Effects and Materials
copyright 2014 Stephen Eric Young
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After a short back-story, the participant is asked to think of a simple sum suitable for a class of children.
The participant confirms he has a sum in mind.
The performer concentrates and writes something on a business card which he places on the table.
The participant is then asked to write his sum on another card and hold it up like a teacher holding up a flash card.
Let’s say it reads 9 + 18
The performer shows some flash cards with sums on, that his teacher used in the classroom.
“Your sum was 9 + 18 right?” “Yes” replies the participant. “So 27 then.”
The performer begins dealing through the flash cards showing that they all have different sums on them. The 27th card he places on the table, next to the participant’s sum.
The participant is invited to solve the sum on the 27th card. The card at his number.
The sum on the card totals (for example) 39
The performer shows that the previous and following cards would have yielded different results.
The performer point to his face down business card.
The one he wrote on while the participant was thinking of his sum.
BEFORE he’d written anything down.
The card is turned over.
Written on it is the number 39.
The performer talks of how they were seen as a child prodigy when it came to arithmetic. In truth they would cheat! They had in fact memorised all of the teacher’s arithmetic flashcards.
A three phase routine from the twisted mind of Peter Arcane.
A volunteer selects one of 40 simple sums and so begins an intriguing multiphase routine of memory recall - mental math.
Just from being given the two numbers in the chosen sum.
The performer is able to recall what type of sum it is
(addition, subtraction, division or multiplication)
and reveal the exact total.
Another random sum is chosen.
This time only one of the numbers is revealed to the performer.
Again they recall the type of sum and total.
One final sum is chosen and for the final phase nothing is revealed
and the performer is able to reveal the sum’s total.
NB: You’ll need to supply your own blank stock/cards to create the flashcards and the routine does require some simple arithmetic.
The Effect In A Nutshell