Let’s explore and find out the secrets, how Franz Harary Time Travel illusion is possible right before your eyes.
In the TED Talk presentation, Harary called it stepping into the space in-between space.
If you are still staring into space wondering how this so-called time-travel illusion is done, watch this space.
Franz Harary spills a secret at TED: “If you can understand how people think, then, for a brief moment, you can control what they see.”
After viewing the video, I think I know how Harary manages to ‘lost in between space for a brief moment and then back to earth’.
The effect of this illusion is vanish and reappearance.
Well, my view could be wrong, thus it will be a waste of time and space in this blog post.
As usual, to delve into this disappearing and appearing illusion, I would look over the prop and also the routine of the act.
Watch this stage illusion below.
How Franz Harary Performs Time Travel Illusion
Basically this is how American illusionist Franz Harary does it:
He stands in the middle of a metal frame with a piece of fabric behind him.
Another similar metal frame with spandex-like fabric covers over him from the front.
The two metal frames are locked together, thus sandwiching him in between the two pieces of fabrics.
The piece of cloth behind Harary is dropped down into the base of the frame which he is standing.
Next Franz Harary steps back and sneaks down into a hiding compartment at the base or platform of the metal frame.
Then the two stage assistants turn the prop side way to the audience, to show Franz Harary has disappeared.
After they rotated the prop back in its original position, Harary steals out from the hiding place.
He steps back into his original position.
The piece of fabric is drawn up behind him.
They remove the frames, lo and behold Franz Harary is back from another dimension.
Yes, it is as simple as that.
Franz Harary Time Travel Illusion Secret Revealed
Let’s scrutinize in details whether what I have just assumed is correct or otherwise.
There are a couple of sneaky moves and hidden devices which I will highlight as I go along.
Firstly, look carefully at the metal frame which Harary is standing.
The cloth behind him is slack and loose-fitting.
You can see gaps between the cloth and the metal frame.
There is no seam or joint in the middle of the cloth.
There are no two holes with flaps where Harary’s feet are standing.
The illusionist just stands onto two short foot pedals.
Now, let’s zoom in closer:
The slack or loose cloth behind Harary is actually like a roller blind or screen.
At the start, it is drawn up and the other end is attached to a hidden roller at the base of the metal frame.
Look carefully and you will notice, there is a separate piece of fabric that hangs below the foot pedals.
It is NOT linked to the loose fabric behind Harary’s back.
This separate short piece of cloth at the bottom is to shield or block the hiding compartment or hiding place which Harary disappears into.
So when does Franz Harary begin to hide and how he do it?
At 6:07, you notice the stage assistant with a pony tail on the stage left, with his right hand secretly meddling at the frame above his head.
He is fiddling the L-shaped lever/latch.
At the same time you can clearly see a loop of thin cable or wire protruding out from the frame.
Later on, I will expose to you the cable or wire and also pulleys which held up this fabric.
I think this device controls the rise and the fall of the fabric behind Harary.
After the fabric is rolled up down at the base, Harary slowly steps backs.
From 6:14-6:30, both the palms movements under the stretched fabric are from the two stage assistants’ hands.
Yes, this is similar to what David Copperfield’s two assistants did in walking through the Great wall of China illusion back in 1986.
Anyway, this is when Franz Harary quickly slips into the hiding compartment at the base of the prop.
From the picture below you can see the thickness or the depth of the hiding place.
After that, the stage assistants rotate the metal frames or prop halfway.
This is to show the audience Franz Harary has disappeared into another dimension, so to speak.
Now there is this tricky move from 6:42 to 6:52.
The stage assistants continue to turn the two attached frames around, without pausing to show the audience the back view of the frame which Harary stands a while ago.
They just continue to turn the apparatus to complete a full circle.
If you watch this act just once, you might not notice this cunning maneuver.
Do you know why they do it?
If you pause the video clip at around 6:44, you are actually seeing the back view of the frame which Harary stands.
Observe closely to the back view of this frame.
The flappy fabric against Harary’s back is gone, or rather has rolled up underneath the frame.
Now what you are seeing is the back view of the front metal frame!
Yes, the stretchy spandex fabric with a middle seam and two holes for Harary’s feet.
That is why the stage assistants do not even pause momentarily this particular view to the audience.
There is more:
You can see loosened thin cable or wire looping through pulleys at the back of the elastic fabric.
This slim cable or wire is for controlling the slack fabric of the frame which Harary stands.
Later on you can see the slackened wire shadow together with Harary from the front view.
This reveal is only possible is because I have the liberty to pause and zoom in closer to the back view of this frame from the video clip.
For the paid audience who just saw it once and sitting a distant away from the stage, they would not notice them.
After the two stage assistants have spun the prop one full round, from 6:53 to 7:00, you can see both of them pressing the two frames together.
It is merely waiting for Harary to slip out from the hiding compartment behind the screen.
Then Harary quickly resumes its original position, holding onto the short metal pegs.
At 7:02, the stage hand with the pony tail on the stage left, pretends to hold onto the frame with his right hand.
His right thumb is actually pressing on a small hidden switch to turn the light on.
If you pause the video clip at 7:03 now, you can see the thin cable or wire shadow clearly.
In other words, Harary is standing facing the spandex screen of the front frame.
The slack or loose fabric is still down at the base of the frame.
At 7:08, Franz Harary’s right hand accidentally touches the thin cable or wire.
When Harary is ready to reappear, the pony-tailed stage assistant once again has to draw up the loose fabric behind the former.
At 7:20 you can see him fiddling the L-shaped lever again above him.
I think that action is to draw back the loose fabric behind Harary’s back in place.
AT 7:28, you can see Harary quickly position both his feet back at the foot pedals.
Finally they separated the two metal frames and Franz Harary acts as if he just materialized back to earth again.
This is how Franz Harary vanishes into another dimension and comes back to stage again.