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Topic: Criss Angel
Message: Posted by: Magicr8 (Oct 20, 2005 08:24PM)
Criss Angel to my mind is one of the world's greatest illusionists. His magic is fresh and original. I love all of his illusions and stunts. But one has to wonder if he has a twin brother. Some times I think that he might in deed have a twin brother.
Especially in his new show Mindfreak the illusion where he's in a tank of water and he has to get out some how. The tank starts bubbling and the camera pans over to the right really fast to see Criss on top of his new vehicle he won. I have to say if he does not have a twin brother he truly is the worlds greatest illusionist of all time!!!
Message: Posted by: magicofCurtis (Oct 20, 2005 09:12PM)
Hmmm, no twin, but staging is the key.
Message: Posted by: The Mirror Images (Oct 20, 2005 09:27PM)
I do :bg:

Michael
Message: Posted by: Jack Murray (Oct 20, 2005 09:32PM)
How many are aware Jonathan Pendragon has a twin?

Jack
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Oct 20, 2005 10:10PM)
Elvis had a twin!
Message: Posted by: NFox (Oct 20, 2005 11:08PM)
Jack,

Does Jonathan Pendragon have a twin? Someone told me that, but I never believed them (Probably almost every illusionist has that rumor about them).

Nick Fox
Message: Posted by: magicofCurtis (Oct 20, 2005 11:26PM)
Nick
Not every illusionist has that rumor about them.... My rumor is that I am a triplet….
Message: Posted by: John Bowlin (Oct 20, 2005 11:30PM)
Criss Angels secret is twin cameras ;)
Message: Posted by: Jack Murray (Oct 21, 2005 09:20AM)
"Jack, does Pendragon have a twin, because someone told me that but I never believed them (Probably almost every illusionist has that rumor about them)".

Nick Fox

YES, that wasn't a joke, he does have a twin!!!

Jack
Message: Posted by: llsouder (Oct 21, 2005 10:01AM)
Apparently, I have many twins, in many cities because, people I meet often think I somebody they have meet before. The best story I have about this is the time I had a person tell my girlfriend(now my wife) they knew my old girlfriend and the kids I had with her... err they were mistaken but oh the fun of trying to explain that one!
Message: Posted by: The Mac (Oct 21, 2005 12:36PM)
Elvis did have a twin who was still born at birth.

(its sad that I know this fact and I'm 25 yrs old)
Message: Posted by: bry1513 (Oct 21, 2005 01:42PM)
Oh no..........................not 2 Criss Angels...............:(
Message: Posted by: The Mirror Images (Oct 21, 2005 02:26PM)
Elvis twin died after he was born.

Michael
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Oct 21, 2005 06:37PM)
Jesse Garon was "Stillborn" acording to the trivia pages.
Message: Posted by: Decomposed (Oct 22, 2005 02:10AM)
Check this out:

http://media.putfile.com/mindfreak-throughtheglass0-6500/480
Message: Posted by: PaxMentis (Oct 22, 2005 08:37AM)
During the time we managed the Pendragons, it was kept a secret from us that Jonathan had a twin. It wasn't until years later that we were watching a special and found out about his twin. Protecting that secret is certainly understandable. Never had the pleasure of meeting him. Of course, I wouldn't have known it anyway :)
Message: Posted by: Caveat Lector (Oct 22, 2005 11:06AM)
I have met JP twin and he was one of the nicests guys. We takled for a while when I helped him set up an illusion JP was selling at a magic shop in Vegas. You would be hard presse to tell them apart when they are on stage. I don't know if he uses him a lot anymore but I think it is a great option to have.
Message: Posted by: Paul Arthur (Oct 25, 2005 04:58PM)
Don't know if anyone else listens, will admit to listening, or which markets it plays in, but Criss was the in-studio guest on 'LoveLine' one evening last week. I think it was Thursday night, but I might be mistaken.
Message: Posted by: Thatoldblackmagic (Mar 26, 2013 11:37AM)
I was told Lance Burton had a twin too (I always doubted that one) However I can comfirm that JP has a twin,
I can remember a mate of mine tellin me how many years ago he met JP's twin backstage at the castle and told him that he was a huge fan etc and asked for an autograph beliveing him to be the real deal, 30 seconds later the real JP walks in creating a real moment of OMG! We still chuckle about this :) He did remark on how genuine and nice they were to meet.
Message: Posted by: T. Durden (Mar 26, 2013 11:41AM)
[quote]
On 2005-10-20 21:24, Magicr8 wrote:
Criss Angel to my mind is one of the world's greatest illusionists. His magic is fresh and original. I love all of his illusions and stunts. But one has to wonder if he has a twin brother. Some times I think that he might in deed have a twin brother.
Especially in his new show Mindfreak the illusion where he's in a tank of water and he has to get out some how. The tank starts bubbling and the camera pans over to the right really fast to see Criss on top of his new vehicle he won. I have to say if he does not have a twin brother he truly is the worlds greatest illusionist of all time!!!
[/quote]

Hi, Criss! Welcome to the Café!
Message: Posted by: Mike Maturen (Mar 26, 2013 12:07PM)
LOL...I was thinking the same thing..."WOW Criss Angel is posting on the Café!"
Message: Posted by: T. Durden (Mar 26, 2013 12:47PM)
Should we start a campaign to nominate "Magicr8" as a featured guest of honor?
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Mar 26, 2013 01:39PM)
Race driver Mario Andretti had a twin an when Mario had facial burns at Indy his twin, Also posed for all the post race photos. Then Aldo crashed and broke his nose and no longer looked like Mario.
Message: Posted by: MagicalMotivator (Mar 26, 2013 08:47PM)
I too met JP's twin at a corporate gig we brought them into TO for many years ago (and the resemblance is incredible) - all of the cast were very professional and very friendly at all times. In fact JP did a very unique twist on a straight jacket release I will never forget.

Rick
Message: Posted by: Pakar Ilusi (Mar 26, 2013 08:59PM)
[quote]
On 2005-10-20 21:24, Magicr8 wrote:
Criss Angel to my mind is one of the world's greatest illusionists. His magic is fresh and original. I love all of his illusions and stunts. But one has to wonder if he has a twin brother. Some times I think that he might in deed have a twin brother.
Especially in his new show Mindfreak the illusion where he's in a tank of water and he has to get out some how. The tank starts bubbling and the camera pans over to the right really fast to see Criss on top of his new vehicle he won. I have to say if he does not have a twin brother he truly is the worlds greatest illusionist of all time!!!
[/quote]

:hysteric:
Message: Posted by: Mike Maturen (Mar 26, 2013 10:12PM)
I have heard virtually NOTHING good from pros who have seen Angel's Vegas show. I haven't yet seen it...any input?
Message: Posted by: Chezaday (Mar 26, 2013 11:00PM)
It was ... interesting ...

Steve
Message: Posted by: mvmagic (Mar 27, 2013 02:51AM)
I saw it too. Was bored out of my mind...good thing the theatre has a bar. On stage he had zero charisma. It was the first and only time I have seen anyome asking for a standing o. And THAT is sad and rude.
Message: Posted by: chrisvagabond (Apr 16, 2013 09:29AM)
There are a Video on youtube where Pendragons fails an illusions, and there are a twin exposed... I don't know if he was the twin brother, but it's funny...

I have youtube blocked at office, but if you want to watch that video, I can post it later in here

saludos
Message: Posted by: w_s_anderson (Apr 16, 2013 09:40AM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 10:29, chrisvagabond wrote:
There are a Video on youtube where Pendragons fails an illusions, and there are a twin exposed... I don't know if he was the twin brother, but it's funny...

I have youtube blocked at office, but if you want to watch that video, I can post it later in here

saludos
[/quote]

I am sure many have already seen it and it won't do any good to repost it. We have all made mistakes in shows before, why repost somebody else's. If it were yours, I'm sure you'd be upset if other people continually brought it back to light.......even If it was DECADES ago.
Message: Posted by: Pakar Ilusi (Apr 16, 2013 09:44AM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 10:40, w_s_anderson wrote:
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 10:29, chrisvagabond wrote:
There are a Video on youtube where Pendragons fails an illusions, and there are a twin exposed... I don't know if he was the twin brother, but it's funny...

I have youtube blocked at office, but if you want to watch that video, I can post it later in here

saludos
[/quote]

I am sure many have already seen it and it won't do any good to repost it. We have all made mistakes in shows before, why repost somebody else's. If it were yours, I'm sure you'd be upset if other people continually brought it back to light.......even If it was DECADES ago.
[/quote]

Agreed.
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 10:04AM)
[quote]
On 2013-03-26 23:12, Mike Maturen wrote:
I have heard virtually NOTHING good from pros who have seen Angel's Vegas show. I haven't yet seen it...any input?
[/quote]

I saw it in Sept. 2010. Here's my thoughts on it.

The pre-show was GREAT! The Maestro character was funny along with his small team. They were the ice-breakers/warm-ups for the night and did very well. The "fat" one climbed over the audience in their seats and he ended up sitting ON me! It was pretty hilarious, actually. :)

I LOVED the look of the theater - the dark and twisted bunny sort of thing was just way too cool! My excitement was palpable.

The show began and it was very cool to be barely 20 feet from Criss Angel! He looked good on stage and very comfortable. A heckler interrupted at times and Criss put him in his place a little rudely, but hey...the heckler is rude to interrupt. Personally I think it was staged as so much of Criss's stuff is...but if it was, then he did a great acting job on his part as I couldn't be sure (and usually I'm VERY sure when it's staged because Criss over-acts).

The show was supposed to be Cirque du Soleil style (and that's why the look was really cool), but personally I felt the magic choices were not the best. There are SO many directions he could have done with it but it felt that half the show was just a disappearance and reappearance somewhere else. He vanished, and appeared on the wings. He vanished, and appeared in a giant robot. He vanished, and appeared on top of a crate. Etc. etc. I would like to have seen a lot more variety of magic. He did a dove act which was very cool, IMO. Mainly because I loved the "look" of the thing. He did a sawing in half that REALLY was not good IMO - BECAUSE he didn't put her back together. He just put his assistant on a table, cut her in half, and they wheeled her off. I don't think Criss is original in many ways at all, BUT this seemed original because everyone ALWAYS puts the girl back together...because you SHOULD! lol. So I didn't like it and it left me feeling it was just half a trick.

Being fair - some pieces were sort of neat at times, but honestly the best thing about the show was the Maestro and the artistic design. I was SO bummed out that there wasn't more Cirque stuff put in - aerial bird-people flying about or something...I don't know. It was just a lot of Criss and it wasn't all that entertaining to me.

Artistic Design: 5/5
Variety of Tricks: 2/5
Originality of Effects: 2/5
Talent Level: 4/5
Stage presence: 3/5
Likeability of the performer: 3/5
Entertainment Value: 3/5
Value received for the money: 2/5
Overall experience: 3/5
Chance of returning to see it again: 0/5

Ok, so let me summarize by saying it was worth seeing once to say I did it. It wasn't horribly boring, but it wasn't NEARLY as good as Lance Burton or David Copperfield (both whom I saw that same weekend).

I personally am a fan of Criss Angel. Not a Loyal...but a casual fan. I LOVE what he's done for magic in that he's been on TV more than any other magician and really helped elevate the art of street magic. He brings this street magic flair to the stage and it works ok. It's NOT the same as a normal stage show and feels different. I don't enjoy a lot of his effects, BUT that's because he's had to sacrifice ideals in order to fill time on the air. NONE of us could have come up with that much magic without using a stooge once or twice. But personally I'd rather have seen less magic without stooges or setups. But hey...Mindfreak ran for 6 seasons...so he had to enjoy that time while he had it!

So all in all - I think he's worked really hard, come up with a couple really great ideas, but reused a LOT of magic and made the "mistake" of doing TV magic instead of real magic. That idealistic sacrifice really hurt him in the long run, I fear. Now when people don't know how he does things, they just assume camera tricks. And that's a shame...because MOST of what he does is NOT a camera trick in the sense that it can be performed for a live audience viewing from the same angle as the "at-home" audience.
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 10:10AM)
By the way - I think the reason MANY magicians get mad about Criss's fame is that THEY know the same tricks and feel they can do them as well or better than Criss...but HE'S the one with a TV show and Vegas show!

When we all watched David Copperfield (or Doug Henning), we had no clue how he did half the stuff he was doing! Heck, when I saw David just in 2010, I STILL didn't know how he did some of that stuff! Absolutely AMAZING.

And as magicians we equate "you fooled me" with "you must be really good." Because Criss RARELY fools us, we don't think he's any good. And that's not really fair...because we can all see how the lay-audience loves him. He has lots of talent and works hard. I think he deserves the fame.
Message: Posted by: Mike Maturen (Apr 16, 2013 10:18AM)
Matt,

I had heard similar reports. If his stage patter goes anything like his TV patter ("look look....look look"), then I could see where it WOULD be boring. Glad you gave us an honest appraisal.

Hope all is well, my friend!
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 10:31AM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 11:18, Mike Maturen wrote:
Matt,

I had heard similar reports. If his stage patter goes anything like his TV patter ("look look....look look"), then I could see where it WOULD be boring. Glad you gave us an honest appraisal.

Hope all is well, my friend!
[/quote]

It was DEFINITELY like his TV show - that's what people are coming to see, after all. They weren't there for a normal Vegas show. So he went with that. The difference is that it's hard to carry a stage show with a "street magic" flair. But he'll continue to improve over time. Hey, we all did. He wasn't used to doing stage work. He did TV work...very different.
Message: Posted by: Pakar Ilusi (Apr 16, 2013 10:32AM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 11:31, Matt Adams wrote:
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 11:18, Mike Maturen wrote:
Matt,

I had heard similar reports. If his stage patter goes anything like his TV patter ("look look....look look"), then I could see where it WOULD be boring. Glad you gave us an honest appraisal.

Hope all is well, my friend!
[/quote]

It was DEFINITELY like his TV show - that's what people are coming to see, after all. They weren't there for a normal Vegas show. So he went with that. The difference is that it's hard to carry a stage show with a "street magic" flair. But he'll continue to improve over time. Hey, we all did. He wasn't used to doing stage work. He did TV work...very different.
[/quote]

He started onstage. Check out his history. He was good at one time.

Then he sold out.

You don't see many Magician berate David Blaine, Derren Brown, Cyril Takayama or David Copperfield. All famous and successful in their own right.

Because these guys didn't sell out with their Camera Tricks.
Message: Posted by: Mike Maturen (Apr 16, 2013 11:09AM)
Matt...

I agree that he will likely improve the entertainment value of his Vegas show, or people will simply quit buying tickets.

I hope for his sake, and for the sake of magic, that he re-evaluates his show and does himself proud!
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 12:08PM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 12:09, Mike Maturen wrote:
Matt...

I agree that he will likely improve the entertainment value of his Vegas show, or people will simply quit buying tickets.

I hope for his sake, and for the sake of magic, that he re-evaluates his show and does himself proud!
[/quote]

That's one thing I've heard about his show (though I can only comment on what I've heard since I don't plan on going back) - that he changes it up frequently to "fix" things. It's very different (even in 2010) than when he first started doing a Vegas show, apparently. Originally I think they had done more aerial sorts of things with wires (like Cirque always does) but people complained saying "We can see the wire!" and Criss was like...uh...cause we weren't trying to hide it? This is Cirque! So there was some misunderstanding and he decided to drop those pieces altogether.

Anyway, he's had tons of stage time now and hopefully has improved some more.

I don't think it's fair to say he's a "sellout" in the sense that he started resorting to camera tricks and stooges. That IS a valid side of magic, but not one that most of us want to consider. Again, it'd be very hard to do SO much magic in Mindfreak without resorting to those once in a while. That's why Henning/Copperfield/others did "specials" and not weekly series. It gave time to be GREAT and not just good.

Honestly (and I DO NOT mean this to sound arrogant in any way), but the main reason Criss isn't really my fav. is the fact he reminds me a TON of myself. Trying to be a bit mysterious, but deep down just fairly goofy. :) When I saw him on stage, I just kept thinking how I could do ANY of those effects (not necessarily thinking I could do them better...just that it wasn't "shocking" to me) - and that's back to my previous post thinking about his magic in general - magic that many of us could perform.

I think Criss has plenty of talent, but he may have missed out on some of the "legend" because he actually was SO prolific in his body of work. We can easily point to huge pieces of magic that Copperfield/Blaine/Henning/etc have done because they stand out as individual specials. Criss did SO much that his larger works tend to get lost in the shuffle (walking up the Luxor). What an odd "problem" to have, huh? Haha.
Message: Posted by: Servante (Apr 16, 2013 12:20PM)
I hear what you're saying, Matt, but at what point do camera tricks cease to be magic and become special effects? Heck, we've all worked to achieve what we have...and I'm not saying Criss Angel hasn't, but I've got a television background, and if you give me some guy from a local community theatre, a length of green cloth and a green screen, I can make a "magician" out of him in half an hour.

Copperfield has never relied on camera tricks as a means to an end. He has certainly "fixed" some of his live shows in the editing bay and, of course, what we've seen in the live shows depends upon what the camera is pointed at...but that's just sophisticated misdirection, in its own way. Copperfield has never relied heavily on camera tricks. Seems to me, with what I've seen of Criss Angel, he does.

It's just not the same to me.

-Philip
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 01:05PM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 13:20, Servante wrote:
I hear what you're saying, Matt, but at what point do camera tricks cease to be magic and become special effects? Heck, we've all worked to achieve what we have...and I'm not saying Criss Angel hasn't, but I've got a television background, and if you give me some guy from a local community theatre, a length of green cloth and a green screen, I can make a "magician" out of him in half an hour.
[/quote]

I agree in part - but that's the point...Criss DOESN'T do camera tricks all the time. Sure he uses them (and I actually hate that) - but he's not a magician because he uses them...he uses them because he's a magician. There's a huge difference. So the part I disagree with is that you can "make a magician" in half and hour. Sure, he'll LOOK like a magician...but he's only doing camera tricks whereas Criss can do a LOT more than that. Does that make sense?

[quote]
Copperfield has never relied on camera tricks as a means to an end. He has certainly "fixed" some of his live shows in the editing bay and, of course, what we've seen in the live shows depends upon what the camera is pointed at...but that's just sophisticated misdirection, in its own way. Copperfield has never relied heavily on camera tricks. Seems to me, with what I've seen of Criss Angel, he does.

It's just not the same to me.
-Philip
[/quote]

And that's why Copperfield is AWESOME. :) I think Criss broke a very important rule of TV magic - the rule that says if you can't do it the same way as for a live audience, then it doesn't really count as magic and it becomes special effects...which is NOT as impressive.

I really can't figure out why he'd do it other than that he was low on material and had to fill time.
Message: Posted by: Matt Adams (Apr 16, 2013 01:08PM)
[quote]
So the part I disagree with is that you can "make a magician" in half and hour. Sure, he'll LOOK like a magician...but he's only doing camera tricks whereas Criss can do a LOT more than that. Does that make sense?
[/quote]

Obviously you were being facetious, but my point was just that Criss is a lot more than a "special effects" guy. YES anyone could do that, but he's filling time! Not everyone can do the rest of the things he does (consider meat hooks in back hung from helicopter...). Illusion or not...that was sick!
Message: Posted by: Servante (Apr 16, 2013 11:58PM)
That was pretty sick. (But it was show business!) :)

And yeah, I take your point. He's a lot more than a special effects guy. But he makes himself appear less by using them. :-(

-Philip
Message: Posted by: Payne (Apr 17, 2013 10:19AM)
[quote]
On 2013-04-16 13:08, Matt Adams wrote:

Anyway, he's had tons of stage time now and hopefully has improved some more.

[/quote]

Well, at least according to the reviews on TripAdvisor http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g45963-d1174403-Reviews-Criss_Angel_Believe-Las_Vegas_Nevada.html the show hasn't improved appreciably. It is still ranked as one of the worst shows in Vegas coming in 437 out of 502 attractions
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Apr 17, 2013 10:42AM)
I have not seen BELIEVE but, artistically, I think combining a cirque production with any kind of magic show is a bad idea. The cirque performers are absolutely amazing at what they do, but they could care less about hiding the wires or traps they use in their show. To place this type of act in the same show as a magician would likely destroy the audience's temporary suspension of disbelief. They know the wires and traps are there, even if they can't see them.

I can't really comment on the choice of illusions within the show, the staging or the manner in which they are presented. However, it seems that an effort has been made to create some semblance of a plot line to tie the magic together. This may or may have worked, but the "effort" seems to be there.

In this sense, it is somewhat reminiscent of Doug Henning's theatrical efforts. In his shows, the scripting was painful and it was clear that Doug could neither dance nor act. The key difference however was that Henning's incredible personality and his mastery of cutting-edge illusions were strong enough to salvage the shows. By all accounts, this seems to be lacking in BELIEVE.

Kent