Saturday, January 06, 2007

Sylvester The Jester at the Magic Castle

Thursday night Polly and I went to the Castle to see Danny Sylvester and Brian Gillis perform. Danny was in the Parlor and Brian was in the Close-Up Room. Danny made sure that we got the rock star treatment, by having the host find us and seat us before the room was open. His performance was well received. This was the first time I had seen his act since Vegas where we were opening up for The Amazing Johnathan a few months back. Because my responsibilities were mostly back stage and in the wings at the Sahara, I really couldn't see what the audience was seeing. It was good to fill in those blanks. I love my old pal, and I'm very proud of his achievements. We talked on the phone yesterday, I asked him if he was interested in the show notes I had for him. We discussed his act and had a nice conversation. Next week we'll fly to Columbia, South Carolina where I will assist Mr. Jester at the S.C.A.M. Convention.

Brian Gillis did a nice job in the Close-Up Room. I've always liked the Fechter handling for the multiple card selection that he does. I was a bit puzzled why he didn't milk the moment of three mini, mental, miricles. . . but. . I just watch and learn. Having seen Ricky Jay, Sylvester the Jester and Brian Gillis all in a short period of time, I have a lot of data to crunch. Different theories about performing and magic, different personalities and different visions for personal contribution to the art, all make for a tasty breakfast.

As I watch these different performance styles, I analyze, and evaluate my own direction. I feel good about the magic I'm doing and feel that little by little. . . there is progress. I'm lucky and blessed to have had this destiny choose me.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Japanese Food, Card Tricks and a Movie Star Magician

Ricky Jay & His 52 Assistants

At the Geffen Playhouse in the intimate Audry Skirball Theater

The show started shortly after 8:00PM. Polly and I had enjoyed a delicious dinner of Japanese (Yakatori) Food at Nanbankan in Santa Monica. Later, as we walked from the parking lot, to the theater in Westwood; I enjoyed the last of my cigars. As the smoke slowly rose from my mouth I told her that I wanted to review the show for the blog and I wanted her to help me out. She agreed, then we made out like teenagers.

We were a bit early getting there, so I continued smoking my cigar and Polly enjoyed a glass of wine. I had seen the show a month ago with David Rudd from Seattle. Although I enjoyed the show, my head wasn't really in the right space to fully enjoy the experience. It was the night before we put Buster on a plane to Cincinnati and and said goodbye. I haven't heard from him since.

We played a little game in the lobby, "Spot the magic geek". Polly was better at the game than me, perhaps I was having trouble seeing the forest through the trees.

I like Ricky Jay and what he's done for magic. His expert card handling technique paired with an interesting lifetime study of Magic, Magicians, Hustlers, Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women makes for an interesting script and show.

He opened with a version of McDonalds Aces using queens. It's a great opener and gives the audience an opportunity early on to get to know Ricky Jay.

He gets a couple of spectators up on stage to help him. They are seated on either side of him at a card table. Ricky Jay then launches into a twenty minute gambling demonstration spanning, Gin Rummy, Poker, Black Jack and Three Card Monte.

The show was tight and there were only a few differences from seeing the show in November near the beginning of the run. He didn't do his signature card throwing demonstration this time.

He finished the first half with his tribute to Max Malini by performing his multiple card selections and revelations of a dozen cards.

What can I say. . . I liked the show. I feel very lucky to have seen the show twice during this run. I don't think I'm overstating it by saying that it was one of the hotter tickets in town selling out the six week run.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Last shows of the year


Here are a couple of pics from the Promenade. Kids paying CLOSE attention during the cups and balls and the leftovers from an 11 card revelation. I love my life and what I do. This upcoming year is going to be the best ever! Or your money back!


Happy New Year!!

Happy New Year

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
And auld lang syne!

There you have it. Another year gone, as the new one says hi. We had a nice New Years Eve and day. Kirsten was over for dinner. Nice understated evening with two pretty girls. Polly made pork chops and fennel, turned out real good. While Kirsten was tired and went home before the big moment, I made sure Polly stayed up and brought in the new year with her lips pressed against mine.

The next day we all went to see the movie Dream Girls. Loved it!

Tonight were going out for dinner and then to see "Ricky Jay and His 52 Assistants"!

Bringing in the new year right! Life is good.

2006 was a significant year for me. It was the year I let go of all negativity and reclaimed my life.

Now lets see what I can do with it.