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Topic: Keith Clark
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Feb 27, 2014 03:25AM)
I ran across this video of Keith Clark on YouTube. I and most will recognize his name from the three publications Rice's Silk King Studio has published his Famous Nite Club Act, consisting of Silks Supreme, Rope Royal, and Celebrated Cigarettes booklets. There was a combined hard cover book of these three acts, but it has been out of print since the 1960's.

It is very interesting to see him in a totally different club act as Pier Cartier, with some humor associated with it. I still remember reading of his death in Genii Magazine, saying they found him in his hotel room in Paris, France, sitting in a chair. He was dead for at least two weeks. I guess it took some time to find out who he was at the time.

This video is a performance in France, don't know if this was television, as television was only invented a few years earlier here in the U.S. So it must be from transferred from film.

There is some interesting tricks to take note (not pun intended)of in this act. The dollar bill production, looks like the one out of the Tarbell Course. This finale of a version of "Eggs Tra Ordinary" as Abbott's call it. He uses only 3 eggs and no water in the glasses.

Other things as the use of Flash Paper, Candles from Pocket, Vanishing and Appearing Bow Tie, and Color Changing Bow Tie that we all thought was new to magic. I had to watch the Color changing Tie several times as the misdirection was so strong for the this trick. I don't get throwing the torn pieces of newspaper, maybe it made sense with what he was saying.

I find it interesting that the famous Emil Jarrow ended his act for 40 years with the "Eggs Tra Ordinary" stunt as sold by Abbott's. See David Charvet's new book on the life of Email Jarrow, it is a easy read and very enlightening.

It is to bad the video is in French, so one could get a sense of the patter of that time period.

Take a look back in time of a well known name in silk magic.

Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Feb 27, 2014 05:51AM)
Right Bill! I never knew him, but I recall Frances Marshall writing about his change of name.

I did INERTIA (another name for the Abbott eggs, tray, and glasses juggling bit)for years, and still do it occasionally. I bought the original props from LARRY WEEKS I soon learned to use only 3 glasses and 3 eggs. (Glasses were not exactly the same height, and the tray would wobble when using 4. --a tripod is self levelling! Larry sold me a RED translucent plexiglass disc. When I put the disc on the glasses of water, the stage lights over head shining through the tray, made the water change to "wine"! It added flash. Larry told me that if I missed and had a mess, I could hold the red disc in front of my face, and quip: "Boy! is my face, RED!"

The late Dick Jarrow,a cousin or nephew,(I forgot) of Emil said that Emil closed with Inertia because it could be 'built up' and alwsya got applause.

The late Robert Parrish in his "Classic Tricks Revisited" has a whole chapter on the 'egg trick'.
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Feb 27, 2014 02:27PM)
Thanks Dick Oslund for that added bit of history, makes the people more real and exciting to connect their magic tricks to the real people.

I don't want to spoil it for others if they read Emil Jarrow book, but Jarrow never used purchased props. His tubes were rolled playing cards.

I did forget one very important publication by Keith Clark, he wrote the "Encyclopedia of Cigarette Magic", the only tome of information on cigarette magic. There are of course several other smaller booklets that were published, but nothing as comprehensive as his body work.

You can see he opened with a bit of cigarette magic. It looks like he actually used his tonguing a cigarette from "Celebrated Cigarettes" booklet.
Message: Posted by: Oliver Ross (Feb 27, 2014 02:44PM)

Before Keith Clark throws the torn newspaper pieces in the air, he says : "You're asking yourself how does this works...It's very easy ! Take the pieces and try it yourself at home. You just have to reattach them !"

Concerning the shooting, the comment under the video says that it's from a Broadway theater. I think it was for television as Keith Clark says after having transformed the black bowtie into a white one, that it looks better on television.

Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Feb 27, 2014 03:00PM)
Thanks Oliver, that makes a lot of sense, but I guess he was doing a Carl Ballantine type of presentation. I'm not one for comedy exposure, unless the trick is fake also, as in Terry Herbert's vanishing candle bit.
Message: Posted by: Anatole (Feb 27, 2014 09:28PM)
There was a picture of Keith Clark in the Dover Wilfrid Jonson book _Magic Tricks and Card Tricks_ where he is shown apparently doing the Rising Card trick with a magnet. That photo inspired me to work out a magnet card rise where the card rises out of a houlette into mid-air up to a magnet. You can see the Keith Clark photo here:

Back when I was a teenager in The Blackstone Ring, I combined the magnet idea in the photo with a rising card principle I had found in Ottokar Fischer's _Illustrated Magic_.

The two photo galleries in the Jonson book inspired me to aspire to be a magician as good as the ones I saw in the two galleries of photos--Keith Clark, Del Ray, Cardini, etc

(While you're looking at that photo you may be able to look at the rest of the photos in the gallery by clicking on "Back to Album"

There are some interesting photos there--some of them occasionally repeated. But I think you'll find some rare items there.)

----- Sonny
Message: Posted by: Bill Hegbli (Feb 28, 2014 12:22AM)
I like that he finished with the "Egg In Paper" magic trick I have done in all my shows. Later Ken Allen marketed the "Egg In Paper Plus" and published a booklet of routines for it.


I didn't post a reference to his booklets by Rice Silk King Studio, here is the address:

Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Mar 4, 2014 06:24AM)
Hi Bill!
I has time this AM to watch the Keith Clark film that you posted last week.

What a fine showman! Everything he did was first class, but I especially appreciated his presentation of the "EGGS, TRAY, AND GLASSES!!! His build up, especially with the blindfold, was a really fine touch of showmanship!

Thanks much for bringing him to our attention.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Mar 11, 2014 08:46PM)
Great act, thanks for the look.