Published by: Julia
If you have ever wondered how magicians do it, take this course. Watch Penn & Teller reveal some of the most important tricks of the trade. This is one of the most fascinating of the 50+ courses that are currently available on Masterclass.com.
Magic and life lessons in one course
It does not matter whether you are interested in magic or not, I promise you that you will learn something from this masterclass. Taking it will enable you to better understand human nature and why magic works so well, on us.
I promise you this unusual masterclass is fun as well as fascinating and informative.
The tricks Penn & Teller teach in their masterclass
This is a fundamental magic course, which essentially teaches you eight different forms, or principles, of magic. Some classes cover a subject by teaching you how to physically do a specific trick. While others use examples from Penn & Teller performances to demonstrate a certain technique or principle.
Regardless, of the teaching format used, each class is engaging, easy to follow and very informative.
These are the tricks you will be able to do yourself after following the course:
- Sleight of Hand – The French Drop
- Sleight of Hand – Cups and Balls
- Coin Tricks
- Mentalism – The Centre Tear
- Card Magic – The Whispering Queen
- Card Magic – Card to Impossible Location
- Card Magic – The Circus Card Trick
- Rope Tricks – Cut and Restore Rope
- The Chop Cup Trick
Other tricks from their show and those of their students are also explained in quite a high level of detail. But, some of these tricks are beyond the current abilities of most of the people taking the classes. At least for now, with practice, you will be able to graduate to doing this type of more elaborate trick.
That is one of the great things about magic. You can learn it very quickly and build a surprising range of tricks using just a few techniques. Pretty soon, what you can achieve is only limited by your imagination and performance budget.
These sections of the course are entertaining as well as informative. I saw from the comments section that even professional magicians had learned a thing or two by taking Penn & Teller’s masterclass. A great testament to the quality of this course.
Truly step-by-step magic trick instruction
For most of their lessons, Penn & Teller break down a specific magic trick. They show you, one movement at a time, how to replicate what they are doing. Penn & Teller do this by sitting down with three people who are new to magic and explaining it to them live.
This is a great teaching method. It highlights aspects of the tricks some students may struggle with and shows the masterclass students that it is possible for a complete beginner to quickly learn the tricks.
For some tricks, there is also a slow-motion replay, which makes it even easier to follow what is going on.
In the workbook, you get access to text and photos, as well. This gives every student the best chance of being able to master the tricks.
As you would expect from two professional performers, their attention to detail is phenomenal. This and their sense of fun makes them excellent teachers. Tiny things like following the object with your eyes as a cue to the audience to do the same are golden tips. It is little details like that which make the difference between your pulling off a trick and not being able to convince the audience.
Busting the myths surrounding the art of magic
As a kid, I was not allowed to watch magicians. My mum was super religious and believed that we needed to stay away from the supernatural. To be on the safe side, she kept us away from magic. So, it was interesting to hear these two professional magicians deal with the misconception that magic is some way supernatural. They neatly explain what magic truly is.
Penn & Teller also talk about the moral dilemma some have when it comes to learning and practicing magic. A lot of people worry that they will be deceiving, rather than entertaining others. Penn & Teller explain how to handle this issue and get the balance right. They show you how to handle your audience in a way that leaves them wanting more rather than feeling deceived.
The benefits of learning magic
I have never really seen the art of magic in a positive light before taking this course. By the end of it, I was a fan and am certainly interested in learning more. Penn & Teller’s enthusiasm and love of this performance art is certainly infectious. They are convincing advocates.
Here are just a few of the ways you could benefit from learning a few magic tricks:
- Practicing magic forces you to connect with other people
- Improves focus
- Makes you more observant
- Improves dexterity
- Provides a relatively easy way to get into the entertainment industry
Learning the art of misdirection
Misdirection is the story you get the audience to tell itself.Teller – Penn & Teller Teach Magic Masterclass
Penn and Teller teach you the most important magic techniques. The foundation skills you need to be able to learn even more new tricks, once you have finished this course.
By far the most important of these techniques is misdirection. The course explains what it is and shows you several different ways to do it convincingly.
Penn & Teller bonus classes
Despite only releasing their course at the end of April 2019, Penn & Teller have already added some bonus classes. I found these especially interesting. For 2 of them, Penn & Teller take an act, let us watch it, then explain how the trick is done and how it could be improved.
The most interesting of these acts is the “Cell Fish”, which they performed on Letterman. Basically, they take a member of the audience’s phone and somehow relocate it to the inside of a whole fish.
It is certainly impressive. But, the most interesting thing about the whole thing is that this is basically an elaborate version of the “card to impossible location” trick. A trick you will already know how to do.
This is just one example of how the relatively simple skills you have been taught can be elaborated upon and turned into an amazing act.
The process used in the bonus videos will teach you are a lot. It also provides you with an insight into the minds of these brilliant performers. Plus, the 3 bonus videos are very entertaining.
I can’t wait to learn more
If Penn & Teller do offer further classes I will certainly be using my all-access pass to take them. Quite a few of the other masterclass instructors have made a 2nd course, so I really hope these guys do the same.
An all-access pass enables you to take as many of the 50+ masterclasses, as you want. Best of all you get to do this for the price you would normally pay for just two courses. If you want to find out more about the pass and the extras you get when you sign up for masterclass.com, just click here and read my full review.