Meeting Report: March 14, 2018 - Michael Feldman Lecture

The creative Bay Area magician Michael Feldman presented a lecture on his latest material to a large audience of Ring 216 members.  The first edition of his recent book, A New Angle, co-written with Ryan Plunkett, has nearly sold out. The last remaining copies were offered for sale after the lecture, and quickly snapped up.

Michael performed and explained a series of novel effects. He began by holding a competition to find the three best Rock Paper Scissors players in the room. The winning moves of the top three players then turned out to have been written, in the correct order, on three large sheets of paper that had been stuck to the wall since the start of the game.

Next the cap of a ballpoint pen vanished, reappeared, and changed color. This was an update of a do-anywhere pocket effect Michael had released years ago and which he had published in his book “The Opposite of People.”

The material from his new book was then showcased in a series of card routines, kicked off by Ryan Plunkett’s “Shuffleupagus.” Two spectators each shuffle half the deck. The magician then shuffles and shows the cards are nearly separated into reds and blacks. He shuffles again, and the cards are in new deck order. It was this effect which was the genesis of the book, Michael explained. He followed this up with the outstanding “Complete faro control, then the direct location of any named four of a kind, and rounded off with some thinking on the larger principles behind the book.

The second half of the lecture was devoted to impromptu card tricks. These included an in-the-hands effect where a mixed deck of face-up and face-down cards rights itself and a cutting the aces routine.

The finale was “Merely Impossible,” a routine Michael has been incorporating into his act over the past year. This astonishing routine has taken in probably every magician who has seen it. In essence, the selected and signed card is located by the magician in the deck…before the spectator returns it to the deck! Michael graciously discussed in detail the psychology behind the routine.

The books he brought with him quickly sold out at the end of the lecture – but a new edition is on the way.