Welcome to The Masters of Magic page. This page will be updated regularly. On this page we will be writing a short bio on some of the new and old masters of magic. We hope that this will be a good place for beginners in magic to visit from time to time.
“The Professor” Dai Vernon, was a Canadian magician born in Ottawa in 1894. Dai Vernon was an expert in sleight of hand technique, particularly with card tricks and close-up magic. One of the most influential magicians of the 20th Century, he was also a mentor to numerous famous magicians including Michael Ammar, Ricky Jay, Doug Henning, Larry Jennings and John Carney.
Vernon is famous for fooling the great escapologist and magician Harry Houdini with a card trick. In the effect Vernon removed the top card of the deck and placed it second from the top, then turned over the top card to again reveal the original card. Houdini watched as Vernon repeated the trick several times. After each time Houdini insisted that Vernon do it again so he could attempt to discover the secret. Finally, Houdini’s wife Bess and Vernon’s friends apparently said, “Face it, Houdini, you’re fooled.” A version of the trick that fooled Houdini (called The Ambitious Card) is taught in The Royal Road to Card Magic. An expert at close up magic Vernon was also renowned for his Symphony of the Rings “linking rings “routine as well as his “cups and balls” routine. Dai Vernon died on August 21, 1992 at the age of 98. He had lived as the magician in residence for 30 years at the famous Magic Castle, a magic themed nightclub in Hollywood California. Thought of so dearly in magic Dai Vernon’s ashes are now interred there. Check out the Dai Vernon Book of Magic.
There are magicians who do tricks and there are magicians whose aim is for people to experience magic. Eugene Burger was definitely the latter. Born June 1st 1939 Burger was known for his long beard and incredibly magical voice. He was a strong believer in framing magical effects and this would draw you in. You were more than a mere spectator, you were experiencing something.
Burger was named one of the 100 most influential magicians of the 20th century by Magic Magazine. He held the position of “Dean” at Jeff McBride’s Magic & Mystery School in Las Vegas. A noted author on Magic, Burger wrote 15 books on the subject and a number of instructional videos. Amongst other things he was a philosopher and an historian of religion earning his Bachelor of Divinity degree in 1964 from Yale University. Eugene taught university courses in comparative religion and philosophy. Eugene passed away on August 8, 2017 in his home town of Chicago at the age of 78. Study Eugene Burger – you will be a better magician for it. Check out his Mastering The Art of Magic.
“You’ll like this… not a lot, but you’ll like it!”, was the well known phrase of British magician Paul Daniels. He was born on the 6th April 1938. His interest in magic began when he was 11 years old after reading a magic book. He performed magic as a hobby during his early life entertaining at parties, youth clubs, and during his national service.
Paul Daniels had a very successful television career, making his television debut on the talent show Opportunity Knocks in 1970. Eventually he landed his own television show in 1978 called Paul Daniels’ Blackpool Bonanza. However he was best known for “The Paul Daniels Magic Show”, a television which ran from 1979 to 1994.
Famously in 1987, Paul Daniels held a Halloween live special of his magic show where he performed an escape routine “that went wrong” or apparently so! Viewers believed he had died in stunt. You can watch it in the video below. In 2014 Paul Daniels released the video Bravura. Running at over 10 hours it teaches much of the act that made him famous.
Paul Daniel continued working up until several months before his death on 17th March 2016. He was 77 years of age when he died. Check out Bravura.
Max Maven AKA Philip Goldstein is an American magician and mentalist. He was born on 21st December 1950 in New York. Maven grew up in Boston, Massachusetts and it was there that he performed at a number of nightspots in the area.
Maven has an extensive knowledge of magic and mentalism and to this end he has been a consultant for famous magicians including David Copperfield, Penn & Teller, Siegfried & Roy, and the late Doug Henning. His numerous TV appearances reflect his extensive knowledge and include “Something Strange with Max Maven”, a paranormal TV series for HTV in Britain. He starred as the title role in FOX’s Halloween special “Count DeClues’ Mystery Castle” which was filmed at The Magic Castle in Hollywood California. Other television roles included starring in the “The MAXimum Dimension”, an educational series for younger audiences and “The Max Mystery Show” which was a TV series for Taiwanese audiences.
Max Maven has written a number of books on mentalism including his famous PRISM book. Over the years he has been a frequent contributor to magic literature such as Genii and The Linking Ring. Maven believes it vital to preserve the history of the magic/mentalism arts and to provide credit to the originators of ideas which is sometimes sadly lacking in the art. He is also famous for his packet trick B’Wave which Eugene Burger described as “The best packet trick of the 20th century.” Check out Multiplicity.