Reviews/Multiball Contact

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[edit] Multiball Contact

  • Author: Drew Batchelor
  • Publisher: The Ministry of Manipulation (Dec 2006)
  • Format: Paperback, 168 pages
  • Available from: Ministry of Manipulation
  • ISBN: 978-0955473906

[edit] Reviews

[edit] Review by User:Brine_child

Well. well well well.

My copy of 'Multiball Contact' arrived through my letter box this morning with an impressive thud (enough to waken a student so you know that this isn't a lightweight pamphlet) a mere two days after ordering from the Ministry.

In my excitement I then proceeded to read the thing through, cover to cover, in one sitting and in short it's blown my mind a little bit. A while ago I saw a couple of pages from the work in progress, so I knew that this was going to be a helpful read but I didn't realise just how significant one educational resource could be.

That's not just idle hyperbole either, since picking up this book I can see my entire approach to practice and performance changing. Starting from the first page I have started relearning and improving my technique on the most basic of exercises.

The presentation of the book has been mentioned in previous reviews and really is an important factor. Drew has provided us with photographs (loads of photographs) rather than illustrations, which is a real step forward for juggling media and the whole thing is as pretty and professional as you could hope for.

Significantly the lessons flow together in an intuitive way so you never notice the learning curve towering above you (compare the first few chapters of 'Multiball Contact' with 'Contact Juggling' by James Ernest to see what I mean) and you'll always be enthusiastic for the next lesson.

Perhaps the thing which has impressed me the most about this book is the way in which Drew explains how to practice efficiently. In no other piece of juggling media have I seen such care and attention paid to actual teaching and method rather than simply showing moves. Whenever an idea is introduced, Drew shows us how to incorporate ideas from his previous lessons; eventually the 'tango', which starts out as a simple familiarisation exercise, becomes a sort of structured improvisation incorporating everything that has been learned prior to that point.

It would surprise me if there is a single contact juggler out there, veteran or rookie, who wouldn't benefit from this book even if they aren't too interested in multiball yet. I started with the one ball lessons and it took me an Autechre album and a half before I picked up ball number two. But if you think that it's going to be a slow paced experience then that's not the case, the whole thing is kept moving with a real sense of humour and a focus on the internal and meditative qualities of multiball contact (warning internal benefits of multiball contact are spiritual more than physical, do not consume your props, acrylics are for external use only)

As if that's not enough there are a couple of nice nods to the dotorg community. Seriously, go to the Ministry website and buy this book. Now. If you don't then your style will suffer and you will end up wasting a lot of your practice time.

Thank you Drew for such a fantastic new addition to the community, you can tell that this has been a labour of love and we're all the better for it. I get the feeling the repercussions that your baby will bring about will be a real force of change in the contact world. Expect a lot of people getting very good very quickly.

[edit] Review by User:Suicas

Well.. my copy of Multiball Contact arrived today!

And...wow! I was really looking forward to this, and it's every bit as good as I'd hoped, and a lot more.

The book is beautifully laid out, full of clear text, explanations and tips for a really wide range of multiball goodness. It's a great visual guide to learning, there are tons of photos and diagrams to go with each lesson to get the point across. The visual presentation of it makes it something I'd happily leave out on my coffee table for non-CJers to flick through too.

For those of us who don't any teachers nearby (or many contact practioners for that matter), having a resource like this which breaks things down into small steps, difficulty and practice times will be invaluable.

I'd seriously recommend that anyone who has the slightest interest in multiball goes out and orders a copy of this book now, preferably 2 copies to encourage Drew to write a followup (for 10 years down the line when you're done with this one of course!).

I've only had time to go through the first few lessons, but had a good flick and read through later parts of the book. It's good. Really good. Really really good. Also, it's extremely good in case I forgot to mention it.

[edit] Review by User:IMP

I also have the book now. Bougth it from Drew at the CJC. I haven't read all of it yet, but i love the first few lessons (the stuff i did). It's kinda the same as what he thougth in his workshop but that doesn't matter. I like the contact tango. I think the advice to keep the feet moving is one the best i ever had in my CJ "carreer".

Back to the book though: I think it's a good book. It's very understandable, even for a non-native english speaker like me. I also like the fact that it has photos instead of drawings. A drawing usually isn't as clear as a photo, since a photo shows things just how they are.

The design is awesome too. I'm a graphic design student myself (still have two and a half year to go though), i think i can distinguish (sp?) a good from a bad design. This one was good though! Ryan told me Drew is a designer himself and i could totally tell.

Negative points / things that could be better: I would prefer a hard-covered book, but i think that might be just personal. That's about it, i think.

Conclusion: a very complete book, going from the very first step all the way down the multiball road, covering all you need to know. Go get it!

Imp

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