Things of magical interest in New York

Discuss the historical aspects of magic, including memories, or favorite stories.
mam
Posts: 137
Joined: June 1st, 2014, 7:47 am

Things of magical interest in New York

Postby mam » August 10th, 2014, 4:46 pm

Hey all,

I will be visiting New York on the 14-24th of August, and I'm looking for tips and recommendations on things to do related to magic (shows, exhibitions, shops, etc.) while there.

I found this site which is pretty good and has a bunch of places mapped, such as Tannen's, The Players Theater, and more.

Are there smaller venues, temporary shows, anything that may a bit hard to discover if you don't know about it already?

Many thanks in advance!

jonathan.blair.3152
Posts: 3
Joined: August 22nd, 2014, 9:37 pm

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby jonathan.blair.3152 » August 22nd, 2014, 9:44 pm

Steve Cohen Chamber Magic Waldorf Astoria

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 23903
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Richard Kaufman » August 22nd, 2014, 9:45 pm

Monday Night Magic
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

Jeffrey Cowan
Posts: 200
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Santa Monica, CA
Contact:

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Jeffrey Cowan » August 23rd, 2014, 2:56 am

Any guy tossing 3 cards on a cardboard box with at least 2 people watching and winning. Or playing the shell game with bottle tops. I've seen some terrific performances (laudable skill; too bad they really were cheating (greedy/dumb) people out of some serious coin).
-- Jeffrey Cowan
www.cowan-law.com

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 23903
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Richard Kaufman » August 23rd, 2014, 11:57 am

Whatever you do, do not be a wise-ass and bet (and win) with the Monte guys. They work in gangs. If you win, they will follow you around the corner, beat the crap out of you, and take your money.
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

User avatar
Matthew Field
Posts: 2733
Joined: January 18th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Slydini
Location: Hastings, England, UK

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Matthew Field » August 23rd, 2014, 12:41 pm

New York, New York, a helluva town.

User avatar
Richard Kaufman
Posts: 23903
Joined: July 18th, 2001, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: Theodore DeLand
Location: Washington DC
Contact:

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Richard Kaufman » August 23rd, 2014, 1:16 pm

There's a lot more magic in London than in New York, isn't there, Matt?
Subscribe today to Genii Magazine

User avatar
erdnasephile
Posts: 3506
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby erdnasephile » August 23rd, 2014, 1:35 pm


User avatar
erdnasephile
Posts: 3506
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby erdnasephile » August 23rd, 2014, 1:36 pm

Jeffrey Cowan wrote:Any guy tossing 3 cards on a cardboard box with at least 2 people watching and winning. Or playing the shell game with bottle tops. I've seen some terrific performances (laudable skill; too bad they really were cheating (greedy/dumb) people out of some serious coin).


I remember visiting NYC back in the mid 70's and saw these guys. However, when I was in Times Square last year, I didn't see any of them. (I did see a lot of cops). Are the monte gangs still around in NY?

mam
Posts: 137
Joined: June 1st, 2014, 7:47 am

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby mam » August 23rd, 2014, 8:51 pm

Thanks for the great suggestions! For posterity, if someone else is looking for tips, here's what I've been up to:

Tannen's Magic, except that it's a fun place to visit, has a bunch of flyers on what's going on in the city, and the people working there can tell you as well. Their immediate suggestions were Monday Night Magic and Steve Cohen's Chamber Magic. Unfortunately, the latter was cancelled during my trip, but I did catch the former. It was a good show in a small seated theater with three acts (new ones every week) as well as close-up magic during the intermission. Also, when buying a ticket you can get a discount at nearby restaurants, so I picked up my ticket at 6:30 when they opened, then went next door to Caffe Reggio and had a good dinner at a good price, in time to get back to the show without having to hurry.

I also found out about a relatively new show: Magic Mania. It's run by Rich Marotta, who except from performing himself also has a couple of performers every Thursday at the West End Lounge. If Monday Night Magic is more of a theater experience, this one is more of a comedy-brick-wall-cellar-with-a-bar-setting. The acts were very good, and seating was at tables really close to the stage with table service.

Came back to this thread to find out about Fantasma and went there today (a bit too close to closing time though). It's a magic shop, but also a miniature Houdini museum, so if you're into paraphernalia (strait jackets, cuffs, etc. used by Houdini) then there's a lot to look at. Turns out a guy who performed on Thursday was behind the counter, so I could actually get some insight into a couple of the tricks he did. (Also, as a side note, one guy who performed on Monday also performed on Thursday with mostly the same routine, which would bore some people, but on the contrary for me as I could sort of study his act this way.)

Did not run into any card flinging street gangs though, maybe they all got rich on selling subprime loans instead and have now retired for good.

Although the above does not add much to what was already suggested, I hope my little travelogue will be useful for someone else too. Again, thanks for the tips!

mrmagik68
Posts: 55
Joined: December 10th, 2013, 6:58 pm
Favorite Magician: Bill Malone

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby mrmagik68 » August 23rd, 2014, 9:37 pm

Jeffrey Cowan wrote:Any guy tossing 3 cards on a cardboard box with at least 2 people watching and winning. Or playing the shell game with bottle tops. I've seen some terrific performances (laudable skill; too bad they really were cheating (greedy/dumb) people out of some serious coin).



You don't really see these guys out here much if at all nowadays. Bloomberg did a really good job of cleaning up NYC, even our crime rate has gone down substantially. But if you do happen to see some 3 Card Monte activity, it's best that you don't partake in the con. As Richard warned, some of these people won't think twice...

I would definitely check out Monday Night Magic and Steve Cohen's Chamber Magic as stated here already. Also, I do believe that some of the local magicians still do the Saturday afternoon hang out in the city, just not sure where exactly. I haven't done those Sat gatherings in quite a few years. Enjoy your stay in NYC!


Roberto

User avatar
Doug Thornton
Posts: 477
Joined: January 18th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Favorite Magician: David Copperfield, Penn & Teller, Harry Anderson, Derren Brown, Mac King
Location: Gorgeous New Jersey USA
Contact:

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Doug Thornton » August 23rd, 2014, 10:59 pm

The suggestions for magic events are all spot on. It's great you found them and shared them here.

And yes, it's true, the 3 Card Monte has disappeared. I haven't seen those guys - and I enjoyed watching - in at least a decade. The last hustle I saw was a guy in Stockholm during FISM - right near the government offices - doing the pea with three matchboxes --- and giving me the evil eye when I took a picture...
Smiles all around
http://www.sam161.org/
SAM 161 - The David Copperfield Assembly

Herb
Posts: 69
Joined: October 23rd, 2011, 1:37 pm

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Herb » August 24th, 2014, 12:06 am

The Saturday magic group meets at Cafe Rustico, a pizza shop at 25 West 35th Street, between Fifth and Sixth Avenues. Usually folks are there from around noon to 5, although it can go later than that.

Also, check out A Taste of Magic, an evening of closeup magic with dining.
http://www.atasteofmagicnyc.com

Tomorrow - Sunday, August 24, two acts that have appeared this season on America's Got Talent are performing at "Magic at Coney." David and Leeman, who are still contestants this season, were last minute additions to the bill - and Rogue who was on earlier in the season is also part of the show. Here's more info: http://bit.ly/1txevcJ

Diego
Posts: 291
Joined: June 16th, 2008, 11:29 am

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Diego » August 24th, 2014, 1:12 pm

Since Rudy Giuliani cleaned it up and corporations bought it up, Times Square is an amazingly different place since the 1970's/80's.
I remember walking down Broadway with Ward Hall, seeing a dead body on the sidewalk,
and pedestrians walking by, barely (wanting to) notice the just murdered casualty.

The monte mobs, drug dealers, hookers, gangsters, etc. that openly plied their trade day and night are gone, (where did they go, what do they do now?)

I remember 5 years ago, walking from the NYC library along 42nd street, (past families and their children carrying bags from The Disney Store) and saying incredulously on my cell phone to someone, "I can't believe I'm walking down 42nd street to the New Amsterdam Theater, to see, "Mary Poppins"!

I have not seen a monte or shell/cap game anywhere in NYC, for years.
There was a media campaign awhile back, with posters and more, warning people/tourists of the monte mobs and what they do. Richard is right, they are not called MOBS for nothing.

Bill Mullins
Posts: 4520
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Huntsville, AL

Re: Things of magical interest in New York

Postby Bill Mullins » August 24th, 2014, 3:47 pm

Gazzo (and Paul Wilson) show how monte is done . . . .


Return to “Magic History and Anecdotes”