Saturday, May 26, 2007

A memorable night at the Magic Castle

After the Aaron Fisher Lecture a bunch of us went to the Castle. There was a strange, old familiar feeling about the evening. . . electricity in the air. There were guys jamming at the main bar, I glanced across the room as I walked upstairs. At the upstairs bar was Chris Korn with a beautiful young lady visiting him from St. Louis. Chris was excited to tell me the good news that his TV show is being picked up for a third season in the Asian TV Market! Congrats Mr. Korn. We joked that it was good that hey signed, cause he might have actually had to go out there and do some gigs. Chris, like myself, has completely embraced his inner hedonist. It's all about enjoying the LA experience. He does it well.

I ordered a cocktail and headed downstairs. I ran into a buddy from Seattle named Matt Herbert. He's a corporate guy who had a meeting down here and was spending the evening at the Castle. We talked about the era that was "Seattle Magic". I forget how many people were touched by that place. It was great shop, with a great community of magicians that supported it. Speaking of Seattle Magicians, I saw Stephen Minch coming down the stairs followed by Max Maven. I chatted with Stephen for a few moments before he and Max left. Mr. Maven looked good considering his bypass heart surgery a month or so ago. I was liking the vibe.

Well the joint was jumpin’, going ’round and ’round,
Hey! realin’ and a rockin’, what a crazy sound,
Well they never stopped rockin’ till the moon went down.

Well it sounds so sweet I had to take me a chance,
I rose out of me seat lord, I had to dance,
Started moving my feet, well a clapping my hands.

Well I kept on dancin’, going ’round and ’round,
Hey! reelin’ and a rockin’, what a crazy sound,
Well they never stopped rockin’ till the moon went down.

Well at twelve o’clock lord, the place was packed,
The front doors was locked lord, the place was packed,
When the police knocked, those doors they flew back.

Well I kept on dancin’, going ’round and ’round,
Hey! realin’ and a rockin’, what a crazy sound,
Well they never stopped rockin’ till the moon went down.

More to follow - a wacky evening that ends at Mel's Drive In

Friday, May 25, 2007

Magic Detail, originally uploaded by i y e r s.

Wednesday - Aaron Fisher Lecture & The Castle

Aaron Fisher

Yoga in the morning, swimming in the afternoon, sunshine all day. I called Daniel and Sam to tell them about the lecture at The Magic Apple - Magic Shop, on Ventura, not far from where I live.

Daniel met me at the City Walk and watched me work a bit. We left Universal and drove a short way to the Magic Shop. Aaron Fisher did a great lecture for 30 people. It’s no secret, I respect his work and I’m proud to call him a friend. Dead Head, Spread Head, Aaron has done this lecture many, many, many times capably, confidently and humorously, all over the world. He noodled through the opener (Search & Destroy) testing the audience and seeing where things could go comedically. I liked watching him establish rapport and get into things. I guess this is his home town crew and he seemed to know everyone. Among the action packed line up of material, he covered the Nowhere Pass, his refreshing handling on a classic principle as well as the Gravity Half Pass.

Aaron’s a Card Man through and through, his thinking and approach is fresh, original and his technique flawless. The first set ended at about an hour and a half. During the break I went outside to smoke. David Malek was talking with Howard Hamburg, I chatted with them a bit. I've known Howard since the old days, when I lived here 20 years ago. David, I met at a World Magic Seminar a few years ago. I met the owner of the owner of the store, a fellow named Brent. Out of town guests included Luke Dancy and Tyler Wilson (in town to attend a taping of The Price is Right; before Bob Barker retires next month). I met Luke and jammed with him a bit at the SCAM convention in South Carolina. I would see him again later at the Magic Castle and watch his eyes grow wide as he entered the famed Magic Castle for the first time.

The second set of the lecture got down to the brass tacks of Focus and Design in Card Magic. The half pass was covered in great detail and some practical applications discussed. A nice version of Inversion, Bicycle Thief and other prestidigal nuggets of legerdemain sprinkled the second half. The lecture ended around 10PM or so.

After hanging out a bit more with David Malek and discussing block transfer controls with regard to riffle shuffle work, I packed it up and headed to the Magic Castle. What a night. I didn't get home until after 4AM

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Monday • Paris, Je T'aime

Yesterday Polly and I enjoyed lunch at the California Pizza Kitchen in West Hollywood. Afterwards we popped in Virgin Records on our way to the Sunset 5 to see a movie. We saw Paris, Je T'aime . . . and I do love Paris, having spent 4 years of my life in that fantastic city. We both enjoyed the movie and the rest of our afternoon into evening that consisted of getting back in bed, watching another movie and ordering in for Chinese. Quite the international day. . . if you ask me.

Twenty filmmakers bring their own personal touch, underlining the wide variety of styles, genres, encounters and the various atmospheres and lifestyles that prevail in the neighborhoods of Paris.

Each director has been given five minutes of freedom, and we, as producers, carry the responsibility of weaving a single narrative unit out of those twenty moments. The 20 films do not appear in the order of the arrondissements, from one to twenty, but rather, in a pertinent narrative order, initially unknown to the audience. They are fused together by transitional interstitial sequences, and also via the introduction and epilogue sequences of the feature film. Each transition begins with the last shot of the previous film and ends with the first shot of the following film, and has a threefold function: 1) The first is to extend the enchantment and the emotion of the previous segment, 2) The second is to prepare the audience for the surprise of the next segment, and 3) The third is to provide a general, comfortable and cohesive atmosphere to the feature film. The delightful and brief interludes of these transitions enables the viewer to slide from one world to the next, featuring a recurring and unexpected character.

This mysterious character is a witness to the Parisian life and helps create a continuous narration. It appears both in and in-between the films. In addition to the information these transitions provide about the city and its people, their tone is intentionally light often referring to famous scenes easily attributed to the history of Paris cinema. Similar specifications are followed by the composer who supervises the musical fusion between the films and the transitions as he creates the musical score of "Paris, je t'aime."

Considering the common theme of Paris and Love, the fusion between the films and the transitions, the fast pace of a fluid and complete storytelling, Paris, je t'aime" is not just another "anthology" picture. It ia a unique collective feature film that constitutes a two-hour cinematographic spectacle whose original structure makes for a dramatically different experience for its global audience.

View Trailer • Click Here

Monday, May 21, 2007

Some Legends, originally uploaded by Kiel Bryant.