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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magicians of old » » Remember Duke Stern? (3 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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magicgettogether
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Karrell Fox remembers Duke Stern in this clip and mentions the pricesheet incident
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WwRVJ1QmhI
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DanGarrett
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You bet I remember Duke! Met him in Atlanta when Charles Pecor introduced me to Duke at Harris Magic Shop. (I was going to Georgia Tech and Charlie directed me in quite a few plays back then!) Dukey was a major influence on my magic. (along with Karrell Fox and Abb Dickson) When Duke passed on in St. Louis, his roommate at that convention was Obie O'Brien. When I went in to Harris Magic to see Duke after the St. Louis convention, and was informed that Duke died (by Jerry Harris), I thought he was joking with me. It took me a while to absorb the truth, and the feeling of loss was as deep as if a member of my family had died.

I will be presented my handling of a Duke Stern coin routine in my new lecture this year (2012). I have tons of Duke stories that I have witnessed or have heard. Also, Michael, I have heard the outtakes from "Abracadabra Is My Game" (I also own a personally autographed copy.) They are indeed priceless.
Dan Garrett
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hugmagic
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I beginning to think I was lucky to let Obie room with me at Magic Montreal a few years back. He was Karrell's roommate at the Desert Seminar when he passed. He roomed a lot with Jay. And now this story on Duke.

themagician64 you should put together a book on his notes and such. I think you might be surprised how many guys would want it.

Richard
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J Christensen
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I recall Duke demonstrating why he disliked Gospel magic. He held up a coin and said, "This coin represents Jesus Christ." He tried a magic pass and dropped the coin on the floor. He said, "***it!" and used his foot to pin the rolling coin to the carpet. "And that," he said, "is why I don't like Gospel magic."
Jim Sparx
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I met Duke Stern when he was manager of the Indianapolis Abbott's store on the Circle. This was about 1949. He gave me a thimble book he had written. I was about 10-11 years old and this impressed me so much I asked for his autograph. His kindness taught me a lesson about being nice to children, because they are very impressionable and you can influence them about how they see the world. I know it made me think, magicians are nice people. (Then I met Russell Swann, but that is another story).
MerlH
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The Louisville IBM put on a weekend getogether and the Lexington Ring provided the intertainment. I lived in Lexington at the time. Duke was the feature act of the weekend. At that time I was doing a medicine pitch "before" the Saturday night show and although Duke was the MC, he was my helper for the "pitch". We had to make huge cards for him to read as a prompter so he could see them. I was so proud to be on stage with him. After the show we had to take him to the airport to fly to St. Louis. He had his Black Jack pretty much gone, but we got him poured on the plane. He died the next day. I have the last picture, to my knowledge, taken of Duke, assisting me in my medicine pitch. It is my avatar on the Café and is on this post.

I loved Dukey. I do "Dukes Dyeversion" on every show I do in his memory. I first met him working behind the counter at Abbotts. He could take any trick and kill with it. I remember at one gettogether he pitched the ball and tube. Abbotts must have had a ton of them and Duke was trying to get rid of them. I loved the trick so much I was very worried that there would be no more left by the time it was my turn in line to buy the trick. He had some left!!!!!

Still in total awe,

Merl Hamen
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Akil
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What types of magic did he perform?
Trois
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Ah...I see you found it , MerlH. I just left your house and I can say you even have other pictures of Duke. I knew him when he worked for Harris Magic in Atlanta. Such a character. I think Mullica hung out there a bit too. I actually like the demo's by Sam Harris. He was smooth at a young age. Duke was gruff and you would never forgot him and his style. My wife was scared to go in the shop as a teenager cause of that old dude......ha. She lived down the street from it. Down on LaVista. Didn't know her then but she knew who I was talking about when I mentioned him. R.I.P. Duke
ps.. As a side note I went in the shop to see him (didn't know he had died) and they told me he had made an "ash out of him-self" in St. Louis. They kept his humor alive.
Not clever enough to come up with something orginal, or did I.
MerlH
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Duke performed anything that closely resembled magic. His tricks were all props for his unbelievable sense of humor. The jokes and asides were what his act was about. I really believe he did everything off the top of his head because no matter how many times you saw him, you never knew what was coming next! When Karol Fox and him worked together, the audience forgot about the rest of the show and only talked about what they did which was not necessarilly magic but PURE comedy..

You had to be there.
Merl Hamen Old dog-- New tricks
Jim Sparx
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MerlH, any possibility of you sharing some pictures of Duke?
Michael Baker
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Image
~michael baker
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Trois
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Great picture !
Not clever enough to come up with something orginal, or did I.
Jim Sparx
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Thanks, he looked like that in 1949, less wrinkles, but that devilish smile. Now I'll remember who to look for when I pass over.
motown
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Duke and Karrell were so much fun at the Get-Togethers in Colon. It's one of the things that made them so special.
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Hookem
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I met Duke in 1972 at the Abilene Tx TAOM. He MC'd one evening show and did his pantomime act. I have never laughed harder than I did that night. He sold me a reel. He said to me, "Young man, buy this reel and you will not leave this booth until you use it as well as I do!" You can bet I bought it and he taught me. My wife loved him.
magicgettogether
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Quote:
On 2012-02-25 16:42, spartacus wrote:
I met Duke Stern when he was manager of the Indianapolis Abbott's store on the Circle. This was about 1949. He gave me a thimble book he had written. I was about 10-11 years old and this impressed me so much I asked for his autograph. His kindness taught me a lesson about being nice to children, because they are very impressionable and you can influence them about how they see the world. I know it made me think, magicians are nice people. (Then I met Russell Swann, but that is another story).


Here is a pic of Duke in that store and a news article from around that era. Be sure to enlarge the pic if your browser shrinks it by clicking on it. The article is quite readable.

http://magiccapitol.com/images/abbotts/n......s/62.jpg
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Jim Sparx
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I have a Abbott's catalog that says the store was on Ohio street,which is the street behind Monument Circle. I remember the store being next to a theater, on the circle. But that was 62 ears ago. Is there any way to get a outside view of the store and the exact street address other than the 60 Ohio Street (which is now a Shearton Hotel).

BTW, Michael Baker, I made a copy of the picture and I am going to have it framed. Thanks
Michael Baker
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I used to have all my magician photos framed, but I now have too many to do that. Currently, I have them in large photo albums. That Duke Stern photo was part of a collection I bought in the late 1970's. Unfortunately, it is not autographed, although I have Duke's autograph on a couple other things.

BTW - For anyone interested, there are a couple copies of his LP record on Ebay right now. I already have a couple or I'd grab one myself.
~michael baker
The Magic Company
Rick Fisher
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Duke was first magician I ever met in 1960's - he made quite an impression on me - although as a kid I was intimidated by his demeanor. Percy Abbott (who I never met), Neil Foster and Duke were my idols growing up.

Here is clip of him performing just months before his death in 1973

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ittVn3GlueU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
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Rick Fisher
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My apologies - here is the correct link

http://youtu.be/ittVn3GlueU
Rick Fisher, President FAB Magic

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