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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » Kirkendal Skull Illusion (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Sid Mayer
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Santa Fe, NM
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The late George Kirkendall designed and built a fantastic illusion involving a cursed box. He pattered learnedly about its discovery and, as he talked, his face gradually and visibly changed into a skull.

He was kind enough to show me the mechanism. It was, like all of his original material, a precision piece but, in this case, not difficult in concept.

I believe that he made more than one of these devices. Does anone know what became of them.

Sid
All the world's a stage ... and everybody on it is overacting.
John Smetana
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???? - 2009
499 Posts

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I do know that George was selling this illusion many years ago for about $1500 as I recall.Since that initial announcement I never heard of it again.
I did get an opportunity to see this performed at a Tony Andruzzi Invocational in Chicago and it looked great. Not only did his face change to a skull but his hands changed also. As presented by George this was very effective.

Best thoughts,
John Smetana Smile
Andy Leviss
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NYC
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I'm pretty sure somebody performed this on the Bizarre show at this year's Phoenix Gathering, but I may be remembering something similar but different--I can't recall who it was, though. Steve Glaser, do you remember?
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
Philemon Vanderbeck
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Seattle, WA
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Doesn't Bill Fienning do a version of this now?
Professor Philemon Vanderbeck
That Creepy Magician
"I use my sixth sense to create the illusion of possessing the other five."
Darmoe
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Ohio
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??? This sounds very familiar and I'll check a local source that knew George and Steve... I do believe however either Bill Smith of John Gaughan were restoring such a device about six years ago for someone... I vaguely remember seeing something like that I don't remembe which shop... regardless, I believe less than a dozen were actually made... I think it was "shared with friends" and not a commercial item per ce...

Get back on this ASAP for you.
"I firmly believe that of all the Arts and Crafts of Mentalism, there is nothing more satisfying than one who is a first-class Reader. It is the ultimate in Mentalism..." - Tony Corinda * 13 Steps To Mentalism
EVILDAN
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Bill Fienning performed this at the final Weerd Weekend. It was pretty wild to watch. The mechanics of it doesn't seem that hard to build, just somewhat involved. And then there's the whole process of getting the skull transformation just right.

It should be noted that Bill does have a beard. For the life of me, I don't recall how far the "skull" extended on his face. Perhaps someone else has a better memory.

EVILDAN.
by EVILDAN....
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"SLASHER - A Horror Whodunnit" - a bizarre close-up routine based on Bob Neale's "Sole Survivor."
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mysterium
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Baltimore, MD
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Quote:
On 2002-08-25 17:58, Andy Leviss wrote:
I'm pretty sure somebody performed this on the Bizarre show at this year's Phoenix Gathering, but I may be remembering something similar but different--I can't recall who it was, though. Steve Glaser, do you remember?


I remember the effect you're talking about, with the suitcase and the green glow. But I don't remember a skull transformation taking place.
Darmoe
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Ohio
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I haven't been able to verify any of my thoughts... But... this is very similar and if I'm getting things right in what's being said here... the old Thayer "INCARNATION" illusion... a headbox on an altar... a mini-blue-room bit... at least, this was the forerunner to the concept.

Several years ago, I think it was one of those "Reality" shows like "Ripleys" or "That's Incredible" a guy did the same basic thing without a cover/box using only lighting... I mention this just in case anyone wants to check out those two directions on things as well as the Kirkendal variant.

Hope it helps!
"I firmly believe that of all the Arts and Crafts of Mentalism, there is nothing more satisfying than one who is a first-class Reader. It is the ultimate in Mentalism..." - Tony Corinda * 13 Steps To Mentalism
Sam Haine
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San Jose, CA
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Greetings,

Dan Lindo performed the effect as described in Andruzzi's Negromicon at the Phoenix Gathering. He has been doing it for a while and certainly has a unique presentation.

As for what happened to George's personal "philosopher stone" chest, I believe Ken Klosterman was pursuing it.

Sam Haine
Magical entertainment for charities www.sam-haine.com
Sid Mayer
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Santa Fe, NM
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To All Who Posted Replies:

Tnanks for your input. I know that Geroge made more than one of these. He did not advertise it but did sell at least one to a Japanese performer.

It was built into a brass bound wooden chest, not a suitcase. George had a good size waxed moustache which did not interfere with the illusion. His entire face and (as John Smetana noted) his hands changed. The whole thing was self-contained and did not use the "blue room" or "Pepper's Ghost" principle.

Sid
All the world's a stage ... and everybody on it is overacting.
iluznst
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Los Angeles
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Sorry guy's and gal's I'm such a book nut, but here goes...

Eugene Berger's "Strange Ceremonies", tells of the George Kirkendall routine, along with four photos showing it.

DA Smile
saglaser
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Champaign, IL
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Quote:
On 2002-08-25 17:58, Andy Leviss wrote:
I'm pretty sure somebody performed this on the Bizarre show at this year's Phoenix Gathering, but I may be remembering something similar but different--I can't recall who it was, though. Steve Glaser, do you remember?


As usual, I can see his face (with and without the skull effect) but can't put a name to it. I'm terrible remembering names, Harvey ;-)

I seem to recall that he was from Chicago, though. Does that help any?
Andy Leviss
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Hey Steve,
As Sam mentioned above, it was Dan Lindo. As soon as I read the name I remembered it (ain't it always that way?)

--A

P.S.-Sorry I didn't ask you guys, too, Mike and Sam; Steve's was just the first name that popped to mind at the moment (I was wayyyyy tired :o)
Note: I have PMs turned off; if you want to reach me, please e-mail [email]Andy.MagicCafe@DucksEcho.com[/email]!
saglaser
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And if I'd had any brains, I'd have read all the responses before I posted mine. You'd think after 17 years online I'd have learned that lesson by now Smile

Steve
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