It's always a sight to see; small groups of curious onlookers who are drawn to the allure of magic and mystic spectacle within the busy Central Business District (CBD).
The skilled performers utilise luring words as well as skits that manage to pull huge crowds and ultimately spend their hard-earned money for entertainment purposes.
From cup and ball tricks to card prediction, Kenyans.co.ke samples five magic tricks to look out for as you traverse the busy streets.
Card Prediction Trick
One of the most common tricks to find across many streets involves a deck of cards. The performer gives the onlookers a deck of cards to shuffle then deals out five cards face down on the table. He will pick someone from the crowd to choose one of the cards and ask them to look at it and return it to the deck.
The deck of cards is shuffled again and the performer is required to pick the card that was selected.
There are many ways how the trick is done but the performer has normally marked the five cards - and will use this to assist him in retrieving the card.
In other cases, the performer has an unknown accomplice in the crowd who will signal him about the selected card. The skill, however, requires lots of practice as the experts are able to perform the trick in seconds -leaving the audience in awe.
Since it's a form of gambling members are warned be wary of such schemes that could cost them their cash.
Vanishing Coin Trick
A classic coin trick that people easily perform on the streets. This is performed using a coin and a handkerchief where the performer shows it to the crowd and places it at the centre of the handkerchief. He then folds it in half and tucks the corners into each other. He then holds the handkerchief to show that the coin is still inside.
After waving his hand over the handkerchief, he opens the handkerchief to find the coin has disappeared.
The trick is done using a double coin which means a coin that is split in half and rejoined. When placed on the handkerchief, it is only one half that is at the centre while the other half is in your hand.
By folding it, the crowd will not know that half of the coin is missing. Through waving, the performer quickly drops the half coin into his pocket.
Cup and Ball Trick
One of the classic magic tricks performed in the streets includes someone from the crowd selecting a ball from the cups. On many occasions, the cup used has a secret compartment that the performer uses to hide the ball. Another technique used is palming where the magician hides an object in their hand.
Floating in the Air
An illusion that normally pulls a huge crowd, it involves a rare skill that involves a person levitating in the air while only supporting himself with a stick.
This trick involves the use of props including either wires, a platform or a sleight of hand technique. The platform is, however, hidden from the audience's view and can be raised or lowered using a hidden mechanism.
Pinpointing the Middle
The trick involves one picking the centre of the long rope after he coils a rope into a round shape. More of a technique, the performer is quick in his skill where the crowd is given a chance to select the middle.
Most of the time, decoys place their money to attract others to part with their hard-earned cash. In most cases, whichever way a person chooses, the performer will either rotate clockwise or anticlockwise depending on your choice to ensure you have not selected the centre.