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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ever so sleightly » » Question about Michael Skinner (4 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Bill Scarlett
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I recently had an intern working for me who is Michael Skinner's neice. This prompted me to do some research on him and, from what I gather, he was a true craftsman of close-up and a genuinely well-liked guy to boot.

There are several books and videos/dvd's out there on Michael. Can anyone suggest a good one or two to start with, since I can't afford to buy them all. Also, if anyone knows about any performance-only media out there, I would greatly appreciate a source. I'm sorry that he is no longer with us or I would have asked my intern about meeting him.

Thanks for your help.

Bill
Vandy Grift
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Someone had posted a video clip of Michael Skinner on the "Tonight Show" doing his ultimate card monte. It may be on Shanes site. Do a search and you should be able to find a link. Great Magician.

Vandy
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Chessmann
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Professional Close-Up Magic of Michael Skinner, vol. 1-4, DVDs, performances and explanations, with some brief (but interesting) interviews added to the mix.

Can't remember the exact title, but there is a series of videos/dvds that are mostly home movies of Michael doing informal performances for friends in home/hotel settings. Tons of performances, but no explanations.

I have both, and find each valuable.
My ex-cat was named "Muffin". "Vomit" would be a better name for her. AKA "The Evil Ball of Fur".
RS1963
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Houdini's Magic Shop has the Home movies of Michael Skinner there are three volumes. Two are vhs the third is dvd. With a bonus disk of a lecture Mike and Roger Klause did together.

Michael was one of the best in close up magic, and a good friend.
mrunge
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Check http://www.dennymagic.com. There is a performance only DVD available from Denny called the "Legendary Repertoire of Michael Skinner." On this DVD, Michael Skinner performs 56 routines and tricks. This is just what your looking for. Enjoy!
the74rock
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Rs1963 I knew you were gonna post on this topic. you such a big Michael skinner fan.
RS1963
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Quote:
On 2005-05-14 00:06, the74rock wrote:
Rs1963 I knew you were gonna post on this topic. you such a big Michael skinner fan.


Yes I just can't help Myself when it comes to any topic with Michael Skinner.

As to the dvds that Denny&Lee sells. It is the the one put out by Houdini's. Very well worth the money.
Paul D
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Check out http://www.themagicwarehouse.com there are a few of his tapes and dvds there.Michael also had a special cream for the hands when using cards. Its called Edge cream.
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RS1963
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Quote:
On 2005-05-14 20:26, Pauly Prestige wrote:
Check out http://www.themagicwarehouse.com there are a few of his tapes and dvds there.Michael also had a special cream for the hands when using cards. Its called Edge cream.


Actually I would rather doubt that the cream said to be used by Michael really was used by him at all.What has been done is a name brand of hand cream has had it's label removed and a new one placed over it. Michael could have used this very product but the advertising of it is very misleading to say the least.
Magic-Daniel
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Michael Skinner is the best close-up magician I have ever seen.
RS1963
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On 2005-05-15 17:46, Magic-Daniel wrote:
Michael Skinner is the best close-up magician I have ever seen.


I agree Daniel. Michael was the best at what he did. One of the things that I think impressed me the most was this. Michael could take something as simple as the ball and vase, devise an entertaining routine with it and fool you with this piece of childrens magic set magic.

He was certainly a gentalmen at all times. His love for the art of magic showed with every effect he performed.
Brad Jeffers
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Bill, which neice was it - Terri, Chris or Julie?
Bill Scarlett
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Julie, she was an intern at my counseling program in Vermont. When she found out I was interested in magic she said, "Oh I had an uncle who was a good magician". I thought to myself "sure, we all have an uncle who does magic." When she told me his name, I couldn't believe it!
the74rock
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I have the Michael skinner dvds and all his stuff is amzing.
markyeager
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I had the pleasure of knowing Michael personally. The two Carsons show are my favorite video performances. Michael asked me to perform at his birthday party at Schulien's in Chicago. I was honored when he asked me. The party was incredible, Mike and I were the only magicians there.
I did my close up magic and some of my magic comedy stand up show. Mike performed the cups & balls with coffee cups and cherry's and a table knife. The same routine that he did on the Carson show.
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pepka
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Hey Mike,
I know what you mean about someone telling you their uncle was a magician. A few years ago while performing at a Christmas party, a man told me of the time he accompanied his father to LA on a business trip many years ago. His dad's bussiness associate took them to the Magic Castle. He told me of a magician he saw there who seemed pretty old and senile, but once he started to perform for them, they were blown away. He described a well dressed man in his late 70's. Silver hair, who did wonderous things with cards coins, and 3 fancy looking cups. Of course I knew he was talking about the professor.
Anyway, back to the topic. No one has mentioned Mike's wonderful book, Classic Sampler. Many wonderful routines, my favorite has to be Oil and Water rides again. I've argued the case for oil and water routines here and on other forums, using this routine as evidence.
Best wishes,
Pepka
Chessmann
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I remember hearing in another forum that Michael's passing was due to not having a pain he was having checked out in time - in other words, something that could have possibly been taken care of, but due to waiting, developed into a fatal condition. Is this true?
My ex-cat was named "Muffin". "Vomit" would be a better name for her. AKA "The Evil Ball of Fur".
Dave V
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Michael's health was deteriorating for several years before his passing. When I saw him performing at "Lily Langtree's" restaurant at the Golden Nugget in the late 80's, he was nearly on "auto-pilot." The moves were there, and still done to perfection, but I could see then that the medications had him pretty well out of it.
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pepka
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On volume one of his DVDs, he explains that his trembling is a side-effect of a medication he takes for a certain ailment. I believe I had heard he suffered most of his life from some form of mental illness, but I'm not sure. I also think the actual cause of death was a heart attack.
Chessmann
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I wonder what kind of career Mr. Skinner would have had had he not gone to the Golden Nugget. While on the one hand it would seem that working at one place for 20 years would limit one's exposure, other opportunites, etc..., it certainly didn't seem to hurt his reputation, as he became known as one of the greats in magic history. It obviously suited him, as he stayed for such a long time.

Just pondering....
My ex-cat was named "Muffin". "Vomit" would be a better name for her. AKA "The Evil Ball of Fur".
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