Saturday, October 13, 2007

In my "In Box" • Tim Flynn

Hi Tom,

It's funny how understanding comes about sometimes. I have read your blog for a couple of years now and in many instances you mention this idea about connecting with your audience. It's not about your magic and how well you can "do" the magic. It's more, deeper than that. I guess I couldn't relate because I hadn't performed enough. Not that I have performed enough yet. But I am beginning to see.

I performed last night for a 75 year old woman's birthday. A favor for her son. He saw me perform at church two weeks ago. On that day there was this connection that happened. Something I had never really felt before to this magnitude. Something ethereal. It was like "WOW." That's what this is all about! I got a "HIGH" from it that lasted a couple of days. But last night was like a dull thud to me. The magic was good, but there was no connection between the performer, (me) and the audience. (them)

Looking at what I just wrote, makes me see something. It is not supposed to me and them but rather "US." Together, a meshing of the audience and the performer going along on the same joy ride experience. Did I fail? I don't know. What can I do to gain from last nights performance? I performed. I did my best, and there were moments in there that I felt a little connectedness. I saw astonishment and wonder and bewilderment on the faces of audience members. I heard intakes of breath in more than one instance. There was applause. Afterward many people said they enjoyed the show. But I feel I didn't turn them on, you know!?

So what was missing? And how do I make sure to rise above it and move on and grow and become better? These are of course rhetorical questions, but they are what and where my mind is heading at this moment while pondering. Is this a sign of growth? Scary isn't it! Because of the lack of feeling and connectedness, I feel kind of low. The other side of the spectrum from two weeks ago. Pretty weird I gotta tell you.

Well, Tom, I think of you often, and now maybe I understand you and what you go through a wee bit more.

Thanks for the magic...

I love you man,


Friday, October 12, 2007

Johann Nepomuk Hofzinser

Johann Nepomuk Hofzinser, originally uploaded by rickmagic1.

Alexander Herrmann

Alexander Herrmann, originally uploaded by rickmagic1.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Recently sold on ebay

Scarce 1902 softbound edition 205 pp, plus ads. Published by F Drake and Co. Spine chipped, otherwise a very fine copy.

Sold for $138.50

Seller Mario Carrandi

Buyer Jason England

On TV • The War Illusionist (2001)

Deception plays a key role in combat, and this has never been taken further--the Trojan Horse excepted--than by the British during World War II. Bedeviled by the brilliant strategies of Erwin Rommel in Africa, the English explored every available avenue for help, including enlisting the talents of the magician Jasper Maskelyne.

THE WAR ILLUSIONIST uses rare photos, the recollections of people involved and expert analysis from modern magicians to reveal how Maskelyne turned the North African desert into an elaborate set, employing the talents he had learned entertaining audiences to trick Nazi commanders. Using camouflage and deception, he made the Suez Canal disappear, moved Alexandria Harbor and made a British squadron suddenly materialize in the desert!

Join HISTORY'S MYSTERIES for a fascinating look at one of the most unlikely--and successful--"warriors" of World War II.

weather, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

Dirty Sexy Money Shooting Location

IMG_1371, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

Yesterday I enjoyed spending a couple of hours on location in Pasadena. I try and time my arrival with lunch being served. Base camp was set up a mile a way in an Elks Club Parking lot, but but catering was set up in front and on the side of the house. Polly had been on site since 5:12 AM. I was rolling in near 2 PM. Just a gorgeous day!

Took a stroll around the estate, must be in the 25 million dollar range for a house like this, in this beautiful old neighborhood. They had been shooting outside in the morning and were turning around to shoot a couple of scenes indoors. The billiard room downstairs was being used as an auxillery hair and make up area for touch ups. They got the actors ready in their trailer at base camp, took the shuttle to the location then touched them up as needed on set.

I thought it was cool to hang out with some of the stars before they starting shooting. Video village was set up off the right of the foyer, Polly's set chair was behind video village in a large formal living room. I sat behind the script supervisor and the director as the scene played out around the corner.

Cool stuff, I learn more about the process every time I watch. Had an interesting chat with a woman named Bonnie, one of the camera operators. We talked about HD 24P. I love this stuff.

IMG_1370, originally uploaded by stuartjudah.

This is the view from the back yard. Not bad at all. It sure takes a lot of people and money to pull this off. I heard 3 Million an episode is in the right ball park. I met the site rep and the director as well. Many episodic shows like this one, use a different director for every episode. Tomorrow is another pre dawn day for Polly. I don't know how these people do it, day after day. It's an interesting life for sure.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Magic Castle, originally uploaded by Fotomom.

A visit to the Magic Castle

Got a call from Aye Jaye last week inviting me to the Magic Castle to see him work. He was the MC in the Palace of Mystery Show. I like Aye Jaye and I liked his act. He's a second generation "Carney" and his performance revolved around stories about life on the carnival midway, scamming marks and barking for the sideshow freaks. He was trying out a new effect in his act, the knife through the coat. It played well and got a good reaction.

Also on the same bill was Murray (the CD guy). An enjoyable manipulation act. I remember when he hit the scene a decade ago. A fresh new look with a youthful appeal. Somewhere along the line, he turned into Prince. Very skinny with a androgynous look and a lot of eye liner.

Working the Close-Up Gallery was none other than Paul Gertner. I've always had a great deal of respect for his work. A clever magician, an original thinker and a top notch business man. A few years back I had the opportunity to see his one man show "Ten Fingers". In his close up show, he featured a couple of his signature pieces, his "Unshuffled" routine and his "Cups and Steel Balls" routine. I never thought that I would consider these classic routines or have them make me feel nostalgic, but strangely, I do.

I stopped in the library to visit with Billy Goodwin, Alonzo Clark was working the behind the bar downstairs. Always pleasure to chat with Mr. Goodwin who said he's had something in his desk drawer for a couple of months, waiting for me to stop in. It was two CD's. MIckey Hart's Barn Jam 8.21.71 w/ Jerry Garcia, Mickey Hart, Phil Lesh, Merl Saunders, David Crosby, Nickey Hopkins and John Cipollina (who recorded the jam session on reel to reel). Thanks Billy. I rocked out in the ethereal ozone.

Caught another act in the Parlor of Prestidigitation , a young man from Chicago named David Kovac. Fresh act, well presented. Did a nice "Magic Square" routine. Best part about it was it was entertaining and magical.

Well, off to Pasadena to visit Polly for lunch. They're shooting on location there in a mansion. Should be cool. I'm sure the catered lunch will be delicious and I'm looking forward to a nice cigar walk in a ritzy neighborhood.

Aye Jaye - Carny Trash

Murray CD FX Act

Paul Gertner - Cups And Steel Balls

Monday, October 08, 2007

Tom Frank

Ocean Blvd., originally uploaded by S.Forza.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

A week in review

What a week it was! Beautiful beyond belief! Blue skies and sunny, roses blooming in every color. Temperatures perfect and non binding clothing make life seem like a perpetual vacation.

Monday I set out for the beach. Santa Monica and the lush palm tree lined Ocean Blvd. always remind me why I love California. Two hour walk, my feet in the surf watching the waves crash in. Cigar in hand, ipod in ears and my mind wandering. Afterwards took a stroll won the 3rd Street Promenade. Saw a young street magician, A fellow I've never seen. He was having no luck stopping anyone in the mid afternoon. I thought about going over and talking with him but thought I'd better get on the freeway and avoid any pre rush hour traffic.

Need to go to work and make people happy. Will finish up later with a report on our new Mac Book Pro and, an end of the week visit to the Magic Castle. Followed by a fantastic weekend with my girl.