Watching a magician perform his tricks is not only impressive and striking, but it’s also bewildering. You can’t help but question how in the world the magician just disappeared with the snap of his fingers. Is magic real? Or is there some behind-the-scenes secret that the audience isn’t aware of? Well, have no fear. We’re about to uncover for you all the questions that have been driving you nuts about the most popular magic tricks. While you may be itching to try these on your own, remember, magicians have to practice these skills for hundreds of hours in order to be successful at them. You might want to leave these tricks to the likes of David Copperfield and David Blaine.
The Walk On Water Trick
The original magicians who performed this trick got their inspiration from the bible where Jesus was believed to have walked on water. Well, the son of God was maybe the first one to walk on water but he definitely wasn’t the last! So, who else has conquered this heroic act? Hint, the answer doesn’t have more than two legs. Another hint? Think of somebody who is capable of pulling off the most difficult of stunts. None other than magicians, of course.
If Jesus could walk on water, heck, I can too, thought the first magician to take on the challenge. Magicians have since mastered the art of “walking on water,” and have brought to life the holy scene from the bible. Now, they can’t actually be walking on water can they? That seems pretty impossible. But somehow, they make it look as though they are walking on water, leaving the audience to feel absolutely stumped as to how they’re pulling off the stunt. This is the exact way a skilled magician wants to make his audience feel. The audience sits at the edge of their seats, holding their breath and waiting for the magician to plunder down into the cold water below. But, the magician doesn’t succumb to expectations and despite appearing to wobble, he maintains his poise and stability and jets across the water without falling into it.
The Secret Behind Walking On Water
As much as the magician may appear to be struggling, he does this all for the sake of a good performance. Being a magician doesn’t only require the ability to pull off mind-blowing stunts. It also requires one to be a stellar performer. Take the great David Copperfield, for example. Other than performing as a musician, Copperfield was also an actor who played the lead role of the longest running musical in Chicago’s history, the Magic Man. Although musicians at times make the audience question their magical abilities, they know exactly what they’re doing the whole time. The good ones at least.
You might be a disappointment to find out that the trick doesn’t involve something so intricate. Or maybe that will make you happy to know, as you too are capable of performing the trick for your friends and family. All you need are some perspex boxes. Perspex boxes become invisible when submerged in water. A magician places them underneath the surface of the water and walks across, making it appear as though they can walk on water. Take that, Jesus.
The Levitating Man
You may have seen this trick at some point being performed by a street performer. If you’re like us, then you stopped and wondered how in the world they are floating in mid-air. You among a crowd of many were standing, dumbfounded. Well, it’s a logical question to ask yourself. The levitator usually holds a rod and floats above a carpet or bed of flowers. But, the unbelievable part is that there is an obvious gap in between them and the ground. There’s no way that the person could be so strong so as to prop himself up just holding on with his hand, right? And even so, nobody could possibly do that for hours on end.
I mean, Simone Biles isn’t even capable of that sort of strength. Well, these street performers perform this trick with ease and use it as a way to make a little bit of money from onlookers. Once you learn how the trick is performed, you may regret all those times you gave money to the street levitator.
What's Really Levitating
Turns out, the genie isn’t the only one who’s able to float mid-air, nor are Indian yogis the only ones. So, how in the world do street levitators join the ranks of the genie Well, when you know and yogis of the world? Well, it’s pretty simple, actually. The trick only involves three parts; the rod, the seat they are sitting on, and the platform on the ground.
The seat is attached to the rod which is attached to the platform on the ground. Got it? The way they pull off this trick is by concealing the seat and the platform with the clothes they are wearing and the prop on the ground is typically covered by a carpet or flowers. The performer sits on the first platform, in comfort and ease, and passersby wonder how in the world they’re able to pull this off so effortlessly. Well, they aren’t defying gravity or doing anything supernatural, they are just using age-old foolery and making money off of it.
Halving The Assistant
So, how in the world does a magician “cut” somebody’s body in half and then put them back together in a matter of minutes? You should know by now that there is a fairly simple explanation for how the magician manages to pull this trick off and that most likely, the assistant isn’t actually being dissected.
The secret behind the trick might be very surprising.
The Secret of The Halved Assistant
The first thing to know is that there are actually two assistants involved in the trick, not only the one assistant that the audience members see. Both of these assistants have different roles, which are necessary to making the trick look believable.
One assistant remains hidden inside of the box and sticks her legs out of the box when it’s the right time. When the magician appears to be cutting the one assistant in half, each assistant flails his arms or legs in order to make it appear as though the dismembered body is creepily still able to move. And that is how it’s done, ladies and gents.
The Floating Woman Trick
The floating woman trick is an old time classic. If you’ve ever been to a magic show, there’s a good chance that you’ve seen this one being performed. For the trick to be performed, the magician first needs a woman. He either selects a woman from the audience or already has selected a woman before the show who’s waiting to be his assistant in the trick.
In the trick, there is a wooden board which rests on two chairs. The woman lies on the board on her back. Then two assistants pull the chairs away, which leaves the woman suspended in mid-air and leaves the audience with their mouths wide open, hanging to the floor. The magician, to further prove his skill, will sometimes choose to run a metal hoop around the body of the woman, to show the audience that there aren’t any cables in place holding up her body. So, if there aren’t any cables involved, how does the woman’s body stay in place like that? Well, we’re going to reveal that to you in the next slide.
Floating Woman Secret
Much like the floating street art performers, the magician needs to conceal the way in which he’s making it look like the woman is floating in the air. So, how do you think he goes about doing this? Well, you’ve heard this one before, and it’s one which doesn’t even require skill per se, just carrying out the trick strategically to make sure that the secret doesn’t accidentally get revealed to audience members. The magician stands in front of a base that is connected to a metal rod in the back.
The rod stays hidden during the whole trick, so even when a hoop is run over a woman’s body, the audience doesn’t see the concealed rod. And if you’re wondering how the rod doesn’t interfere with the metal hoop, that too is designed in an ‘s’ formation so as to add to the illusion. The two chairs meanwhile, convince the audience that the woman is really levitating in mid-air, when all the while, the metal rod is what is keeping her body propped up and “floating.”
That Rabbit In The Hat Trick
When you think of a magic trick, this is likely the one that you picture. Perhaps the oldest trick in the book. The first magician who is said to have pulled a rabbit out of a hat was Louis Comte in 1814. This 200-year-old magic trick is one that any young magician can learn to perform to wow his audience members, that is if you can find a bunny rabbit lying around.
The first thing that you need is a large hat, which appears to be empty, resting on a table. The illusionist will show his audience that there is nothing inside of the hat, before he pulls a bunny rabbit out of the hat, seemingly from out of nowhere.
Where is That Bunny Hiding?
This trick requires some equipment for it to work successfully. The magician will need an actual rabbit, a tablecloth and a bag.
The bag with the bunny inside will be attached to the table, and it’ll be hanging down while concealed from the audience thanks to the tablecloth. For the trick to work, the magician must slide the bag into the hat to show that the rabbit has been concealed in there all along!
Biting The Coin
You have probably seen this performed before either in a magic show or on the street. The trick starts with the magician requesting a coin from a member of the audience. He then proceeds to wow the audience by biting into the coin using only his teeth. This trick makes viewers squirm as they jump to cover their own teeth, imagining how it would feel to break their teeth on steel.
The reason why the trick is so believable is that the magician takes an innocent member from the audience who has absolutely nothing to do with the trick. The magician may even ask that audience member to take a bite from the coin himself. Of course, he is unable to do it. So, how in the world does the magician succeed in doing so? Does he have shark or vampire teeth or something? Most likely not. But, he does have in his possession something else which allows him to be successful and amaze his audience.
Biting a coin in half – Secret
If you’re hoping to perform this trick yourself, you’ll be happy to know that you don’t need to go to magic school to learn how to do it. You only need one thing for the trick, and that’s a fake coin which looks like a real one. But, the difference is that a fake coin is breakable. What the trick requires of the magician is to switch the real coin that the audience member presents with the fake coin.
Of course, this has to be done in a swift enough manner so that nobody catches it. Magicians are very deceiving and many times, they aren’t performing tricks which are so challenging, but they must learn how to do them correctly and cunning enough. If this trick is performed incorrectly, you may end up taking an accidental bite out of the wrong coin and then finish your magic show with a missing tooth. Expert magicians become very skilled at being deceptive so that they’re able to move on to other more difficult tricks later on.
For the last 100 years, magicians have been sawing women in half. The first public performance of a woman being sawed is believed to have been in January 1921 when the British magician P.T. Selbit performed the illusion in London. Since then, magicians have been tricking speculators into believing that the woman is really being cut in half. The trick looks so real that many audience members cover their eyes with their hands, afraid to peek. You can rest assured; no women are being harmed in the making.
It’s vital to the safety of all involved that the magician places their assistant in the correct position before whipping out the giant saw and sawing right through the body of the assistant. No, this isn’t a horror movie! It’s just a magician using some deceit. Clearly, the assistants always make it out alive in one piece or else this trick would have been prohibited a long time ago and there would be many magicians sitting in jail cells around the world. So, how in the world does the magician pull off this seemingly dangerous trick you ask?
Behind The Sawing Trick
First of all, this is NOT a trick that should be tried at home, because it requires you to have special equipment. Remember when we revealed to you the chopping the assistant trick? Well, this one is quite similar to that. There is a secret compartment where the assistant is able to protect their body from getting mutilated by the saw.
In order for the assistant to avoid danger, they must tuck their legs away; failing to do so can result in a situation we don’t even want to detail for you. To create the illusion that the assistant is being chopped in half, fake feet are placed at the end of the table. To the audience, it looks like the assistant is sawed in half but after the magician “puts her back together,” she manages to walk away unharmed. Hmmm… so the magician is a healer too.
Bending The Spoon
Have you ever been out at a fancy restaurant when a magician comes around to perform a trick for your table? Maybe they performed the bending spoon trick leaving you stunned with pasta dangling out of your open mouth. They take the spoon from your very table, in order to prove to you that they haven’t brought along their own. They then make the stainless steel silver bend.
You look around, confused, wondering whether the manager of the restaurant is about to come around and kick the magician out of his restaurant for damaging the restaurant’s property. And then, out of nowhere, the magician restores the spoon to its original form. This trick is a classic and it’s one that’s quite easy to pull off if performed correctly. If you want to learn how to wow your audience members, then keep reading to find out the secret.
How You Really "Bend" A Spoon
If you’ve been reading the above secrets to magic tricks up until now, then you can probably guess how the magician manages to make it look like he’s bent a spoon out of shape. He deceives his audience by having an extra piece of equipment on hand.
So, you want in on the secret? The magician uses a small silver coin to mimic the spoon’s handle. They then make the illusion of the spoon moving in their hand by making use of the table. This makes it appear as though the spoon is being bent when in reality, the illusion is created by using a silver coin and keeping it still.
The zigzag trick is similar to the sawing magic trick. The trick was invented in 1965 by Robert Harbin. The assistant is placed in an upright wooden box and big metal blades are placed in the middle of the box. The magician creates the illusion that he’s placing these metal blades inside of the assistant and splitting her up into thirds. It appears as though the assistant has been cut into a zigzag shape.
Sounds pretty gory, right? There is even a small door in the middle which allows the audience to see the insides of the assistant. Gross. The magician, to further prove his authenticity, will stick his head where the assistant’s torso should be. At the end of the trick, the magician slides the assistant’s insides back into place and the assistant walks away, unharmed. Say what?
How Do They Do It?
If you’ve ever seen this trick performed, then chances are you yourself have been stunned. The trick simply looks impossible. Well, given a flexible assistant, the trick is possible. The trick requires the assistant to contort her body inside of the box to make it look like her torso has disappeared.
So, you know that the assistant has to be extremely flexible in order to fit herself into a very confined space. She has to keep her body parts which are sticking out of the holes completely still. The box also has black stripes going down the sides which make it seem more narrow then it really is. But, the black space is used by the woman inside of the box. The sliding blades are also not as narrow as they appear. The entire box is designed to make it look as though the box is much smaller than it really is. This skill takes hours to practice.
Spike Through The Body Trick
Do you know that you can make it look like you’re floating on top of the sharp point of a spike, without your body getting even slightly injured? This trick is enough to fool even the toughest critics. The trick is also known as impaling. The magician presents to his audience a stand, which has a sword standing in a vertical position. He then picks up his assistant and places her laying on her back on the tip of the sword, to the audience’s dismay.
The assistant might drop down a foot or two, impaling themselves on the spike in the process. But then, they pick themselves back up from the spike, appearing not to have suffered any injuries along the way.
Is That Really A Spike?
Like all other magic tricks, there is more going on than what meets the audience’s eyes. Of course, nobody is actually being impaled and no blood is being shed.
Like other tricks we’ve seen, this one involves a small hidden platform which is on the spike. The assistant rests her body weight on the platform, which makes her look as though she is a human kebab. And the reason for dropping down is to take the focus away from the spike and make it look like it has gone through her.
The Levitating Cup Trick
If I'm going to be real with you all, I've been wanting to move an item using only the power of my mind since I saw Matilda do it in 1996. Unfortunately, none of us have a magic wand like Harry Potter or Hermione Granger. And that’s seriously unfortunate.
But fortunately, the magician in us can make it appear as though we are making a cup levitate. By strategically placing our hands around the cup and slowly moving them apart, you too can make it look like you are making a cup float in the air. So, you might want to pull your Hogwarts application out of the garbage, where you aggressively threw it after believing you didn’t stand a chance.
Levitating cup – Secret
Okay, fine. That isn’t really the way to Professor McGonagall’s heart. But, there is a much easier way that you too can learn. Heck, a five-year-old can pull off the trick. All that it requires is poking a hole through the back of a styrofoam cup with your thumb.
In this way, the cup will stay attached to your thumb and you’ll be able to fool your audience into thinking that you’re making it levitate. If you’re going to try this trick, then you’ll want to make sure you distract your audience members with your other hand so that they don’t try and understand for too long how you’re making the cup “float.” Also, make sure that your audience members are directly in front of you and not on the side. If they’re on the side, then your trick will be a complete bust!
The Sword Swallow
You might be disappointed to know that there isn’t a big secret with this trick and that it’s not something you could pull off easily for your next magic show. Actually, it’s more about practice here.
It is undeniably cool to look at though, so if you can do this, you've pretty much made it.
Sword swallowing – Secret
First of all, you only want to perform this trick if you are an experienced magician. If done incorrectly, serious damage could be done. Swallowing a sword with no harm involves bending your head back to exactly the right angle so that your mouth and throat are aligned.
You can then slip the sword through your mouth and slide it down into your body. You just better be sure that it’s at the right angle… otherwise you’ll be in deep water. Need we say, do not try this at home.
The Smooth Criminal Leaning Trick
Michael Jackson was and will always be the King of Pop. Just look up “King of Pop” on Google and see what comes up. One of Jackson’s most popular moves was his iconic lean from the Smooth Criminal video. This move has been emulated millions of times since.
MJ performed the move perfectly, making it appear as though it came as natural to him as walking does to every other person. But, how in the world is it possible to lean forward so much that you’re almost parallel to the ground? Any other normal person would topple over themselves and face plant into the ground.
Not Everyone Is Michael Jackson
Rest assured. Michael Jackson didn’t have any weird feature embedded in his body which allowed him to balance at a 45-degree angle. Actually, the king of pop needed a bit of help to pull off this notorious skill. So, all those nights you spent in your bedroom falling into your hardwood floor probably weren’t worth all those face bruises.
In order to pull off the move, Jackson actually wore special shoes which had triangular holes in the bottom. There were also nails jutting out of the ground to catch the holes. So, Jackson would get into position and the nails would catch into the holes of his shoes, allowing him to bend all the way forward. Pretty neat, huh? And if you’re interested in getting your hands on those shoes, you’ll be happy to know that you can purchase them online. Get your smooth criminal.
Note From A Lemon Trick
If you watched Britain’s Got Talent, circa de 2015, then you were probably one of the millions of viewers to be amazed by Jamie Ravens. Ravens performed many mind-blowing skills, but there is one which is the most famous of them all. This trick really left the judges and audience members with their mouths hanging to the floor.
Ravens asked one of the judges to sign a piece of paper. He then folded up the paper and out of nowhere, he made a lemon appear. When he sliced open the lemon, the judge’s signed note was tucked inside of it. How in the world did he manage to do this?
What's The Secret?
If you got a close enough look, you may have picked up the secret behind this. And if you didn’t, then no fear- we’ve uncovered the secret for you. You can see Ravens quickly closing the lemon up after he showed the note that was planted inside of the lemon.
This is likely because there was a hole in the lemon that Ravens didn’t want the audience to notice. Jamie did a good enough job distracting everyone that nobody noticed him slipping the note into the hole of the lemon. Nobody but us… meh heh.
Puff of Smoke Trick
How cool would it be to make smoke appear out of nowhere? Every time somebody would irritate you, you could rub your fingers together and make smoke come out of nowhere so you wouldn’t have to look at them anymore. Well, if you’re a magician, then there’s a good chance you’ve mastered this skill and can make smoke appear by rubbing your fingers together.
And guess what, you don’t even need to have any wizardry in your blood! You just need to be a pro trickster. The point is to make it appear as though the smoke is coming from nowhere. But, the smoke actually has a source and fortunately for all of us muggles, it’s an easy trick to learn.
The Secret Behind The Puff of Smoke
Separate the side from the cardboard box, fold it in half and light it. Allow it to burn for a little and then put out the fire. Gather the white residue, which is white phosphorus. This is how you create a smoke effect. Rub some on your index finger and thumb and rub them together. There you go!
Your fingers are smoking. And remember what we said about washing off the residue when you’re done!
How It's Really Done
First of all, we are by no means in support of using or abusing animals for the sake of magic. Another animal which has come to be associated with magic besides the bunny is the pigeon. Disclaimer; the substance involved in this trick can be very dangerous. Keep in mind before trying this, the substance involved can be dangerous and should be immediately washed away after the trick is completed. To begin the trick, take the striker side of a matchbox.
In this magic trick, a magician tells audience members that he is going to make a pigeon appear before their very eyes. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, they snap their fingers and poof, a pigeon appears. But, it’s not from out of nowhere that this pigeon is coming. There’s a reason for the pigeon’s sudden appearance.
Pigeon appearing – Secret
If you’ve seen this trick performed, you may have noticed that there’s a quick flash and then the bird is suddenly there. The flash is meant to serve as a distraction so audience members don’t notice that they’re being deceived.
The flash catches the audience off guard. Therefore, they don’t notice that the magician pulls the pigeon out from a secret pocket in their sleeve.
Making Ice From Water
Magicians try and convince you that they can make water disappear into thin air and then all of a sudden, turn into an ice cube. And their skilled trickery persuades audience members into believing this. But, we know better, and you should too by this point!
The trick goes like this: The magician pours water into a cup and then in an instant, it turns into ice. Well, low and behold, you can’t actually turn water into ice that fast. But, there is a very simple trick you can do to make this happen. Even you can perform this trick. Keep reading to find out how.
Secret Behind The Ice Trick
Can you think of an everyday item that absorbs water? Clue- it’s found in your kitchen. If you guessed sponge then ding ding ding, you’re correct! In order to successfully perform this trick, you need a sponge.
Similar to other tricks, the ice doesn’t appear out of thin air. It’s actually hiding there the entire time. The magician places a sponge in a cup, then ice, and then he pours water over that. The sponge quickly absorbs the water and the audience sees only the ice. That is, if the magician chooses a sponge and cup of the same color. If not, then he pretty much bombs the trick and ends up the one who’s a fool!
Walking Through The Wall Trick
Have you ever wished you could walk through walls? I know that after you saw Harry Potter you did. Well sorry to be a dream killer but unfortunately, it isn’t possible and never will be. So, if you saw a magician walk through a wall, then you can safely assume he was up to no good! You were probably wondering how in the world did he make that happen.
Well magicians, like us, are human. There’s a pretty clever explanation for how they manage to pull this off without a trip to the hospital and a body cast. So if it’s not actually possible to go through walls, then how do they pull this off?
The Secret Behind The Wall Trick
So are you ready to find out the answer? Can we get a drum roll, please? The answer is… under. The magician doesn’t actually go through the wall but under it! There is a tunnel built into the wall that stretches from one side to the other. Although it may appear to the audience that the magician is dashing through the wall, he is really just ducking under the wall into a tunnel and coming out on the other side.
Hence, the reason why there are sheets covering everything during this trick.
The Statue of Liberty Disappearing
This is definitely a trick that you can’t try at home. Magician David Copperfield blew everyone’s mind in 1983 when he made the 310-foot tall Statue of Liberty disappear.
The trick was broadcast on television as a live special and also took place in front of a live audience. Leaving people around the world wondering, so how did he do it?
Secret Behind the Statue of Liberty Disappearing
Although Copperfield is amazing, he didn’t really magic away the iconic monument, instead, he very cleverly moved the stage. The audience didn’t know it, but they were seated on a rotating platform. Copperfield brought up a giant screen and while it was closed, he turned the stage just a tiny bit.
The real statue was then hidden by one of the posts that were holding up the screen. The lights around it were turned off and the second set of identical lights was turned on out at sea. Viola, a negative space that looks just like the original appeared.
Hand Through Glass Trick
Just like walking through walls, it is always cool when a magician manages to convince us that he can move some part of his body through a solid object. One of the oldest tricks of this type is the hand through the glass trick. First, the magician taps the glass to show you that it is solid.
He may even have a volunteer from the audience check that it is just regular glass. Then a scarf or some other item is put through first and the finale is when the magician puts his whole hand through the seemingly solid glass.
Hand In Glass Trick Revealed
The secret behind this is actually quite simple and you can even do it at home with a little preparation. All you need to do is cut two specially prepared screens.
When the magician is ready to perform the trick, he shifts the real mirror to the back and moves the two fake mirror panels forward, leaving a place where his hand can fit. When he is done, an assistant shifts back the real mirror and he can once again show the audience how solid it is.
Turning $1 into $100
Who wouldn’t want to know how to turn a $1 bill into a $100 bill? Such an ability would certainly help make online shopping a lot more fun, but when a magician does it, the trick is still impressive.
You can clearly see that all they have in their hand is $1 and in seconds that becomes $5, $10 or even $100. We can assure you that if magicians could actually do this, they would most likely not be working on stage at all.
Turning $1 into $100 – Explained
Just like many close-up magic tricks, this is all about quick fingers and misdirection. The audience may only see a $1 bill, but there is a larger bill carefully folded and taped to the back.
The magician then folds the $1 bill in the same manner and then quickly turns everything over so that the larger bill is in front. The larger bill is unfolded and now the $1 is taped to the back. This is an easy trick to pull off if you have the patience to practice your folding skills.
Underwater Chain Escape
One of the most breathtaking and iconic magic tricks around is the underwater chain escape. The magician is handcuffed and wrapped in chains and then jumps or is pushed into water.
The magician must unlock the cuffs, undo the chains and make his way out before running out of air. The audience are literally at the edge of their seats while time is counting down.
The Secret Behind the Underwater Chain Escape
Legendary magician Harry Houdini was famous for getting out of handcuffs and he had quite a few tricks in order to do so. He knew almost every kind of cuffs and was such an expert that he could just hit some pairs at a certain angle and make them pop open.
He also kept master keys hidden in his hands or under his sleeves. He could usually get out of a pair of handcuffs in seconds and then take his time unwrapping the chains just to build up suspense. It is important to remember, that magicians who do these kinds of tricks are experts and this is not a trick you should try at home.
Putting A Ripped Card Back Together
This trick is a lot of fun and can be seen on stage, on the street or even in a bar. A magician picks a random audience member and asks them to sign a playing card. He then takes the card folds it into four pieces and rips it along the fold lines in front of them.
Soon after, he amazes the audience by having the card magically reappear unharmed. Leaving us to wonder if he can repair the hole in our favorite shirt that we’ve been hanging onto since high school.
The secret to Putting A Ripped Card Back Together
Unfortunately, a good tailor is a better bet for that shirt, because the card was never really ripped in the first place.
The magician actually has two cards in his hands when he is folding the signed card. He rips the backup card while leaving the signed card intact. He uses his fingers to hide the folded intact card and pulls it out unharmed at the end of the trick.
Straight Jacket Escape
Escaping from a straight jacket that is fastened at the back is a classic magic trick. The audience sees the magician putting on the jacket and watch it being strapped on tight but in a few short minutes the performer is free, and the audience is cheering.
If magicians want to take the straight jacket trick up a notch, they can perform it underwater or even underwater in a locked box, like Harry Houdini.
Secret Behind the Straight Jacket Escape
The secret to this trick is preparation and of course practice. When the straight jacket is being fastened, the magician must tense their muscles and also hold a deep breath. This makes the body bigger and once released gives them more slack inside the straight jacket to work with.
This may not always be enough, Harry Houdini famously had to dislocate his shoulder one time in order to be able to finish the trick.
Fish in A Bottle Trick
In this trick a closed water bottle is shown to the audience. It can be examined and shaken in order to assure them that there is nothing but water inside.
Then the magician takes a cloth (or a hand towel if you’re trying this at home), says the magic words, and a goldfish appears swimming happily inside the bottle. The cool thing about this trick is that you can do it right in front of your audience for the full wow effect.
Fish in A Bottle Trick Revealed
So how does the goldfish get into the bottle? It was actually there the whole time, only it was hidden by the bottle cap. The fish rests on a thin see-through piece of plastic that is inserted under the cap, with a little tab sticking out.
When the magician covers the bottle with the cloth, he pulls out the tab and the goldfish falls straight into the closed bottle. Just make sure to perform this quickly, you don’t want to leave the fish in the bottle cap for too long and end up with a dead fish as your grand finale.
Head Drop Trick
This trick is similar to when your grandfather stole your nose when you were a kid, or in this case the magician sneezes and suddenly their head falls off. In most cases they reach up and grab it, making everyone in the audience suddenly need to sneeze but desperately trying to hold it in.
So, can magicians really disconnect their body parts without any damage? Of course not, you should know better by now.
Secret Behind the Head Drop Trick
All you need to create this illusion is a hanger without its top, two sticks and some tape. You create a triangle shape with the sticks which are connected with tape to both sides of the hanger. When the sneeze comes, the magician moves his head slightly down, while lifting the coat up with the sticks that are connected to the hanger making it appear as if the head has dropped.
It’s better to perform this trick against a dark background with a black hanger so that the audience won’t be able to see what is really holding up the coat.
Coin Through the Glass Trick
We’ve discovered how magicians put their hands through a pane of glass, now it’s time to find out how they get a coin through the bottom of a drinking glass.
This trick has the magician taking a coin and putting it in their palm. They then bang on the bottom of the glass a few times until the coin magically transfers from their hand thorough the glass to rest on the bottom.
Secret Behind the Coin Through the Glass Trick
To master this trick, you need quick fingers and a lot of patience. When the magician is ready to stop banging and actually get the coin in, they bend their fingers over the coin, move it to their edge and throw.
The bang distracts the audience while the coin lands inside the glass. It’s all over and inside the glass before anybody notices, if you do it quickly and precisely enough that is.
The Disappearing Matchstick Trick
This is another fun slight of hand trick in which a magician makes a toothpick or matchstick appear and disappear from their hand right in front of your eyes. The stick is held between the thumb and index finger and appears and reappears with the flick of a hand.
This trick is very effective because it makes something appear out of nothing and can also be done anywhere. Also, you can allow the audience to examine your shirtsleeves because they will be clean.
The Secret Behind the Disappearing Matchstick Trick
To make this trick work all you need is either a match or a toothpick and a little glue. You use the glue on the edge of the match and stick it to the side of your thumb next to the nail.
When you want it to disappear simply straighten your fingers and thumb to keep it hidden. To make it reappear you just fold your thumb as if you were holding it. In a pinch, saliva can be used instead of glue, but the toothpick may fly off if the trick is performed too many times.
The Levitating Card Trick
As we’ve already seen, getting things to levitate is always interesting. In this classic magic trick, the item being levitated is a playing card, but not just any card, a card that was apparently chosen at random by someone in the audience.
The deck is then placed into a glass and the correct card just pops right out. But how could the magician know which card would be chosen? They couldn’t prepare for that, or could they?
The Levitating Card Trick – Secret
In this trick the magician really does let the audience member choose whatever card they want; the real secret is to return that card to the deck into the correct position. There is a special card at the end of the pack which is supported by a counterweight.
When the card is turned upside down a small pad with a sticky wax dot makes the whole thing go up and pop out of the deck.
The Can on A Card Trick
This trick is simple but still cool. The magician takes a can and places it on top of a playing card.
Despite all odds and the forces of gravity, the can stays upright on the paper-thin card. Is this magic or just a good balancing act?
The Can on A Card Trick Explained
If the person performing the trick gave you a good look at the back of the playing card, you would discover that instead of a straight line there was a “T” shape holding up the can. The “T” is created by folding a playing card in half, and then taping the folded part to the straight card the audience can see.
The two cards together are actually surprisingly strong and can even hold heavier items than just a can of soda.
The Twisting An iPhone Trick
Street magician Dynamo has perfected this modern-day trick in which he takes a random person’s iPhone and twists it so that it is cut exactly in half, one half is the front of the phone and the other is the back of the phone.
He then twists the phone again and returns it to its owner in the same condition it was received. You can say a lot of things about iPhones, but we’re pretty sure you can’t just twist one and then be able to use it two minutes later.
The Secret Behind Twisting An iPhone
Like many others all this trick needs to work is a bit of preparation, a little misdirection and very fast fingers. Dynamo keeps half of an iPhone’s back cover with him when performing this trick. He has to make sure that he is only performing the trick on the correct make and model, otherwise it wouldn’t look right.
He starts off showing the audience the back of the phone and then covers it with both hands. He then pretends to twist the phone but actually just rotates it and slides the fake half cover on the front. When returning the phone, he does the same thing only in reverse.
The Double Bullet Catch
The bullet catch is a well-known magic trick that has had audiences at the edge of their seats for decades. Penn and Teller took this trick to the next level in 1996.
They made sure the bullets weren’t tampered with by making audience members sign them and they also performed a spectacular simultaneous catch. They set up a pane of glass to show the bullets being fired and used laser sights to find their targets. All that was left was the simple matter of catching a bullet with their teeth.
The Secret Behind the Double Bullet Catch
It goes without saying that this is a trick only for experienced magicians. The first step is to swap the signed bullets with wax bullets and load those into the guns. The performers then talk and generally use misdirection so that the audience doesn’t notice when they place the prepared signed bullets somewhere in their mouths.
When the gun is fired the wax melts from the heat and the hot wax punctures a hole through the glass. At the right moment, the magicians retrieve the bullets and place them between their tooth as if they had caught them from the firing gun.
Guessing A Name in A Sealed Envelope
Another amazing ability that magicians have is seeing through a sealed envelope to reveal what is written inside. Or is it? This trick is really great for parties and will leave your friends scratching their heads in wonder. The way it goes is that the magician of the group takes out a sealed envelope and says that they have a prediction.
They place it next to a hat and ask everyone to shout out names of famous people. The magician then proceeds to write out the suggestions, crumples them up and places them into the hat. A volunteer then picks a name from the hat and reads it aloud. Finally, the envelope is opened and lo and behold it is the exact same name.
How Did They Know?
All you need to get this trick ready is an envelope, notepad, pen, hat and something to put papers in. Before the party even starts you will prepare the prediction in a sealed envelope. Simply write the name of a celebrity everybody is sure to know after the words, “You will choose...” and seal it an envelope. Then every time someone calls out a prediction simply write the name you already put in the envelope and crumple it up into the hat.
Make sure no one can see what you are writing. Stop only after someone has said the name you chose, and you have about ten crumpled paper balls. When the volunteer comes up to pick a name, they will have no choice but to pick the one that matches what is written in the envelope.
The Sands of the Nile Trick
This trick was all the rage in the 1970s. The magician has a big bowl of water on the stage and slowly pours in different brightly colored types of sand. First, he does red and then blue and so on and goes on to mix everything up in the bowl. He then proceeds to reverse the process.
First, he takes out the blue sand and it is not only separate from the other colors but also completely dry. He then proceeds to do the same with all the other colors until all that is left is a clean bowl of water. The audience applauds and scratches their heads to figure out what just happened.
The Sands of the Nile Trick – Explanation
Although the audience may suspect differently, the water in the bowl is just regular water, it is the sand that is special.
It has been treated with a hydrophobic compound such as Scotchgard which makes it water repellent and also causes it to clump, which is why the colors don’t mix. This magic trick is actually a really cool science experiment.
Indian Rope Trick
This trick is so old, we have only seen it performed in movies, but the illusion is so fascinating we still must know how it was done. A rope which is curled up in a basket starts levitating towards the sky in a vertical line.
A small boy climbs up the rope and then down again and then gravity reasserts itself and the rope falls back to the ground. There are also versions in which the boy disappears and then may or may not reappear, but since there is a lot of myth regarding this particular trick, we’ll stick to the version we can explain.
The Secret Behind the Indian Rope Trick
This trick requires quite a bit of preparation in order to succeed but is then actually quite simple to perform. The basket is placed above a hidden chamber in which another helper is waiting. When the trick begins, they use a metal pole which they insert into the hollow rope to cause it to go up.
A nimble boy can fairly easily climb a straight piece of metal. After the boy climbs down, the pole is pulled back down and the rope collapses.
The Self-Tying Shoelace Trick
Magician David Blaine made this cute trick famous by walking up to a group of kids and asking if they want to see a magic trick.
When one of the kids mentions that Blaine’s shoe is untied, he simply shakes his foot and the open laces are replaced with a perfectly tied shoe. Magicians don’t even have to tie their own shoes anymore, talk about unfair.
The Explanation Behind the Self-Tying Shoelace Trick
So how did he do it? The shoe was in fact already tied, but the top of the shoe was hidden by the cuff of his pants. The open laces were part of a separate pair of laces that were not tied to the shoe but were actually attached to a string which ran up the magician’s pant leg.
He pulled the string up, probably through a hole in his pocket, causing them to disappear while the tied shoelace appears. Simple, right?
The Coin Behind the Ear Trick
This is one of the most famous and annoying tricks in magic, especially if performed badly by your least favorite uncle. But this classic trick in which a magician plucked a coin from behind an audience member’s ear was performed in filled halls back in the day and no one could quite figure out how they were doing it.
Is the magician using a trick coin or is something already hidden behind the ear of a pre-selected volunteer?
The Coin Behind the Ear Trick Revealed
In fact, neither of those theories are true. The magician is hiding something between their fingers, but it is not a coin, it is a tiny telescope.
The magician pulls his hand back and lines it up perfectly in front of the audience member’s eyes and a carefully situated miniature coin which is hidden on the other side of the room. From the volunteer’s point of view the coin appears to be the correct size and sitting in the magician’s hand.
Linking Rings Trick
This well-known magic trick started out in ancient China. The magician takes some seemingly solid metal rings and manages to meld them together into a chain.
The more time the magician takes with this trick, the more impact it has because it gives the audience a chance to examine the process closely, making it even more believable and therefore more mindboggling.
Linking Rings Trick Explained
In order to make this trick happen, magicians use a special type of rings known as ‘locking rings.’ These rings have designed weak points that can be opened by the use of pressure. The magician uses these special rings along with solid rings to create the illusion.
The magician must remember which ring is which and precisely where the weak points are. If they want to make things extra convincing, they let an audience member examine the rings, but make sure to give them the solid rings to check.