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  • Gregory Ferdinand


Updated: Jan 19, 2020

“Teach-A-Trick” night was the theme for our first assembly meeting of the new year. With 13 performer-teachers and many more observers, the room was filled with anticipation. The performances were exceptionally well done and the accompanying explanations clear and concise. It was a great learning opportunity for all who attended. If you missed it...well, there’s always next year!


Assembly president, Vince Mendoza led off with YAT, a self-developed version of the 3-Fly coin trick. (YAT is an acronym for “Yet Another Three-fly). It was an impressive demonstration followed by a detailed explanation. This is a classic of magic and hopefully many in attendance will take the time to learn it...I know I hope to. As an encore, Vince showed us his work on a version of the Pass. Aptly named, the Perpen-zontal Pass, his method provides better timing and less “tension” while executing the move – quite an improvement on the method described in Erdnase’s Expert at the Card Table.

Mike Healy followed with a trick he learned as a child in which numerous rings, loops and bands are tied to 2 shoelaces securely attached to a magic wand. Incredibly when the wand is removed all the objects pass through the shoelaces and into the magician’s hand.

Pablo Avila showed us a trick he had recently seen performed by Shin Lin at his Borgata Casino show in Atlantic City. Everyone in the audience was provided 4 random playing cards. These were all torn in half and one piece was placed in the pocket. What followed was a bunch of choices in which the audience shuffled up the remaining cards, passed several to others and finished with an elimination deal which resulted in a single, half-card remaining. Amazingly, that one piece matched the piece in their pocket. Well done Pablo! Thanks for sharing.

Pablo & Agustin

Pablo’s performance was followed by his son, Agustin, who demonstrated and then tipped the mental magic trick he performed at our December holiday party. The trick consisted of placing 9 cards on the table in a matrix formation and having a spectator mentally select one card while Agustin was out of the room. Upon returning to the room Agustin used his keen mental powers to eliminate the unselected cards leading to the revelation of the spectator’s choice. I must admit, I had no idea how it was done until I learned the secret! Thank you so much Agustin.


Barry Sagotsky, our newest member, demonstrated a Poker Deal in which the infamous riverboat gambler, “Cactus Pete,” dealt himself the best poker hand twice in a row, despite the fact that the cards were mixed before and between deals. I think I’ll use that next time I perform!

Conrad & Tom

Conrad Colon showed us a trick from his performance repertoire in which a lemon placed in a lunch bag disappears – returns and then disappears again. In the kicker finale, the lemon returns to the bag and transforms into a glass of lemonade. What else would you expect “when life hands you a lemon!”

Tom Durnin showed us how easy it is to perform miracles without resorting to a lot of knuckle busting sleight of hand as a freely cut to card matched a prediction that was made earlier in the evening. This is the kind of trick made for me – maximum impact with no difficult sleights or moves.


Bobbo (Bob Simek) performed Nuts & Bolts, a slightly “blue” version of two in the hand, one in the pocket with a kicker ending. Packs small, plays big and doesn’t cost a lot to put together. I’m sure many of us will be visiting Home Depot shortly!

Mariano Blanco performed Ring Thing, a Garrett Thomas trick. In this trick, a ring is removed from the finger and then miraculously reappears on the finger in an instant. This is repeated several times. He really had me fooled until he tipped it. Great trick – I can’t wait to try it myself.

Topher Sutton showed us an old-time trick in which two random cards are placed into the center of the deck and, as he tosses the deck into his other hand, suddenly the selected cards appear as the only two cards left in his tossing hand. I knew this trick but forgot how powerful it can play. Thanks Topher.

Elliot Allen, a visitor to our Assembly, demonstrated some money magic in which a $100 bill and a $1 bill trade places. This is a great “in the spectator’s hand” trick which plays strong. Elliot then provided all in attendance with templates for making the trick’s gimmick. Well done!

Mike Lamperello showed us a mental magic trick using Post-It notes. In this trick, sheets are pulled from a pad until the spectator says “stop.” When the next sheet is turned over, it is inscribed with a note stating “I knew this is where you’d stop.” How cool is that! And so easy to do if you know the trick.


I performed a Lie Detector trick in which a spectator selects a card and tries to deceive me as to the color, suit and value of the card. Of course, with a little help from Siri I prevail! As an encore, I demonstrated my new, favorite John Bannon trick, Paint it Blank. In this trick, a mentally selected card turns invisible and reappears between two jokers. I can only say “This is one great trick.” Check it out on John’s website.

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