Hiding the Elephant

Hiding the Elephant

How Magicians Invented the Impossible and Learned to Disappear

Book - 2003
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Baker & Taylor
The author delves deeply into Harry Houdini’s greatest illusion, tracing every aspect of this fascinating story, including the magicians who were his mentors, to uncover the secret of how he made an elephant disappear before a stunned audience.

Perseus Publishing
Harry Houdini was the greatest escape artist in history, yet known to his contemporaries as a terrible stage magician. Nevertheless, in 1917 he performed a single illusion that has been hotly debated ever since: Under the bright spotlights of New York’s Theatre Hippodrome, he made a live elephant disappear. Where did he learn this amazing trick and how did it work? The answers lie in magic expert Jim Steinmeyer’s chronicle of illusionary innovation, backstage chicanery and espionage, elevated showmanship, and keen competition within the world of magicians. Steinmeyer has captured the cultural history of magic during its “Golden Age” in America and abroad. Readers will learn the secrets and life stories of the fascinating personalities behind optical marvels such as floating ghosts appearing onstage and interacting with live actors, disembodied heads, and vanishing ladies. The people and events surrounding each step toward “The Vanishing Elephant” reveal how simple principles, mixed with ingenious psychology, can entertain and deceive. Houdini’s great feat of invisibility was based on a secret passed onto him by Charles Morritt, and the trick remained their secret for more than eighty years. In this book, Steinmeyer reveals Houdini’s mystery and more.

Harry Houdini was the greatest escape artist in history, yet known to his contemporaries as a terrible stage magician. Nevertheless, in 1917 he performed a single illusion that has been hotly debated ever since: Under the bright spotlights of New York's Theatre Hippodrome, he made a live elephant disappear. Where did he learn this amazing trick and how did it work? The answers lie in magic expert Jim Steinmeyer's chronicle of illusionary innovation, backstage chicanery and espionage, elevated showmanship, and keen competition within the world of magicians. Steinmeyer has captured the cultural history of magic during its "Golden Age" in America and abroad. Readers will learn the secrets and life stories of the fascinating personalities behind optical marvels such as floating ghosts appearing onstage and interacting with live actors, disembodied heads, and vanishing ladies. The people and events surrounding each step toward "The Vanishing Elephant" reveal how simple principles, mixed with ingenious psychology, can entertain and deceive. Houdini's great feat of invisibility was based on a secret passed onto him by Charles Morritt, and the trick remained their secret for more than eighty years. In this book, Steinmeyer reveals Houdini's mystery and more.


Blackwell North Amer
Harry Houdini was the greatest escape artist in history, yet known to his contemporaries as a terrible stage magician. Nevertheless, in 1918 he performed a single illusion that has been hotly debated ever since: Under the bright lights at New York's Hippodrome Theater, he made a live elephant disappear. Where did he learn this amazing trick and how did it work? The astonishing answers lie in magic expert Jim Steinmeyer's chronicle of more than half a century of illusionary innovation, backstage chicanery and espionage, elevated showmanship, and keen competition within the world of magicians. Steinmeyer has penned the cultural history of magic during its "Golden Age" in America and abroad - the breathtaking race among legendary conjurers to make things materialize, levitate, and disappear.
Translating the art of the illusionist to the printed page, Steinmeyer unveils the secrets and life stories of the fascinating personalities behind optical marvels such as floating ghosts interacting with live actors, disembodied heads, and vanishing ladies. He demystifies such tricks as Pepper's Ghost, The Sphinx of Colonel Joseph Stodare, Harry Kellar's The Levitation of Princess Karnak, and Charles Morritt's Disappearing Donkey - and with his brilliant descriptions, provides a front row seat to the most celebrated and controversial magic performances in history.

Baker
& Taylor

The author delves into Harry Houdini's greatest illusion, tracing every aspect of this story, including the magicians who were his mentors, to uncover the secret of how he made an elephant disappear before a stunned audience.

Publisher: New York : Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2003
Edition: 1st Carroll & Graf ed
ISBN: 9780786712267
0786712260
Branch Call Number: 793.8 STE
Characteristics: xxi, 362 p., [8] p. of plates : ill. ; 24 cm

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