These are the kind of things that would serendipitously happen. They are part of the magic that made The Magic Show and kept it going. Needless to say, Doug never trusted the bag set again. He and his assistant double checked it every time.
What those particular stagehands thought was going to be a smart aleck “har de har” moment turned into a threat to their union positions. The gentlemen wanted to get a name for themselves on Broadway and they sure did.
That act of foolishness travelled like a wave ahead of the road shows The Magic Show was about to embark on. Everybody knew that this type of behaviour could not be tolerated. In a very short time span this act of sabotage was well known throughout IATSE and the theatre community. When I took The Magic Show on the road six months later, all the local stagehands knew what had happened and nobody tried to deal me a bad hand with the magic.
Getting the understanding of the Special Assistants value straightened out, helped make it possible for me to travel the US with confidence. The Magic Show tours and Doug’s first two specials were treated with respect by each IATSE local we encountered. From that point on, I had complete control and final check of all the illusions. Nothing was touched after I set it.