Bill Bixby...TV's BEST magic program circa "the 1970's, during it's day this show was the "Bomb"
So, have you guys seen this film? One of the best, most realistic, looks at the world of Magicians ever put on film. How do I know? Because I began my career as an actor/performer at age seven and from 2 TV movies, at age 13, I graduated to the role of MAGICIAN. Like Bill Bixby in the picture above (from the 1970’s TV show) ~ I dreamed of being “THE MAGICIAN!” I still hang out with magicians. My best friend is the best close-up Magician in the city of Chicago. I met my best friend at age 18 when I had just secured the position of, “head demonstrator” at the now defunct, CHICAGO MAGIC CENTER, which, in its day, was the oldest and best known magic shop in the city. I had received this position because of my work throughout the Washington DC, Metro area. By the time I was 16 I had performed at every Elementary school and public library within a fifty mile radius and had moved to Chicago in pursuit of my theatrical dreams. When I got sick, 2 years ago, it was Lord Isaac (magician extraordinaire) that came to live with me, to make sure I was doing ok. He is my best friend and room mate to this day. He is the only person I know that has never had a job of any kind, aside from that of “Magician”, he is a walking encyclopedia of the history and performance art of Magic. Many a night you can find a group of Magicians in my living room practicing, and talking magic into the wee hours of the morning. So I hope this puts your mind at ease when I say I know what I’m talking about, when it comes to Magic and Magicians.
The art of “Magic” , as an entertainment, has a long, documented history, with conjuring feats on record dating back to 2500 BC. Thousands of books and publications exist, available to anyone who dare endeavor to discover the secrets of conjuring and prestidigitation. The real trick is in the evolution of the art form itself, or staying “on top of” the latest creations and ideas popping out of the minds of Magics latest performers. BUT, and this is HUGE, there exists a basic foundation of years of training and understanding of principles that must be acquired. Not everyone can “pass” the test. Sleight of hand, and understanding of basic human nature,
being the “most” difficult to master. It is in these basic principles that “magic” receives its “breath of life.” …………. In the movie, the lead character is on a mission to restore his dead Fathers reputation as a Magician. Brilliantly played by Mark Ruffalo and supported by an incredible cast: Woody Harrelson, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Jesse Eisenberg, Melanie Laurent, well, I think you get the idea. What is so marvelous about this film is that the entire movie itself is one big Magic trick. Every time you think you know what’s going on, you don’t. And at the end, WELLLL you’ll have to see what I mean. When I asked the men in my living room what they thought was the best magic film of all time? “The Prestige” came up, “Houdini”, with Tony Curtis came up, but all pretty much agreed that for really getting a good look inside “Now you See Me” won out. So, if you haven’t seen it ,take a look…….it doesn’t disappoint.
“The first American born conjuror to make an outstanding success performing in his home country was Richard Potter, the mulatto son of a slave and her white master. Acting as his own agent and manager, Potter traveled throughout the Eastern United States during the early 1800’s, entertaining audiences with his demonstrations of ventriloquism, magic, and drama. Not only was Potter America’s first negro magician, but he was also, easily, America’s greatest magician of his time. His skill made him a legend throughout New England and earned him great wealth and “A buttload” of fine friends. POTTER PLACE, a town in New Hampshire, is named after him………..
The reason I bring up his story, in particular, is two fold. First, if you put your mind to making a go of it, in the world of magic, the “Sky” is literally the limit. There are no parameters or rules or stigma’s attached to being a Great Magician. You can do, accomplish, vanish, or appear to be, anything your heart desires. It is a resplendent profession filled with limitless possibilities. And second, as a man capable of making your wedding ring vanish in mid-air, then reappear in your husbands, girlfriends purse, it is easy for me to recognize the hidden potential in acquiring such a skill. The kind of skill that Isaac Marion Hood III (known as “Lord Isaac”) carries with him each and every day with an honor and integrity, that can only be described as impeccable. In this world of performance art, there is nothing better than being capable of walking into any room, at any time, and completely blowing the minds of those fortunate enough to be present, In this man’s opinion, Magic has the kind of lasting impression that will always be admired, required, and on the cutting of the arts and sciences, where this world houses it’s most coveted and protected secrets………..I am Dartanion2, and that’s the way I see it………..cheers
Cherie Sumner said:
Hi Tony! I love your write today on magicians, magic, and the movie, “Now You See Me, Now You Don’t”. I saw the movie and thought it was great. I have always loved to watch magic shows. I went to Las Vegas a couple of times and saw some of the inspiring magic shows. I especially love the shows where they use animals. I think it is so cool that you grew up around magic and know a lot of the secrets behind them. You have so many versatile talents and experiences in your life that fascinate me. I found the story of Richard Potter interesting. I had not heard of him, as Houdini and thee like seem to steal the foreground, but I think Mr. Potter deserves ample attention to the foreground of magic. Thanks for bringing him to reader’s attention. I must read more about him.
I adore your blog and support your conscious decision to bring the metaphysical and even miraculous physical phenomenon to everyone’s attention. We can all learn from each others experiences.
I hope you are feeling well today. I keep you in my prayers. I did too much standing on hard concrete watching fireworks last night, and I am paying for it today in my back….and my feet are zapping me too. Sigh. I just wanted to be ‘normal’ for awhile and do the American thing for the 4th. Paying for it now. Oh well…..that is life now.
Looking forward to your next post. ((hugs)) Cherie
Hi C, I know what you mean, I am having a very difficult day today myself, pain. Too much entertainment yesterday. But I’d do it again anyway, it was a good 4th and I made some new friends, so that was pretty cool…….thanx for checking out Richard Potter he hasn’t received all the credit due him so I just wanted someone to know……….hugs back at ya’…….t xx
Georgina Richardson said:
Although I know nothing about magicians or magic tricks I do find the subject fascinating. They say that magicians aren`t allowed to tell people how they do their tricks! is that true? if so how do new magicians learn how to do it?
The story you told us about Mr Potter was really interesting and I would love to read more about him.
Your own story about your life and what you have done was great and I think you could write a book just about you and your travels and your career as an actor! Starting at the age of 7 and acting in two films. And at the tender age of 13 doing magic shows is amazing! you must know a lot about the industry of magic and theatre and it sounds like you have certainly covered most of the categories in the industry. What were the TV movies you starred in?
Isaac sounds like a wonderful gentleman and a lovely friend, you must be very close!
I`ll bet your dinner guest`s have a brilliant time with all that entertaining magic.
Love G xx
Hi G, yes I do know a lot about magic. In fact, if I were standing in front of you right now, you could give me any object in your pocket or purse and I could make it disappear and reappear, elsewhere in the room FUN STUFF!(lol) yep, Isaac is great, everyone loves him, he’s the center of attention everywhere he goes….it’s a blessing to have him here……Oh, and I didn’t star in the movies I was a supporting lead actor so, that was good. Thanx so much G……..i’ll be on cosmo most of tonight….see you around………t xx
Reblogged this on Metaphysics and the Movies according to Dartanion2 and commented:
I began my early career as a magician……..kinda like Johnny Carson only much less notoriety……….my room mate is a professional Magician……I worked in a Magic Shop for a while……there are magicians at my house often, so I know my subject matter. enjoy friends…………tony……T xx