Posted: Mar 22, 2012 11:13pm
Ray Grant - one of magic's most talented builders, costumers and performers - died March 15, 2012 in Portland, Oregon at age 72 after suffering a stroke.
He was born and raised in eastern Washington state and became interested in puppetry and marionettes at a young age. He joined Stan Kramien's circus at age 16 and during the 1960's and 70's performed with his wife, Mary, in clubs, circuses and other venues around the world. Ray had a fast-paced act of original illusions. The act was entirely crafted - including the beautiful wardrobe - by himself. He also used many animals in the act including poodles (dyed in various colors) and a bengal tiger (years before Siegfried and Roy came to the U.S.)
After he and Mary divorced, Ray created his original marionette act - "Ray Grant's Personettes" - with large puppets (4 feet tall) that could be seen in the largest theaters. He also traveled far and wide with this act for over 20 years. He continued to make costumes for many performers in Las Vegas and around the world until his death.
Ray was a true performing and creative genius, and a master showman.
He is survived by his two daughters and a host of friends in the world of show business.