Steve Draun - Standing Room Only - Volume 1 DVD

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Steve Draun - Standing Room Only - Volume 1 DVD

Postby MrCat » Mar 9th, '20, 19:56

Hey folks, been a while since I left a review, and this is gonna be a tough one as there's soooooo very much to cover so I'm not sure how I'm gonna do it yet but let's see :D
So, grab a cuppa, sit back, and enjoy the review.
Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin...

The Effects:
I have included an image of the back cover here to save on some typing :wink: so I can give the 'blurb' plus a bit more in depth here.

Ambitious Card -
Wow. This is a really great take on the traditional... The spec' signs a card of their choice at the beginning. The usual DL comes into play but the real thing here is the banter and the routine that Steve does. It's really beautiful and funny, but the real killer is the grand finalle having showed the spec's signed card jumping about to the top of the deck in a variety of cleverly entertaining ways it's then suggested that the card is so ambitious that he can send it to his pocket...after removing his wallet, and searching the pocket, it's not in the pocket...maybe it's in the wallet? Nope. But maybe it's in the zipped up zipper pocket of the wallet? Having a look we see a sealed envelope in said zipper pocket, the sealed envelope is then torn open, and inside that...yes, the spec's signed card. Nice!!! Gimmicks are required for the end, 2 to be exact, one of which can be home made easily, the second could be home made if you're really keen. Think I'm gonna have a go at that.
(Will report back to y'all later ... possibly a lot later ... on my gimmick making shenanigans) ;)

$100 Bill Switch -
Well, it's a bill switch. A borrowed (large) note is switched to a smaller one for commic effect. It's the banter (or audience engagement as some might say, patter or whatever) that really makes this one. There is a gimmick required, a very very cheap one, and one I'm honestly not a huge fan of although in the performance I never spotted it I think largely due to the handling. A nice effect overall.

Knotted Silks -
This is a beautiful effect. Steve ties two pieces of fabric together a number of times and magically unties them without appearing to do anything apart from tighten the knots further with his movements. The beauty is in the banter and the routine, and the fact the spec's are invited to tie the two 'hankies/silks' together themselves and Steve once again magically seperates them with ease. It's a hard one to explain in text without the visuals but a beautiful audience participation effect. He does use a 'special' fabric which I'm unsure how essential that is yet having not actually tried it, but the explination of the knotwork is very clever and beautiful. The only thing I would worry about is what kind of knot your spec's tie but Steve shows us exactly how to deal with that so that everything will run smoothly...kind of a pun there :D

Vanishing Cigarette -
Well, get a spec' to light a cigarette and hand it to you, make a gag or two whilst shoving the lit cig' into your fist, burning end first and hey it's gone! Very quick and simple but given the danger burny element a beautiful effect. Requires a very simple gimmick for very minimal cost (3 or 4 quid) but once again the banter and presentation make this a lovely little piece.

Colour Changing Knives -
Gimmicks required. Don't know about the cost of these. It's quite a nice effect if that's your kind of thing but not a huge fan myself, probably my least fave' on the DVD. A knive is produced and the handle is made to change colour a few times before ultimately being shown as multi coloured. Steve does it beautifully but he would :D ... Let's move on...

3 Card Monte -
This is possibly my utter absolute fave' of this DVD. It's 3 Card Monte...what more can I say? Well a fair bit actually ;)
This is one of those routines that I Really Really love where you tell the spec's exactly what you're going to do before you do it, beautiful close up magic. And of course a lot of cleverness with the performance making the specks know this is designed to fleece them out of their money, telling them you will show them just exactly how those street hustlers do it... 'showing them how it's done' ;) and yet still the spot card isn't where it's supposed to be. It's quite frankly the best performance of 3 card Monte I've ever seen. No gimmicks required, just some slight of hand that will require a lot of practice, yet very simple moves. Genius, pure genius, can be repeated again and again and...

Cards Across -
2 spec's are told to count out 10 cards each from a deck on to the table, then told to sit on their pile of ten cards each. Steve then says he will magically transfer 3 cards (again some amusing banter here which really makes it) from under one spec to under the other spec. And yey it is done. The specks remove the cards from under their butts and count them on to the table aloud. One spec has 7, the other 13! Job done :)
This is a very simple manuva (I can never spell that word) beautifully done and beautifully explained - once again Steve comes totally in to his own with his amazing patter which is a lot of what this DVD is about. No gimmicks required.

Ring Flight -
It's the classic. Borrow a ring and make it go somewhere. I've seen a few of these and I own one completely different version requiring a lot of crazy home making of stuff which is very clever and I did do. (Can't remember if I left a review of that one but I digress so...). Home made gimmick required, explanation once again excellent. There are soooooo many different ways to do this effect out there on the market. This comes down to personal taste and what fits in to your preferred style and routine. Unless you can do Actual Real Magic :D you need a gimmick...this one is pretty cool but as stated it's all a matter of taste and what you're prepared to carry on you and about your person when you go out, and what kind of situation you intend to perform in. The explination is pretty straight to the point. See the overall conclusion below for more...

Linking Rings -
An old classic! Gimmick required!
Never been inclined to learning this one myself as it's gimmick heavy and kind of a stage thing and something large you have to carry about. It's not ideal for the causal performer but a beautiful rendition of it. I can't really say much more about this apart from if you want to link rings, you probably know how already, if you don't you can go and get some and find out haha but this is a lovely performance and again one of the best routines I've seen of a classic trick/effect. 'Nuff said.

Discounted on Merchant of Magic ( to £15 but volumes 2 and 3 come in at £30 currently. I don't own them yet but going by volume 1 £30 is a bit steep but quite possibly worth it, especially if you do paid gigs!
There are a lot of gimmicks involved here. Some home made, some will have to be bought unless you have an amazing workshop and are very talented.

(1=easy to do, 2=No sleights, but not so easy, 3=Some sleights used,
4=Advanced sleights used, 5=Suitable for experienced magicians only)

Erm, well there's a lot of effects here. Overall I'd say they range between 3 and 4.

This is quite frankly an amazing DVD. Steve is an amazing and beautiful man. For those who have not yet encountered him he looks and sounds like your favourite uncle or grand dad and his explanations are that of a talented genius who has the perfect way of describing things so as to make them totally uncomplicated and really easy to do if you have but the mildest of inclination to do so. His performance is totally lovely, very very entertaining and what you will get from this DVD is a total masterclass in patter and just exactly how a pro' deals and treats their audience.

This is a not a DVD for the bedroom magician. However, it is a thing of beauty and a total pleasure to watch whatever level you are at, be it staring out for the first time or a seasoned performer.
I would say that this IS a DVD for those whom go out and do stage and close up, and do paid gigs. That said tho, and I am aware I'm kind of contradicting myself here, it's really great inspiration for the beginner too mostly due to Steve being such a great performer and such a great teacher too. Very unassuming and lovely and with a teaching method and just way of explaining things that makes you think you can do it if you want to with no skills at all to kick off with.

It is very gimmick heavy, there are 2 card effects that require no gimmicks and my general overall feeling is that this is a kind of self contained full routine that requires planning and a lot f prep as well as a lot of practice in some very good to know 'sleights' which lefts face it never go amiss. He has inspired me as a non public performing non paid type dude to get my glue and sticky tape out again which is pretty rare for me!

Gosh darned amazing. Steve Draun is amazing. His website sadly is dead (it's mentioned on the DVD in terms of for sale of a bunch of stuff that is needed for most of the effects) but you can find it all in the usual places or with a little googling (or duck ducking as I prefer these days).

You will learn A LOT from this, be ye seasoned or fresh off the boat. Know that to be true.
Me? £30!? That a lotta cash for me but by gosh I'm tempted by parts 2 and three...Nuff said.

Now grab another cuppa and go buy it.

The End.

Wow. Just yes.... Yes...
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Re: Steve Draun - Standing Room Only - Volume 1 DVD

Postby Mandrake » Mar 10th, '20, 09:29

Excellent review, thank you!

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