Review: At the Table Live Lecture Bobby Motta

[vc_row][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_custom_heading text=”Reviewer: Madame Curator”][vc_column_text]I first knew of Bobby Motta about a decade ago, and really liked his style of magic and mentalism… folks who have considered purchasing Motta’s exciting interactive card stab effect, Lethal, would know what I mean 😉 So I was super stoked for his At the Table Experience lecture at Murphy’s Magic.

For those who aren’t familiar with Motta, you just need to know that this working pro has a regular show in Toronto, and his stuff has been used by known magicians like Dan Sperry and Oz Pearlman on America’s Got Talent. Besides Lethal, Motta also sells half a dozen other items exclusively on his website Motta Magic.

The handsome dude is also an actor. I found this sexy clip of Motta in action 😉


Now, back to the review of Motta’s online lecture. For those who didn’t catch it LIVE, you can purchase the video download from all reputable Murphy’s Magic dealers. IMHO, at US$7.95 the 2-hour lecture really is a steal; it’s about the price of a scone and skinny vanilla latte from Starbucks… and it will leave you feeling way more satisfied!

The amazing Greg Wilson, one of my absolute all-time favourite magician/ magic creator from when I first started dabbling in magic, hosts the show and adds A LOT to the programme. His amazing magic theory and wealth of experience radiates and I’ve always appreciated Wilson’s easy clarity.

A solid host who asks the right questions and steers the conversation in the right direction, the charismatic Wilson also provides great alternatives and brilliant suggestions to Motta’s material. Together, they had a nice chemistry going and it felt like two buddies bantering over a magic jam session 🙂


Motta’s first effect is his marketed effect Blackmail, a contemporary update on a clever principle taught in Corinda’s 13 Steps to Mentalism. It requires no swami gimmick and without giving it away, I’ll say that it is a very bold and direct method of getting a spectator’s thought of card or number. The prediction is inside a sealed envelope too!

After seeing how it’s done, you can easily construct the gimmick yourself or simply purchase it off Motta’s website since he shared that he has “leprechauns in the basement working for him”. LOL. Blackmail can easily be used as an “out” and the various ways to present this mind reading effect is only limited by your own imagination.

BP (Andy Nyman is credited as co-creator) was also featured. I absolutely 100% adore adore Nyman and his superbly creative mind and I think Motta’s presentation and patter would work on lay people in the audience …but his technique didn’t quite fool me; perhaps I was already looking out for it, I don’t know but the peek seemed rather obvious, to be honest.

The Informant, Motta’s marketed wallet impression device, was featured next. While Motta declined to give a full presentation, he gave a brief demo on this clever utility device which is in some ways, similar to Psypher and the Telethought Wallet.

It also boasts an inclusion of the classic Out-to-Lunch principle and you can incorporate Motta’s Blackmail within this useful utility. If you’re a working pro, you may consider investing in Motta’s Informant; it’s a great way of giving out your business cards… and with the right mind-blowing, er, mind-reading context too.

Motta pitched his pocket-sized growing and shrinking head illusion, Zoom, available soon on Murphy’s Magic. Bloods and Crimps was shared next, Motta’s card trick that was (almost) hands off for the magician. Magicians who enjoy breather crimp effects like Tiny Plunger may enjoy Motta’s presentation, which he labels as a magician’s fooler.

STD aka Shut the Door, the clear favourite, was the last effect Motta performed in his lecture. It’s a beautiful card trick… so simple but yet so diabolical… and practically impossible to figure out. STD is definitely is worth the cost of the whole lecture alone.

Without touching anything, the magician has someone cut the deck and pick a card. They keep it out of sight and put the rest of the deck in the box, closing it shut. The magician is then able to divine their card, which they could be sitting on or placed in their pocket, etc. Memory work comes to play, so Mnemonica lovers may enjoy this one for variety 🙂

Questions about tips on producing a show, as well as, magic VS mentalism were also addressed… along with Motta’s personal philosophy about his work. Before the wrap up, Motta also plugged his upcoming project, Blue. Not much specific details were shared and no demo was presented, so we only know that Blue is a booklet on a card effect, based on an old principle of magic, which Motta named after his newborn daughter (not sure why he’d name his kiddo “Blue” but then I’d probably come up with some hippie name for my daughter too, when the time comes, just because I can… So I’m not judging)!

In all, the 2 hour-ish lecture was a pleasant, effortless watch. Time just flew! I really liked Motta’s easygoing energy and likeable personality (he could probably do stand-up comedy too, he’s so funny!) and Wilson’s pitch-in of great ideas and involvement in the teach-in. But I honestly wished Motta was a bit more streamlined in teaching and sharing effects. Some bits felt way too relaxed, to the point of being rambly… but maybe that’s just my Asian genes talking!

Out of everything discussed in Motta’s lecture, I’ll probably try STD out on my darling spouse tonight. After all, like Motta wisecracked, “STD… If you need to get it, get it this way.”


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Ning Cai is a Singapore Literature Prize nominated author, who was also long listed for the Epigram Books Fiction Prize in 2016. A bestselling writer, she is also recognised for her illusionist/ escapologist stage character Magic Babe Ning, and recognised by Channel News Asia as South East Asia's first professional female magician.

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