“Bill in Lemon” illusion from “World of Magic” ’79!

In this vintage moment from 1979’s “World of Magic” Doug gives new definition to the idea that money burns a hole in your pocket. Recorded at the Hilton Las Vegas, this deceptively simple illusion is having a bit of a revival this week courtesy of our friends at “Magic Week.”

Vintage Las Vegas Hilton Doug Marquee

What you see above is the fabulous Las Vegas Hilton, and if you look to the bottom left “The Magical World of Doug Henning” shines bright. Well, it shines bright below Liberace, Steve Lawrence, and Eydie Gorme! The Las Vegas Hilton, now the Westgate Las Vegas, is probably most well known for the multitude of …

Walter C. Miller Obituary

It slipped under my radar over this past weekend that Walter C. Miller, Doug’s long time TV director, passed away at the age of 94.  Miller’s important contribution to all of Doug’s specials can not be understated. He can also be credited with directing what was television’s first modern magic special with “World of Magic”…

“The Rock N’Fun Magic Show” Advertisement-1975

Get rid of those Monday blues with this vintage 1975 newspaper advertisement for the “Rock N’ Fun Magic Show” on NBC 4 in New York.  The show itself was hosted by actor Jeff Mylett,  featured sitting next to Doug, who at that time was the understudy for Doug in “The Magic Show.” The special was…

“Fountain Levitation Illusion” from Magic on Broadway

Hello All! Well, I thought I’d dip my foot back into the proverbial posting pool today courtesy of the “Fountain Levitation Illusion.” With Ann Reinking as his assistant, Doug is at his best with this legendary illusion that never seems to get old over time.  This vintage illusion fit well into the special’s “best of”…

VOTE!

I’m not one for bringing politics into my blog or social media interactions. But, I feel I’d be remiss if I didn’t encourage all of you out there to VOTE if you haven’t already. In the meantime, I will be taking  a week or so off from the blog to take care of some personal business,…

“Bed of Horrors” Article by Brian Lumley-Conclusion

The Bed of Horrors: Part Four ©2020 Brian H. Lumley Another “Bed of Horrors” came from Owens for The Magic Show national tour. It had the same set of problems as the original unit. All the changes that were made for the Broadway illusion were incorporated into the design of this piece, but it still…

“Bed of Horrors” Article by Brian Lumley-Part Three

The Bed of Horrors: Part Three©2020 Brian H. Lumley On Broadway they wanted the “Bed of Horrors” bigger with longer teeth. This meant extending the four posts 4’ at the top and replacing the spikes with new ones 12” long. Now the top had to drop further, slide over a new seam, land smoothly and…

“Bed of Horrors” Article by Brian Lumley-Part Two

The Bed of Horrors: Part Two©2020 Brian H. Lumley The “Bed of Horrors” was a bad dream come true — it just would not work with any guarantee. The canopy slid down the four posts guided by four sleeves of square tubing about a foot long welded to the corners of the canopy frame. This…

“Bed of Horrors” Article by Brian Lumley-Part One

Over the next few posts, I’m going to be publishing an exclusive article from Brian Lumley. I’m sure many of you know, but Brian, along with Glenn Priest, was Doug’s right hand man and technician during the early days of Doug’s career.  This article encompasses the treacherous set-up of the “Bed of Horrors” illusion from…

“Motorcycle Illusion” from Magic on Broadway

The motorcycle illusion featured today made its first TV appearance with Doug all the way back in 1977’s “World of Magic III.” Without a doubt, it became one of Doug most memorable and famous illusions. So much so in fact, that he recreated it for his last special “Magic on Broadway” in 1982.  Now, in…

“Rubber Girl” Illusion from “Magic on Broadway”

The “Rubber Girl” illusion above was featured on Doug’s 1982 “Magic on Broadway” special. A lot of the special had sort of a greatest hits feel about it, and was a perfect venue for Doug to show off some old favorites sprinkled with new illusions. In retrospect, all this is appropriate as this was the…

Doug and Debby Orlando T.M. Center Poster Autographs

The above poster comes from a recent purchase I made. While Doug and Debby signed a lot of autographs, this one was dedicated to the Orlando T.M. center that was open at the time.  When it closed, everything in the center was eventually disposed of over time. However, this unique poster survived through a keen…

Would You Like to Help a Teacher Teach through Magic?

I received this very nice email today from teacher, Lee Hollman. Lee teaches at P.S.132 in Brooklyn NY, and has a request that maybe some of the many magicians out there can help him with. He’s also a huge Doug fan, as we all are. I personally can’t think of a better way than this…

James Randi (1928-2020)

Word is beginning to spread throughout the magic world that “The Amazing Randi,” aka James Randi, has just passed away. In his 92 years, James Randi brought a lot, not only to the world of magic and escapism, but to the art of skepticism and debunking of fraud. In that respect, he certainly picked up…

“Houdini’s Magic Magazine” Mystery

For all intents and purposes there shouldn’t be a mystery surrounding this January, 1978 issue of “Houdini’s Mystery Magazine.”  I recently purchased this issue off of EBay for many reasons. The number one reason, of course, is for the cover and article previewing Doug’s upcoming “World of Magic” special. However, as I began to flip…

“Mismade Girl” from The Magic Show Movie!

To close off your Friday, why don’t we take a look at the “Mismade Girl” illusion from the “Magic Show” movie?  Designed by magician Chuck Jones in 1968, the illusion has taken on a life of its own over the years, and was a frequent part of Doug’s act and stage shows! Enjoy! Have a…

Argus Leader Interview-5/1/1987

I was drawn to this article because of it being at a late stage of Doug’s magic career. It even begins with the interviewer asking about his opinion of Penn and Teller, and Doug’s view of them. Clearly they were the new kids on the magic block in the late 1980s. Times were clearly changing …

“Fergus’ Dilemma” from Merlin

The above song, of course, comes from “Merlin” and features one of Nathan Lane’s musical numbers from the show. While the sound quality is lacking, it does give you a “representation” of what the music was like.  Over the years, Nathan Lane hasn’t talked about “Merlin” all that much. When he has, it always hasn’t…

Doug Henning on Broadway-Annie Slide Illusion

It’s two Annie actresses for the price of one in this clip from 1982’s “Doug Henning: Magic on Broadway!” Taped during the Merlin era, the special’s slide illusion features the original Annie Andrea McArdle transforming into the then current Annie Allison Smith. Did the Sun really come out tomorrow with this illusion? Well, that’s for…

“Bump in the Night” Box Interview with Greg Gleason

As many of you may have seen, magician Greg Gleason recently and accidentally came to own Doug’s original “Things that go Bump in the Night” box. How that came to be is a fascinating story. It’s a story so fascinating that I’m going to let Greg tell it himself.  How did you obtain the box?…

Gary Brown on his Genii Article: Expanded

In 1997, I had reached out to Erica Larsen who was, at that time, editing Genii, about doing an issue devoted to Doug Henning.  Erica kindly agreed, arranging for a few other writers to contribute pieces, and I volunteered to do a biographical sketch.  Because Doug was still involved in trying to launch the Veda Land project,…

1997 Doug Bio Sent for “Genii” Article

The following  biography was faxed to writer Gary Brown for an article he was doing on Doug for “Genii” in 1997. While Doug himself did not participate in the article directly, he did give his blessing to it.  Tomorrow I’ll be posting Gary’s more detailed account of what occurred with the article and its reception….

Tonight’s Magic Collector’s Corner!

Sorry for the short notice folks, but I have it on good authority that tonight’s “Magic Collector’s Corner” will have a very special Doug segment. What it is, well, I can’t tell you. But, rest assured I’m looking forward to watching! The information to attend is listed above! See you there!

Famous Faced Cards by Paul Romhany (feat. Doug)

Sitting comfortably with Houdini, David Copperfield, and Cardini, Doug’s visage is one of the greats featured in this version of the “Famous Faced Cards” illusion.  The illusion itself is reimagined by Paul Romhany, and based on a routine by Ken Brooke. The cards themselves are very striking, eye catching, and truly one of a kind!…

Doug and John Ritter

Most people are probably familiar with the traditional picture of Doug and John Ritter that I used for today’s splash page. However, I recently came across this alternative shot that was taken on the same night. The event in question occurred on Halloween 1978, and was taken at what I assume is the Magic Castle…

“Merlin” Jeopardy Question

In a blink and you’ll miss it moment on “Jeopardy, ” Doug appeared as a question in an episode that aired just last week. The category, appropriately titled “Guys Named Doug,” was connected to “Merlin” and went for $600. How it turned out for the contestant, well, I’m not surprised. It is a lost musical…

Earth, Wind, & Fire Thank You to Doug- Ebay Item

For all you collectors out there, I just came across this unseen item today on Ebay. As you can see, this 1978 trade magazine advertisement was from the popular band Earth, Wind, and Fire thanking Doug for creating illusions for their tour. It also works well as a double promotion for Doug’s then upcoming “World…

“Alla-Kazam”Fanzine- World of Magic ’78 Article

The following article comes from the second issue of the magic fanzine “Alla-Kazam.” The magazine itself was bi-monthly, and a product of MacDonald Magic located out of Spencerville, Ohio. By all accounts, it folded in 1981.  But, let’s begin with that cover illustration shall we?  By that I mean it’s certainly one of the more…