10 More Minutes of Dai Vernon and Doug on Dick Cavett (Revisited)

If 21 minutes of Doug on Dick Cavett wasn’t enough for you, how about 10 minutes more? In it, Doug and Dick introduce a performance and chat with the legendary Dai Vernon. All of this culminates with Dai demonstrating the famous Cups and Balls. I’d be more descriptive. But, why would I do that when…

“A Death-Defying Escape” in Hollywood

Thanks to John Cox of Wild About Harry for alerting me to a new magic and comedy play currently running at the Hudson Guild Theatre in Hollywood starring Judy Carter.  “A Death-Defying Escape” is a show that deals with Carter’s life and career in magic among other things. Why am I mentioning this? Well, according…

Doug’s First Letter to Dai Vernon

The above letter, as featured in “The Essential Dai Vernon,” is Doug’s initial contact with Vernon to inquire if the esteemed magician might mentor Doug during his time at Los Angeles’ Magic Castle. It goes without saying that Vernon accepted, and due in no small measure to Vernon, Doug blossomed under his tutelage. The rest…

Doug on Dai Vernon-1976 World of Wizards Special

The above clip comes from a 1976 James Randi special called “World of Wizards.” I had posted the full special some years ago, but the original channel that hosted it, “Sleight of Direction,” disappeared. However, through magical means I was able to make it reappear for you today with no further hosting issues. Actually, today…

Dai Vernon at Doug’s 1977 Wedding

This little seen picture below was taken at Doug’s wedding to Barbara DeAngelis in 1977. The event itself took place in the Pacific Palisades of Los Angeles, and had about 150 guests in attendance mainly relatives. However, a handful magicians were invited including a long haired Ricky Jay whom you can see right behind Dai…

Doug and Dai Vernon at the 1978 S.A.M Convention

Sorry for the lack of posts this week. But, due to some work related projects many balls have been in the air this week. However, I wanted to get something quick off to everyone, and this picture of Doug and Dai Vernon at the 1978 S.A.M. New York convention does the trick! I’ve only seen cropped,…

Linking Ring- March,1972 (Doug in Hollywood)

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Many of us have read about Doug’s early days in Hollywood studying with Dai Vernon at the “Magic Castle.” However, this my friends is the real deal. Written at the time it was happening, this article gives us a first hand account of the whispers and rumors surrounding this Doug Henning….

“Goodliffe’s Abracadabra” Cover-Aug. 1978

Today’s post comes from Andrew Van Buren, and is a August 1978 cover from the popular British magazine “Goodliffe’s Abracadabra.”  Abra, as it was fondly referred as, was started in 1946 by magician and author Charles Goodliffe Neale. The magazine itself enjoyed a record sixty-three year run, and folded in 2009 after issue 3,296. Andrew…

13 More Minutes of Dai Vernon and Doug on Dick Cavett

(ED. Note: Due to legal reasons this video was apparently removed by You Tube. Sorry about that) If 21 minutes of Doug on Dick Cavett wasn’t enough for you, how about 13 minutes more? I actually wasn’t expecting to find more of this broadcast but, wouldn’t you know it, the second half came to my…

Dave Collier 1978 Photos: After Party with Dai Vernon

Well, all good things must come to an end folks. As much as I’d love to keep posting these fantastic and memorable photos, I’ve run out of my supply. Not to worry though because next week I’ll be posting an exclusive interview with photographer Dave Collier to give you more backstory on his life and…

Dai Vernon on “Magic Circus!”

At “The Doug Henning Project” the daily focus is on, rightfully so, Doug Henning. But, for part of this week I’d like to focus on some of the master magicians that taught or influenced Doug in his formative years. The first on our list is Dai Vernon. If you aren’t aware of him, and how…

Doug and Dai

This particular clip, taken from the CBC Archives, seems to be one of the few filmed examples of Dai Vernon teaching Doug. The two had become close friends when Doug traveled from Canada to train with Vernon after being awarded his legendary $5000 performing arts government grant. Their lessons, which took place at “The Magic Castle,”…

John Gaughan: Part One

This week we have another treat in store for you with one of the art form’s most prominent and respected designers: John Gaughan. For over fifty years, John has been delighting audiences with his work for such artists as Siegfried and Roy, David Copperfield, David Blaine, Criss Angel, Mark Wilson, and Ricky Jay. However, most…

Larsen on Henning: Part One

For many in the magic community, Hollywood’s “The Magic Castle” has been the headquarters of the craft for close to fifty-four years. As the brain child of brothers Milt and Bill Larsen, this private club has entertained professionals and audiences in a way that can only be seen to be believed. Doug’s first exposure to the Castle…