Thursday, October 2, 2008

Out of the Box

One of my favorite blogs, Craig Conley's Magic Words, has a thoughtful post about Women in Boxes, a documentary on magicians' assistants and the important yet often overlooked role they have played in magic.

As the mother of a son who has a keen interest in magic (he's a member of the Society of Young Magicians), I've learned a lot about magic and magic history over the past couple of years, and I have a real respect for magicians' assistants and their wives (the two often overlap). They work very hard to help create a magical experience for their audience, yet must generally remain in the background while the magician basks in the applause and recognition for the performance. Depending on the relationship between magician and assistant, they can also provide invaluable support and advice to the magician as he develops and refines his magic routine.
I had fun going through the bio's of the assistants featured in Women in Boxes, and learning how some, such as Luna Shimada, went on to become magicians in their own right, while some started new careers in magic in a different capacity. I was delighted to see that one of them, Deanna Shimada (wife and assistant to the magician Shimada, and Luna's mother) now does Tarot card readings. I tried googling her to see if she has a website of her own, but alas couldn't find anything. She, along with the others profiled, seems like a cool person and I can't wait to check out the DVD to hear their stories.

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