Dave Collier Interview Part Two: Meeting Doug and a Hungry Tiger

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Doug and Young Fan @ Dave Collier

HAD YOU HEARD OF DOUG HENNING BEFORE THIS ASSIGNMENT?

I HAD NOT HEARD OF DOUG HENNING BEFORE HIS SPECIALS.  I DID PROVIDE PICTURES I TOOK AT HIS SPECIALS TO HIM… AND ACTUALLY VISITED HIM AND HIS WIFE AT HIS HOUSE.  HE WAS QUITE BUSY MOST OF THE TIME, SO I DIDN’T GET TO SPEND MUCH TIME WITH HIM.

WHAT WERE YOU IMPRESSIONS OF DOUG WHEN YOU FIRST MET HIM?

WHILE DOUG WAS VERY ATTENTIVE AND REMEMBERED MY NAME, HE WAS ALWAYS BUSY, BUT CHARMING

WHAT STOOD OUT FOR YOU IN TERMS OF HIS PERFORMANCE PRESENCE?

I BELIEVE DOUG BELIEVED IN TRANSCENDENTAL MEDITATION OR A SIMILAR MIND SET. SO, EVEN THOUGH THINGS WERE SWIRLING ABOUT HIM LIKE A STORM, HIS DEMEANOR REMAINED CALM (PERHAPS LIKE THE CALM IN THE MIDDLE OF A HURRICANE)

HOW DID YOU VISUALLY APPROACH TAKING PICTURES FOR THESE SPECIALS?

THE FOCUS OF THE PICTURE… IS EMPHASIZED NOT ONLY BY THE SUBJECT, BUT WHAT IS BEHIND THE SUBJECT.  IF A BACKGROUND CAN BE FOUND THAT CONTRASTS THE SUBJECT, YOU ARE ONE STEP CLOSER TO HAVING A MEMORABLE PICTURE (IE. IF A PERSON WITH DARK HAIR IS PHOTOGRAPHED WITH A BLACK BACKGROUND, THE SUBJECT BECOMES SOMEWHAT “CAMOUFLAGED” BY THE BACKGROUND)….MANY TIMES YOU HAVE NO CHOICE AS IN THE CASE OF A PERFORMANCE, BUT YOU DO THE BEST YOU CAN TO CREATE A GOOD PICTURE. 

IF AFTER A PERFORMANCE YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO STAGE A PERFORMER…YOU SHOULD BE LOOKING FOR SUITABLE BACKGROUNDS ON AND OFF THE STAGE, SO THE PERFORMER CAN IMMEDIATELY BE MOVED TO A SUITABLE BACKGROUND.

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Brooke Shield from “World of Magic III” @ Dave Collier

IS THERE A MOMENT OR MEMORY THAT STANDS OUT FOR YOU?

I WALKED THROUGH THE KITCHEN IN THE LAS VEGAS “LIVE” SPECIAL TO GET TO MY SEAT IN THE CENTER OF THE FRONT ROW.  WHILE I WAS IN THE KITCHEN AISLE, AN ANIMAL HANDLER APPROACHED ME WALKING A YOUNG, BUT LARGE TIGER…

BUT BEFORE I COULD MOVE ASIDE, THE TIGER FORCIBLY PULLED THE HANDLER 90 DEGREES UP AN AISLE DIRECTLY BEHIND THE STAGE, AND PULLED HIS HANDLER SEVERAL FEET WHERE THERE WERE TWO BIRDS IN A SMALL CAGE.  WITH A SINGLE SWIPE, THE TIGER RIPPED OPEN THE CAGE AND ATE THE TWO BIRDS!  I LATER LEARNED THAT IF A LARGE CAT IS FED, IT HAS A TENDENCY TO FALL ASLEEP, AND WHEN SLEEPY ARE NOT ALERT AND ARE DIFFICULT TO WORK WITH. THIS TIGER WAS HUNGRY, AND ATE THE ONLY FOOD HE COULD SEE!  HE THEN BECAME OBEDIENT AGAIN, AND ALLOWED THE HANDLER TO AGAIN CONTROL HIM. 

IT TURNED OUT THESE TWO BIRDS WERE PART OF DOUG’S FIRST ACT, SO DOUG HAD TO IMMEDIATELY ADJUST HIS LIVE PERFORMANCE.  IT DIDN’T SEEM TO FAZE HIM A BIT!  HE WAS AS CALM WITH THIS CATASTROPHE AS THOUGH SOMEONE HAD DROPPED A PIECE OF GUM ON THE FLOOR WHICH HE STEPPED IN, AND THEN SIMPLY PULLED IT OFF.  HE PULLED OFF THIS LIVE MAGIC SHOW WITHOUT MISSING A BEAT.  WHAT A GUY!  MAYBE THERE IS SOMETHING TO THIS TRANSCENDENTAL MEDITATION OR WHATEVER HE USED TO REMAIN FOCUSED AND CALM. NONE OF US WILL EVER KNOW WHAT THE FIRST ACT WAS FOR THIS LAS VEGAS SHOW.

Be Sure to Return Tomorrow for the Concluding Part of my Interview with Dave.

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