MT: May 20-26, 2002

VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,603 / Monday – May 20, 2002
Julie Sobanski explains how she decided to become a magician after seeing a David Copperfield Television special and gives some advice on women who want to become magicians in a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article. Sobanski explained, “After almost every show, a little girl will come up and ask about becoming a magician. Any girl should practice and study the history and art of magic, and get library books on magic. You have to start with the smaller things like making coins disappear before you can make a tiger disappear. Or saw a man in half.” Sobanski is also currently working on a book about the “history of lady magicians.” To read the May 19 article by Jackie Loohauis titled “‘Princess of Magic’ conjures up career in illusion” click: HERE.(5/20)

David Blaine ripped his heart out during the taping of the Carson Daly show which a New York Post article described as, “…David Blaine performed such a horrific, gory illusion at a taping of Carson Daly’s late-night show, NBC is considering canceling the segment.” To read the May 17 Page Six article by Richard Johnson, Paula Froelich and Chris Wilson click: HERE.(5/20)

James & Lori Chartier open with their show “Chartier Magic” on May 22 at the Apple Dinner Theater (455 US 41 Bypass North ) in Venice, FL where they will appear through October 9. Admission is $10 per person and reservations can be made by phoning: 941- 485-5411.(5/20)

JAPAN: Gaston Quieto who just finished a one-year run at the Teatro DeCancun in Mexico begins his Asian lecture tour with stops this month in Japan. You can catch him in Yokohama (May 21-22), Tokyo (23-25), Hamamatsu (26-afternoon), Nagoya (26-night), Osaka (28), Okayama (29), Hiroshima (30), Yamaguchi (31), and Ibaragi on Jun. 1.(5/20)
VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,604 / Tuesday – May 21, 2002
The New York magicians’ Saturday hangout is featured in the May 27 issue of The New Yorker magazine. The article points out that “Since the middle of the nineteenthirties, the city’s best sleight-of-hand men have been getting together every Saturday afternoon at one restaurant or another to talk shop and hone the niceties of their craft.” The article’s focus is on the recent closure of the current hangout and where the magicians are now meeting. It’s a sarcastic article, which ignores the magic and the contributions made by a majority of the group. Names mentioned in the article are: Herb Zarrow, Oscar Weigle, Doug Edwards, Al Louie, Ricky Jay, Jerry Wiesenberg, and Brian Higgins. To read the May 20 article by Adam Green titled “The Magic Basement” click: HERE.(5/21)

David Blaine chats with his fans on the ABCNews website on Monday May 20 at 1pm where he talks about his upcoming stunt and is asked if this is more challenging than the ice stunt. Blaine said, “Much more, because if I lose focus for more than one second, that’s a catastrophe. The other difficulty is dealing with the winds, the temperature and the other uncontrollable elements.” Blaine also tipped one of the hidden features on his Fearless DVD, “If you go to the archive menu on the Fearless DVD and sit for about five minutes, a really good interactive magic effect will happen. Have a deck of cards ready.” To read the May 20 transcript of the David Blaine chat click: HERE.(5/21)

Simon Beckett is about to start a magic classes in Selly Oakbased Juggling, Kite and Magic Shop in Birmingham, England. An evening Evening Mail article quotes him, “I have already spotted a lot of wizard potential in many of the youngsters and the girls are showing a lot of talent.” To read the May 20 article by Poppy Brady titled “Wand-erful” click: HERE.(5/21)

David Blaine in an in-depth story in The Guardian, which quotes Blaine on the dangers of the stunt, “With the ice, if there was a problem, they could cut me out… With this one, if there’s a problem, and I come down, there’s nothing but pavement, so… you can figure out what would happen.” The article also describes a first hand account of the Carson Daly taping where Blaine apparently ripped out his heart. To read the May 21 article by Oliver Burkeman titled “Is this the new Houdini?” click: HERE.(5/21)

David Copperfield is said to be shopping for an island in a Miami Herald article. To read the May 20 article titled “Copperfield goes island shopping” click: HERE.(5/21)

Dan Crook’s performances of magic for his friends in school and in talent shows are discussed in a Chicago Daily Herald article. To read the May 18 article by Diana Sroka titled “Magician finds chances to hone craft” supplied by YellowBrix and Infoseek click: HERE.(5/21)
VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,605 / Wednesday – May 22, 2002
David Blaine will attempt to stand on top of a ten-story high pillar from noon on Tuesday to 10:50pm on Wednesday at which time he will dive onto a 12-foot high platform made of cardboard boxes. The danger lies in both the 35-hour balancing act, which could have him accidentally fall onto the steel and concrete below and the actual landing at the conclusion which will have to be precise in order to minimize injury. In an exclusive MagicTimes feature you get a behind the scenes view of what happened on Tuesday. …Go to full story.(5/22)

David Blaine in a Reuters story, that is being carried by newspapers worldwide, quotes the event organizers, “Blaine is not harnessed to the column and the only concession made to safety is two handles on either side of Blaine, which he can clutch onto in the event of intense winds.” To read the May 21 article titled “Magician to Spend 35 Hours Atop Pillar in New York” click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine in a NY1 report that quotes him, “It was not supposed to be this cold at the end of May… I can deal with it, but it makes my legs fade a lot quicker than we had planned.” To read the May 21 article titled “Magician David Blaine Starts Latest Endurance Stunt” click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine is quoted in an Irish Independent article. “I’ve got no worries. My aim is to overcome my greatest fears and this time I am addressing my fear of heights.” To read the May 22 article by Tom Kelly titled “Magician set for 35-hour stint on flagpole” click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine in The Scotsman where they observe, “I’m still trying to work out what constitutes the magical bit of this feat, but I assume it depends upon whether or not he survives. If he does, it’s magic; if he doesn’t, it’s publicity.” To read the May 21 article titled “If the magician survives, it’s magic – if he doesn’t, it’s publicity” supplied by YellowBrix and Infoseek click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine is called a “stuntman” in a Newsday article that discusses his current stunt and reports that “Blaine, who said he has fantasized about jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge or hanging off a skyscraper, said he will end his latest stunt by jumping into a pile of empty cardboard boxes.” To read the May 21 article by Pete Bowles titled “Magician Shifting Into High Gear” click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine in a weird article on which compares him with Johnny Knoxville who is known for diving into feces. To read the May 21 article by Cintra Wilson titled “Men who hurt themselves for a living” click: HERE.(5/22)

David Blaine is describe in an Ananova article as “The modern day Houdini looked relaxed as he was lifted to his perch above Manhattan’s Bryant Park by a demolition ball attached to a giant crane.” To read the May 21 article titled “‘No worries’ as magician embarks on 80ft flagpole stunt” click: HERE.(5/22)
VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,606 / Thursday – May 23, 2002
The 34th annual Academy of Magical Arts Awards Banquet took place on Monday May 20 at the Magic Castle in Hollywood. The winners, which are voted on by the membership, were: Steve Valentine (Close-Up Magician of the Year), John Carney (Stage Magician of the Year), David Regal (Lecturer of the Year) and Martin Lewis (Parlor Magician of the Year). The special awards and fellowships voted on by the board of directors were: Jim Steinmeyer, The Pendragons, Tihany, John “Kaz” Kasnetsis, Billy McComb, Rick Thomas, Pavel, and Earl Nelson.(5/23)

Shortly after David Blaine survived his Vertigo stunt an Associated Press article described what happened, “About 10:50 p.m., he gave a thumbs up, jumped from the pole and fell into a stack of boxes with a landing zone of quilted blankets. Assistants dug through the cardboard toward Blaine, half-covered by crushed cardboard. He emerged, seemingly unharmed, and waved feebly to the screaming crowd.” To read the May 22 article titled “David Blain’s Act Ends With Plunge” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine’s day while on the poll is described in an Associated Press article, “Blaine waved occasionally when fans screamed out his name. He took cell phone calls, jabbering away from 100 feet up. He did a radio interview with Howard Stern, and planned an Internet chat later in the day.” To read the May 22 article by Larry McShane titled “Latest Blaine Stunt is Balancing Act” click: HERE.(5/23)

A series of Associated Press photos on David Blaine’s Vertigo can be seen by clicking: HERE.(5/23)

A transcript from CNN’s “American Morning With Paula Zahn” which was covering the David Blaine Vertigo stunt, appears on the CNN website. Correspondent Brian Palmer speaks to Blaine while on a cherry picker which gets close to him. To read the May 22 transcript: Part 1 click: HERE.
–To read the May 22 transcript: Part 2 click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine told Sky News, “I have nothing. My legs have gone, my back has gone, I’m just saving what I have got for this jump onto the cardboard.” To read the May 22 article titled “Blaine: ‘I’ve Nothing Left'” click: HERE.(5/23)

A Daily News article mentions the cost of David Blaine’s stunt, “Blaine is co-producing the $2 million extravaganza, paying about $100,000 of the cost out of his own pocket, he said.” To read the May 22 article by Emily Gest titled “Precariously Perched For Bryant Park Plunge” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine in a New York Post article that observes, “Here are some of the biggest fears Blaine could be facing during his stunt: Pigeon droppings, the runs, an earthquake or hurricane, heavy winds or rain – or Mayor Bloomberg declaring him a landmark.” To read the May 22 article by Adam Miller titled “Magic Man Rises To Latest Challenge” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine explains, “…has a simple explanation for some of the insane stunts he puts his poor body through: ‘It’s just what I do.'” To read the May 22 Knight Ridder article titled “David Blaine makes it plain: ‘It’s just what I do’” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine is quoted in a BBC News article, “When asked why his public spectacles have been endurance tests rather than magical feats, Blaine said a magic-themed stunt would be ‘the next thing.'” To read the May 22 article titled “Magician’s thriller on a pillar” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine is called in a Newsday article, “…a genius at self-invention and self-promotion and self-hype. And in New York at this particular moment in human history, that’s a magic of its own.” To read the May 22 article by Ellis Henican titled “Fear of Exposure? Never” click: HERE.(5/23)

David Blaine is said to be “…making New Yorkers feel a little dizzy” and described Vertigo, “…as much a mental challenge as it is a physical feat.” To read the May 22 ITV article titled “Blaine begins ‘Vertigo’ stunt” click: HERE.(5/23)

George Kovari is the magic coordinator for the new “Invisible Man” play at the Manchester Theatre in England. A Manchester Online article previewed the show and profiled Kovari who pointed out that “To keep working is the important thing; without work you are not a magician.” To read the May 21 preview titled “Now you see him” click: HERE.(5/23)

VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,607 / Friday – May 24, 2002
While still on the pole David Blaine has already began talking about his next stunt. Blaine told a Guardian reporter, “Soon as I get off this pillar, I’m going to start planning that… I’m going to be chained up, and I’m going to be dangling.” Blaine was speaking about an event scheduled for February 2003 in London, which will most likely take place at the Tower Bridge over the Thames River. Although the details are sketchy it will most likely be a combination endurance stunt, escape and a leap into the water. For more information read some of the articles below.(5/24)

The overnight Nielsen TV ratings for Wednesday May 22 have “David Blaine’s Vertigo” finishing third in it’s time slot for the night with a 5.9 rating and a 10 share which translates to a little more than six million households who tuned in to see the show. The rating for this show was down from his previous special. The overnights are usually adjusted before they become official next week.(5/24)

Ed Schuman who was a longtime active member of the Society of American Magicians and past national president died on Thursday May 23 in Denver, Colorado at age of 85. He also had a routine published in the Tarbell Course In Magic 7.(5/24)

BBC News reported that David Blaine’s next stunt is scheduled for Feb. 2003 England and it is described as, “…a chained and handcuffed Blaine is due to be thrown into the freezing River Thames in London from Tower Bridge. He hopes to escape his chains before surfacing alive in a stunt that echoes Houdini’s escape from New York’s East River.” To read the May 23 article titled “Blaine ends pillar thriller” click: HERE.(5/24)

David Blaine is said to have “looked cold, bored and miserable” prior to jumping. A Guardian article also quotes him “I just want to thank everybody for their support for making this possible… God bless us all. Peace.” The article also quotes Blaine about his next stunt, “Soon as I get off this pillar, I’m going to start planning that.. I’m going to be chained up, and I’m going to be dangling.” To read the May 24 article by Oliver Burkeman titled “New York’s pillar-dweller jumps” click: HERE.(5/24)

A London Evening Standard describes David Blaine’s leap “He plunged towards a mat of blankets that had been placed on top of a huge pile of cardboard boxes laid out an hour earlier. The 60mph impact saw him vanish deep into the boxes. Support teams and medical aides dug frantically into the heap and found Blaine dazed but apparently none the worse for his ordeal. He was able to walk away, supported by members of his team and waved weakly at the crowd.” A mention of his next stunt placed it at the Thames river near the Canary Wharf. To read the May 23 article titled “Blaine drops from 100ft pole – and walks away” supplied by Infoseek and YellowBrix click: HERE.
–A version of the same story by James Langton appeared in This is London. To read it click: HERE.(5/24)

An ABC News article describes the final moments of David Blaine’s Vertigo, “After a 10-second countdown from the crowd, Blaine, dressed in baggy pants and a hooded sweatshirt, stepped from the pillar and landed flat on his back on the boxes. The magician and illusionist appeared physically wobbly but coherent and said “God bless us all” to the crowd before being taken to an ambulance to be examined by medical technicians.” To read the May 23 Reuters article titled “Leap of Faith” click: HERE.(5/24)

A New York Daily News article describes David Blaine as, “…no Spider-Man, but he certainly had folks holding their breath last night when he took an 80-foot plunge onto a pile of cardboard boxes in Bryant Park.” To read the May 23 article by Tamer El-Ghobashy and Leo Standora titled “David Blaine Stands, Falls” click: HERE.(5/24)

David Blaine’s finale is described, “Thousands of fans gathered in a park behind the main branch of the New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue to see Blaine jump from the pillar, which at its peak had a width of about 22 inches, onto a 12-foot high pile of cardboard boxes.” To read the May 23 Reuters article titled “Leap Of Triumph” click: HERE.(5/24)

David Blaine in a New York Post article that quotes several doctors about the dangers with his Vertigo stunt. To read the May 23 article by Marsha Kranes titled “Blaine’s Dangerous Feat” click: HERE.(5/24)

David Blaine’s Vertigo is examined by an Express And Star article that tries to decide whether it was magic or a stunt. Magician Allen Merrell explained, “…most performers stick either to traditional magic, known as illusions, or to real feats of endurance and danger, known as stunts. Blaine does both. The automatic assumption is that even his genuine stunts are illusions.” To read the May 23 article by Peter Rhodes titled “Amazing feat or a trick of the trade?” click: HERE.(5/24)

Cipriano ‘Cippie’ Rodriguez is featured in The Pueblo Chieftain in conjunction with his surprise party thrown by Southern Colorado Magic Association, which made him a lifetime member. Ed Groves said of Rodriguez, “when Cippie’s on the stage, it’s pure magic. It really happens. You suspend your disbelief and he takes you to another plane.” To read the May 22 article by Loretta Sword titled “Abracadabra” click: HERE.(5/24)
A hooded David Blaine during a quiet moment prior to his ascent to the top of the 10-story pillar for his Vertigo stunt on Tuesday May 23, 2002 at Bryant Park in New York City. (Photo: MagicTimes). (5/24)
VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,608 / Saturday – May 25, 2002
Darren Romeo’s new show “Siegfried & Roy Present Darren Romeo, The Voice of Magic” which is scheduled to open on Tuesday May 28 in Las Vegas is the subject of a Las Vegas Sun article which quotes Romeo “I am very, very excited… I have been performing magic since I was 9 you can’t imagine how I feel. This is so surreal. Even now, when I am so close to the scenario, it seems like some strange episode. The world is spinning.” Roy commented, “Darren reminds Siegfried and me of ourselves at the beginning of our careers. He is a dedicated performer with an endless desire to please an audience.” To read the May 24 article by Jerry Fink titled “Siegfried & Roy protege Romeo takes stage at The Mirage” click: HERE.(5/25)

Dylan Ace in a Miami New Times article that talks about his upcoming straitjacket escape from a burning rope. The article describes Ace as, “A devotee of the great Harry Houdini, he wants to move from doing mere magic tricks onstage to perfecting more daring escapes. He also wants to free himself of the stilted magician-in-a-tuxedo stereotype.” To read the May 23 article by Juan Carlos Rodriguez titled “The Great Flaming Escape” click: HERE.(5/25)

“Melinda, First Lady of Magic” is reviewed in the Las Vegas Sun where they comment, “…it was obvious that Melinda loves what she does. But what she does is not strictly magic: it is seduction. She seduces her audience with her flair for the glamorous and her warmth, good looks, charm and dancing.” To read the May 24 article by Jerry Fink titled “Melinda gives it her all at Venetian Showroom” click: HERE.(5/25)

A funny article in Maxim has the editor, Jordan Burchette, standing on a bucket for 23 hours. He got the idea while in the mens room of his building “You can imagine our surprise when we discovered this while trying to use the pisser on the 23rd floor of our offices, and were greeted by Blaine, perched like a cockatiel outside the window, and glaring back at us.” To read the May 22 article click: HERE.(5/25)

A Page Six, New York Post, story speaks to the many David Blaine fans which came to see him live. The article also quotes Blaine, “I want to inspire people to challenge their own fears, angers and prejudices so that they can go out and face whatever they are afraid of in life.” To read the May 23 article by Jen Vitale and Bridget Harrison titled “Hero’s Fall Of Fame” click: HERE.(5/25)

A Teletext story reveals more details about David Blaine’s next stunt and quotes Ali Bongo, “He is a new generation and a new way of showing magic, which is good.” To read the May 23 article by Jonathan Donald titled “And for Blaine’s next trick” click: HERE.(5/25)

David Blaine’s next stunt is described in the Glasgow Herald, “The 29-year-old American plans to be thrown, chained and handcuffed, from the Tower Bridge in London into the river Thames before freeing himself.” To read the May 24 article titled “Blaine plans Thames plunge for next stunt” supplied by YellowBrix and Infoseek click: HERE.(5/25)

David Blaine is quoted about Vertigo in a Daily Record article, “Standing alone up there, I feel a weird kind of peace. It’s quiet up there, as if the city’s under water. When you’re standing on one spot, time moves slow.” To read the May 24 article titled “Blaine Opens Magic Boxes” click: HERE.(5/25)

David Blaine’s time on the pillar is described in Newsday, “On the 22-inch-wide column, Blaine, wearing a baggy, hooded sweatshirt and dark, loose-fitting pants, stood with his legs as far apart as possible, sometimes moving his arms to help his circulation.” To read the May 23 article by Bryan Virasami titled “Now, the Iceman Jumpeth” click: HERE.(5/25)

David Blaine in a London Independent article that claims that, “…some in the crowd said they felt cheated. The original plan had been for Blaine to stand 100ft high for 48 hours.” To read the May 24 article titled “‘It hurt,’ says magician who jumped 80 feet after 35 hours on a pole” supplied by YellowBrix and Infoseek click: HERE.(5/25)

Puck, Chris Capehart, Torkova, Todd Robbins, Michael Chaut, Randy Shine, Dennis Kyriakos and Asi Wind appearing at Monday Night Magic on May. 27 at 8pm in NYC. For tickets phone Ticketmaster at: 212-307-4100. For more information click: HERE.(5/25)

VA,SC,MI: Legendary street magician and Slydini student Jim Cellini is on a lecture tour throughout the United States with stops in Richmond, VA (May 23), Newport News, VA (24), Charlestowne, SC (26), Garden City, MI (28), Bay City, MI (30) and Kalamazoo, MI (31). For more information click: HERE.(5/25)

FLORIDA: The 2002 Florida Magicians Association Convention sponsored by IBM Ring #45 takes place on May 24-26 in Miami. Performers and lecturers include: Juliana Chen, Shawn Farquhar & Felicity, Oscar Munoz, Randy Pryor, Chad Long, Mirko, Jay Mattioli, Kevin & Caruso, Michel & Greco, Bill Goldman, Paul Gertner, and Duane Laflin. For more information click: HERE.(5/25)
VOLUME: 53 / ISSUE: 1,609 / Sunday – May 26, 2002
Ricky Jay is called a “slyly hip sleight-of-hand artist” in the Arts & Leisure section of the New York Times where they describe him in his “On The Stem” show as, “Ricky Jay uses magic the way Chris Rock uses comedy or Ute Lemper uses cabaret songs. Magic’s the medium, entertainment’s the message. He doesn’t go in for whimsy or give himself suavely mysterious airs.” The writer comments, “I did expect to have fun at ‘On the Stem,’ but I didn’t expect to be so delighted.” To read the May 25 article by Margo Jefferson titled “Myth, Magic and Us Mortals” click: HERE. (Members only site).(5/26)

The Amazing Kreskin is in Las Vegas for five weeks where he is waiting for UFO sighting. A Las Vegas Review-Journal article reported that “Kreskin is backing up his claim — first made on a Fox News Channel morning show and detailed on the “Predictions” part of his Web site — with a $50,000 check. It goes to charity if “the largest sighting to date” doesn’t occur by June’s end.” To read the May 24 article by Mike Weatherford titled “Amazing Kreskin killing time until UFOs arrive” click: HERE.(5/26)

Gregory Wilson, Bob Borgia & Co., Lou Serrano, Jon Armstrong, Bob Dorian, Fitzgerald, and Ross Horwitz appear at the Magic Castle in Los Angeles on May 27-Jun. 2. Ross Horwitz lectures on Sunday Jun. 2.(5/26)
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