Articles - The illusion behind levitating street performers is revealed - The Open News
 
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11-12-2015

The Illusion Behind Levitating Street Performers Is Revealed

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Pavement performers and artists have always been a feature on the streets of towns and cities the world over, from buskers to painters, dancers to human statues. In recent years, a new breed of street entertainers has emerged with an interesting twist as they seem to have achieved the impossible. They are ‘levitating’ performers, emulating the ancient levitating yogis of India and they’ve sprung up in various locations causing quite a stir.

The illusion behind levitating street performers is revealed

Levitating performers are a variation on a theme of the human statue, but they’re intrinsically different as they appear to defy the laws of physics and enter into their own mystical realm of super-power. They attract large crowds of bystanders who stop and stare, hardly believing the spectacle before their eyes. Usually, these levitating humans are dressed in attire that’s straight out of India or the Middle East with draped clothing and headgear such as turbans and cloth facemasks. They form a very interesting, enthralling and curious sight.

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Perhaps very young children would be completely taken in by this but anyone with moderate intelligence and a basic understanding of gravity and physics, will quickly realise that something very clever is going on and that it’s NOT magic or mystical power! Few in the crowd can actually work out how it’s been achieved.

Thankfully, various resources at people’s fingertips today can explain the mystery, putting minds at rest. Video evidence has been captured of street performers setting up their act with the 'device' and clothing before carefully climbing into their costume.

Sometimes 2 artists are involved, one levitating and the other seated on the ground. Sometimes, the seated artist’s ‘holding’ the staff that supports their levitating companion, with even greater dramatic effect to the illusion.

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