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How I got the Magic bug 5 Replies

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Getting the magic bug 2 Replies

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Sight Gags and M.C. Bits 3 Replies

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Blog Posts

Items to be added to my repertoire

I'm working on two effects these days: "The Trick That Cannot Be Explained" a la Eugene Burger, and "Kismet Connection" in Ted Lesley's Paramiracles.

Posted by James Short on April 14, 2024 at 11:00am — 1 Comment

Arkansas Magic Convention

I was just at the Arkansas Cavalcade of Magic and I had a great time, plus I picked up a few neat goodies. My first purchase was a Tommy Wonder take on Wild Card called "The Tamed Cards". It came with a DVD and preassembled props. At an auction I got Harry Robson's Worker's Dream wallet at less than half the retail value. And finally I picked up "Challenge Name-A Card" by Mark Strivings.

I have a few takeaways from the convention:

  • The hotel was nice. The room was clean…

Posted by James Short on March 29, 2024 at 7:30am — 1 Comment

Looking for Illusionists for a viral video idea based on a TikTok Trend

Hello Everyone, 

I am looking for illusionists, magicians and assistants (hate using that term, I prefer stage partners) to help design a video to go viral. On Tiktok, there's a trend where people are saying "I'm (we're) a ____________, of course I (we) ____________". I have a couple of these for "I'm a magician, of course I ________________", so I want to get a bunch of magicians and illusionists to video one illusion or trick each and have them say the line. I want to put…


Posted by Vinnie Spano on March 8, 2024 at 4:11pm — 3 Comments

New routine

While trying (and failing) to nap, a routine popped into my head. It's going to be called Thinking Traps, and will deal with beliefs, confirmation bias, and cognitive dissonance.

Stay tuned for further developments.

Posted by James Short on February 21, 2024 at 1:54pm — 1 Comment

Free magic resources I like

  • Vanish Magazine
  • Imagine Magazine
  • Michael Close newsletter
  • Denis Behr's Conjuring Archive
  • Knowledge Base and TLPP effects at

Posted by James Short on February 3, 2024 at 11:35am — 3 Comments

A nice routine from the December Linking Ring

In the December Linking Ring there is a great, easy-to-do routine in Mike Powers' column "The Card Corner". It's called "Leader-hosen" by Gary Ward. I love the ending particularly.

I adapted the middle Oil and Water phase to an effect I already do. Mr. Ward's ending plays particularly well in the script I already had for my routine.

Posted by James Short on January 20, 2024 at 12:05pm — 1 Comment


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By working and learning together, we can make the magic happen!

FISM Winner Eric Chien! Watch and Enjoy!


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Wild About Harry Houdini

High-Class Vaudeville in D.C.

Houdini played Washington, D.C., many times during his career. Starting in 1914, Houdini's regular Washington venue became B.F. Keith's Theater located in the Riggs Building at 1426 G Street and 615-627 15th Street. This was Washington's home for "High-Class Vaudeville."Below is an unusually detailed vaudeville playbill from the September 20, 1924, Washington Times. This is a great way to see

The Houdinis in the bordello

In the 2014 Houdini Miniseries, there's a scene in which the young Harry and Bess find themselves unknowingly booked into a brothel. Turns out this is based on reality. In fact, I now believe I've discovered precisely when and where this happened, thanks to a letter in the Boston Public Library and a scrapbook in the Library of Congress.I'm sharing this one as a "History Exclusive" on my

LINK: Houdini monkeys with a buzz saw

The photo below has long been somewhat of a mystery. But now our friend Joe Notaro has discovered an issue of Motion-Play Magazine for May 25, 1919, which describes Houdini's encounter with the buzz saw. Click to read at Harry Houdini Circumstantial Evidence.This article also answers the question of what "trick" Houdini is showing DeMille in this photo.Thanks Joe! Related:

Inside the Hulme Hippodrome

This video takes you inside the abandoned Hippodrome in Hulme, England, where Houdini performed in February 1909. Here's hoping it can be saved.Music Hall and Theatre Review,  February 19, 1909.For more on the theater and the effort to save it, check out the Save Hulme Hippodrome website.Related:List of surviving Houdini theatersNewark's (barely) surviving Houdini theatersInside

Houdini chases spooks in Charlottesville

On March 4, 1924, Houdini appeared at the Jefferson Theater in Charlottesville, Virginia. This was part of his first spiritualism lecture tour that year. In most cities, Houdini only gave a single lecture. But here at the Jefferson, he gave a matinee and an evening lecture. The lectures were given under the auspices of the Kiwanis Club to benefit the Children's Home.The Daily Progress reported


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    SAM Podcasts!

    25. How Magic Saved My Life - Part 2

    We continue with another unusual story on how someone became a magician. Ryan Loyle hit rock bottom and saw no hope of getting out of it. The a bit of magical fate entered his life. Listen to this tale of hope and inspiration as host Bruce Kalver tells the tale.

    To learn more about The Society of American Magicians, go to

    Ryan Loyle's YouTube channel is: Loyle Magic


    24. How Magic Saved My Life - Part 1

    All magicians have a story on how they became a magician. We found someone who has an unusual story that will show you that the art of magic is truly magical. Vee Sovann tells how magic turned his life around in a very dramatic way. 

    To learn more about the Society of American Magicians, go to



    23. The Trivia of Magic Babylon

    This episode discusses the new magic trivia book Magic Babylon with it's author Joe Hernandez. You can find the book on

    Be sure to also check out the new S.A.M. history book at

    To learn more about The Society of American Magicians, go to


    22. Joe Givan's Halloween Disaster

    They thought they had a sure thing with a Halloween show that would bring in hundreds of people. They soon found out that luck was not on their side. Listen to a funny tale of a time when things didn't turn out the way they expected. Guest Joe Givan of Theater of Dreams in Castle Rock Colorado tells the Story

    You can learn more about Theater of Dreams at

    Hosted by Bruce Kalver, Backstage S.A.M. is a production of The Society of American Magicians.

    To learn more about The Society of American Magicians. please visit

    21. The S.A.M. History Book

    Editor David Charvet discusses the new book Magic in America: The Story of the Society of American Magicians written by David Goodsell. Get the behind the scenes story of the making of this monumental publication.

    You can learn more about the book and how to order at

    Hosted by Bruce Kalver, Backstage S.A.M. is a production of The Society of American Magicians.

    To learn more about The Society of American Magicians. please visit



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    Jim Stott replied to Katherine's discussion Magic Cartoons in the group Magic Jokes, Cartoons & Stuff
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    Heros of Magic 2

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