Tear a piece out of a dollar bill and then miraculously restore the bill to its original condition.
Ask someone if you can borrow a dollar bill. You can also perform this trick with your own bill, but the stakes will be higher if you use someone else’s.
Fold the bill in half, with the president’s face on the inside.
Make a tear that’s about an inch long in the bill, starting from the fold and running along the bottom of the dark green border on the back of the bill. The placement is important because it helps camouflage the tear at the end of the trick. Don’t hide what you’re doing. This is the “convincing” part of the trick, so you want to make sure the spectators can see that you really are tearing the bill.
This time, you don’t want anyone to see what you’re doing. With moves like this — in magic, they’re called “sleight of hand” — practice is the key to success.
• Hold the bill with the folded edge at the top in your left hand, with your thumb facing you. Then reach over with your right hand as if you’re grabbing the piece that has been torn.
• Grab the bill at the base of the tear so you can use your right thumb to push the torn piece down so that it lies flat against the back of the bill.
• Shift your left thumb so it’s now holding the piece down.
• With your right hand, pinch the edge of the bill and pull away quickly as if you’re tearing the piece completely off. You don’t want to tear it, though; you just want to create a tearing sound.
• Make a fist, as if you’re clutching the torn-off piece of the dollar bill in your hand.
The spectators now think you have a piece of the dollar bill in your right hand, so you’ll need to use sleight of hand to make them think you’re getting rid of it.
You can pretend to put in your pocket or act like you’re putting it in your mouth and chewing it.
Now it’s time to restore the bill. You should still be holding the bill in your left hand with the fold at the top. Use your right hand to grab the side of the bill facing the spectators along the open edge, which should be at the bottom.
Grab the open edge of the side facing you with your left hand. Rotate the bill so the fold is now on the left side. As you do this, snap the bill open.
It will now look like the torn piece has been magically restored. If you pretended to put the torn piece in your mouth, pretend you’re spitting it back in place at the same moment you snap the bill open.
To keep the tear hidden while you’re showing the “restored” bill to your audience, maintain constant tension. To do this, simply pull the edges in opposite directions, as if you were trying to stretch the bill out from side to side. You can turn the bill around while you do this, to show both sides of the bill to your spectators.
The spectators will now think the trick is over, but you have one last important thing to do: Either put the bill in your pocket or return it without the tear being seen. Without drawing attention to the bill, fold it up and put it away or give it back to them. If you take your time returning the bill, the spectator will be less likely to want to examine it when you hand it back.
Blake Vogt is a professional magician who performed before millions on live TV on America’s Got Talent. His jaw-dropping tricks and ability to make people laugh took him all the way to season 11’s semifinals. Vogt creates his own tricks and illusions. Now this master magician shares with BL the secrets to a few of his favorites.