Magic Music

This game is well known, but is reproduced for the information of those who may be unfamiliar with it. One of the company is sent from the room, and during his absence it is arranged that he is to do something. e.g. sit down in a certain chair, or take a book and carry it across the room to place it on a table, etc. When he returns, he is told that the music will guide him in his efforts to learn the task he has been appointed to do. Suppose, for instance, that he is to take a chair and place it upside down in a corner of the room. The player plays softly when he is at a distance from the chair and more loudly as he draws near to it. As he puts his hand on it, the music is very loud but does not stop, so he knows that he is to do something with it. It is then played softly until he approaches the designated corner, but still does not stop. Guided by the music he essays various things with it until he hits upon the one appointed, when the music stops with a crash.

As a parlor game it might be intended to be played accompanied by a simple tonal piece, but it of course might be played more freely. The game is still used in improvisational theatre and it's main appeal is in the fuzziness of actions and their judgment.

About this sub-page

This quote of the "Magic Music" game is used as a part of a review for a book by Daniel Bloomfield, Games and puzzles for the musical (1910). See there for the full context.

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