Cardini

cardiniBorn Richard Valentine Pitchford in Britain on November 24th, 1895, Cardini would become one of the great innovators in magic history.

Cardini is credited with the birth of the type card handling techniques we perform today.

In his early years, he spent many hours practicing card manipulation in the trenches, working for the British Army during World War 1.

He became so good that he could even manipulate with gloves on. He would later be famous for it.

He traveled around a bit until landing in the States where he would create skits based on his manipulation and sleights.

He was a huge hit as audiences and magicians had never seen anything like it.

His awards and acclamations include:

  • New England Magic Society’s proclamation of Cardini as the “greatest exponent of pure sleight of hand the world has ever known”
  • He was honored in 1970 with the title “Master Magician”, which was awarded at the Magic Castle, LA, and presented by Tony Curtis.
  • In 1999 he was named one of Magic Magazine’s Top Magicians of the 20th Century.
  • He was a three time President of the Society of American Magicians.
  • In 1960 The Magic Circle in London honored him with the Silver Wand Award.
Posted in History

Easy to Master Card Miracles

Easy to Master Card MiraclesMichael Ammar’s classic, all-time best selling series for learning card magic is essential for any magician’s collection.

With nine DVDs is the collection, it is packed chalk full of some of the best card tricks ever created.

Each trick uses a regular deck of cards, and although they vary on skill level needed to perform, even a novice with a lower skill level can master the tricks with a little practice.

Some of the classic effects on volume one alone are:

  • 8 Card Brainwave
  • Las Vegas Leaper
  • Triumph
  • Red Hot Mama
  • And More…

Volume one is worth picking up for the fact that it has enough card magic for any single magician’s repertoire. But if you want a collection of some of the best card tricks ever created and demonstrated by on of magic’s greatest teachers, I recommend the whole 9 volume set.

You will not be disappointed. In fact it will catapult your skills forward.

Pick up Michael Ammar’s Easy to Master Card Miracles today!

Posted in Magic Made Simple, Resources, Reviews, Uncategorized

Doug Henning

doug henningDoug Henning was a Canadian magician who performed magic in the 1970s and 1980s, re-popularizing magic as a mainstream art form.

He performed his first show at the age of fourteen and soon after performed on Canadian television.

He received a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts and traveled to America to study among the greats.

Making magic popular once more, Doug Henning created a theatrical show titled “Spell Bound.”

He then went on to do television shows in the U.S., winning Emmy’s and receiving critical acclaim.

In the mid 1980s, Doug Henning retired from show business and studied Transcendental Meditation and later ran for office in Canada.

In February of 2000, Henning died of liver cancer at the age of 52.

Posted in History

Modern Magic by Professor Hoffmann

Hoffmann Modern MagicModern Magic by Professor Hoffmann, First published in 1876, is regarded by many a fine magician, as the ultimate magic book.

It details methods of the era in which it was written in, yet is still relevant today.

Harry Houdini gave much praise to both the book and the author.

Johnny Carson is said to credit Modern Magic by Professor Hoffmann for the reason he got into show business.

Many tricks are described in this legendary book using classic objects such as playing cards, coins, and rope; and unconventional items such as eggs, rice and utility devices.

The lack of English magic titles before Modern Magic by Professor Hoffmann meant it was the first of its kind.

Many magicians would agree that the book is as useful today as it was during the time of publication.

Pick up a copy for your self

Posted in History, Magic Made Simple, Resources

Slydini

SlydiniTony Slydini, born Quintino Marucci, was an Italian sleight of hand magician.

He is credited with being the first exclusive close-up magician.

His father was an amateur magician and encouraged his son to focus on sleight of hand.

Moving from Italy, Slydini traveled about until ultimately landing in Boston where he would land  a three show a day gig performing for $5 a show.

His style of close-up magic was so unique and revolutionary that spectators and magicians alike were amazed.

His whole show was impromptu, feeding off the audience to determine which tricks he performed.

He was so good in fact, that he apparently was the only magician that could fool Dai Vernon.

Slydini went into death in 1991, but left a legacy as one of the greatest sleight of hand magicians the world has ever seen.

Posted in History

Now You See It, Now You Don’t – Lessons in Sleight of Hand

Now You See It, Now You Don'tIs sleight of hand overwhelming you?

Are you just starting out and feel engulfed in all the materials on the market?

Start here…

Now You See It, Now You Don’t by Bill Tarr is a classic.

Many received their early training form this book.

The illustrations are top notch and can do more for your learning than many videos you find online.

As the author says this book is “a comprehensive course in sleight of hand.”

Inside you will learn:

  • Card fanning
  • Springing the cards from hand-to-hand
  • The three shell game
  • The cups and balls
  • Three-card monte
  • The Miser’s dream

Plus…

  • Dozens of the world’s greatest sleight of hand effects!

With over 1,500 line drawings, you’ll learn the easiest way to perform sleight-of-hand magic

Get your copy today

You’ll perform miracles in no time flat.

Posted in Magic Made Simple, Resources

Howard Thurston

thurston posterHoward Thurston was born in Columbus Ohio on July 20, 1869. His childhood was rather tough, so the young Thurston ran off and joined the circus.

This is where he would meet his future partner, Harry Keller.

Inspiration came after Thurston visited Alexander Herrman’s magic show and was determined to top it.

He would top it, indeed, and would later become the most famous magician of his time.

His stage show was the biggest of the era, so big in fact, it took eight train cars to transport.

Thurston became known for his sharp use of cards. He was so good in fact, he fooled Alexander Herrman and billed himself as “The Man Who Fooled Herrman.”

He used the publicity and became known as The King of Cards in vaudeville houses throughout Europe and the United States.

After his long time partner Keller retired, Thurston continued performing until 1936 when he suffered a stroke.

He lives on in legend as one of the greatest magicians to ever grace the stage.

Posted in History

The Double Lift

Playing cardsIf you asked magicians what the most important card sleights to have in their arsenal are, the list would vary. But in all of these lists one that would never be left out. And that would be the double lift.

The double lift dates back to 1776, but many magicians give credit to the late great Dai Vernon and his double turnover.

There are many versions of the double lift, but they all essentially perform the same sleight. That is, turning over two cards as one.

Some versions of the common routine, The Ambitious Card, rely heavily on the double lift, some even exclusively.

If you are looking to learn the double lift, I suggest getting a book such as Expert Card Technique by Jean Hugard, instead of learning it from some novice on YouTube.

Learning the correct way to perform the sleight will prevent yourself from picking up any bad habits.

Posted in Magic Made Simple, Resources

David Copperfield – The Most Successful Magician

David CopperfieldDavid Copperfield (born David Seth Kotkin) is the most commercially successful in all of history.

As a boy he studied and performed magic as “Davino the Boy Magician”. Shy and a loner, Copperfield saw magic as a way of fitting in, and a way to meet girls.

His first break was a lead role in the musical “The Magic Man”, which became the longest running musical in Chicago.

Between 1978 and 2001, Copperfield starred in 17 Television specials and two Documentaries.

He has the largest personal collection of magic memorabilia and owns a series of islands in the Bahamas where he has built a resort.

Some of his more famous tricks are:

  • His flying illusion
  • His sawing a person in half
  • Vanishing the Statue of Liberty
  • Walking through the Great Wall of China

Copperfeild’s net worth is said to be around $800 million, the highest of any magician in history.

Posted in History, Resources

Choosing a Stage Name

The StageChoosing a magician name is a relatively large step in your magical pursuits. It solidifies your persona and stamps your ticket, saying “I Have Arrived!”

If you are trying to find a stage name that is suitable for yourself, read on.

A lot of magicians use their government names. If you have the name David Copperfield then the task of finding your stage name might be complete.

But if you are like most, you want something catchy.

Tips for finding the right stage name:

-Rhyming: Names like Stan the Magic Man or Chester the Jester are both catchy and memorable.

-Two Forenames: Take two forenames and combine them.
Example: Teddy Howard or John Patrick

-Enhancers: Use Great, Magnificent, etc. Magicians from the past used enhancers to their names. I find it a little dated, but it might work for you.
Example: The Amazing Kreskin

-Add Letters: Add letters to the end of a name.
Example: If your name is Dan you could call yourself Danini or Danoni

-The Magician: A simple name followed by “The Magician” is not unique, but establishes fact without question and can work wonders for promotion.
Example: Gary The Magician

No matter how you arrive at your stage name, one must admit its importance. If you plan to go professional, your stage name will be your business name, logo and trademark.

Choose wisely!

Posted in Magic Made Simple, Resources, Uncategorized
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