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Ask a layman to name something a magician does, and he will inevitably say "saw a lady in half." This immortal classic is here to stay. The sawing sensation started in England in the 1920's by P. T. Selbit (Percy Tibbles). Many versions of this effect were performed, but the true innovations occurred when Guy Jarrett and Turkish illusionist Zati Sungar decided to cut down the size of the box and apparently eliminate the possibility that the girl could fold her legs up into one of the boxes.


Our version of this effect is classic and straightforward. An assistant enters the long slender cabinet. Her feet and head protrude from the ends of the box and are secured with stocks. The magician then takes two shiny metal blades, inserts them down into the middle of the cabinet, and apparently cuts the lady in half. The cabinet is pulled apart into two separate pieces!

The side doors of each box are opened. The audience can see the assistant's leg still in place inside one half of the cabinet, all the while her feet that protrude out the end of the box wiggle away. The audience see the assistant's head move about, protruding out the end of the other box, and her arm and torso are visible through this cabinet's open door. The two halves of the cabinet are pushed back together, the doors are closed, the blades are removed and the assistant is restored. "I came, I sawed, I conquered" as Servais Le Roy once said. 


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