals working together to create the Magic. This routine features a basic timing sequence, the principal of the body taking the hand and performing the necessary mechanics of a trick when the audience is mentally at rest. This routine will enable the student to employ several very important principals and pave the way to other effects.

The Helicopter Card
The Helicopter Card is being offered as an example of Slydini’s misdirective eye hand coordination (the same technique he employs in The Paper Balls Over The Head). There is a very unique switch of the chosen card as it is being placed into the fan and a fan steal that will introduce the reader to the Slydini Palm. Mastering this routine will help prepare the magician for a study of The Paper Balls Over The Head.

The Coins Through The Table
The Coins Through The Table is the window to Slydini’s psychological misdirection. While mechanics have to be performed at the right time, this is not a Timing Sequence based routine. Magicians who have decided not to study and employ Timing Sequences should focus on this chapter.

The Knotted Silks
This routine is being offered as an example of how Slydini took existing techniques available to magicians and crafted a unique entertainment. The routine does not depend upon Timing Sequences and is therefore available to those magicians who would like to add this routine to their act without having to devote their entire way of accomplishing necessary mechanics to the Slydini System of Misdirection.

The Paper Balls Over The Head
This is a complementary study of the published lessons on this routine written from the perspective of a student struggling with the fear of getting caught while tossing the ball over the head of the spectator. Mechanics are reviewed but the major focus is on the performer’s belief system and interaction with the impromptu assistant. This lesson is intended to give the student a greater insight into what was being communicated to the assistant by Slydini and therefore why Slydini was able to control the assistant’s perceptions so completely.

The One Coin Routine
The One Coin Routine is the ultimate conclusion of Slydini’s way of performing Close Up Magic. In order to perform this routine the student will have to master Timing Sequences, The Revolve Vanish, The Imp Pass, and The Fake Take. The fundamental principals are all present here. To understand this routine is to understand how Slydini performed Close Up Magic.

Section Three

A closer look at the way Slydini treated his audience, impromptu assistant, and the life experiences that made him the Magician he was.

1st edition 2005; 216 pages with photos and illustrations.
word count: 84063 which is equivalent to 336 standard pages of text

Reviewed by Terry Terrell (confirmed purchase)
★★★★★   Date Added: Saturday 16 September, 2023

D. Angelo Ferri's aka Dennis Barlotta is one of the few qualified to teach Slydini's material. This material compliments the Slydini Concepts course

Reviewed by Josef Fortier (confirmed purchase)
★★★★★   Date Added: Thursday 29 December, 2022

I read the Fulves Slydini book as a teenager, which had an enormous effect on me. This book spells out much of the ideas I absorbed then but fleshes them out. The book is a wonderful window on "lessons from Slydini" by someone who has thought about those lessons a lot.

Reviewed by Christophe Bonnard
★★★★★   Date Added: Tuesday 27 January, 2009

This book is GREAT.