Arts & Entertainment, Home & Lifestyle

Rope Tricks

Penn & Teller

Lesson time 6:10 min

Rope tricks play with images of destruction and resurrection. Penn & Teller walk you through their version of cut and restored rope tricks.

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Topics include: Rope Tricks


[MYSTERIOUS MUSIC] - Let's learn a little bit about rope tricks. Teller will show you the basics right here. You cut a rope, and then you put it back together. That's all a rope trick really is. Teller's cut a rope, and he's put it back together. But now it's magic. Another basic plot of magic is restoration. Something's destroyed, and it comes back. You burn it, you rip it up, you tear it up, you cut it up, you destroy it, and then it's restored. And another prop that's used in magic a lot is rope. Rope is used so much. Teller's going to do a little cut and restored rope for you here. - We'll take the middle of the rope, and we're going to cut that with a pair of scissors like this. That leaves us with two pieces. Let's tie them together. Tie them together. The knot would be better down here, don't you think, or maybe down here, or maybe gone altogether? OK, let's all learn this. You might want to stand up. - OK. - Start with the two ends of the rope in your two hands. Put both of them in your left hand. Clip them under your thumb. Good. Grab the middle of the rope with your palm up. Take two fingers like this, and as you raise your hand, grab this piece of rope and pull it up instead of the middle, hiding this folded joint. Now use your scissors to cut the rope. Take one of the ropes that is intact and drop it on the right, one on the left, and hide that joint, hide that joint so people think they're looking at two pieces of rope. And the rest is very simple. You just take those two ends and tie them in a double knot around each other. And that looks enough like a like a regular double knot. Once it's there, hold the rope so that you can see the position of that. Then you can move it down, and people will laugh a little bit. Move it down a little more. People will laugh a little more. Finally, throw the knot away and display the rope as intact. Now, if you want to get really fancy, like I sometimes do-- I know this is not polite. But you can do this, and you can do this. Tie a knot like that. Would you hold-- just take the end of the knot, please. - This one? - Just the end of the knot. - This one? - Yeah. I'll see you later. - Oh. - But that's fancy. [PLAYFUL MUSIC] PENN (VOICEOVER): Cut and restored rope. [MYSTERIOUS MUSIC] Hold both ends of the rope in your left hand between the thumb and index finger with the back of the hand toward the audience and the looped middle hanging down. With your right hand, grab the very center of the rope and bring it up to the ends of the rope, and the left hand grabs it with the center loop sticking up above the left hand to the right of the two ends. With your right hand, reach for the scissors. And as you do, the left hand accidentally drops the center of the rope, making it necessary to repeat the procedure. However, this time you'll do a secret move that simulates the previous action but makes the trick possible. With...

About the Instructor

With more than 40 years performing together, Penn & Teller have sold out shows around the world, earned a star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, and created the longest-running headline act in Las Vegas. Now the legendary magicians are taking you behind the curtain. Learn fundamental magic tricks and the psychological tools that create amazement, at home or on stage. Expand your perception of the possible.

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