The passing of a dear friend

One of the perks of writing for the Las Vegas Magic community, as I do, is that I get to create content which features the work of magicians that I admire (and have been fortunate enough to meet) – and that I am able to call more than a few of those magicians personal friends.

Recently I have discovered one of the drawbacks of writing for a community that I know, and love, so well. In the early morning hours of July 28th – I learned of the sudden and deeply unexpected passing of a dear friend. That friend was an active participant in the magic community – and I realized that I would have need to craft an article regarding the passing of a person that was dear to me.

My view was that I could no longer do anything for Bill in this life other than writing him the very best tribute that I could.

I hope that somehow–through my words–I have found a way to keep his memory bright and alive in the hearts of those that knew and adored him. It is also my hope that my words can serve as an introduction to the people reading that Bill never had the chance to meet.

It was with great sadness, and tremendous distress, that the Las Vegas magic community learned about the passing of one of their own during the early morning hours of July 28th. Las Vegas magician William (Bill) Robinson died unexpectedly from complications involving his heart.

The rest of Bill Robinson’s tribute (with photographs) can be found, HERE.

Rest in Peace, Bill.

You are well and truly missed.

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Las Vegas magician Nathan Burton performing at the Flamingo

Hotel Flamingo Las Vegas

Hotel Flamingo Las Vegas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Magician Nathan Burton provides an enjoyable afternoon of entertainment at the Flamingo Las Vegas. Attendees of the show might recall Nathan’s appearances on the popular NBC show America’s Got Talent. Burton’s star quality ultimately earned him headlining status in March of 2008 and he has been wowing his audiences, ever since.

Burton opens his show with an impressive appearance of multiple Las Vegas Showgirls. He moves on, quickly–whilst engaging his audience with a tale from his youth–to performing one of the tricks he is most known for – flushing a “security guard” down a toilet. Nathan provides rapid-fire comedic entertainment . . . with a magicians keen eye being successfully applied to the tiniest of details. Each magical interlude is enjoyable, as well as being expertly permeated with his trademark style of performing what is, truly, the best in comedy magic. (Article continues, HERE.)

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Close-up magician Armando Vera performing at the Flamingo

English: Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada

Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Close-up magician Armando Vera can be found entertaining pre-show audiences attending the Nathan Burton Comedy Magic show at the Flamingo. Vera’s chatty and comical VIP Experience at the Nathan Burton Show takes place on the balcony level of the Flamingo Main Showroom. The VIP Experience is an intimate, close-up gathering: it is also the only pre-show of its kind in Las Vegas.

This columnist was introduced to the work of Armando Vera whilst attending the International Magic Experience. Armando performed an overwhelmingly beautiful chop cup routine during his IMX performance which touched many an audience member on an emotional level. Based upon that performance, alone, this columnist was most thrilled to have received an invitation to see Armando’s VIP Experience performance.

Article continues, HERE.

The International Magic Experience offered first-rate magical experiences

Casino logo

Casino logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The International Magic Experience was hosted by the Orleans Hotel & Casino May 21-23, 2012. The Orleans proved to be an excellent choice for the placement of this event considering both the large theater on premises . . . as well as the Orleans offering comfortable, well-appointed conference rooms. The spaciousness of the theater–and all of the generously-sized conference rooms–had been thoughtful amenities which were much appreciated by the event attendees as well as the many guest artists and/or performers present during this spectacular event.

The organizers of the International Magic Experience (IMX) promised “3 days of nothing but magic overload” and they successfully delivered on that promise. This reporter was on hand in order to offer exclusive media coverage during the entire run of event. Summed up in 6 words?

An abundance of magic was experienced.

Article continues, HERE.

Michael Turco brings Magic and Mayhem to the Saxe Theater at Planet Hollywood

Planet Hollywood Las Vegas Hotel

Planet Hollywood Las Vegas Hotel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Magician Michael Turco can be found performing during his energetic stage show in the Saxe Theater at Planet Hollywood. Audiences might remember Turco from his sixth season appearance on the popular NBC television show America’s Got Talent. That talent has since arrived in Las Vegas and lucky ticket holders can catch Turco’s show–Magic and Mayhem–and experience an enjoyable afternoon of mystery and illusion.

Four talented dancers (Rachel Hall, Ashleigh Hunter, Shana Menkevich and Britne Lopez) open the show with a choreographed number which is pleasing and upbeat. Their dance routine successfully establishes the tempo of the show that is to come. Each of the dancers perform well as they provide visual interest on a relatively large stage.

Article continues, HERE.

Top 5 things you might not know about Mac King

Brenda & Mac King

Brenda & Mac King (Photo credit: PhineasX)

How much do you know about Las Vegas magician Mac King? Here are some little known facts about the performer which headlines in one of the very few family-friendly shows available on the Las Vegas Strip:

  1. While performing his cut-and-restored rope routine, Mac severed the tip of his thumb. Badly injured, he tried to stop the bleeding. When that didn’t work, Mac asked if there was a doctor or nurse in the audience. A nurse did come forward and managed to stop the bleeding. King finished that show, as well as the one that followed, before going to the hospital in order to be treated for his injury.
  2. King graduated–in 1981–from Macalester College in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Macalester is a private liberal arts college. King attended the college on a National Merit Scholarship. Mac graduated–with Highest Honors–with a double major in Magic and Anthropology.

Article continues, HERE.

Stefan Vanel performing in the Harmon Theater at Planet Hollywood

English: West side of the Planet Hollywood Res...

West side of the Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Parisian magician Stefan Vanel has moved to the Harmon Theater at Planet Hollywood. His recent move might have something to do with the two different ways his name is currently being spelled on promotional materials. He performed under his given name, Stephane Vanel, whilst headlining in The Magic of Paris at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino.

Stefan began his magical career by accident. In his early days he worked as an underwear model for Armani. One day, whilst awaiting his turn on the catwalk, Vanel had been practicing flourishes with a pack of cards. When it came time for him to walk down the runway, there was no place to put his cards. Vanel quickly adlibbed a manipulative card routine which he performed as he walked down the runway. The audience response was so great that his accidental performance unexpectedly landed him a weekly television magic show–entitled Fun TV Magic–in Paris, France.

Article continues, HERE.

Top 5 things you might not know about Jeff McBride

Top hat as an icon for magic

Top hat as an icon for magic (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How much do you know about the American sleight of hand master that is also known as Magnus? Here are some little known facts about the 3-time award winner at the International Grand Prix of Magic in Monte Carlo:

  1. Jeff studied at the American Mime School in New York City. During that time period he also worked full-time in the Flosso Hornman magic shop.
  2. He became a Vegas headliner at the Hilton. He was only 25.

Article continues, HERE.

Teller files lawsuit against Dutch entertainer Gerard Dogge

Teller, of the comedy magic duo Penn & Teller....

Teller, of the comedy magic duo Penn & Teller. Photo taken after their show at the Rio All Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to paperwork which has been filed with the Las Vegas federal court since April 11, magician Teller has brought a lawsuit against Dutch entertainer Gerard Dogge. Gerard Dogge’s performance name, Gerard Bakardy, is also mentioned in the legal paperwork.

Dogge’s legal troubles began when he allegedly posted Teller’s Shadows illusion–of which Teller owns the copyright–on the popular video website, YouTube. During the video, Dogge performed an illusion which he called Rose & Her Shadow. After Dogge’s performance on the video he allegedly offered to sell the secret behind his Rose & Her Shadow illusion for the sum of $3,050.

Article continued, HERE.

Mac King offers a family friendly magic show at Harrah’s

English: Harrah's hotel (Las Vegas)

Harrah’s hotel (Las Vegas) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Family friendly and Las Vegas shows are not two terms which tend to roll off the tip of your tongue when uttered, together. But with the rare talent in Mac King’s possession, those terms are not mutually exclusive of one another.

Audiences of all ages are sure to love the keen artistry with which Mac King performs his comedy magic show as well as the genuine laughs he provides within the construct of his engaging performance. He has spent years honing his craft and it shows. He effectively employs the use of good humor combined with an amiable personality and a unique performance style. His talent utilizing sleight of hand, in particular, is superb.

Article continued, HERE.