1948 Magicana column reference

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Postby James Foster » 01/27/04 07:52 AM

I'm searching for the reference to a 1948 Magicana column in Genii which refers to and/or features Bill Woodfield's take on Frank Shields and may have included coverage of Shields' Ambitious Card routine. If anyone can help me track down the specific issue(s), I'd be most appreciative.

Thanks.

James
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/27/04 09:14 AM

Magicana did not appear in Genii until the early 1950s, I believe. I have detailed all of this in William Woodfield's obit which appeared in Genii last year
Magicana was first published as a stand alone mag for two issues in the 1940s. Then it appeared once in The Conjurors Magazine. Then it appeared in Genii for about 18 months in the 1950s. Then it reappeared in Genii, run by Charlie Miller, starting in the 1960s.
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Postby Pete Biro » 01/27/04 11:05 AM

There are a couple of people that I know of that know a lot about Frank Shields' work.

Paul Chosse and Mark McGuire. Mark, who learned and used a lot of the material, told me at the recent WMS he might be writing up several of Shields' routines for a future issue of Genii.

I wish I had taken notes at the time, but was more interested in watching Frank than learning his material.

Although he did teach me his handling of a false count, a top change and a great (simple) poker deal as well as a flashy display of four cards.
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Postby Ken Becker » 01/27/04 12:01 PM

James Foster: Correction to RK's comments; "Magicana" edited by William Woodfield did indeed appear in Genii in 1948. The article you refer to is in Genii, April, 1948, volume 12, no. 8,pg. 229, and is on Frank Shields' Ambitious Card Routine. I have a copy.
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Postby James Foster » 01/27/04 12:04 PM

Thanks, Richard, for your clarification. The information I have from a Busby Epoptica indicates a 1948 column, but if the column didn't exist, then it is clearly a misprint. I'm pretty certain that there must have been an early Magicana with some mention of Shields and his Ambitious Card, but now I'll have to track down a library of these issues and browse them. If anyone out there has access to these and could possibly help, I'd be very grateful.

Pete, I sent along an email regarding Shields. You are certainly not alone among those who recall his work most favorably. I hope you share more stories.

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Postby Guest » 01/27/04 02:10 PM

I was wondering if anybody could fill in some dates for me. Thanks in advance.

May 1946 - First issue of Magicana appears as a monthly periodical

June 1946 - Second and final issue of Magicana appears as a monthly periodical

September 1947 - One issue of Magicana appears in The Conjurors' Magazine (Vol. 3, No. 7)

[circa 1947/48] - Bill Woodfield begins Magicana column in Genii

[circa 1950] - Bill Woodfield ends Magicana column in Genii

November 1964 - Charlie Miller begins Magicana column in Genii

[circa 1985] - Charlie Miller ends Magicana column in Genii

Does anybody know the dates? I guessed the years for those in brackets.

Thank you,
Cameron
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Postby Guest » 01/27/04 04:34 PM

Originally posted by Pete Biro:
There are a couple of people that I know of that know a lot about Frank Shields' work.

Paul Chosse and Mark McGuire. Mark, who learned and used a lot of the material, told me at the recent WMS he might be writing up several of Shields' routines for a future issue of Genii.

I wish I had taken notes at the time, but was more interested in watching Frank than learning his material.

Although he did teach me his handling of a false count, a top change and a great (simple) poker deal as well as a flashy display of four cards.
Hi James, Pete, etal.

I'm glad to see some interest in Frank Shields. He was one of the all-time great card handlers. Vernon loved him, in fact made what amounted to a pilgrimage to Oakland just to see Frank work. He (Vernon) once commented that "Frank did everything wrong that it was possible to do wrong when he did the top change - and fooled me with it worse than anyone ever has!"

Frank idolized the Professor, studied Marlo voraciously, was Braue's only real student, was confidante to guys like Jack McMillen, Bill Woodfield, Charlie Miller, Mel Brown (who, curiously, carried on a bi-weekly correspondence with Marlo for over 30 years, but NEVER met him!), and mentored people like Matt Corin, Jeff Busby, and me.

Frank was funny, kind, generous, and a hell of a magician. His rendering of Marlo's Supercount was legendary. Some of his bar antics belong in the "World's Funniest Magic Jokester Hall of Fame" (if there was one...). Imagine some poor soul, wandering into Frank's bar and thinking he would do some magic too. Frank would ask for the deck, dunk it in the bar well (in the sink), take it out soaking wet and shake it off. Handing it back to the hapless magic boy Frank would say: "Here you go, they looked a little dirty, so I cleaned 'em up for ya! Go ahead!" NOBODY worked Frank's bar... There are dozens of stories like that, stories about false teeth, cards in urinals, anatomical impossibilities, flying chairs, bar room brawls, and, common to all of them, amazing magic! If you've got a Frank Shields story maybe this is the place to share it. I'd love to see a book on Frank, but I don't know any one person who could do it. Maybe a collaboration, a collection of stories would be a fitting memorial.

After suffering a stroke that left him unable to do any slieght of hand, his passion and the way he made a living, Frank did something unexpected by most, but not by those of us who knew him. Refusing to throw in the towel, Frank completely re-structured his thinking, eliminated all slieght of hand, and developed a mental act! He was determined to continue to perform, and he found a way. Frank was an amazing, inspiring man, and the magic world is poorer for his loss.

Best, PSC
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Postby Joe Pecore » 01/27/04 05:53 PM

James,
I sent you an email. I confirmed too that the Shield's column is in the April,1948 Genii.


PSC,
These are the dates I have on file:

Bill Woodfield edited Magicana within Genii from
January 1948 until April 1949

Charlie Miller edited Magicana within Genii from November 1964 until September 1987. (Although the last few years many issues were edited by Elizabeth Wilson and James Patton. I've also been told that many were ghost written by Elizabeth too.)


James Patton started Magicana within Genii back up on May 1989 and went until at least 1992. (not sure the final date)


- Joe
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Postby Guest » 01/27/04 05:58 PM

Thank you so very much, Joe. I really appreciate it. This information will help me greatly in completing my Magicana collection.
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