Saturday, June 02, 2007

Wednesday afternoon session at Dean Dill's

Session @ Dean DillsI picked up Aye Jaye at his house in Sun Valley near Burbank, hopped on the 134 to Glendale and piff, paff, poof we're at Dean Dill's Famous Magic Barber Shop.

Dean and Pete Biro were the only ones there so far. We added to the mix and the fun started. Pete showed us a neat billet loading letter opener. His good pal Joe Porper made it. Marty showed up, then John Lovick and Shoot Ogawa. Shoot did a nifty bit making it look like a bunch of coins and silverware were magnetic. It was a clever routine with a lot of nice little touches. I first saw Shoot at an LMVI a few years ago, some of his magic was stunning. It's a shame we had to leave, it would have been neat to get to know him a little.

Cups du jour

Snagged pic and description off of ebay

This is a very rare (perhaps unique) set of brass Conrad Haden cups. Connie Haden cups have become extremely difficult to find and are highly prized by both collectors and cups and balls workers. This set was was made by Haden for Gene Devoe over forty years ago and had been in Bob Stevens' collection from the 1960's until I obtained them in six or seven years ago. They have slightly different contours than the so-called Slydini cups that Haden had crafted a few years earlier (they are a tad larger and have somewhat less rounded beads around the middle), but like all of Connie Haden's apparatus, they are beautifully made. I have never seen another set quite like them. A wonderful addition for any magic collector or cups and balls worker.

Sold for $697

Saw it, liked it

Cups du jour

Snagged these pics and description off of ebay.

Offered for sale here on eBay are a set of three original Paul Fox chrome cups. These are the self-same cups that Rafael Benatar has been using in performance for the past two years. These cups have been gently used and never abused. Two of the three cups have a couple of dents and dings in them and although I have tried to capture them in the photos they are hard to see.

They in no way detract from the working of the trick, nor do they detract from the overall aesthetics of the cups. If the high bidder so desires, Rafael will send him or her an autographed picture or his signed cups and balls DVD. The reserve price reflects half of the cups actual value. This is a rare opportunity to purchase a set of highly sought after original Paul Fox cups that have a performance history attached to them, having been used by one of the best cups and balls magicians of modern times.

Rafael has a nice big smile on his face because this set of cups sold for a nice $1,125

Cups du jour

Cups & Balls, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

Snagged this pic and description off of ebay

Vintage Magic - Zina Bennett Cups & Balls

Perhaps best recognized for his marriage to Suzy Wandas, Zina Bennett was an accomplished performer in his own right. A skilled surgeon, Bennett had large and dexterous hands which allowed him to manipulate and even back palm jumbo cards(!) He was active in the Detroit magic clubs and was a regular at Abbott's Magic Get Together.

This set of cups was Doc Bennett’s personal set. They measure a bit more than 3 1/2 " tall and 2 3/4" at the mouth. Although they are unmarked, they are likely P&L. Curiously, it’s a mismatched but identical set of 2 copper cups and one brass (or so it appears). I've cleaned them up but they're still oxidized in certain places, probably from years sitting on the shelf in the small theater that Suzy and Zina had in their basement in Detroit.

Sold for $586

Busker du Jour

Magician, originally uploaded by Tyson L.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Busker du Jour

Daniel Davenport on Hollywood Blvd.

Ascanio - El Maestro

Last week

Hours into days, days into weeks, weeks into months. . . . and my worst complaint is an occasional short filler cigar. As you can imagine, the fun never ends here at Camp Paradise.

I started a post last week about going to the Castle and having a blast, seems like ancient history by now. Rewind to last Wednesday night after the Aaron Fisher lecture, at the Castle in a real good mood. Cocktails and conversation flowed freely over card tricks. Howard Hamburg raved about a couple of guys I had to see. I was treated to the magical stylings of a cat named Dani DaOrtiz and his pal Christian Englbom.

Always a pleasure to see students of the Ascanio/Tamariz Spanish style of card magic. Lots of action, fluid motion and deception. Evidently they had spent the afternoon at at Dean Dills slaying the gang with trick after trick. My favorite thing Dani did was a flawless version of the three card monte using a method I had never seen. Quite good.

We closed the Castle, then sessioned in the parking lot for a while. An old friend from years ago came up to me and asked me if I knew who he was. I was at a loss, which I usually am in these situations. His name is Ori and he is an Israeli Magician. He lived here in LA at the same time as I did in 86/87 now he’s in Tel Aviv. Matt Herbert, Daniel the street magician, Ori and I went to Mel’s Drive in for breakfast. Matt bought us a nice meal and another hour or so of jamming on magic. A good time was had by all and I got home a bit after 4AM.

There now that that’s out of the way we can move forward again into the past as yesterdays session at Dean Dills is another story.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Busker du Jour

Taste magic, originally uploaded by hjoew.

Taken at the Taste of Cincinnati last weekend. I think this is a young man named Christian. And if I'm not mistaken that looks like a rare set of nickle plated Phoenix Cups. He used to come into my shop when I was in the Carew Tower.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Been Busy

Been busy living my life, doing my thing. Had an interesting surprise audience member yesterday, none other than Mr. Penn Jillet. He watched my show and gave me a nice tip. I’d have liked to have chatted with him briefly after the show but I had to sell a couple trick decks. It was funny at one point near the beginning, I actually felt a little nervous. My hands were shaking a little and the whole deal. When I got to the coin manipulation sequence to the music, I had to just do my thing and let’er rip. The whole set went well.