"Have some wine," the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.
Welcome to the March Madness issue of The Little Egypt Gazette. It's a strange time to be putting out an issue, a little too early for a Spring Break issue and yet the Desert Magic Seminar is already history. This issue therefore falls somewhere between a Little Egypt Gazette Lite issue and a full-blown issue. There is no new card trick, but we do provide some additional thoughts on one of last month's items. We also provide what may not be the best, but will probably be the longest, review of the Desert Magic Seminar that you will encounter. If you weren't there, I hope it gives you a sense of what it was like. If you were there, I hope it stirs pleasant memories. But first the news . . .
LANCE II -- Produced again by Gary Ouellet, Lance's second special, Lance Burton, Master Magician: The Encounter, aired on NBC on February 24. "Welcome," Lance opens. "I'm standing in the heart of the worst-kept secret in America . . ." This opening -- beautifully written by Turk Pipkin, as was the entire program -- introduced the production of a flying saucer in Area 51 of the Nevada desert, a prequel to a show otherwise taped in Las Vegas. Although I found the two made-for-TV feature illusions less effective than last year's candidates, the rest of the special was a treat, beginning with the first great views of Lance's new theater at the Monte Carlo. The rest of the magic (mostly relying on comfortable material from Lance's well-honed stage show) included the production of six girls and an alien from a "magical teleportation chamber" and their subsequent vanish within the folds of Lance's cape, the production of Lance from a revolving painting, a nice interlude from Lance's FISM manipulation act seguing into the surprise production of a girl from a dove cage (now offered for sale as the Gemini cage, $4800), a lengthy and charming routine with a four-year-old boy from the audience, Lance's startling gramophone switch, an elaborate masked ball with multiple illusions climaxing in a sword fight duel, a turn by 18-year-old Danny Cole with his sartorial magic, and the comedic "Backstage Illusion" in which Lance, hiding under a table cloth, reads Playboy and orders a pizza. As last year, the show closed with an intimate number showcasing Lance's personality, this time using Billy McComb's lovely birdcage vanish routine. "Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building . . ." Throughout the hour Lance delivered his lines beautifully and came across as both a consummate magician and as a guy you'd like to know. I especially enjoyed the Gemini cage/girl production and the final cage vanish, and I hope the show did well enough that Lance returns next year with even more surprises.
BACK TO WONDERLAND -- The third issue of The Looking Glass, the quarterly magazine by Kaufman, Hobbs, and Racherbaumer that features Tenniel drawings from the Alice books, has arrived, dated Summer 1996. (Time travels at a different rate in Lewis Carroll's world.) As with the first two issues, this slick production is full of interesting tricks and commentary. I particularly enjoyed Francis Carlyle's thoughts and methods on "Seeing at the Fingertips" and Racherbaumer's detailed analysis of Don Alan's Card Stab. (The latter, the second analysis that Jon has leaked, really makes one wish the long buried Don Alan book would appear.) Kaufman and Hobbs also elaborate on what really happened re the Stanyon books. Although Hobbs lowered my otherwise high regard for his work by admitting that he is an attorney, this entire set of magazines is well worth your time and is still available by subscription, at just $40 for the four issues. Contact Richard Kaufman at 4200 Wisconsin Ave., NW, Suite 106-292, Washington, DC 20016.
PASADENA NEWS -- In addition to the much anticipated Guy Hollingworth book, Mike Caveney is also hard at work on a new book about Les Levant. Expected in a few months, the Levant book will be written by Kent Blackmore of Australia and will be based, in part, on an unpublished autobiography by Levant.
TAHOMA NEWS -- The latest color flyer from L & L Publishing announces the completion of Daryl's Encyclopedia of Card Sleights video series. These Volumes 7 and 8 contain material on False Displays, False Dealing, Color Changes, Switches & Changes, The Top Change, Packet Switches, Miscellaneous, Flourishes, and Miscellaneous Flourishes. All eight volumes are available for $215, or any three for $85. (With this series, the McBride series, and the new Ackerman series, there has possibly never been a better time to learn card magic. And these are just the videos.) Louis is also offering Ian Adair's Art of Dove Magic video for $29.95.
WASHINGTON, D.C. NEWS -- If you tuned in last month on time (whatever that is!), you may have missed our post-publication list of some of the upcoming books from Richard Kaufman. Among these 1997 titles look for The Annotated Artful Dodges of Eddie Fields by Jon Racherbaumer, Swami/mantra by Sam Dalal, The Stone Age by Stephen Hobbs, The Professional Now You See It, Now You Don't! by Bill Tarr, Jennings '67 by Richard Kaufman, Folding Money Fooling Vol.1 by Robert Neale, Hauntics! by Christian Chelman, The Effortless Card Book by Peter Duffie, Charles Bertram, The Court Conjurer by Edwin A. Dawes, Vis a Vis, The Magic of Jack Avis by Jack Avis and John Derris, and Arcade Dreams: Marlo Without Cards by Jon Racherbaumer. We overlooked the fact that Richard is also branching into videos. In The Looking Glass, he announces that Rene Lavand, Jerry Andrus, and Ray Kosby have already been taped, with several other big names lined up.
SEATTLE NEWS -- Just in time to make this issue comes a postcard from Stephen Minch advertising his new Ken Krenzel book, Ingenuities. Among the 34 effects featuring the typical Krenzel sleight of hand, Stephen also promises a "kinder, gentler" Krenzel, with a substantial number of items that are "sleightless or near sleightless tricks guaranteed to perplex and astonish the most discriminating audience." The book at 224 pages is by Stephen Minch with 213 Kelly Lyles illustrations. $37 pp from Hermetic Press, 1500 S.W. Trenton St., Seattle, WA 98106-2468.
EXPOSURE UPDATE -- If you enjoyed Mike Randazzo's incisive Galina Controversy article referenced in our December issue, you should appreciate his hard-hitting look at Exposure, prompted by the Becker fiasco and just in time for the first of April. And boys: if you are upset that we haven't included a "Girls of Spring Break" link this year, Mike's piece might make up for the loss.
My home in the metropolitan heart of Little Egypt? Nope -- it's New York, New York, the fantastic new hotel across the street from the Tropicana in Las Vegas. The Trop was host in March to the incredible 20th edition of Joe Stevens' Desert Magic Seminar, just about the coolest convention on Earth (except for the year we were just down the hall from the Hawaiian Tropic Suntan convention). For a detailed day-by-day account of the coolest convention in magic, anyway, with all the important Las Vegas highlights, click DMS XX. Ascanio, Tamariz, Green, Gertner, Read, Mayoral, Omar Pasha and more!
This, thought the March Hare, should be the last time Dormouse attempts to expose the secrets of magic on Maury Povich.
You say it's March and no new books came out this month and you're just dying to buy something because new card stuff is like mother's milk and you can't live without it? You've landed in the right paragraph, because not only do we have our usual sensational book and lecture notes available, but also Virtual Foolery, the new booklet published by Amy Stevens to introduce the world to the columnists who write for GeMiNi, the Greater Magic Network. Edited by Jon Racherbaumer and T.A. Waters, this nicely produced 32-page monograph contains "The Sound of Music" by Ian Adair, "Billion-Dollar Bill Switch" by Pete Biro, "Everywhere and Nowhere Goes Hollywood" by Steve Bryant, "Sand-Which" by Aldo Colombini, "Pieces of Eight" by Karrell Fox, "Persistence of Thought" by Mark Garetz, "Dai's Wager" by Pat Hennessy, "Two Teasers" by Roger Klause, "The Supra-Selling of the Lemming Man" by Simon Lovell, "At Homb With McComb" by Billy McComb, "Mullica's Four-Ace Ending" by Tom Mullica, "Magic for the Rest of the Week" by Anthony Owen, "Marlo's Favorite Devilish Miracle" by Jon Racherbaumer, "On Line, Who Is, and Who Cares" by Mike Rogers, "Gypsy Cursive" by T.A. Waters, and "Double Restoration Rope" by Ron Wilson. Stevens Magic Emporium sells it for $15, and we have a few copies here for that price, postpaid in North America.
For a look at our own favorite material, consider Little Egypt Card Tricks or The Little Egypt Gazette: The Lecture 96, which contains the best of the personal card tricks from Volume 1 of this periodical. Included are "Let George Do It" (a presentation for Paul Harris's "Night Shades"), "Everywhere and Nowhere Goes Hollywood," "From the Casebook of Sherlock Holmes," "Ranch Hand," "Red and Blue Cannibals," "The Great Al Baker Three-Card Mental Test," "Satan's Monte," and "Celebrities." The notes are $15 and the book is $22, postage free in the U.S. Here's the place to spend the big dough you won on the office basketball pool. Forward remuneration to Steve Bryant, 1639 Sycamore Court, Bloomington, IN 47401. No passwords, no hassles. Add $6 for overseas addresses for the lecture notes, $9 for the book.
For the latest on Columbine and Golem, card dialogue from Stanwyck and Coburn in The Lady Eve, and, oh yes, did you hear the one about Pete Biro, Karrell Fox, and Jay Marshall?, turn to this month's installment of "Stirring the Tana Leaves."
As always, our Favorite Links page contains links to some of the best magic sites on the web. Simon Lovell joins the cast of the strange folks you can run into from the privacy of your own bedroom.
Copyright© 1997 by Steve Bryant
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