Miser's Dream Trick
A classic coin trick that is some two hundred years old, yet it still delights audiences of all ages. The Miser’s Dream can be performed on stage or for small groups equally.
The magician picks up a wine bucket from a table and begins to tell a story about a stingy man who found a magic lamp and made a wish. From that point forward whenever he wished the man could produce money from thin air - and the magician “catches” a coin and tosses it loudly into the bucket. The magician proceeds to produce dozens of coins from all over the stage, a seemingly endless supply.
One coin is repeatedly vanished and made to reappear, while a hidden stack of coins in the bucket provides an audible distraction.
A stack of a dozen coins and a metal bucket are required for the basic effect. Additional effects can be produced with coin droppers and other props. Preparation
The stack of coins is hidden behind the metal bucket before the performance.
Performing the TrickThe Miser’s Dream works wonderfully on stage thanks to flash coins, the metal bucket and the sound of coins dropping into it. It can be done just as effectively in a crowd if the magician can control the angles of the bucket well enough.
- The magician picks up the bucket and the stack of coins at the same time, hiding the coins in his left hand. He grips the bucket with the left hand, trapping the coins against the side of the bucket in an angled stack.
- From here he can release the coins one at a time, where they will make a satisfying clink as they hit the bottom of the bucket.
- The magician starts off by appearing to catch a coin in mid air and tossing it into the bucket - at which point he releases the first coin.
- Reaching into the bucket with the right hand the magician produces the coin and shows the audience. He makes to toss it back into the bucket but instead finger palms it, releasing a second coin.
- From here the show is on, with the magician re-producing the same coin over and over again. Each time he produces the coin from a new place - the nose, behind an elbow, the hair, the shoe, the floor, the air and each time palms the coin as he pretends to toss it into the bucket.
- When the coins are all gone from the left hand, the magician can shake the bucket up and down, catching more coins in the left hand to reset. He can also stir the coins in the right hand; showering streams back into the bucket and palm a handful. He can then produce that handful and toss them back into the bucket visibly.
- This act is all about showmanship. Once the basic sleights are mastered, there is a lot of fun that can be had in telling the story. Tossing an invisible coin and hearing it clink is one gag, as is doing the same but delaying the clink for a surprise.
- Coin droppers - devices that hide and then release a stack of coins into the magician’s hand - can be used to produce streams of coins from an assistant’s nose or the magician’s elbow.