Hiding the Elephant: How Magicians Invented the Impossible

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Arrow Books, 2005 - Magic tricks - 362 pages
4 Reviews
This is the story of the Golden Age of magic and of the world's most legendary magicians: the eccentric personalities who patented the first ghost and competed fiendishly in the race to make things materialize, levitate and disappear.We meet Harry Kellar, the ruthless thief of secrets who was the model for the Wizard of Oz, and PT Selbit, the first man to saw a woman in half on stage.We meet John Nevil Maskelyne, whose Egyptian Theatre was a London institution for sixty years. Hiding the Elephant is the masterwork of a man who has dedicated his life to magic, who knows the tricks inside out, and still believes.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - aadyer - LibraryThing

A great overview of the Golden age of Magic & the characters that inhabited it. Very good on their interactions, their inventions but less so on the "wonder" of what was, probably the finest age to be ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ben_a - LibraryThing

Terrifically enjoyable history of magic. You may have heard the line "they do it all with mirrors." That turns out to be quite accurate. True in India. True here Read full review

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About the author (2005)

Jim Steinmeyer has designed illusions for David Copperfield, Ricky Jay, Siegfried & Roy and Orson Welles, and for six Broadway shows including The Beauty and the Beast. A consultant for a six-part BBC documentary on the history of magic and producer of a Channel 4 documentary, he designed the illusions for Richard Eyre's Mary Poppins and is a contributing editor of Magic magazine.

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