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Saturday, October 2, 2010

The most important book on performing

A second edition copy of Neo Magic arrived this week from England. After many months of searing for this incredible book and purchasing a copy of the also out of print "Neo Magic Artisty" to help and further my growth, to spur new thoughts and create a better show.

There is an interesting history behind Neo Magic, first run was only 500 issues, about half were destroyed on WWII. Second run only 750 issues. So maybe 1,000 at most still exist. This is the most important book ever written about performing magic, about keeping it elevated to an art form. The author Sam Sharpe was quite an interesting and amazing man.

To me at this time "Neo Magic" has become the single most significant piece of literature on performing.

With a journey that started with Tarbell, lead through "Books of Wonder, on through the Fitzike trilogy, by way of "Our Magic", with detours to "Strong Magic", "Essential Robert-Houdin" Carney's "Magic by Design", briefly working with Joanie Spina, Denny Haney & Bob Fitch's lecture notes, finally to "Art and Magic" and "Neo Magic Artistry".

To hold a signed, second edition copy of "Neo Magic" is absolutely amazing. I'm having a moment.

I'm trying to decipher the signature, "Best wishes to my friend ?AC Kefus? from Sam Sharpe Aug 1961" , perhaps I'll never find out. Good reason to keep searching, it was a long search that lead me to find this edition of "Neo Magic".

The book is hard to acquire, maybe that is a good thing, maybe not. It should be read by any and everyone who aspires to perform magic in front of live audiences as a quality entertainer. One of those things you need to become a true performing artist in the field of magic.

I also owe another debt of gratitude to my good friend Peter as he put me on the trail of the book a few years back (yes it has taken that long to find it), as Erdnase, "Expert at the Card Table" is his guide he knew Sharpe's "Neo Magic" would be as important to me

Deep down I know it's just another step, no matter how large, in the journey but the view from the plateau pretty good.

It was worth the search and this is what we do to further our art, I'm sure any other artist in any field reading this has made or will make a similar or even larger trip.

Came to mind, today I bought my son his first saxophone. Who knows, maybe that's his first step, hard to tell when he is only 9 but time will tell

So when your art means that much you follow the path. It's worth it, to you, your show and to your audiences!