Friday, November 21, 2008

Fascinating article about Teller (of Penn and Teller) and his red ball trick

In 2007 Teller, of Penn and Teller wrote an essay about "a hundred-year-old trick called the David P. Abbott ball" that he was working on. The essay was included in the program for the Penn and Teller Vegas show:

When the theater is empty I like to go out on stage. It’s lonely and beautiful. I look at your empty seat and think about you being in it. … Then I practice. I often practice stuff you’ll never see. For the past few weeks I’ve been working on a hundred-year-old trick called the David P. Abbott Ball. It is a very, very hard trick, almost like juggling. I put in an hour almost every day. I try to get the tricky moves so deeply into my muscles and brain that I can forget I’m doing a trick. Soon I’ll know whether the ideas I have for this trick are possible. But I won’t know that till I learn all the moves and invent my own. If the trick doesn’t work out, you’ll never see it, and I won’t be sad. I had fun every second I was working. I love the stuff you never see.
This is the story of that red ball trick. Yes, it's now part of the show.