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Levitating Magic Trick
November 27, 2010 2:58 AM   Subscribe

How does a magician levitate a person?

I'm trying to figure out how a magician can place a board across the top of two chairs, have a person lie flat on the board and then remove the two chairs leaving the person "levitating". The magician walks around the person with a large ring to show that it's not connected to hidden wires or any supports. I've seen a magician use a fake leg to disguise a metal frame that supports the person but this trick shows the magician walk around the levitating person!
posted by boby to Grab Bag (6 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
Hiding the Elephant by Jim Steinmeyer contains some interesting chapters on the history of this trick and various ways in which it can be done.
posted by dogsbody at 3:42 AM on November 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think one of the versions of this uses wires and a trick ring at the final stage. The trick ring doesn't go all the way around but has a small cut at the top, through which the wire can pass.
posted by Dr Dracator at 5:04 AM on November 27, 2010


I have seen one version of it explained before (in video form, probably a long time ago on tv, can't find it now) that the bed is raised from the side by an S-shaped rod. The hoop is passed around the "levitating" bed by following the S shape, so it looks like it has given the bed a full, clean pass.

Here it is explained that way
, so at least I know I didn't make it up.

There's also the made-famous-by-David-Blaine Balducci Levitation, if you're into that. Good for fooling small children and people in front of a camera.
posted by phunniemee at 7:38 AM on November 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


One version I've seen demonstrated had a bar with an S-shaped kink in it inserted into the back, allowing the ring to go around the "floating" board, without actually passing through the bar.
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posted by Kattullus at 7:39 AM on November 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


Or what phunniemee said.
posted by Kattullus at 7:39 AM on November 27, 2010


There was a show on TV that showed how they did several different well known magic tricks. It was VERY interesting. From what I remember, they did this trick too. The plank or whatever that the person layed on had a steel bar that came out of the back side and went though a whole in the curtain. The hula hoop thing is a simple illusion. They showed how it looked like it passed all the way around the plank, but it never went completely around the back side.

Ha, I found it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAHsY_w4lcM
posted by NotSoSiniSter at 8:40 AM on November 27, 2010 [2 favorites]


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