The Digital Wizard CDRom
Produced by Martin Breese
Reviewed by John Derris
Fifty years ago
"The Wizard" was a favourite monthly magazine of mine. It was not a specialist
publication but included close-up, stage and platform effects, mental magic as
well as interesting biographies of performing magicians of the day. I loved its
format - a pocket A5 size, bold, colourful cover and the clear and detailed line
illustrations of Jack Lamonte who was associated with the editor and founder
George Armstrong. Nearly every month you would find something between its pages
that would interest you enough to work on an item. And the contributors have
since all made their mark in magic - Al Koran, Ken Brooke, Roy Johnson, Fred
Lowe, Lewis Ganson, Billy McComb, Hans Trixer and many, many others.
There were feature issues such as the Al Koran edition, a prized copy of which I still have today that gave a biography and miscellany of the emerging fertile brain of that star in the ascendancy that included cards, thimbles, mental effects and other bright Koran ideas. This is typical of the quality of the magazine that went into 95 issues comprising 3328 pages covering every aspect of magic. Now through the enterprise of Martin Breese he has purchased the publication rights and assembled all 95 editions on a single CD disc that can be played on a PC or Apple Mac computer at a ridiculously low price considering the wealth of material offered.
At my age I am a computer illiterate but it's simplicity itself to follow Martin's instructions and open up an Eldorado of magic that will undoubtedly yield new (but old) ideas that you can use. I've always found that with the plethora of books that are pouring out of magic publishers these days that if you want to find some new thinking, go back to the books of years ago.
With earlier books on discs for me it was a problem to locate an item and I much preferred flicking through the pages of a book, However on this Martin Breese disc is incorporated an excellent, fast, visual page reference and a facility (Adobe Acrobat) the allows you to turn over the pages of the book on the screen that compares favourably with real paper pages in your hand.
At just £31.75 ($45.00) post free The Digital Wizard is a steal and I know you will find some gems that have remained hidden for years within its pages. Highly recommended. Obtainable from Martin Breese International.
© John Derris, August 2002