Recall a couple of weeks ago when Magician, Instructor and bon vivant Lee Asher made a special offer to Inside Magic Readers?
Sure you do. He promised Inside Magic Readers a free gift on his web site that would help inspire us.
Mr. Asher followed through in spades.
The gift is very limited access to incredible magic videos from our craft’s rich history. The videos are available for viewing for 24 hours and then moved back into the vault for all time. We don’t know if he considered the effect of this policy but it has us going back to his site daily. Hmmm.
In the past week or so we have seen some great (and not so great but nonetheless inspiring) magic and magicians.
You can see the video of the day here.
There was Warren Hull starring as our favorite fictional performer/detective Mandrake the Magician. Jay Ose had the incredibly envious job of teaching the beautiful Joan Blondell the ins-and-outs of card cheats.
John Scarne showed his chops with great gambling moves to prove he was more than one of the most prolific writers in our biz — he was also a serious heavy.
We became nostalgic seeing the late, and very great Jerry Andrus perform his very own brand of magic. We very much miss Mr. Andrus and his out-of-the-box (literally) thinking and performing. He was an Inside Magic Favorite and one of the more considerate friends this meager web site has ever had.
Richard Himber demonstrated his ability to break the bonds of what some have called a law — gravity. We hope he shows us how to use our Himber Wallet in upcoming videos. We have about 22 of them right now — not counting the Mullica Wallets which could be counted as one or two depending upon one’s perspective or pocket size.
Geoffrey Buckingham proved the FISM judges do make the right decision as he performed his award-winning act for the cameras.
And of course, we saw and enjoyed — sort of — Abbott and Costello performing the Multiplying Bottles. Nothing against the comic duo but it kind of irks us to see non-magicians use really nice magic equipment. We were envious of their props — we think there is some psychological term for that but we care not to dwell again in the DSM-IV.
Mr. Asher tells us that the “clips should help you become a better magician and truly inspire you. But most importantly, they should educate you about magic’s rich past.”
He invites your comments on the selection thus far and suggestions for future pieces.
Personally, we would go with more Joan Blondell — she was awful pretty. And more knuckle-busting moves — how about some vintage Frank Garcia from the Tonight Show? Or maybe just more of Joan Blondell talking about Frank Garcia or anything really.
Mr. Asher is currently on tour but keeps the new (old) videos coming daily. He tells us that he is currently enjoying “Penang, Malaysia (overlooking the Straits of Malacca).
“It’s very peaceful and beautiful. The food is wonderful, the Malaysian people are extremely friendly and charming. Plus, everyone here loves magic! If you have the opportunity, you must visit!”