John Calvert A Salute To Magic

MagicTimes Spotlight News

Calvert’s Magicarama comes to New York City.

Master showman John Calvert, a living legend of magic, returns to New York City to perform highlights from his Magicarama extravaganza and to be honored by the Society of American Magicians Parent Assembly #1 as Magician of the Year: 2001. Calvert will present his masterful conjurations as the feature of the annual “Salute to Magic” at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center at 8:00 p.m. April 28, 2001. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the special magic that is part of “the longest world touring stage spectacular in theater history” and the charisma of veteran magician, movie star, and celebrity, John Calvert.

“He’s a classic,” exclaimed his longtime friend, Broadway magic consultant Charles Reynolds, in a recent conversation with MagicTimes… “He’s one of the last links to an earlier age of magic and show business. He played the role of The Falcon in the movies. He stood in for Clark Gable. He piloted airplanes blindfolded, sailed his yacht to ports around the globe. He was a sensation at Loews State Theater in 1947 and he’s never let up.” Some of the signature routines that Calvert will present at the “Salute to Magic” are his classic cigarette productions and the Floating Organ wherein he levitates his glamorous wife Tammy as well as the large organ console on which she is playing. “John has played theaters all over the world. He has the commanding personality of the true magician,” says Reynolds. Calvert has been appearing before the public for 70 years (he is approaching his 90th birthday) and still exudes a sparkling charm and swashbuckling vitality very much suited to a living legend of legerdemain and an icon of illusion.

The “Salute to Magic” is a fitting occasion on which to pay tribute to Calvert as “Magician of the Year.” The longest running magic presentation in the United States, “The Salute to Magic” commenced in 1908 under the auspices of the founding Parent Assembly #1 of The Society of American Magicians. During the shows long history, each year a different magician is selected to be honored as Magician of the Year. The “Salute to Magic” has known many venues; Hunter College, Town Hall, The Brooklyn Academy of Music and now for the past several editions, the Tribeca Performing Arts Center. Those recognized have included necromantic luminaries Harry Blackstone, Jr., Richiardi, Scarne, Al Flosso, and Slydini.

John Clavert’s Magicarama poster. (Reproduced from a William V. Rauscher postcard.)

Also on the bill supporting Calvert and his troupe are “magicomedian” George Schindler as master of ceremonies; manipulator Jay Sterling, the highly regarded David Oliver well known for his dove work and presentation of the Floating Ball, and musical, magical banjo playing Todd Charles. “Salute to Magic” promises a truly scintillating selection of novelty entertainers with the slant on sorcery.

The present focus on close-up magic and the dearth of theatrical venues in which to see traditional stage conjuring make this event a unique occasion for magic aficionados, especially those of more recent vintage, to experience the skill and artistry of a vanished era. From every point of view this is a show that anyone who loves magic cannot afford to miss. There are few on the scene who have been continually before the public as has Calvert. Among the magi, he is the last Titan from an age of giants. In short, the mere appearance of John Calvert constitutes a “Salute to Magic.” Buy your ticket now. Plan to be there, become caught in the spell, and join in the cheers. Salute to Magic. Salute to Calvert.

The 93rd annual “Salute to Magic” honoring and starring John Calvert will take place at The Tribeca Performing Arts Center at 199 Chambers St. in New York City, on Saturday April 28 at 8:00pm. Tickets are $35.00 for adults and $25.00 for seniors and children. All seats are reserved Tickets and are available at the box office before the show or from ticket chairperson Richard Stuart at 516-826-3660. For more information e-mail:

—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.

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