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Topic: Johnny Hart has passed away
Message: Posted by: Anatole (Dec 11, 2018 08:34AM)
I just received an email from Steve Short, the author of _Johnny Hart: International Star of Magic_ confirming that Johnny has passed away. Johnny was for my generation the inspiration that other generations saw in Cardini and Channing Pollock.

Steve wrote that Johnny passed away at 9:30 p.m. last night (December 10).

Here's a link to a great youtube video of Johnny's act from 1969--in black-and-white, which is the way I remember the act from when I first saw it on "The Ed Sullivan Show" back in 1962.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3lhINcJ74U

I remember what Frances Ireland Marshall wrote in the May 1962 issue of _Linking Ring_:
"Here he is in all his youthful handsomeness--the boy who caused all the talk after his recent Ed Sullivan appearance--young English magician Johnny Hart."

When Johnny did Audley Walsh's "Long Distance Side Spinner" (at 2:50 in the video), a friend of mine was convinced that he had a gadget in his hand that spun the cards into the air. But I had found the flourish explained in Tarbell, Volume 4: "Audley Walsh's Long Distance Spinner"--and quickly added the flourish to my repertoire.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
Message: Posted by: Anatole (Dec 11, 2018 08:44AM)
I'm sure that some people watching the video in the link above will be shocked/surprised that Johnny did card fan productions in a circus ring with people behind him. People were also shocked when Channing Pollock performed card fan and dove productions with some of the audience behind him in this video from 1956:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HPahq1c2yc

But I really expect that the top pros aren't as paranoid about "exposure" like that as some magicians might be. As Henry Hay wrote in _The Amateur Magician's Handbook_: "Incidentally, when the methods of a Cardini or a Nate Leipzig are explained, they seem more like magic than the tricks themselves. The sleight-of-hand man is the only performer who can never be made ridiculous, and may even grow in stature, by exposure." Having people behind them did not diminish Johnny or Channing Pollock's stature any more than Cardini's exposures in _The Chicago Tribune_.

----- Amado "Sonny" Narvaez
Message: Posted by: JNeal (Dec 11, 2018 09:44PM)
Anatole! That (Henry Hay) is one of my favorite quotes and a guiding mantra when developing material.
So very unfortunate that we are reminded of it because of this sad event.
Johnny’s charisma and relaxed way of working were a revelation to those of us aspiring to professional status.