Gemini Magic Square Routines

Published on Thursday, November 09, 2006 in , ,

Magic SquareMagic squares have been a frequent topic here on Grey Matters, as a quick site search will show.

The classic presentation for magic squares is to ask for a number, quickly create the magic square, and then show the numerous ways that give the total.

This is not the only approach, however. Thanks to Stevens Magic Emporium and their Gemini Archives, you can learn two new and original approaches. In Mike Roger's magic square routine, a spectator chooses one of four business cards with playing card pips on them, and writes a two-digit number on the card, all without the performer's knowledge. The cards are then put away. The performer takes out another business card with a 4 by 4 grid on the back, gives a reading to the spectator, including naming the selected playing card pip, and then fills the 4 by 4 grid with numbers. Finally, it is shown that the grid totals their selected number in numerous directions.

Ted Lesley's magic square routine also employs a personal approach, but in a different way. In the Lesley routine, 5 cards and envelopes are handed out, and 4 of the 5 people are asked to give a sample of their handwriting on the back, while the other is asked to write a number from 34 to 100, and write their chosen numbers on each of their respective cards. They are then instructed to place their cards in their envelopes, without the performer seeing what each person wrote, and the envelopes are mixed by another spectator. The performer then divines to whom each card belongs, and finishes by creating a magic square that totals the number thought of by the 5th spectator!

Not only are these good routines in an of themselves, but they're also wonderful examples of taking classic presentations in new directions. They're well worth your time.

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