Monday, April 19, 2010

David Blaine Levitation Revealed

Many illusionists and magicians like David Blaine, Criss Angel and David Copperfield have carried out both on-stage and street acts where they appear to be floating in the air for a brief moment i.e. the art of levitation. To the naked eye, it looks like the individual’s body is raised above the ground by a few inches; the magician “hangs” there for approximately 4-5 seconds and then descends back to where he or she was originally standing.
Let’s take a sneak peak at how some of the illusionists do it. The trick’s secret was first worked out by an intellectual known as Ed Balducci.
As the magician gets ready, you will observe that they back away from the audience by, give or take, 8 to 10 feet. They need this distance to execute the illusion, but will tell the spectators it is for their own safety in case the magician “falls down”. Both feet are joined at the ankles and then one foot (known as the “far” foot) is pulled slightly back so that from a distance of 8 feet it appears to be absolutely parallel to the other foot where as in reality it goes behind.
Here’s the tough part. Using the toe on the “far” foot, the magician must push or raise himself slightly – balancing the whole body’s weight on a single toe. Sounds something like a ballerina could do? It sure is. That is why countless and tireless hours and days go into practicing this act before it can be perfected.
You will observe that magicians will try to conceal the “far” foot by wearing longer trousers than they normally do.