Indianapolis Marriott East | Heart-Stopping Magic at The Marriott

Just got back from a show in the Indianapolis Marriott East located at 7202 E 21st St, Indianapolis, IN 46219. Doctors only.

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Doctors from around the country gathered here in Indianapolis to this event and could not explain the magician stopping his heart and twisting his limbs around in an impossible manner.

Lakeshore Bone & Joint Institute sponsored this IWCI event, and Selina at Lakeshore Bone & Joint Institute found me and hired me at the insistence of one of the doctors who had seen me before, "Get Jon Finch," said the Dr. David Lenkins to Selina. As wise as this doctor is, neither he nor I could quite figure how the magic was accomplished.

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At the end of the show, he suggested I change my slogan from, "Relax, I'm The Magician," to "I'm The Magician...Relax." Well, he's a doctor, what do I know? Doctor's orders.

In all magic, people tend to react the strongest to a mentalism effect--and in all mentalism, the prediction effect is the strongest of all.

For example, when someone thinks of a playing card, then the spectator spreads the deck face down and the playing card she was thinking of is now face-up staring him in the face.

For a long time, I thought nothing could top that. It's a quick great opener, can be drawn out to be a great closer, and great for a great many other reasons.

It has many virtues--it happens in the hands of the participants and not the magician's hands, the way I do it involves several people and gets them interacting in a playful way, the ending (in the way I do it) makes the main volunteer the hero and therefore encourages participation from the others in forthcoming effects.

I also take a private joy in the fact that people expect to see "another card trick," but eventually realize this little card trick is more disconcerting than any magic they've seen before

Nothing magical happens with the cards. All the magic is in their minds. This really could happen--it just shouldn't happen. The magician doesn't touch the cards, so sleight-of-hand (something I'm often accused of) is out of the question. The plot couldn't be simpler, there's nothing confusing or complicated about it. The people who witness it know what they experienced.

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You think of any playing card, then you spread the deck on the table.
Only one card is face-up, and that's the card you'd been thinking of.

This should not happen.

But it does happen. Night after night, again and again.

However tonight, I dialed it up. I probably did the above "card trick" once tonight, but I wanted to test the audience from the above with the same effect when done with a thought-of person's name instead of a thought-of playing card.

One benefit to the "card trick" is that if anyone gets too freaked out, I can always dismiss it as, "It was just a card trick. You've seen card tricks before."

In a way, this is funny to everyone who saw my card trick.

I think saying this can relax people, especially before I've performed magic or mentalism. People let down their guard, and sigh to themselves, "Ah, a card trick. Let's watch." I like putting them at ease before making them uneasy.

Tonight, instead of handing someone a deck of cards and saying, "Think of any playing card," I did something else.

There are 52 cards in a deck, but there are thousands of common names of people in the United States and even more uncommon names. Moreover, we have a stronger connection no a name of a person than a playing card; and people are easier to remember.

As I've matured as a magician, I've come to realize that getting an immediate reaction is easy. What's more important and more challenging is making that impact stick for a long time in the form of memories and stories told about the event.

So this time I handed someone my business card and told her to put it away, in a pocket or purse.

AFTER she's got my business card tucked away, I say, "Without saying anything or even moving your lips, think of someone you know, someone who is not at this table, maybe not even in Indianapolis Marriott East hotel, someone you might even talk to in the next couple months."

Now the participant is thinking of someone alive (my professional preference). I then say, "Two years before I was born I wrote a message on the back of my business card."

Everyone watching so far has sunk into a thick suspense. Only a magician with a rope like mine can pull them out of it.

She had put the business card in her pocket even before thinking of someone--someone I should not know, and someone she should never introduce me to. Those present are now eager to see the back of the business card. 

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When she does retrieve my business card from her purse, staring her in the face is a clear message which had been written on the blank side of the card,

I'm writing this now and in a week's time you'll be reading it. I'll ask you to think of someone, and you will think of your sister, Jamie.

She not only has my business card which is good luck unless she loses it, but also has the memory of a lifetime.


Jon Finch is a professional mentalist and magician who performs at corporate and social events. Having performed in over 50 countries (well...counties), he offers entertainment in Indianapolis Indiana, sharing his creative brand of magic, mentalism, and comedy with people like you.

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