Pepper's ghost is an illusion technique used in theatre, named after scientist John Henry Pepper. It has a long history, dating into the 16th century, and remains widely performed today. The audience views a stage or room with various objects in it. On command, ghostly objects appear to fade in or out of existence in the room, or objects in the room magically transform into different objects.
Two way mirror foil on frame
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How the Pepper’s ghost effect works
In the stage version of the illusion, an actor is hidden in a recessed area below the stage and faces a mirror. The audience sees the actor’s ghostly image reflected in a sheet of glassless mirror suspended above the stage, and lighting can be used to make him or her appear or disappear.
Pepper’s ghost has been a popular theatre trick since the 1860s. In those days, an image reflected from a hidden, illuminated room appeared to be on stage, with the audience unaware they were essentially looking through a window. This “ghost” was at least genuinely three-dimensional, with the audience viewing a reflection of a live actor, who appeared three-dimensional just as your reflection in a mirror appears three-dimensional.