Magazine to “Come Alive” at 10th Anniversary Special Event
As an illustration morphs into live action footage in a film montage, similarly the pages of MAGIC magazine will be imbued with life; to “strut” for a few days at The Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 19-22, 2001 as Stan Allen and Co. stage a special convention celebrating the tenth anniversary of MAGIC. Those in attendance at this event will be able to interact and participate, walk around inside the pages, so to speak, of this conjuring journal brought to life, at what is being billed as MAGIC…Live! an “unconventional convention.”
“Three years ago we started a file. A what can we do to celebrate our tenth anniversary milestone, file,” explained MAGIC magazine publisher/editor Stan Allen to MagicTimes. “We considered a road tour, a contest. Then we came up with the theme of bringing the pages to life. A convention with all the events based around the magazine.” A ‘hook’ had been found on which to hang a hurrah. “We want this to be a ‘flow through’ experience. We want to innovate, to push the envelope, just as MAGIC magazine has done in the field of magic publications.”
Many convention-hosting organizations have published magazines but MAGIC has put a new spin on the convention concept by having the magazine provide the organization for the convention. By bringing the periodical and it’s assorted features “to life” Allen and his associates have invoked an ancient theme of enchantment, that of the living book. Master wizards of the past such as Thurston and Fu Manchu (David Bamberg) began their full evening shows by stepping from the pages of a huge, “Book of Magic.” Present day magi in attendance at the upcoming event will have the opportunity to become enveloped in the multi-dimensional temporary manifestation of The Independent Magazine for Magicians as they rub shoulders with columnists, contributors, advertisers feature subjects, and just plain subscribers.
“It’s a once in a lifetime event. Mine or yours. There won’t be an 11th or 12th. We’ll be pulling in a lot of favors. Many of the featured guests are participating because of their strong belief in and support of MAGIC magazine,” said Allen. “These loyal contributors want it to survive. They’re putting their energy and time where their mouth is.”
The Opening Party will be based on the cover of the magazine. A special “augmented” 10th Anniversary issue will be distributed at the convention. “I wish there was a way to get everybody who attends on the cover of the magazine,” mused Allen. “The contributing editors will run sessions; we’re building a special close-up presentation area of stadium seating with video as an adjunct. Tuesday night has a “Build your own Evening” format where you can select the time of the show you plan to attend. The Las Vegas production team includes Rory Johnston, Stuart Beck, and Lisa Moore. John Moehring (Associate Editor) has been a constant sounding board throughout the conceptualization and implementation of this special project.”
“The first convention I attended was the 1966 P.C.A.M. in Santa Rosa,” Allen reminisced to MagicTimes. “I was 16 years old and it took us seven hours to drive there. We stayed at a Motel 6 and it really was 6 bucks! Since then, I’ve attended many conventions and have frequently thought, ‘…why don’t they do this? or why not try…?’ This is a chance to prove my ideas. We’re not doing it for the money.” Allen will attempt innovations in scheduling, show options and tutorials. “Elements you like in a convention will be here but with a twist; the dealers room is skewed as ‘The Advertisers Fair.’ Close up will get the attention it deserves. Lectures will be short. We want the event to be a different set up. We want to raise the bar, initiate new trends. The worst thing people could say to me afterwards would be, “Just like any other convention.” I want them to say, ‘It was different.'”
For more information about this special event, a list of performers, schedule and registration information click: HERE.
—Richard Steven Cohn
Richard Steven Cohn has written for Genii, Magicol, M.U.M., The Yankee Collector, MAGIC, as well as magic themed articles for Brooklyn Bridge Magazine and Stagebill. He is a magical consultant for television and theater and performs both as a single and with his wife Alexandra.