Happy Holidays and “World of Magic ’77” Article!

I had intended to have more posts leading up into the holiday season, but a pinched nerve in my shoulder and arm put a damper on that plan.  Regardless, I wanted to get one more 2020 post to the readers, and wish you all a very Happy Holiday season. It goes without saying 2020 wasn’t…

NBC Specials: More TV Guide Close-Ups

Remember what a “TV Guide” was? If not, then maybe I can refresh everyone’s Streaming and On-Demand based minds with these vintage “Close-Up” articles from that once popular publication.  It’s all a myriad of eras for Doug, and runs right up to the final special “Magic on Broadway.” How about those caricatures as well? I…

Fickle Nickel Juke Box Song Titles

The above pictures come from the collection of Joe Long. I’m sure it doesn’t take much guessing to see that these are “actual” song options used for the Fickle Nickel jukebox.  Not featured in my clip from yesterday, the finale of the illusion involved Doug taking the jumbo half prop coin and inserting it into…

“World of Magic” Fickle Nickel in Full

In tandem with last week’s post, I have a few more Fickle Nickel posts for you this week. Not least of which is the full routine which I was eventually able to find. For being one of his most famous performances, it’s not readily available on this thing called the internet.  Rather than describing it…

Fickle Nickel Friday: Original Jumbo Half Prop

Today’s item comes from Joe Long’s collection, and is the original jumbo half that Doug produced at the end of “World of Magic” 75’s “Fickle Nickel” illusion.  The opening of  Doug’s first special could have opened in any number of ways. But, rather than opting for a giant spectacle Doug chose the quiet subtlety of…

“Bill in Lemon” illusion from “World of Magic” ’79!

In this vintage moment from 1979’s “World of Magic” Doug gives new definition to the idea that money burns a hole in your pocket. Recorded at the Hilton Las Vegas, this deceptively simple illusion is having a bit of a revival this week courtesy of our friends at “Magic Week.”

Walter C. Miller Obituary

It slipped under my radar over this past weekend that Walter C. Miller, Doug’s long time TV director, passed away at the age of 94.  Miller’s important contribution to all of Doug’s specials can not be understated. He can also be credited with directing what was television’s first modern magic special with “World of Magic”…

“Houdini’s Magic Magazine” Mystery

For all intents and purposes there shouldn’t be a mystery surrounding this January, 1978 issue of “Houdini’s Mystery Magazine.”  I recently purchased this issue off of EBay for many reasons. The number one reason, of course, is for the cover and article previewing Doug’s upcoming “World of Magic” special. However, as I began to flip…

“Alla-Kazam”Fanzine- World of Magic ’78 Article

The following article comes from the second issue of the magic fanzine “Alla-Kazam.” The magazine itself was bi-monthly, and a product of MacDonald Magic located out of Spencerville, Ohio. By all accounts, it folded in 1981.  But, let’s begin with that cover illustration shall we?  By that I mean it’s certainly one of the more…

Chip Romero Collection: Gazebo Bandleader Costume

And I’m back. Sorry for the bit of delay, but, as I mentioned I’ve been dealing with a pinched nerve in my shoulder and arm. All that combined with some minor physical therapy, required me to step away from the website briefly. However, enough about me. All this week we will be featuring items from…

Doug’s “Bump” Box and “Cut in Half” Wheel Found!

Have you ever wondered what treasures from the world of Doug Henning are hiding out in the unlikeliest of places? If so, then the following was sent to me by John Harrison, author of the excellent 2009 biography “Spellbound: The Wonder Filled Life of Doug Henning.” Take it away John! I have always been fascinated…

Genii Magazine: May 1980

This issue of Genii from May of 1980 is truly a treasure trove of pictures and reviews from magic’s golden modern age. Not only do we get a review of Doug’s Pantages shows, but also reviews of the “World of Magic: 4 & 5.” This issue comes from a time when Doug was king, and…

1984 San Francisco Orpheum Theatre Playbill

This recent purchase of mine was too good not to post on the site. The Orpheum Theater, located at 1192 Market Street in San Francisco, was originally built in 1926. It still stands today as one of the city’s premiere places for theatre, music, and culture.  For those keeping track, this particular run of the…

Magic Week Video Archive-World of Magic II

For all those looking for some relief in the lockdown, look no further than this current edition of the Magic Week Archive featuring “World of Magic II.”Culled from Duncan Trillo video collection, this UK broadcast of the special is a truly crisp and immaculate version.  Even if you’ve seen the special before (which I’m sure…

Haversat & Ewing Auction-Doug Egyptian Collar

For all those Doug collectors out there, another piece of magic history is going up for auction this weekend at Haversat & Ewing Galleries.  Straight from the 1978’s “World of Magic,” is Doug’s Egyptian collar as featured in the special’s time travel  theme. This online auction runs from May 15th-16th, and the item itself is…

Doug on the “Today Show” with Bryant Gumbel (1984)

(ED. Note: Due to legal reasons this video was apparently removed by You Tube. Sorry about that) This 1984 “Today Show” appearance comes from when Doug returned to Broadway with his “World of Magic” show.  After the perceived failure of “Merlin,” Doug was able to cleanse the palettes of many critics with this, by all…

Glenn Campbell Handkerchief Illusion

The above clip comes from “World of Magic II,” and features a somewhat awkward lesson in handkerchief magic from Doug to singer Glenn Campbell.  Nobody would ever accuse the “World of Magic” specials to have the best dialogue. But, as we all know it was the magic that really counted…not the cue cards. 

Potter & Potter Auction: Glass Wall Hanging

And I’m back… I sincerely apologize for the long delay in between posts. Due to a freelance design job, my spare time became few and far between resulting in an unplanned break from the site.  Well folks, it’s a new day, and let’s get back to it shall we? The above item is a current…

Potter & Potter Auction-Flaming Miracle Poster

Welcome to 2020 everyone! Let’s begin our third year on a high note with this auction from “Potter & Potter” out of Chicago! This current online auction will win you one of the most distinctive and flashy posters that was ever created for “World of Magic II.” In it, artist Seymour Chwast crafted Doug as…

Kiel Opera House Advertisement

The above advertisement was printed on June 1, 1980 in the “St. Louis Post-Dispatch.” The Kiel Opera House, now known as the Stifel Theatre, was opened in 1934 and enjoyed a healthy and long life until it was closed under financial disagreements in 1991. Reopening in 2011, the theater seems to be back to its…

Statue of the Pharaohs Today

If you ever wondered where a lot of Doug’s illusions have ended up over the years. Well, the short answer is that they’re mainly still around, just not always in one place as they used to be. In the case of Doug’s “Statue of the Pharaohs,” let’s get a bit of a refresher before we…

Cooper-Hewitt Archives: World of Magic Poster

While some of you may already be aware of this promotional poster, I’m featuring it because this version comes straight from the Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Archives in New York City. It’s colors and quality are highly preserved, and this is definitely one of the most pristine versions I’ve ever seen. For me, this poster has always…

World of Magic V: Compressed Illusion

The above clip originally aired on February 14th, 1982 and is the final “World of Magic” special. As it goes with any magician, looks can be deceiving, and Doug had one more special up his sleeve called “Doug Henning: Magic on Broadway.” But, that’s another story.  Now back to this one. While no one could…

Wild About Harry: Doug and Houdini Article

For those jonesing for a Houdini/Doug fix this Saturday, may I divert your attention to today’s post on John Cox’s excellent website “Wild About Harry.” It delves into the impetus for John’s lifelong love of Houdini which is…well, visit the website to find out if you haven’t guessed already.  While you’re there stay a while…