In an obvious jab at Criss Angel, my favourite mentalist, Richard Osterlind, came up with a video series lovingly entitled “No Camera Tricks,” emphasizing that mentalism can and should be performed au naturelle, without using any paid actors, stooges, or special effects when doing things legitimately is very much feasible thanks to the performer’s ability to catch the crowd’s attention with ease.
Richard Osterlind covers some of my favourite material here, including the blindfolded rubik’s solve, the 20-card test, the acid test, Digital Feedback Extraordinaire, and of course, the Dracula book test, coupled with a Seafire kicker that only a man named Richard Osterlind can hope to pull off. He also performed the Pegasus Page, which is just like the Wizard Manual, only less better. :P
Watching Osterlind in action is really a thing of beauty. The way he talks to his audiences, the way he has everything under control, and his very stern demeanor against people messing around with him tends to really underscore how good he is at performing under pressure situations. It takes years upon years of experience to really gain the kind of confidence he has, but you get insights into what it takes particularly in these videos, especially once you see how he can hypnotize his audience with a high success rate.
.:283/365: Michael Finney’s Card On Forehead:.
This video, in all honesty, practically reveals the secret to the persons watching the performance, but see, the whole idea of the routine is how long Michael Finney can successfully misdirect the volunteer without him realizing what’s going on.
This is a true master at work, and while this is featured on his Live at Lake Tahoe Video in L and L form, watching it here on YouTube is every bit as satisfying, especially with his offbeat quips that you know he came up with on the fly.
Personally, after watching him and Mel Mellers at work, I’ve developed a flair for coming up with suitable one-liners in the middle of performances, and they go very well with the scripted lines you already are supposed to have. It keeps you from ever having dead air while doing stuff, and allows you to perform as a motormouth, which is the style I have chosen to utilize for myself.