Let’s go behind and try to find Michael Grandinetti walks through steel secret concealed in the solid steel wall.
I know this is an old walking through a steel plate performance of master illusionist Michael Grandinetti.
Note: This is not Michael Grandinetti levitation revealed.
Both his “Broom Suspension” and “Pole Levitation” acts are rather old illusions which have been performed before by many other illusionists.
The “Broom Suspension” aka “The Ethereal Suspension” or “Aérial Suspension” was created by Jean Eugene Robert-Houdin way back in 1849.
You can find the secret of this suspension trick in these books:
Magic For Beginners By Harry Baron
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This is also NOT the popular Dan Wolfe’s Thru Steel illusion performed by many amateur and professional magicians (as shown below).
A heavy-looking wall of steel is affixed onto the skeletal frame stand.
Then a small rectangle frame mounted with a piece of paper is slotted in the middle section of the prop.
Michael Grandinetti walks behind the steel wall.
Amazingly, he manages to penetrates the steel wall and comes out through the torn paper.
The frame with the torn up paper is removed, and you can see the steel wall is still solid.
Michael Grandinetti Walks Through Steel video:
For me, it is the prop itself and Grandinetti performing routine, which give me the idea how he so-called melts through the steel wall.
He went on to say that it took close to seven years before he finally performed it for an audience.
Fortunately, it took me less than seven viewings of he video clips, and I could share my version of Michael Grandinetti walks through steel secret.
After I had a sketchy idea of Michael Grandinetti walks through steel secret, then I would scrutinize those so-called ‘tricky parts‘ of the prop.
This is to confirm whether my guesswork is correct.
Remember, my supposition of this illusion secret could be grossly wrong, and rightly so.
It is just my two cents.
Disclaimer: I do not own this apparatus and I do not know how precisely how this magic trick is done.
In other words, they have to discreetly shift out of the way or/and slide in the cut-out for the penetration effect to materialize.
Then there are other methods to walk through wall or mirror.
Similarly, the Masked Magician has already divulged to you how to pass through steel with the help of a fake hand in this video.
By the way you can find this identical illusion called “A-Frame” in 2002 Andrew Mayne‘s book “Solo-X“.
Get this free one-man illusions booklet and many other Andrew Mayne magic tricks and illusions here.
You can also use a hidden assistant to help out as seen in this thru-wall act.
At 2:20-2:23 the female assistant blocks the view, while the magician’s arm is replaced by a hidden assistant.
The magician has ample time to sneak out from the side of the wall to make the appearance behind the cloth.
In fact, at 2:30, you can see the right side of the cloth wavering just before Singapore illusionist J C Sum appears.
Related: Get your free J C Sum illusion books below.
There are various methods of performing the walking-through-wall tricks.
I would share with you a few other similar acts in the future blog posts.
Michael Grandinetti Walks Through Steel Secret
The two main secrets of this Michael Grandinetti walks through steel wall stage illusion are:
1. The steel wall is NOT ONE solid piece.
2. There is a hidden doorway in the steel wall.
I would reveal and elucidate them in detail later.
Now, let’s go through master illusionist Michael Grandinetti act.
The Frame Stand
I have mentioned a while ago, it is the prop or the apparatus which give away the secrets.
The first thing that raise my suspicion is the tall metal frame stand itself.
To be precise, the rectangle shape frame in the middle section of the prop, where Grandinetti walks through.
When I scrutinized that rectangle frame with a curious frame of mind, I suspected it must an accomplice in the trick.
The innocent looking rectangle frame is actually a front for the key secret of this penetration trick.
I will reveal and explain why this prop need this attached rectangle frame later in the article.
The Steel Wall
When I viewed both videos of Grandinetti performing this illusion (Masters of Magic TV show & at Universal Studios Hollywood), I detected something was amiss.
Let’s take a long, hard look at the 7 feet tall, 4 feet wide, 1 inch thick and 200 pound wall of solid steel, as it claimed.
The very first thing I noticed Grandinetti keeps focusing only on ONE SIDE of the wall.
When he stages it at Universal Studios Hollywood, Grandinetti invites a member of the audience just to examine the ONE SIDE of the wall.
He keeps slamming his hands on this side of the wall to indicate it is sturdy.
He NEVER shows the OTHER SIDE of the wall to the public.
On the Masters of Magic TV show, his two stage assistants wheeled in the wall on a push cart.
Then they quickly spin the wall around to show to the studio audience.
Yes, they show BOTH SIDES of the wall to the studio audience.
But, only ONE SIDE of the steel wall is COMPLETELY seen, as shown below:
While the OTHER SIDE is obstructed by the black color metal bars of the push cart, under the pretext of delivering the piece of heavy steel wall.
The truth is this specially-designed push cart comes with the black metal bars which help to conceal one of secrets of this stage illusion.
By the way, I think that piece of 7-foot 1-inch thick steel wall is NOT really that heavy as it seems.
I will also elaborate this weighty issue later in the article.
So, what is Grandinetti hiding on the OTHER SIDE of the steel wall?
The Wall Of Illusion
Now, let’s walk through Master Illusionist Michael Grandinetti walking through steel secret step by step…
At the beginning of the show, Grandinetti shows the solid steel side of the wall to the audience.
But the prop is turned around, when he performs the walking through the wall illusion.
In other words, the audience is seeing the illusion happens on the OTHER side of the wall.
The side which is obstructed by the rectangle shape frame in the middle of the prop.
What really happens between the rolled-down screens is this:
The SIDE of the wall which Grandinetti is facing is actually a thin steel door.
From the side view below, you can see the slim steel sheet.
Firstly, he opens this thin steel sheet door.
Why do I say it is a door?
Focus your eyes on the thin steel sheet.
When Michael Grandinetti pushes his hands on this SIDE of the wall at 2:44 in the video clip, you can see it goes in.
Then again at 2:48-2:50, you can clearly see the thin steel sheet door quivering or wavering by itself.
This is the opening side of the steel door.
Another reason why I suspect this thin steel door, is the width of the two rolled-down screens at the side.
They are almost as wide as the steel door.
Why does the illusionist need such a wide screens just to block him alone doing his trick?
This big steel sheet door is fastened to the thick wall by two black slim hinges with inconspicuous hollow rivets.
To avoid being detected, these black hinges are camouflaged by fixing bulky angle hinge clasps over it.
Plus a large conspicuous locking mechanism (with red capped lever) next to it.
Furthermore, there is another redundant hinge clasp right below the big lock, as seen below.
In magic tricks, this what they called the deceptive art of misdirection.
It is a way of tricking you into believing what you see.
Now, you know the whole wall is NOT one solid steel wall as it seems.
There is a thick wall attached with a steel sheet door.
That’s why as I have mentioned earlier, I think the wall is probably not really that heavy, where you need a push-cart to ferry it and three men to lift it up.
To enhance the penetration effect, it needs to give the audience the visual perception that the wall is steely solid and impenetrable.
To further strengthen the impression the wall is thick and compact, it is bordered with rows of rivets.
The Secret Hidden Doorway
When he opens the steel door, there is a hidden rectangle shape hole with an attached door on the thick side of the wall.
This rectangle door comes with spring hinges, so that it can close by itself.
This works exactly the same principle as the popular “Through Steel” illusion, as I have already exposed and explained in “Ultimate Penetration Frame Secret Revealed“.
Here is a quick recap of the secret of this one-man illusion:
On one side of the frame which holds the steel plate is fastened with spring hinges.
Yes, the steel plate is actually like a swing door.
The magician walks behind the prop, with one hand discreetly grips on the opening side of the steel plate, usually under the guise of adjusting the curtain rods.
He holds on the steel plate together with the curtain rod.
Then as he steps forward, he let go of the steel plate behind him.
It will automatically swings onto his back torso because of the spring loaded hinges.
The steel plate will keep following closely against his back, as he slowly steps out of the stand.
In this video from 1:12 you can see magician David Sandy’s left hand secretly gripping onto the steel plate, while talking.
While still holding onto it, he walks into the middle of the prop.
At 1:16, you can clearly see him adjusting the spring-back steel plate on his back.
Now, let’s get back to Michael Grandinetti…
In fact when Grandinetti performs the illusion, this secret door is facing the audience all the while.
But this hidden door outline cannot be seen from the OTHER SIDE of the wall.
It is because it is strategically hidden by the rectangle frame in the middle of the prop.
Yes, that is the very hole or the hidden door where Grandinetti walks through.
Now you know why this OTHER SIDE of the wall is never fully shown to the viewers right from the start of the show.
Remember the wall is quickly spun around on the push-cart to show the OTHER SIDE of the wall to the TV audience?
The rectangle door outline is well-hidden by the thick black bars of the specially-designed push-cart.
When they lift the wall to the frame on the frame stand, again they do not show the OTHER SIDE to the viewers.
The viewers only get to see the OTHER SIDE of the wall after it is fitted onto the prop.
By that time the rectangle hole outline is fully blocked by the rectangle frame.
In the beginning of this exposé, I have already highlighted that this built-in rectangle frame is up to some tricks
I think the stage left side (the audience’s right) of the wall is where Grandinetti opens the steel plate to get to the hidden door inside.
Similarly, the concealed rectangle door is also opened on the same side.
I say this is because of the way Grandinetti exits through the hole.
He steps out his left leg out first, and using his body to block the left side of the gaping hole, while his right hand is still holding onto the spring-loaded hinge door.
At 3:29 of the video, you can see the hole right through to the blue stage backdrop between his legs, while he is pulling out his right leg.
It is because the self-closed hidden door is still in the midst of fully closing up.
Note: To see the hole clearer, slow down the YouTube playback speed to 0.25.
You can see the exposed hole in the wall between his legs just below his crotch from the visual below.
When his whole body is just out from the hole, Grandinetti stands still momentarily blocking the rectangle frame, under the guise of brushing back his hair.
This stance is not to gloat over the success of his penetration act.
It is just a precaution; to ensure that the self-closing door has swung fully back in place, thus closing up the hole, before he steps away.
The Paper Frame
When Grandinetti thrusts both his hands through the paper frame, he does it precisely and meticulously.
The two holes for his hands are specifically marked and prepared.
If you take a closer look, you would notice the two holes on the paper where Grandinetti’s hands push through are prepared with perforated lines.
They are equally important to this Michael Grandinetti walks through steel secret.
If these two torn areas are too widely ripped apart, they will expose the hole of the hidden door.
Take a closer look at the tear lines from the visual below:
Well, this is my version of Michael Grandinetti walks through steel secret as viewed from the two videos online.
Ultimate Illusion Collection: The Vault Edition Vol. 2 By J C Sum
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Disclaimer: I do not publish or host any of the books here. They are copyrighted to their respective owners. All content cited is derived from their respective sources.