Over the next couple days I wanted to focus on the unsung heroes of “The Magic Show”…Doug’s Understudies!
At the time, Doug had issues with the idea of the show continuing without him. As the show’s producer Edgar Lansbury said in John Harrison’s book “Spellbound:”
“Doug was always convinced that nobody else could do these illusions…When he eventually decided that he wanted to go off and do other things, he said, “You’ll have to close the show.”…We said “No we can’t close the show…We’ll have to replace you.”
In the end, Doug had final say in who was chosen as his understudies, and how they were trained. Magician Peter De Paula was ultimately selected to replace Doug on “The Magic Show’s” national tour. It ran for a year across the United States, and kept the show going in people’s hearts and mind without its beloved star.
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I remember Joe Abaldo was his understudy on Broadway and did a great job!