Number 264 - 16th July 2005


David Strassman live in London... "Strassman is to ventriloquy what rocket power is to air travel" Daily Mail. "Devastatingly funny... nothing short of astounding." The Scotsman. See ventriloquist David Strassman and friends Chuck Wood and Ted E. Bare at the Pleasance's exclusive London preview, from July 21st - 30th prior to his Edinburgh headlining slot. Venue: the Pleasance Theatre, Carpenter's Mews, North Road, London N7 9EF (Map), Get two tickets for the price of one - visit for special offer details and to book. 16.7.05


The Magician and the Cardsharp - The Search for America's Greatest Sleight-of-Hand Artist by Karl Johnson. "A famous magician's journey to find the greatest cardsharp ever evokes the forgotten world of magic where Americans found escape during the Great Depression. It has the nostalgic quality of an old-fashioned fable, but Karl Johnson's The Magician and the Cardsharp is a true story that lovingly recreates the sparkle of a vanished world. Here, set against the backdrop of America struggling through the Depression, is the world of magic, a realm of stars, sleight of hand, and sin where dreams could be realized - or stolen away. Following the Crash of '29, Dai Vernon, known by magicians as 'the man who fooled Houdini,' is tramping down Midwestern backroads, barely making ends meet. While swapping secrets with a Mexican gambler, he hears of a guy he doesn't quite believe is real - a legendary mystery man who deals perfectly from the center of the deck and who locals call the greatest cardsharp of all time. Determined to find the reclusive genius, Vernon sets out on a journey through America's shady, slick, and sinful side; from mob-run Kansas City through railroad towns that looked sleepy only in the daytime. Does he find the sharp? Well, Karl Johnson did - after years of research into Vernon's colorful quest, research that led him to places he never knew existed. Johnson takes us to the cardsharp's doorstep and shows us how he bestowed on Vernon the greatest secret in magic. The Magician and the Cardsharp is a unique and endlessly entertaining piece of history that reveals the artistry and obsession of a special breed of American showmen." Due for publication on August 10th. Hardcover, 368 pages. To pre-order now, with a 9% discount from, Click Here. 16.7.05


Mark Raffles - The Legacy. "Join the world's number one pickpocket in this limited edition DVD collector's disc. For the first time on DVD Mark Raffles reveals his entire act; an act that inspired a new generation." The disc includes a complete explanation of his pick-pocketing show, archive footage, a history of the act and more. Anyone attending The Magic Circle Centenary Celebration will be able to buy the DVD before its official release (on August 1st), and, this Thursday at 11am, Mark will be signing copies on the Alakazam Magic stand. "Mark Raffles and Russ Stevens are two class acts on the British magic scene. Their collaboration on this DVD meets all expectations, providing a magnificent record of one of the great acts of British variety. It's informative too. Quite wonderful!" John Fisher. An production. (I've seen a pre-release copy and it's excellent, I hope to feature a few clips shortly.) 16.7.05


Theatre of Science. Extra dates have just been added to the Theatre of Science show currently playing at the Soho Theatre... "Following a sell out show at Soho Theatre in 2002, Theatre of Science is back with a new electrifying show. Putting their lives on the line in the name of entertainment and science, Simon Singh and Richard Wiseman will be attempting to pass one million volts through a cage, with one of them locked inside." There's a review and a great photo in the Guardian, Click Here - for booking details Click Here. 16.7.05


Marc Paul is featured in the current edition of Total TV Guide (16th - 22nd July) in a half page feature that discusses The Magic Circle's 100 years, and the BBC2 series Magic, which will be repeated on digital channels UKTV Documentary and UKTV Documentary Plus 1 from Monday this week, to coincide with the centenary. "It [magic] has evolved over the years to become much more accessible. The magician used to create an invisible barrier between himself and the audience because he seemed to be doing something they couldn't do. Now, the magician will often use the audience in his act, making us feel closer to the magic." Said Marc in the article.  16.7.05


Trevor Duffy lectures in the UK next year from March 20th to April 7th. "In Crossing the Fine Line Trevor had us all enthralled with his innovative ideas. His routines are charming and are a testament to the Many hours of practice he has spent in order to show us how to leave the audience having had an experience. If you are an official of a magic club or society then I can only urge you to book Trevor and allow him to educate your members into elevating their performances into a different league." Martin Duffy, President Newcastle Magic Circle, August 2003. To book the lecture for you society contact Colin Peters: 01306 883938 email for more information. 16.7.05


Illusionist Guy Barrett is performing his illusion show at the Doha Summer Wonders Festival in Qatar in the Middle East this Summer. Guy and his dancers are working nightly at the festival until August 10th, apart from a break in the middle when he flies home to perform at The Magic Circle Centenary Celebrations, on July 20th. 16.7.05


Hat-Trick Entertainments present "Magic Live - The UK's Largest Touring Show" at the Landmark Theatre, Ilfracombe, on July 29th and August 4th at 7.30pm. Box office 01271 324242. From the poster: "Starring Eugene Matthias - UK's No1 Magical Entertainer, Rodan - Europe's Top Escape Artist and Andy Rice - The Man of Many Faces." 16.7.05


Fabrice Delaure Productions have a brand new website! To coincide with their 10th anniversary the company have just launched a new site featuring their entire product range, news, video clips, tips, an FAQ's section and more. Visit today! 16.7.05


Magic on BBC Radio One. Late night Tuesday 19th July (actually 3am Wednesday morning) Huw Stephens presents one hour of magic featuring Dynamo, Sav, Alistair Cook and Chris Cox. The program will also be available on 'Listen Again' from after the 20th. 16.7.05


Filming took place on Monday for the new Terry Herbert DVD, to be produced by Practical Magic. Also featured on the DVD is David Kaye (Silly Billy) from New York. The DVD Magic For Under 5s consists of a live show from Terry, performed for nursery age children, followed by explanations and in-depth discussion between Terry and David on performing for this age group. The DVD will be launched at the Kidology Convention on Monday September 5th. 16.7.05


Magic Dave, (Dave Allen) the UK Children's Entertainer of the Year 2004, will present lecture "Little People, Big Business" at the Watford Association of Magicians on Tuesday, 19th July. Telephone Frank Leonhardt on 01923 888166 or visit for more information. 16.7.05


Radio Magic launches on Monday 25th July at 8pm and the first ever live show will feature stage hypnotist Matthew Stirling who'll discuss his line of work and attempt to hypnotise Radio Magic host Jay Fortune on air - anything could happen! If you'd like to be in with a chance of being at the live launch, and for all more information, visit 16.7.05


Latin-Magic will be performing on the Braemar for Fred Olsen Cruise Lines to July 24th. Their act mixes strong Latin-dance and choreography with magic and illusion. 16.7.05


Brian Farron helped launch the latest Harry Potter title Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince on Friday at WH Smith, Liverpool, complete with his own animatronic hat that talked to customers, and a giant animated Dementor that greeted them! "Potter mania casts spell to conjure up wizard launch" Click Here. To order the adult edition, with a 47% discount from, Click Here. 16.7.05


Ali Cardabra has just released a new effect called Oraculum. "It is absolutely super for private parties, featuring a digital Genie who plays an unusual card game with a guest, and concludes by magically producing a chosen card. If you own a DVD player or a lap top computer this is for you; if you own a portable DVD player you can use this anywhere, even as a close-up routine! Oraculum comes complete with the special DVD, cards which may be used for several mind reading effects, and instructions." Oraculum costs 29.99 plus 3 postage. Cheques should be made payable to "P Buonocore" and sent to Ali Cardabra, PO Box 25963, London N18 1WB (or write for more information). 16.7.05


Scott Creasey lectures at the Doncaster Magic Club on August 1st. The venue is the Regent Hotel in Doncaster, located in the town centre. The lecture starts at approximately 7.15pm and visiting magicians are welcome (5.00 charge). For more details visit 16.7.05


Walt Lees lectures on close-up and card magic for International Magic on Saturday afternoon, July 30th at 4.30pm, at the Cittie of Yorke Pub, 22 High Holborn, London WC1 (Map). To be sure of your ticket call International Magic on 020 7405 7324 or email: - tickets must be booked in advance and cost 10.00 each. 16.7.05


President of the Sussex Magic Circle, Andrew Jeffrey, is giving a lecture entitled "Being a Professional Amateur" at 8pm at the Medway Magic Society in Rochester on Tuesday 19th July at the Gordon House Hotel, 91 High Street, Rochester ME1 1LX (Map). The lecture has been well received on what Andrew calls the "World Tour of Sussex." (Click Here for a review). Visiting magicians welcome, contact Medway Magical Society for details. 16.7.05


Mystery of the magician who spent his life dodging bullets. "Will the strange affair of the mysterious death of Chung Ling Soo - the inscrutable magician once as feted as his contemporary, the great escape artist Harry Houdini - finally be solved in Edinburgh this August? Adam Koplan, the man who is bringing this bizarre tale of a Scots-American prestidigitator - who may or may not have been murdered while performing the signature trick that made him famous - is playing his cards close to his chest. 'I don't want to give too much away,' says the New York-based director of The Flying Carpet Theatre Company, whose new physical theatre piece about the magician, The Mystery of Chung Ling Soo, will be staged at C venues. 'But certainly the show will reveal that the truth really is stranger than fiction.'" To read the full article by Jackie McGlove in the Scotsman, Click Here. 16.7.05


Owen Lean "The Road Mage" is currently in Vancouver, Canada performing at the Summer Entertainment on Granville Island Street Festival and plans to use the money he makes to produce a new performance DVD The Middlesbrough Circle of Magicians will be holding their annual dinner on Saturday November 12th. tickets are now available from Steven Lewis, 7 Hawthorn Road, Sedgefield, TS21 3DA priced 25.00 each We've been asked to mention The John James Project, which includes a magic forum, so here it is: That's it for this week, MagicWeek will be a couple of days later than usual next week due to The Magic Circle Centenary Celebrations - see you there! Your news is always welcomed, Duncan. 16.7.05