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Wonder Thunder

Episode #1 : Why saw a woman in half? What is the connection between a deck of cards & the calendar. Remote card location.

Episode #2: Espionage, jealousy & murder among magicians. Adam calls his arch nemesis Richard Vegas.

Episode #3:The first aircraft pilot down under was a magician and a live random number challenge via phone.

Episode #4: Bar stunts, Alice Cooper as a magician and magic used in pop concerts.

Wednesday
Apr162008

Black's Magic Takes on the Pirates!

James L Clark, founder of Black's Magic Group & Street Magic Magazine has fired what he promises to be only the first attack in an ongoing campaign against those who pirate magic. Thanks to a post in the Genii Forums by Magician Tim Ellis, we were made aware of the story by a headline stating, "One exposure site feels the pain..." According to the entry Magic Unlimited, After identifying a site that was purchasing Magic DVD's and other literature, and then making it freely available to its' members, Clark contacted the site owner and attempted to convince them to cease such activities. After being told where he could go with that idea, Clark contacted the local field office of the FBI in the state in which the site owner lived and the young man in question then received a visit from Bureau Agents. Since then, the site has closed and Clark has begun to identify other site with whom he will pursue similar steps. Nicely Done James!
Wednesday
Apr162008

Criss Angel Vanishes From Binghamton

Plans for Criss Angel to stage a disappearance from an imploding building as part of the next season of his A&E show Mindfreak has vanished from the schedule. An article from the Binghamton Press Bulletin provides details in an article entitled, Magician's disappearing act to bypass Binghamton. The plan involved the demolition of the 119-year-old Ross Building which is scheduled for demolition in early May. "The city is trying to bring down the aging structure in the safest way possible," Mayor Matthew Ryan says. "There will be no implosion." An executive producer for "Mindfreak" confirmed Tuesday that the show had considered a Binghamton building for an Angel special, but was unavailable for further comment.
Tuesday
Apr152008

Elliot Card Challenge

In the Sun Journal, we are reminded of the third annual Elliott Card Challenge to be presented by Ring 362 of the International Brotherhood of Magicians in Bangor, Maine on April 20th.  "The contest honors Rumford native son James William Elliott (1874-1920), who publicly challenged the world to compete in a contest of card manipulative skill. For the 22 years that he offered this public challenge, no one ever took him up on his offer, allowing him to remain the Champion Card Manipulator of the World, 'The King of Kards.' " One year ago, Rumford was named as "Maine's Capital of Magic" by  Ring 362 of the I.B.M. and Assembly 174 of the Society of American Magicians to further honor Elliot. Among this year's contestants is Tom Craven of "The LInking Ring."
Tuesday
Apr152008

Sensationalism Smacks You Back!

norm clarkeAs reported yesterday, Las Vegas Review Journal columnist Norm Clarke and the Luxor's golden boy are apparently at war.  The Vegas Eye, calls Clarke's story on the supposed incidents between himself and Criss Angel "the usual Clarke school of sensational journalism." Politz goes on to  question the accuracy of Clarke's reporting on the details of the incident and says, "Funny how Clarke doesn’t like being called names or being picked on about a disability. However, Clarke has no problem calling others names.  Do you Norm? or is that plus size Norm?" In addition, Robin Leach, as he'd promised in his posts yesterday, mentioned that he'd be asking for statements from all parties on the actual facts of the encounter. In today's column, Leach says, "My request for a candid conversation to clear up the accusations was turned down by his management people saying: “Just let it go away and be forgotten. There is nothing to be gained by rehashing it now. It’s a case of no comment.” Apparently from here on in he just wants to focus on his new $150-million Cirque du Soleil magic spectacular,Believe, for which rehearsals begin today (TUES) for the first time in the new Luxor Theater."  Additional coverage can be found on this topic in an article from the Los Angeles Times for those that can't get enough.
Monday
Apr142008

Al Mann Lecture DVD Released!

al mannOur thanks to  Steve Brooks over at Magic Cafe for making us aware of the release on DVD of a recording of the legendary mentalist Al Mann. The presentation was recorded in Vienna, Austria on November 24th 1984. According to the information provided by Steve via Chris Wasshuber at lybrary.com, "It is a wonderful video to watch and see Al in action, as well as pick up a number of tips and several excellent routines. He also explains a fantastic card force developed by Robert Parrish. This force is so fair and completely absent of any sleight-of-hand, that the knowledge of this alone is worth the entire DVD!" Visit lybrary.com now for more info on this rare opportunity.
Monday
Apr142008

Was it a "Mindfreak" or Not?

Criss & VeronicaAs much as we have tried to steer clear of reporting on topics with an overtly "gossipy" overtone, it seems a bit silly for us to ignore articles from such sources as the Los Angeles Times, Robin Leach's Luxe Life, and Norm Clarke of the Las Vegas Review Journal with regard to one of magic's most popular performers, Criss Angel. All report varying versions of an unhappy Criss Angel expressing his dissatisfaction with the fact that his girlfriend, the current Miss Nevada USA Veronica Grabowski, did not make it into the finals of Donald Trump's Miss USA (Universe) pageant. According to an article from the Los Angeles Times, reporting on local Vegas celebrities by local press,   "has resulted in some epic feuds. And some silly ones. But certainly one of the ugliest -- with threats of violence -- happened on Friday night after the Miss USA contest between Criss Angel and the Review-Journal's Norm Clarke." Richard Abowitz, author of the piece goes on to report that, "According to Clarke, Angel flashed an obscene gesture on the NBC telecast after his girlfriend was out of the competition."  Clarke who writes the Vegas Confidential Column for the Las Vegas Review Journal say in an article entitled, 'So, that's why it's titled Mindfreak, "Angel, his two brothers and a bodyguard ran down a corridor to catch up to this writer near the entrance of a VIP post-pageant party. "You're a (bleeping) idiot," screamed Angel, who kept repeating it. He added that he wanted nothing to do with me or this column in the future." Mr. Clarke, who wear an eyepatch because of a chaildhood injury which left him blind in his right eye, goes on to say that Criss threatened him by saying, "Don't ever write another word about me, or you'll need an eyepatch over your other eye." In his Luxe Life Colum for Las Vegas Magazine, Robin Leach reports, "Now that I’m back in town I will try today to get to the bottom of all the printed problems surrounding Mindfreak magician Criss Angel. Apparently disappointed that his new galpal, Veronica Grabowski, Miss Nevada didn’t make it into the Top 15 candidates he wound up in a scream fest with my gossip-guru pal Norm Clarke. He’s also alleged to have unleashed an F-bomb tirade and used his center-finger in an obscene gesture to the NBC cameras when they focused on him stunned that Veronica didn’t make the final fifteen! Instead of attending the official post-pageant Planet Hollywood Resort party celebration Criss took her off to the rival LAX nightclub at the Luxor for their own party celebration." We continue to admire the ability of Criss to entertain and to generate interest in magical performances, but hope that the dust settles soon so that he can comfortably begin rehearsals for his new Cirque show at the Luxor. All reports have stated their intent to try and get more information from the principals and we will report as updates are made available.    
Saturday
Apr122008

Bling Doesn't Mean Engaged

Vegas Confidential reporter Norm Clark tells readers that in spite of the jewelry that arrived with him last week and which was presented to Miss Nevada USA, the two are NOT engaged. Criss is said to have appeared unexpectedly in order to put some magic back into their relationship via some "pricey-looking diamond earrings" which were displayed to her fellow contestants. Supposedly, they match the "big honking diamond Angel reportedly presented to the beauty" which she's wearing on her left ring finger. "They're not engaged," said Steve Flynn, who is Angel's public relations rep. Norm goes on to discuss some an encounter with the illusionists and one of the pageant judges when he reportedly said, "I hear you are a judge. I hope you are going to give my girl high marks."
Friday
Apr112008

First Look at Pixar's Presto!

PrestoThe Slash Films Blog has releasted a still shot from the directorial debut of Pixar’s Annie Award-winning supervising animator Doug Sweetland which is set to premiere in front of the production company's next feature film  "WALL-E." Apple Computer founder Steve Jobs' Academy Award winning Pixar Animation Studios has long been recognized for short film presentations which are eagerly anticipated warm-ups for such animated features as Toy Story, A Bug's Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters, Inc.  Finding Nemo, The Incredibles and Cars, This five minute short film follows  Presto DiGiotagione, a turn-of-the-century magician, who is famous for an astounding hat trick. Presto’s apprentice rabbit, Alec, however, is dissatisfied as he shares none of Presto’s wild success. While Presto is out eating lavish dinner, Alec is left behind, locked in a birdcage with a carrot torturously out of reach. Sweetland also provides the voices of both Presto and Alec. 
Friday
Apr112008

"BELIEVE" in Angel's Double Dilemma

In his Vegas Luxe Life Column, Robin Leach ponders the ability of Illusionist Criss Angel to resolve the dilemma of their relationship should she win the crown. According to Leach, "The striking couple have literally been inseparable since meeting earlier this year—even going dirt-bike riding together up in Red Rock Canyon. I’ve seen them together a number of times at the Luxor where he lives and at both the Cathouse restaurant and loungerie and LAX nightclub."  In his column, Leach goes on to say, “He wants her to win. He’s very proud of her,” one of Criss’ friends told me.” But if she wins it’ll be a year before they are really together again. She’d be based in Manhattan and will travel the world as the ambassador of Miss USA. That’s a tough spot for two people who care very much about each other to find themselves in.”  Of much interest to those that follow such things is the debate as to the name of his new $150 million Cirque du Soleil  show at the Luxor. Leach casually refers to it in teh column as "Believe," but Criss reserves comment on the official moniker until a future press release. The show is It’s tentatively set to open in previews on July 31 with a gala opening penciled in for September 12.
Friday
Apr112008

Margolis Magic Talent Nixed

As we has previously reported, CBS premiered the new reality/competition show “Secret Talents of the Stars" on April 8th. Because of dismal ratings, it was canceled last night. Why do we care? Because, unless previously unreleased video is posted to YouTube,  Playboy model Cindy Margolis' talents as a magical performer will remain unrevealed.