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DVD by Scott Strange
"Oddballs", a new DVD by Scott Strange, is a collection of a new sleight and variations that is, simply, a must-have for anyone doing serious sponge ball magic. Or wanting to do serious sponge ball magic. Or has a set of sponge balls. Or knows what sponge balls are.
Okay, a little over the top, but not by much. Scott Strange has done some beautiful work here. This sleight is pretty near a work of art by itself and anyone working with sponge balls should have this disc, pure and simple.
Those same folks are also going to need some patience; this stuff isn't exactly the easiest thing to learn. But, while I appreciate and admire the producers to warn, earnestly and repeatedly, how difficult this material is, they are not beyond the grasp of anyone who has experience in sponge ball work. It felt to me as if most of the difficulty here came from just being strange (no pun intended). Don't think anything here needs more than patience and practice, just like everything else we do. Let's take a look and you'll see what I mean.
"Strange Change" is gorgeous. It is worth the price of the DVD. It is going to be one of those sleights you'll have to master to be considered a serious sponge ball worker. It is that good. Simply put, it's a visual color change/transformation of a ball done with one hand. But the flexibility of this thing blew me away. It is shown being used with a spectator's hand, on the table, even a bit flourishy with two hands. Then it's put into a quick little bit called "O.C. Transpo", where the Strange Change is used in a simple yet flashy transposition.
Next up is a great "split" move where a single ball, held at the fingertips, is split into multiple balls. This one is a bear to learn because of the timing required. Get that down, though, and you've for a beautiful move for introducing multiple balls into your routine.
After that is "Eye, Balls", a bit of a flurry routine that is cute and funny and just silly enough. I like it, what can I say? Here, the Strange Change is used again and again and looks so good in the context of the routine it's almost scary. More than that, this is a lesson is stealing loads without cover; Strange does it and gets away with it as easy as you could ask for. Brilliant work here.
Following that is "Goshman Nipple Pinch". Seriously, I can't make this stuff up; that's the name of it. This time around a two-inch ball is twisted in half, visually splitting into two one-inch balls. No description can do this one justice; it looks just plain slick.
Next is a quick flurry routine that is hilarious to watch, not because of the routine itself, but because the "real life" performance is done with two guys who are having a conversation and completely ignoring Strange who, undaunted, performs the whole routine, including the use of misdirection and audience management. I was almost in tears over this one. Those two guys not withstanding, it's a great, quick routine built around the Strange Change and looks very, very good.
Yeah, I'm completely in love with this disc. It's great stuff, extremely well-produced and wonderfully taught in addition to being packed with great material. "Oddballs" is worth every penny and every rave review it's going to be getting.
DVD by Scott Strange
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