I did however get to see and talk to Bob Albo. who was one of the guest speakers from the U.S.A. I had breakfast with him and Mrs Albo a couple of days later at their hotel. In case you don't know it Bob has written and published the first three volumes of a series of six whicji are destined to become real collectors'items. If you want to know about about old magic props, get hold of the Albo books. One day they will be essential reading.
Another visitor to these shores recently was the tall dark and handsome David Copperfield. I spent a day with him and Terri Rogers doing a short tour of the London magic shops. Coincidentally they screened one of his TV Specials a couple of we6ks ago which was more than interesting. Last year I was in Las Vegas where there must have been at least five or six big magic acts appearing and they were all doing similar things. You know, big cages, wild animals etc. but Copperfield doesn't appear to be going in this direction. He seems to be leaning towards magical sketches. Taking one strong effect and building a whole sequence of happenings around it, complete with dancers or other performers where necessary. All sorts of themes are used from gangster type scenes to boy meets girl scenes, and for David it works. I say that because I can't see it working for anyone else at present. You have to be young, you have to be good looking and you have to be a good mover. D.C. is all of these things and he or his advisers Eire to be complimented on the attempts they are making to avoid the band wagon.
Having said that, brings me to the thought that someone, somewhere, must be looking for a short stocky Scotsman to promote into a big star. He isn't young. He isn't good looking, and he moves like constipated turtle, but at least he's good to his mum, and compared to Messrs Copperfield, Henning,
Siegfried and Roy etc., he has one big advantage . . . he's different. . . no? O.K. forget it.
Video tapes were we talking about video tapes? No? Well it's about time we did. because that appears to be the latest thing. Every time a magician appears on TV you can bet money on it that someone somewhere is taping the show. There is nothing wrong with that in itself. I think it is a good idea that people who are interested in magic should build up a library of tapes with magicians' acts on them. But there is a snag and that is when a friend wants a copy of that tape. Snag? Yes, snag. Who is there who can give you permission to give away a performance of a third party which maybe contains something which may be uniquely the performer's?
It's bad enough giving it to a friend but I have seen videos of professional acts for sale. That, surely, must be wrong. If you think about it, a video tape which teaches something is no different from a book. I'm thinking of all the teaching tapes which are currently being advertised in the national press. Everything from languages to cookery is being offered on videotape so why not magic? I'm talking for laymen.
Every so often a book written by a magician will appear on the book stalls. The magic press will comment on it and depending on its contents and who is the author, they will decide that it is either "a good introduction to magic for beginners" or, if it contains some secrets which they personally think should not be given away, they will scream blue murder and expulsions will follow . . . although I can only think of two instances offhand where this has actually happened.
But what about video tapes? What will the magical fraternity make of video tapes being offered to the public that expose magic tricks? Remember this . . . many of the classic books of magic have been published by non magical publishers and are available on the bookshelves of many well known bookshops and a video tape that teaches is not all that different from a book. Well. . . what are you going to do? Scream? It won't do you any good. The people who are promoting such tapes are very big companies. (Did I mention that it is happening already?) They are not interested in the views of a minority but in the spending power of the majority.
Let's all close our eyes and it will go away . . . honest... it will. Goodbye
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Magick is the art and practice of moving natural energies to effect needed or wanted change. Magick is natural, there is absolutely nothing supernatural about it. What is taught here are various techniques of magick for beginners. Magick is natural and simple and the techniques to develop abilities should be simple and natural as well. What is taught on this site is not only the basics of magick, but the basics of many things.