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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » What are the top 10 books written on stage illusion techniques? (10 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

stine
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TN
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I have a very extensive library on cards, close up and specific sleight of hand principles.Yet my library is very limited on stage techniques and principles.I own all of Sharpe's work on mechanical, pneumatic, and optical principles. Encyclopedia of levitations, Houdin's books and Jarret, as well as many Steinmeyer's books but not all. For those of you expert in stage illusions what would you recommend as the top 10 ( if there are that many?) as "must have's" if you want to educate yourself on and actually be able to build and create illusions? Thanks!
Bill Hegbli
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Eternal Order
Fort Wayne, Indiana
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If you look at the tops post, Paul Osborne Illusions, there is an extensive list of illusion information listed in those 12 pages, not only covering Paul Osborne's material.

Additionally, if you do some searching in this section using the Café's search engine, there has been an increase interest in what it takes to put on an illusion show, and many books and DVD's are mentioned that would interest you as well in building illusions.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
stine
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Thanks Bill, is there a consensus on must have books for someone serious about understanding the methods of stage illusions?
Donald Dunphy
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Victoria, BC, Canada
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This link might be helpful to you:

http://illusionbooks.com/recommended-boo......ionists/

JC Sum has several helpful articles on his website.

Main page: http://illusionbooks.com/

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
stine
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Thanks Donald!
kidnapped1853
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Years ago, one of the first books I read on performing and touring with an illusion show was Illusion Show Know How by Ken and Roberta Griffin. I believe that it is still available at Abbotts: https://www.abbottmagic.com/Illusion-Sho......whow.htm
stine
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Thanks Kidnapped.
thomasR
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Paul Osbornes Illusion Systems Series
Rand Woodbury's Illusion Works Series
Jim Steinmeyers Device & Illusion
Magic of Robert Harbin (hard to find but needs to be on the list!)
Andrew Mayne Illusion Book (not a great place to start as there are no measurements, mostly lots of ideas, but a lot of the ideas are very creative.)

As far ar presenting illusions...
David Seebach "So you want to be an Illusionist"
Ken Griffin "illusion show know how"
Dick Oslund
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Quote:
On May 29, 2018, stine wrote:
Thanks Kidnapped.


I MAY have a copy of Ken and Roberta's book. If so, it's in storage, I'll check, the next time that I get 'out there', and PM you. I suggest that you read Abbott's ad in the link above.

The Griffins were my friends.

Dick
SNEAKY, UNDERHANDED, DEVIOUS,& SURREPTITIOUS ITINERANT MOUNTEBANK
Gerry Walkowski
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To me, the best place to start is Jim Steinmeyer's wonderful book, Device and Illusion.

Gerry
David_N
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Regarding current, in print books then you could do no better than 'On Stage with Illusions' and 'The Theatrical Illusion Show', both by Duane Laflin. These books examine illusion choice, presentation and showmanship. They are an excellent investment, written by someone who knows what he is talking about.


My recommendation regarding building advice is not a book but DVD's; specifically...'Building your own Illusions' Parts 1 & 2 by Gerry Frenette. These videos contain an epic amount of information on illusion construction and are a steal at the price. Indispensable for serious home builders.
stine
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I really appreciate everyones input. Thanks so much!
sawuin2
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Definitely Device and Illusion by Jim Steinmeyer
reedrc
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There are so many. But some that come to mind - would recommend The Base Book, Any of the other Rand Woodbury books , Tim Clothier, Mark Parker, Suspension And Levitation, Pro Illusion Series By Mike Caveney, Jim Steinmeyer, Duane Laflin, JC Sum. Ace Illusions, Milan Forzetting, Chris Stolz, Petro Gurido, the Base Planning book, Andrew Mayne ,Grant’s Illusion Secrets, James Hodges, Jim Garrish - PVC Illusion Book, Jim Sommers - Build Your Own Illusions, Paul Osborne, Byron G. Wells, OUTERBRIDGE-A-Day-in-the-Life-TOURING-SECRETS, Robert Harbin Demon, Robert Harbin The Magic Of, S.H. Sharpe - Conjurers' Mechanical Secrets, The Ilusion Paradigm, Will Goldston Series, Hemingway, Gary Darwin - Grandes illusions impromptues, Dick Gustafson - Professional Illusion Building. There are lots and lots more but above would be a good start nothing was intentionally left out just as many as I could think of or that I could see on my shelf from my desk. I have a few entire book cases full of just Illusion Books. Lots of great material. You can find may of the early 1900s books online in PDF form for free such as the Will Goldston documents.
Kind Regards

Ryan C. Reed
Founder, Illusion Entertainment

designer, director, theatrical consultant, digital wizard, magic impresario, wonder aficionado, Illusioneer & dream architect.

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Bill Hegbli
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Eternal Order
Fort Wayne, Indiana
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Quote:
On May 29, 2018, stine wrote:
Thanks Bill, is there a consensus on must have books for someone serious about understanding the methods of stage illusions?



I have found it is the book you did not buy, that had exactly what I was looking for to complete my act material, for 10 years.
Vietnam Veteran 1967, Sgt. E-5

Graduate of Chavez College of Prestidigitation and Showmanship

"Magic With A Twist Of Comedy"
reedrc
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Agreed. I've found all the books are interesting to own and to have as a
reference from a historical perspective and foundation of understanding
but ultimately innovation / the road less traveled
is what makes the best material.
Kind Regards

Ryan C. Reed
Founder, Illusion Entertainment

designer, director, theatrical consultant, digital wizard, magic impresario, wonder aficionado, Illusioneer & dream architect.

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