Ian Adair – Corkscrew Magic

Ian Adair


Hereís a rather interesting type of effect. It came to me one evening when I was watching someone opening a bottle of red wine. The actual metal screw section of the corkscrew came away from the wooden T-shaped handle.


The performer displays a bottle of wine complete with a tightly fitted cork. He also drapes a white stiff napkin over his arm and pretends to be a waiter. A slender tube, which fits over the bottle, is nearby and is made to cover the unit. Next, a corkscrew of the T-shaped variety is shown, metal screw type section – wooden handle on top, as illustrated. As this is shown unfortunately the metal sections falls off onto the table. The performer is left only holding the wooden handle and apologizes to his audience. He drops the wooden handle into the empty folds of the napkin, holding the four corners together thus to form a bag. This is handed to a spectator to hold. A snap of the fingers and when the napkin is undraped, there is the corkscrew complete again with itís metal section again attached to the handle. Upon lifting away the tube, the cork is no longer in the bottleneck and parts of the contents are poured into a nearby glass.


  • A set of two nesting bottles, the inner one being able to hold a certain amount of wine, or liquid which resembles the real stuff. A cork which fits into the neck of the outer bottle. A plastic or cardboard tube to fit over the nesting bottles. You may already have this from your set of Passe Passe Bottles, or from your Multiplying Bottles outfit.
  • A wineglass nearby.
  • A white napkin of the cloth variety.
  • A special corkscrew made from two of similar shape and size. To fake it, use one as the genuine one, and from the other, remove the screw metal sections, discarding the wooden handle. Bore a hold on the top of the wooden handle, approximately central position, as illustrated. Screw it lightly into this hole. Now you have a corkscrew with two metal sections, both protruding from the central parts of the wooden handle. You will find that it is any easy matter for you to display the corkscrew looking genuine by hiding the second screw section with the fingers of your right hand.

You are ready to commence the effect. Have the corkscrew inside your jacket pocket or within the fold of the cloth napkin.

Display the bottles (nested together).

Point to the tightly fitted cork.

Cover the bottle(s) with the tube. Normally, there is a hole cut toward the back of the tube for easy access using the index finger. This in turn will take away the outer bottle when required. Alternatively, the fingers on the right hand can enter via the top of the tube and steal away the bottle.

Explain to your audience that you will show them how to open a bottle of wine by magic. Once the bottle is covered, remove the corkscrew from the napkin or from your pocket and display it within your right hand, concealing the duplicate metal section. It looks genuine.

Throw the cloth napkin up into the air and drape it over your left hand. Drop the corkscrew into the folds, making sure no one sees the duplicate metal section. In doing so, allow the loose section to fall off onto the table, with a “clang!” Apologize and display just the handle held between your fingers. Drop this inside the napkin. Gather the four corners of the napkin together and hand these to a spectator to hold for all to see. Stand back and snap your fingers. Let the spectator undrape the napkin and then ask him or her to display the corkscrew. Itís complete again. You may wish to vanish the section which has accidentally(?) fallen off, but this is entirely up to the individual. Take the corkscrew and wave it over the covered bottle within the tube. Remove the tube either inserting your finger through the hole at the rear or by lifting away the outer bottle, containing the cork so that when taken away, there is the inner bottle WITHOUT A CORK! Whereís the cork? Thatís the question and how did the bottle magically open itself? Lift up the bottle and pour the wine into a glass. Sample the wine and nod your head in approval.

Itís certainly a different type of effect, one I hope GeMiNi members will enjoy.

Ian Adair.