Sleight of Hand at its Finest!

Posted by Editor on September 2nd, 2014
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Peregrine Pass by Daniel Prado from Dan and Dave on Vimeo.

“I don’t believe it! A perfect control to the top or bottom of the deck”

It’s not often we stumble upon a secret technique that looks as good as what is suppose to be happening, in this case – closing a spread of cards. With the Peregrine Pass, what happens “behind the scenes” when compared to the polished performance is night and day. This is sleight of hand at its finest!

UPDATE: Almost immediately after uploading the trailer to YouTube Daniel was accused of using “video editing” to hide the control. Here’s a “uncut performance” for the haters, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLYfMEpPG94

Learn how it’s done in this in-depth tutorial by professional magician, Daniel Prado.

Available exclusively at shop.dananddave.com

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Houdini, Illusionists 2.0 And Magic On TV [Magic Bulletin]

Posted by Michael on September 2nd, 2014

Up top we have James More from The illusionists 2.0 speaking to Mike Hosking on Newstalk ZB (which is out of New Zealand). While the original line up preps for its North American tour (set to begin in November), the 2.0 crew is opening tonight in Auckland, New Zealand. Actually, given the time difference and all they are probably hitting the stage around the same time this article posts!

Houdini Part One premiered last night on History. If you missed it, it is on again tonight before Part Two (thanks to a massive storm and flickering electricity, I will be re-recording it). Overnight ratings are not out quite yet (the holiday will probably delay them until Wednesday), but the movie seemed to spark some nostalgia here and abroad. Time Magazine posted a slideshow of vintage Houdini photographs and The Derby Telegraph ran a story on Randolph Douglas, the Derbyshire teen who sold Houdini on the idea of upside straitjacket escapes.

Besides Houdini Part Two(which re-airs in its entirety on Saturday), there is a new episode of Wizard Wars tonight and America’s Got Talent will see performances by Mat Franco and Smoothini as they make their bid to join Mike Super and David and Leeman in the next round of competition. I do not know how y’all feel, but I am almost getting spoiled by all of the magic on television at the moment.

Speaking of Houdini, did anyone else catch Murray Sawchuck and Gay Blackstone on the special episode of Pawn Stars last night?

E! Online is reporting that Joan Rivers is making “small, but positive, steps” towards recovery. The pioneering comic and one time magician’s assistant remains on life support and in a coma.

Before Brody: Five Well Known Actors To Portray Houdini

Posted by Michael on September 1st, 2014

Adrien Brody is a well established actor and a bona fide movie star, but he is not the only famous actor to play Harry Houdini.

Houdini, who dabbled in acting, we be undoubtedly pleased to learn that two Academy Award nominated actors had portrayed him in film. Other famous actors also took turns playing the world famous magician.

When Houdini premieres tonight on History, Adrien Brody will not only be the latest actor to portray Harry Houdini, he will be the first Oscar winner to step into the role. In the build up to the two part film’s release, much has been made of the fact that Brody himself performed magic as a young man. Although some have suspected this was played up for publicity, his mother actually wrote of it in The Village Voice over a dozen years ago when Brody was in contention for the Academy Award. Adrien Brody may be the most decorated actor to play Houdini, but he is not the only well known actor to play the role, not was he the one in Oscar contention.

It is probably fair to say that Tony Curtis’ portrayal of Houdini, in the film of the same name, is the best known. In fact, some think that it was his 1953 film that cemented Harry Houdini’s reputation as the world’s greatest magician. It is definitely responsible for the wide misconception that Houdini died as a result of a mishap in his Chinese Water Torture Cell act. That is not the only liberty taken with the magician’s life by the film, which blurred over many of the man’s rough edges and mixed up the chronology of events, such as his adoption of straightjacket escapes. The public was not concerned by the film’s accuracy, though. They embraced the light hearted biography, particularly the love story between Harry and Bess, who was played by Tony Curtis’ real life wife (at the time) Janet Leigh. Houdini was Curtis’ first real success as a leading man and he would go on to long a successful career, even getting an Academy Award nomination (Best Actor) for The Defiant Ones.

More after the jump
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The Amazing Randi: Still Going Strong

Posted by Michael on September 1st, 2014

The Miami Herald posted this video (and another, which you can see here) over the weekend in conjunction that they printed with James Randi. The 86 year old magician and South Florida resident was nominally interviewed because of the documentary about him, An Honest Liar, but it is barely mentioned. Instead, they were content to just let Randi perform magic, talk about his career and his debunking. You can read the full interview at the Herald’s website

Free Book AND TV Show Downloads And More [Magic Bulletin]

Posted by Michael on September 1st, 2014

First up, CW 33 KDAF coverage of the Texas Association of Magicians convention down in Fort Worth this weekend.

Another summer weekend means a new book in the Conjuring Arts Free Summer Reading Club, and we think it may be the last (we do not know when the club will end this year, but summer is basically over for most of America). If it is this is the last free high quality PDF download, they are going out on a high note. Professor Hoffman’s Modern Magic, the book that arguably ushered in the modern era of magic, is yours to download free until next Sunday. Get it here!

We know iTricksters like free stuff so we have two more goodies to tell you about, both over on iTunes. The first episode of Penn and Teller: Fool Us (American version) is free to download as is the first episode of Wizard Wars. If you do not have SyFy (or, for that matter, a local CW affiliate), this is a great way to at least see what you are missing. Plus, it is always nice to have a little something downloaded for the next time you are stuck somewhere with nothing to do… We do not know how long these episodes will be free or if they are available outside of the United States.

The Daily Mirror reported late last week that Dynamo has responded to some of the criticism of his Shard levitation. He basically just Tweeted he was loving the speculation… and hash tagged the premiere date of his next series and WIRES. The next day the Mirror reported that he claimed on Sky News to only have uses the wire, a safety line, during windy rehearsals.

Houdini premieres on History in the United States tonight and the Wild About Harry blog is reporting that it will be seen on September 7 on Channel 4 in England.

iTricks hopes for the best for Joan Rivers, who at time of writing is on life support in a medically induced coma. She is one of the truly great ladies of comedy but one of her first paying jobs in show business was as an assistant to Kuda Bux.

Risk everything with Manoj Linking pins!

Posted by Editor on September 1st, 2014
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Imagine being able to link and unlink 2 safety pins in the most visual manner possible.

Now imagine being able to link & unlink them in your SPECTATOR’S HAND. Now re-imagine being able to do it SURROUNDED.

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A Tour Of Houdini: Art And Magic With Joshua Jay

Posted by Michael on August 29th, 2014

Another Video Friday is drawing to a close… and we have had some fun with the Houdini theme. Now, though, we are bringing you the coolest link of all. About three years ago the Contemporary Jewish Museum posted a series of videos on YouTube which featured Joshua Jay guiding viewers through the highlights of their exhibition on Harry Houdini. This is the third part in the series, but you can see all of the videos on the Contemporary Jewish Museum’s Houdini: Art And Magic YouTube page. They are all worth watching.

Have a great Labor Day weekend, everyone. Whether you are performing, relaxing or taking the long weekend to start building that sub trunk in your garage, stay safe and have fun.