There is something ever spooky and sinister about mirrors. Perhaps its because it represents our opposite, or because people claim to get "visions" from staring into one. Stories of people getting trapped in the two dimensional mirror have been around since the Twilight Zone episodes from decades past. Performing magic with mirrors is usually difficult because any tampering or trap door in a mirror will be obvious even at a great distance.
Wouldn't it be fun to take something and pass it through or into a mirror? Without cover? Here's an effect that opens many doors for spooky sci fi patter at Halloween.
Ever since seeing Doug Henning do the Crystal Dimension Mirror in one of his seventies specials, I have thought this was simply one of the best "mini illusions" that money could buy. However, since seeing Doug Henning do this, I have not seen too many others doing the effect. Probably because this illusion has the impression of being a "high maintenance" illusion and also has a reputation as being "alot of work to vanish a sponge ball".
TALKS - If you are a parlor magician and like entertaining people in your home, this product is not for you. It is not really meant for closeup, parlor, or even living room shows because there is a slight "talk issue" the product makes. Unless you do this to music in the background, you need to have a little distance to cover the noise. In the demo I did I tried to talk over this, but it is noticeable if you listen closely. I have played with this effect with products that have ranged between $180 and $1000 and they all make a little noise to some extent, not a lot but enough to prevent parlor shows without some sort of background noise (the ad says as close as a few feet away, I would say 6-8 feet minimum).
FRAGILE - It is a mirror and mirrors can break. You do not want to get finger prints and such on the mirror either, it needs to be clean. Carrying around a small bottle of windex is not out of the ordinary when using this prop. I would suggest taking the mirror to your local glass company and have them make a duplicate (I did this and it cost about $35). Its not like you are going to break it, but it removes the fear of breaking it and you will be more apt to use this device.
HARD TO TRANSPORT AND SETUP - This is not really true, it fits into a pizza box and takes a few seconds to set up. It looks like it would be a pain to transport and setup but it isn't.
The "pros" to the effect is that it looks like you are putting a spongeball through a round vanity mirror.
This effect is ideal for stage, it works well in a sponge ball routine, it works well in a haunted house, it works well with trick or treaters at Halloween (enough background noise is always present at Halloween).
We recently made a huge one of these and placed it on a dresser, making it look like an old fashion vanity table. The prop was not very mobile but was a hit on Halloween.
If you are interested in one of these you can buy one new from Abbott's, but I have seen these several times at magic flea markets so you might want to check your local magic club first to see if anyone has one for sale or if a used magic sale is coming up.