The Magic Show-Celestial Elevator

There’s nothing like a brief snippet from the TV version of “The Magic Show” to start the day off right! If all elevator rides were this fun…

Lion Tamer from “The Magic Show”

One of my favorite songs from The Magic Show is “Lion Tamer.” The song itself was composed by Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Godspell), and originally performed by actress Dale Soules. However, this version is recreated by Didi Cohen (Grease) for the filmed version of the musical from the early 1980s.  It’s a simple, but heart warming…

Never Before Seen Backstage Production Photos

The pictures featured below are a hodgepodge of never before seen production photos from “World of Magic 6 and 7,” as well as the filmed version of “The Magic Show.”  All of them really give a nice snapshot (no pun intended) into what went into making these legendary specials.  Special Thanks to Steve Zigmont-Doug Henning…

Doug at Ali’s Training Camp by Brian Lumley: Part Two

On stage in front of the Broadway audience Ali invited Doug to come to Africa as part of his entourage.  Doug did a massive sputter not knowing what to say; there was so much going on that others did not know about.  Then Muhammad saved the day when he invited him up to his training…

Doug and Muhammad Ali by Brian Lumley: Part One

Today’s multi-part story comes to us from Doug collaborator and website friend Brian Lumley. Brian has been kind enough to share a first hand account of when Doug met another legend in his field, the great Muhammad Ali. As you would expect, it’s a riveting story, and I’m very excited Brian has decided to make…

Tour and Show T-Shirts: Part One

Enjoy this plethora of vintage Henning T-shirt swag courtesy of Michael Whitecar. As you can see, each one truly represents a unique era and phase of Doug’s career.  Collect that All!

Current New York Magazine “Magic Show” Article

You can’t say it’s very often these days that there is a new article on “The Magic Show.” Let alone one featured in “The Cut” from New Magazine.  So, you can imagine my surprise when friend of the website Brian Lumley passed this onto me. It’s all about writer Christopher Bonanos’s first trip to see…

Doug Henning and Walter B. Gibson

The above image once again hails from the fine auction house of “Potter & Potter.” It’s from their upcoming June 16th David Baldwin auction, and in my opinion is a rare find indeed. The inscription reads: “To Walter Gibson–My favorite magical author. Magically yours, Doug Henning” Doug signed many autographs in his life, but this…

Jim Steinmeyer Interview: Part One (Revisited)

(To commemorate the website’s upcoming first anniversary, I thought it would be appropriate to dip into the vault and reprint some of the initial interviews that launched everything. So, in that spirit enjoy this interview with Jim Steinmeyer from our second week)  For many in the world of magic the name Jim Steinmeyer conjures up  fantastical…

Original Magic Show TV Commercial from the Michael Grandinetti Collection

This  commercial featured above was originally broadcast on October 10, 1978, and features Doug’s replacement Joe Ablado in the lead role. While Doug may not appear in the ad itself, his presence can be felt in the poster, the songs, and of course the illusions themselves.  So, enjoy this rare bit of Broadway TV magicana,…

Original 1976 Magic Show Marquee and Billboard Photos

These fabulous photos were given to me by early Doug collaborator Brian Lumley, and feature “The Magic Show” marquee and billboard during Christmas, 1976. On my recent trip to New York I had tried to visualize what the theater and its surrounding areas looked like during that period, and these certainly give me a great…

“The Magic Show” on Amazon Prime Streaming

John Cox of Wild About Harry was kind enough to let me know that the 1981 filmed version of “The Magic Show” is now available for streaming on Amazon Prime. While this production has been available on DVD for a while, this is the first time anything by Doug has been available on a streaming platform.  Notably,…

Cort Theater Photos

And I’m back! After a busy three weeks off, “The Doug Henning Project” is up and running for service. During this time, I had the pleasure of spending a week in New York City. NYC is memorable for many reasons, not least of which is that Broadway is the home of the Cort Theater. The…

Brian Lumley: “Magic Show” Secrets

How did Spellbound end up on Broadway? Ivan Reitman, Spellbound’s producer/director, put an ad in Variety which was published Dec. 19/73. This was the pre-production week. Joe Berhu and Edgar Lansbury saw the ad and came to take a look. By the end of the week Broadway was in the air. We set up shop…

Brian Lumley Interview : Part Two

Glenn Priest (far left), Brian Lumley (Middle), and Doug  Were you interested in magic before you met Doug? In a word no. Not Lesley, Glen, or myself had any experience with stage magic. We had each seen or performed magic on our own but that is another story. It is also why we each had…

Brian Lumley Interview: Part One

Today we have a treat in store for you in the form of a brand new interview with one of Doug’s earliest technical collaborators Brian Lumley. From “Spellbound,” to “The Magic Show,” to Doug’s first two specials Brian was there all the way. He was more than gracious enough to answer a wide range of questions,…

Vanishing Elephant Illusion

While I had hoped to find a clip of the original “Vanishing Elephant” illusion from Doug’s second special, everything on You Tube is an inferior and grainy copy. Fortunately for us, Doug recreated the illusion for the 1981 filmed version of “The Magic Show” which is the origin of this higher quality clip.  The elephant…

Society of Canadian Magicians: 1974 “Magic Show” Article

In addition to writing a great article this week, Richard Sherry has shared this issue of the “Levitator” from May/June 1974. The issue focuses on Doug’s groundbreaking success with “The Magic Show,” and even features an interview with Doug culled from “The New York Times.” Early interviews with Doug are always great to read, and…

David Ogden Stiers

For most people, actor David Ogden Stiers is best remembered for “MASH,” numerous Disney projects (Beauty and the Beast), and a long list of notable television and film roles. However, most magic fans will know that Stiers co-starred with Doug in the original Broadway production of “The Magic Show.” Playing the villainous and washed up…

Metamorphosis!

The above clip comes from the filmed and retooled version of “The Magic Show.” Shot in 1981, this version for television changed songs and even took some out. But, it is the only filmed version of the musical, and the only way to experience it today.  The illusion in question needs no introduction! Doug’s version…

Al Hirschfeld Meet Doug Henning

This New York Times article was conducted for the opening of “Merlin.” It’s a great read as you would expect, however the highlight is surely the Al Hirschfeld drawing that opens it. Doug was no stranger to Hirschfeld’s famed pen and pencil after having been previously featured in Hirschfeld’s art for “The Magic Show.” In fact,…

Nancy Henning Interview: Part Four

Hasn’t this been great? Before we start the last part of our interview I just wanted to once again thank Nancy Henning for taking the time to talk to me. I think we can all agree that her insights and observations only serve to make us appreciate Doug’s artistry even more. How do you think…

A Little “Magic Show” Music!

This 2010 clip is from a concert series called “If It Only Even Runs a Minute.” The series itself explores obscure and often overlooked Broadway shows such as, you guessed it, 1974’s “The Magic Show.”  The play, if you already didn’t know, was Doug’s big break into the public spotlight and reignited the public’s fascination…

Fan Mail Mystery!

Magician Pat Darienzo of Long Island shared with me this article he wrote soon after Doug passed away. What you are about to read is truly a Doug Henning mystery…and living proof that our mail system may be a little slow.  The Greatest Trick Doug Henning Never Did By Pat Darienzo     Doug Henning, to whom…

Please Stand By…

Due to a rather severe bout of food poisoning, “The Doug Henning Project” will be on a short hiatus. I’ll be back up again next week.  See you soon!

More Never Before Seen Pictures!

Boy do I have a treat for you! Over the next couple days I will be presenting extremely rare and candid shots of Doug and his crew preparing for “The Magic Show” television movie along with various NBC specials.  These photos not only show us the meticulous planning that went into every project, but also…

Alternate “Magic Show” Poster

This phenomenal and eye catching poster for the “Magic Show” television adaptation is truly, pardon the pun, a “wonder.” Rarely seen, it shows a totally different concept than the traditional poster that was used for the Broadway  and television versions.  If anyone has more information on this, where it was used, and the artist please…

“Magic Show” Movie Props!

Today’s images again come from Steve Zigmont’s impressive collection. What you see below are the bottles that the evil magician Van Zyskin uses in his act for “The Magic Show” movie.  Filmed for Canadian television, this version of “The Magic Show” differs from the famed Broadway production. However, it is the only version of the play…

Vanish Magic Magazine

I just wanted to let everyone know that the new July 2017 issue of “Vanish Magic Magazine” features a long form article written by yours truly about, you guessed it, Doug Henning. The article has tons of great pictures and delves into the history of Doug along with my reasons for starting “The Doug Henning…