What a beauty this is from Christopher Taylor at Taylor Imagineering. If you are a regular visitor to my site you may know that I get quite tired with electronic effects and the reasons are quite simple: invariably they are expensive, use rechargeable batteries (which all eventually die and cannot easily be replaced), and amazingly are often less reliable or impressive than non electronic versions. What I like about Christopher Taylor and the magic he produces is that he is a performer himself and he truly cares about the magic he produces.
Nothing could be clearer than in the production of this beautiful Snooker Prediction Box. Start with the careful and clear video instructions he has produced for this box. Everything you could want to ask is mentioned clearly in a full screen video and you are left understanding precisely how the box works and what to do and, just as importantly, what not to do. The unit comes with two remote receivers (a digital readout and a vibrating one) and he includes all the necessary batteries (which are regular batteries and easy to replace) and even a screwdriver and (get this) a magnet to retrieve the battery should it fall out of your hands beneath the battery compartment! Talk about attention to detail 🙂
The box looks authentic and uses real snooker balls which are large, brightly colored and solid to the touch. There is nothing to see inside or outside of the box and it can be freely held by the spectator. When it comes to the moment to remove the balls and track them you can use either the vibrating receiver or the digital readout. Both methods have their benefits but one really nice feature of the digital readout is that it remembers the order and the position of each ball removed so you’ll have nothing to remember (which sometimes in a live performance is crucial!).
The unit, like all of Christopher’s products, is totally reliable – and straight out of the box it worked first time with no fussing or fiddling about. The remotes are all digitally printed, with custom circuit boards and have clear markings for the on position. I can’t imagine what else you could do to this item – there are even 6 balls instead of the more common 3 or 4 which really covers pretty much everything.
It comes with no routine per se but you could easily perform it as straight mentalism.
Straight Routine: Have 3-6 people up on stage and ask each of them to each choose any ball from the box with your back turned. Then when they are all done turn around and read their minds one by one.
Card to Wallet Routine: Or you could add an extra twist using a card to wallet such as this one. Create 6 color cards – I simply went into Word and created a page with 6 squares each of a different color and cut them out and taped them to some blank faced playing cards – and have them in your pocket in the same order as in the box. As the audience are making their selections you can easily peel of the cards and when done slip them into the wallet (even within an envelope if you want in a zippered compartment too). This would be my routine:
Invite a single audience member up and show them the box and have them think about three balls in the box. Have them choose the first ball and place it in their left pocket, the second ball in their right pocket and the final ball in their jacket pocket. (Load the wallet with the selections) and turn around and ask them to concentrate on the three balls. Focus on the left pocket first and call out the color, now the right pocket and call out the color. Now, focus on the inner pocket and call out the color. Finally, make sure your hands are clearly seen empty and slowly remove the wallet from your jacket pocket. Open it up and slowly unzip the inner pocket and remove the three cards inside (or the envelope if you are going the whole way!). One by one turn them over saying that what is also amazing is that not only did I know precisely what color was placed in each of your pockets I placed these three cards inside this wallet before we started and they also match the same colors. And the crowd goes crazy 🙂
Pocket Prediction Routine (Free Will): Or if you omit the wallet and place one of each of the color cards in six different pockets. This could be played as a demonstration or lack thereof of Free Will. Each time they choose a color you ask them to place it in the pocket that has the color. Now when they are done (and they can take as many as six balls with this routine). You say before we began I placed three (or whatever) different cards in three of my pockets. In my left pocket I placed this card which is black – what color ball do you have in your left pocket? Black! In my inside jacket pocket I placed this card which is yellow – what color ball do you have in your inside jacket pocket! Yellow! And finally in my rear pocket I placed this card which is Green – what color do you have in your rear pocket? Green!
I really like this approach and it looks way more amazing than the effort involved.
The final thing I wanted to mention about Christopher Taylor is on top of all of this he seems like a really nice guy. He replies to your emails and goes the extra mile to make you happy. If you read his posts of The Cafe his comments are fair and honorable, which is so often not the case in the magic world.
Click here for more information.