News — hocus-pocus

The loss of some very well respected magicians this November.

The loss of some very well respected magicians this November.

It was a sad month for the world of magic as we lost several terrific magicians. Matt Field was well known to many in the UK and was the past editor of The Magic Circular. David Maas, half of the well known quick change act David and Dania, succumbed to Covid-19. The great Walter 'Zaney' Blaney, entertainer and creator of the Blaney Ladder Levitation passed away at the age of ninety two (92). These gentlemen were passionate about magic and gave so much to so many throughout their careers. They will be missed by all who knew them. Thank you to Nick Lewin and Tim Drake for their tribute to Walter.


Vanish has a dual reputation as both an International and Independent magic magazine. This means we feature artists from around the globe more than any other publication, and we aren't afraid to have articles that are slightly outside the box. This was my goal from day one when I started VANISH eight years ago and it continues more so today. The world around us is constantly changing, having a magazine that reflects these changes will be important for future generations as they research the past. I would like to think many years down the road that when youngsters have to do a school project on "The Great Lock-down of 2020" that those who like magic will be able to find examples within the pages of Vanish, its affect on the entertainment business and what people did to survive.


This edition reflects both of my goals as we feature the incredible artist Malin Nilsson from Sweden. She is a remarkable performer with a unique view of our craft. It is an honor to feature her as the cover story.


I recently received an email from a reader who said they felt VANISH has done more to promote unity and diversity than anything they’d seen from other magazines or organizations. This warmed my heart, and it’s wonderful to see that in the past few months magic groups have embraced what we have been doing for the past eight years and are becoming aware. We continue to provide ground breaking articles covering numerous subjects from a variety of contributors situated across the world. In this issue Eric Walton shares what the SAM is doing with an on-line show called FLAVORS OF MAGIC. Felicity Fields continues her series on Diversity in Magic and gets the view points from two very different people at complete ends of the age spectrum. 


Connie Boyd’s chat with Diana Zimmerman, who paved a path for generations of magicians with her performances and continues to do so with her writing and producing is a must read. Ben Robinson is one of the most profound, ground breaking magician that I know. VANISH got the exclusive story of Ben's new book release and launch. If ever we needed an Outlaw Hero, the time is now and nobody is more qualified for that title than Ben.


Finally, a big thank you to Kevin Bethea. Kevin has helped open all of our eyes with his Black Lives Matter series. These stories are a must read if magic has an opportunity to move forward.


Stay safe and wishing you all a Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah and Happy Kwanzaa …


Paul Romhany



By Paul Romhany - Editor

FREE Download magazine from


The magic magazine everybody is talking about.  This is truly an international magic magazine with writers from Asia, Europe, South Pacific and North America. The articles range from Marketing, Essays on performing, as well as close-up and stage routines.

This issue our feature artist is magician, movie and television star Steve Valentine. In this interview by Chipper Lowell, you will find out how Steve went from one of the busiest magicians to one of the top working actors in television and movies in Hollywood. He also has some great tips for close-up workers.

JC SUM - Six Thinking Hats for The Magician

TELLER SPEAKS - an insight in to the recent Shadows lawsuit

MAGIC BABE NING - Working with female/male partners and assistants

DIAMOND JIM TYLER - Bamboozlers - learn a cool effect with a bottle and ketchup packet

LUCA VOLPE - Impossible Prediction - Italy's top mentalist shares an amazing lottery prediction effect

MARK PARKER - Logic and Reason - essay on performing illusions by Illusion Designer Mark Parker

BRIAN WATSON - Housekeeping? An essay on Cups and Balls which can relate to other forms of our craft

PAUL ROMHANY - Magic Reviews - a look at the latest effects and Applications

NICK LEWIN - The Magic of Cruising - a look at the inside story of getting on cruise ships

WAYNE ROGERS - 364 on 1 - a stand-up routine by Wayne Rogers

CRIS JOHNSON - The Success Series continues

PETER LOUGHRAN - Marketing Tips for Bizzarre Magic

RANDY CHARACH - Income Marketing System for Magicians Part 2

KIETH FIELDS - That should be ME up there!

KEN DYNE - The Revelation

LEE ALEX - Hermione - a costume change illusion

RICHARD WEBSTER  - a great card reading routine called, "Cards Of Fate"

KYLE RAVIN - The Transformation

BIZZARO - The Secret to Happiness

ANDREW GERARD - A Penny for Your Thought - a close-up coin/card routine  

TC TAHOE - A Very Good Year - card reading routine by TC Tahoe

BEN ROBINSON - Magic 24-7

NICK KOLENDA - Top 3 Rehearsal Tips

DANNY ARCHER - Routine called Barrel Of Fun - close-up coin routine

KEN RING - Glorius Stack - a memorized stack that is easy and great for ACAAN

KYLE PERON - A Magician's Constitution

ADRIAN SAW - Review of Lu Chen show in Hong Kong

DANNY WEISER - The Healthy Performer

The last issue was ready by at LEAST 30,000 magicians from around the globe, that we could track. We estimate our readership is probably well over 40,000 readers. With the amount of downloads we are still receiving from issue one, we believe that we will eventually end up with a target audience of 100,000 readers. Please share this magazine with your friends, colleagues and members of your local magic clubs. The aim is to promote magic in a positive light, and encourage us all to give better performances.


From the Editor - Paul Romhany

Performing Mentalism For Young Minds Volume 2 now available

What a week it's been. I took last week off to spend time with my family. We are in our home now, bags unpacked and had a lovely Easter together. It's nice to just take time out to relax and enjoy being together. We are slowly settling in down under here in New Zealand. Today I was able to plant a few fruit trees. That is something we have been wanting to do for some time now, get back to New Zealand so we can plant lime, orange and lemon trees. 

This week has seen Vanish - International Magic Magazine reach the 30,000 download mark! The magazine went viral all over the Internet and has become an instant hit. I have tried to keep up with all of the e-mails but time just got away from me. You can still download the FREE MAGIC MAGAZINE from this website ( The second issue is well under way and promises to offer more effects, essays and reviews - I'm particularly looking forward to the cover story as it's one of my favorite actors AND magicians. If you'd like to know how to go from a magician to TV and movie Star this might shed some light.


Performing Mentalism For Young Minds Volume 2Well the new book is FINALLY finished and available. It has been several years in the making, and completes the HUGE body of work on Performing Mentalism for children.

This is the latest in the series of great and easy to do mentalism for children.  For many years this was incorrectly overlooked as a way to entertain, but no more. This volume has 300 pages and over 55 routines PLUS more essays and articles on performing for kids. What many have discovered is that a lot of the material can also be performed for adults as well as children. The effects range from close-up, walk around to parlour and even stage routines! There is such a huge variety in these books. 

If you combined BOTH VOLUMES together you would end up with over 600 pages PLUS over 100 routines and effects. This really is quite the body of work and I'm very proud of it. It wouldn't be possible without all the wonderful contributors so I would like to thank them all.

Contributors for Volume 2 includes:-

Contributors includes:
Bill Abbott,Greg Arce,Danny Archer, Christopher Berry, Reg Blackwood, Greg Britt, Ken Dyne, Martin Duffy, Andrew Gerard
Jim Gerrish, David Ginn, David Harris,,Barry Harvey, Michel Hout, Matthew Johnson, Cris Johnson,Jim Kleefeld, David D. LaRue,Anthony Lindan, Larry Lipman, Isaac Louie, Endre Løvås, Lon Mandrake, Nick Morton, Mark Paulson, Kyle Peron, Ken Ring, Wayne Rogers, Paul Romhany, Dal Sanders, Professor Spellbinder, TC Tahoe, Christopher Taylor and Richard Webster.

Volume 1 was one of the hottest selling Mentalism books of 2011. There is a huge movement towards performing without props, yet still making it entertaining. This is what the essays talk about, and show you how to go about doing it. For me some of the best material in both volumes includes the essays. 



My new Pro-Series books have just come out. This is number eight in the series and again, these are doing incredibly well. This time it's my Headline Prediction routine PLUS a really amazing version by my good friend Cris Johnson. I first discovered Cris's routine in his outstanding "Murder By Magic" and knew I had to include it in the Pro Series. I was so glad he wanted to be part of it because it really offers several different versions of doing a Headline Prediction. Anybody who has received FREE NEWSPAPER publicity will tell you the BEST way to get it is by doing a headline prediction. The best way I like to use it is when I turn up to a new town to perform and need to get free publicity. By involving the local MP or Mayor, as well as newspaper it's a sure fire way to get Radio, TV and news coverage.

This has the exact method I use, plus Cris's version and another version I have performed on stage. There is also a little bit on using my Dream Prediction for a headline prediction.

This is something that both mentalists and magicians will get use out of.

Effect: The magician posts a sealed envelope to the client a week prior to the show.

At the show the client confirms it is sealed, and has not been tampered with. The performer brings out three different daily newspapers, and a spectator is given a choice of one. The spectator takes the newspaper with sealed envelope, and sits down for the remainder of the show. For the finale, the magician asks the spectator to bring the newspaper and envelope on stage. The spectator opens up the sealed envelope, and reads out the letter, which not only predicts which newspaper the spectator would choose, but also the daily headlines, and certain results of things that happened during the show.

BONUS - Cris Johnson also shares his favorite Headline Prediction routine called, ‘ConFab Headline Prediction.' This is the exact routine and method that Cris performs in his professional corporate show that uses headlines from the daily papers that are chosen by the audience.

Effect: A sealed FedEx envelope is handed out to someone at the beginning of the program. At the end of the program, several local newspapers are handed out to audience members. At the appropriate part of the show, the performer encourages the audience to select their own headlines, phrases or even individual lines of an article out. Upon opening the sealed FedEx envelope the spectator finds another sealed envelope and inside is an index card that has all of the audience-selected material on it in as much detail as the performer cares to have.

Both versions are practical and can be used under any working condition from intimate settings to stage work.


Finally Paul Romhany shares a unique version using a prediction rolled up inside a poster tube, that can be used for a headline prediction or any type of prediction effect. This was used by Paul and his wife on board cruise ships for the past twelve years, as well as for solo headline prediction style routines. This unique method uses something most magicians own but Paul uses it in a very different way.


Hot Picks of the Week from

  Slomotion by Joe Litvinchuk


I have been reviewing magic for many years, and can only tell you this is one of the BEST items I've ever reviewed! Let me also say that I never leave home without this gimmick. I have performed this so many times now - usually using a borrowed finger ring - and it NEVER fails to get gasps. I have performed this right in front of magician's noses and they still have NO idea. I love doing this in short sleeves for magicians because they are so used to the $300 versions where the magician has this huge gimmick running up his arm attached to a big box etc.  This is the most practical version bar none! 

There is no doubt about it; it was the biggest selling item in 2011. Then, the production completely sold out and it became unavailable. Not a day has gone by when we haven't received numerous requests for this item. After working very closely with the manufacturer, we are happy to announce that SLOMOTION is BACK!

"I love this thing. Rarely, do I ever put a trick in my pocket to carry with me in the event of an "impromptu" performance. Now Slomotion is the only trick I have with me at all times."
- John Mendoza

It's another Hocus Pocus exclusive!

I am proud to announce that my good friend, Joe Litvinchuk, the owner of Phantom Magic, has chosen Hocus Pocus to be the EXCLUSIVE distributor for all Phantom Magic products.

His effect, Slomotion, is the cleanest version of Psychokinetic Energy we've ever seen! The performer uses a lifesaver and straw, both can be borrowed, and threads the lifesaver on the straw. Then, at the performers command, through apparent pyschokinetic energy, the lifesaver starts spinning. But, then the performer can stop the spinning at will and reverse the direction! When finished, the objects can be left behind, because everything is borrowed and completely examinable.

Perform using actual items found available in a live setting (coffee shop, bar, etc.) to confirm you are not using trick items; they are fully examinable. Spectators will not believe their eyes when they see this up close! Hands are shown empty before and after. This effect can be repeated immediately.

  • Perform wearing casual attire (no sleeves required)
  • No magnets, threads, or wires
  • All objects are borrowed
  • Instant reset; no set-up necessary
  • Perfect for close-up, walk around and street performers
  • You will perform immediately right out of the package
  • Easy to perform
  • No static electricity
  • Supplied with instructional DVD
  • Works automatically
  • Shift - Self Bending Key by Ellusionist

    I am a big fan of the Self Bending Key that Ellusionist released a while back - I used it on TV and combined with other bending spoons and forks when you finish off with it bending in their hand it kills. Like Fork - this is a key that BENDS in the spectator's hands. It doesn't get any more visual and mind blowing than this. Again, I combine it with another one of my favorite key bending routines by Andrew Gerard, and together you have the ULTIMATE key bending routine bar none!! This really is the Rolls Royce of Key Bending effects.

    Self bending metal is the next evolutionary step in PK Magic. If traditional metal-bending was an Ape, Shift: Self Bending Key would be Modern Man with an iPhone 7 and a Jet Pack.

    Shift is the epitome of 'Packs Small, Plays Big.'

    You can now perform the impossible action of bending a a key INSIDE your SPECTATOR'S HAND, in plain view, for the world to witness every surreal moment.

    The key itself has been manufactured from a patented alloy, similar to the Self Bending Fork, and will stay in its 'set' condition, even hanging on your key chain - so you're ready to perform at a moment's notice.

    Shift: Self Bending Key activates it's bending movements using ONLY your spectator's body heat. You can manipulate the molecules of metal without touching the key as is slowly bends in open view.

    In a breakthrough of technology, Shift: Self Bending Key is the lowest priced self bending metal effect in history. Not to mention the ONLY engineered the gimmick to stay straight in room temperature UNTIL you place it inside the spectator's hands.

    Shift will remain unbent, unnoticed, and unassuming until the moment you place it into the spectator's hands. From that moment on, your work is done and the real phenomenon begins.

    You now have the tool for a surreal performance. A physical impossibility is now within your reach.

    Sweet Treats Wonder

    Sweet Treats

    Finally this week, an amazing effect for the children's performer. This is so well made and will really fool the kids. There aren't that many new kids routines on the market these days - and this one is something every kids performer should have. It's an old idea but updated and extremely well made. The routine is great and it has an ending that will fool adults and children alike.

    SWEET TREATS -- A new version of the classic U.F. Grant Mystery of the Pyramids effect.

    An item you can take down from the shelf and perform at a moment's notice; no set-up necessary, completely self-contained and fools them every time!

    Ingenious Manufactured Method!!

    Presented, is a stack of five brightly colored blocks on a base and rod to represent a roll of candy. The stack is covered with a cylinder and turned upside down repeatedly.

    Upon removing the cover, the blocks are always upright.

    Present it as the first magic trick you ever performed as a baby by showing a stack of wooden circular blocks on a rod/platform and a tube. You can casually show the top blocks to be separate and drop them back on the stack. You then cover everything with the tube, and turn it over in your hands. When you remove the tube, the stack is still right side up!

    Repeat until they start throwing things at you!

    Preparing for another cruise

     Another hectic week. I had a great time in Hong Kong, the reports back from the show were great and already we are looking at more work throughout Asia. Many times as a cruise ship magician we joke about the fact we get paid for the travel and not so much for the show.  Having just flown 11.5 hours one way then perform 10 minutes and back home for another 11.5 hours I must say I got paid for the travel. It really takes it toll when you travel this much. Having said that I'm very pleased to be working of course. One of the best moves I ever made years ago was developing an act that was truly international. This has allowed me to perform in countries that the majority of magicians wouldn't get booked. Also, having continued on with the Chaplin character has helped in these in these world class venues. 

    What many people may not know is that I also perform other shows than the Chaplin Act. My full evening Mentalism show and my comedy show. In the future I'll put up photos of the new act I've been busy developing - very different but again it's aimed at the international non-English speaking market.

    Next weeks BLOG will be late as I'm on a cruise ship again. Work is coming in for ships - despite what people might tell you the cruise lines are still booking acts - they have however canned a lot of the older acts that have been working on ships for 30 plus years. I have a lot of good friends who have worked ships for many many years and can no longer get regular work. The industry has changed a lot since I started. It's all about keeping your act fresh and exciting - this will keep you working for a long time.



    I have had a number of emails from people asking when Volume 2 will be ready. I'm pleased to say it's ALMOST complete. This volume has even more effects in it than the first - and all of them are amazing. I would say that if you perform any type of mentalism you will want to get your hands on both books. Volume 2 has quite a large variety of effects from close-up, strolling to stage and even an illusion idea for performing on stage.


    Appearing & Floating Guitar by Black Magic Co. - EXCLUSIVE

    Here is an effect that offers ALOT of possibilities for a performer. I really like this idea. The magician enters and produces a guitar from a briefcase, then causes it to float. This could make a great 'piece' of theater with the right music.  The quality of product is great and I can certainly see this being a feature in somebody's act. Everybody today seems to float a table, why not float a guitar. Being a musician I really like this and can see it as a part of my stand-up act. It's very easy to perform and is extremely visual. If you need to perform a solo illusion then this is perfect. The great thing is that it really does look like a real guitar!

    This is exclusive to so contact them to get yours today.

    This is the kind of unique item that we are always searching for.

    The magician comes on stage carrying a briefcase. The briefcase can be shown and examined on all sides.

    The magician then sets the briefcase on a table, opens it and removes a FULL SIZE GUITAR.

    The magician then holds the guitar up and it begins floating and cavorting around him; seemingly under its own power.

    If you're looking for a unique and unusual effect this one's for you.

    Supplied with wooden briefcase, special guitar and DVD instructional.

    The price is $695.00

    Shift: Self Bending Fork by Ellusionist

    I am a HUGE fan of mental bending. I perform all types of versions from spoons to forks. I had the opportunity to see this myself and test it out at a convention in Vancouver, Canada. This floored everybody who saw it. The great thing about this version is that you can pretty much leave it out and when you want to perform it, have a spectator hold it and the fork will start to bend. It's unbelievable. I now own one myself and used it recently on a TV spot I did here in New Zealand. The reaction from the host was worth every penny and caused quite a stir. I think the perfect way to do this is to incorporate it in to other different bends you already do, and at the end finish with this one in the spectator's hand. 

    Ellusionist has added a chrome finish to so that the fork resembles REAL flatware, cut the price in HALF, and engineered the gimmick to stay straight in room temperature UNTIL you place it inside the spectator's hands.

    Shift will remain unbent, unnoticed, and unassuming until the moment you place it into the spectator's hands. From that moment on, your work is done and the real phenomenon begins.

    You now have the tool for a surreal performance. A physical impossibility is now within your reach.

    IMPORTANT: This is NOT an opening effect. If used as an opening trick, make it your ONLY trick and walk away... we've discovered that NOTHING can follow Shift.

    You can now perform the impossible action of bending a fork INSIDE your SPECTATOR'S HAND, in plain view, for the world to witness every surreal moment.

     Aura by Jay Crowe

    Jay is well known for releasing innovative and highly visual magic. I have to say that he has really outdone himself on this one. It is EXACTLY as it reads in the advert. A blank card is placed in a spectator's hand it is visually changes, face-up to their card. It just doesn't get any more visual or stronger than this!! I'm not a huge fan of card tricks unless they are commercial and work in the real world. This has to be one of the most visual effects I've ever seen. The method is outstanding and right up there with Jay's other creative effects. Jay often takes his magic to different levels, beyond what most of us would normally do. Aura is certainly one of those effects.

    Jay Crowe and Jason Brumbalow have worked together to create that mythical holy grail of card magic; the no-move, no cover, color change as the blank card comes into being without any sleight of hand or moves whatsoever.

    Nowhere in magic does a blank card develop like a Polaroid in your spectator's open palm. Until now.

    From a blank deck a card is chosen and placed in the hands of a spectator. They are told to think of a card, and visualize the image flowing forth from their mind to the blank card in their hand.

    Slowly, Visually, face up, the image materializes from nothing. The blank card has manifested on its own, becoming the very card they had in their mind.

    Witness what real magic should look like as the image of their card breathes itself into existence before their eyes.

    Perform in spectator's hand which makes this SUPER STRONG MAGIC!!