Tribute To Robert-Houdin

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Posts: 9
Joined: May 21st, 2008, 12:17 pm

Tribute To Robert-Houdin

Postby veegates » May 27th, 2008, 11:34 am

I read with great interest that Eduardo was wanting to put together a show in honor of Houdini. I have been for some time considering putting together "An Evening With Robert-Houdin".
I have already built a few of his effects, but my concern is...while everyone (Magicians and non-Magicians) has heard of Harry Houdini, I wonder how many non-magicians are familiar with Robert-Houdin. People that are not familiar with Houdin would not know about Diavolo, The Orange Tree, etc and I wonder in modern times if they would be impressed with the magic of the 1840's. Would they consider his effects quaint or just outdated?
I don't know. I have built my version of Antonio Diavolo (he is posted on Youtube ),
and having shown the video to a few friends they seemed to be not terribly impressed. The Orange tree is a very pretty effect (Paul Daniels did a wonderful job of it), but there is not a great deal of flashiness about it. My Orange Tree is on my website.
I would love to hear any opinions on how you think Houdins effects would be accepted today.

Jonathan Townsend
Posts: 7384
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Westchester, NY

Re: Tribute To Robert-Houdin

Postby Jonathan Townsend » May 27th, 2008, 12:17 pm

What's a mechanical watch? Is that like using a real tuning fork instead of a quartz crystal circuit? I heard they used to make stuff like that from metal instead of plastic and silicon.

Okay now that we have some frame to consider context...

If you introduce the setting and watchmaking and the marvels being discovered at the very start of the first industrial revolution when metals were first tamed into shapes and clever folks could make minuscule gears... and clever things from those gears... and some of them made things which were shown back then and then hidden away for the last two hundred years till...

:) just setting the stage. Once you invite their imagination onto that stage the material will likely work just as well.
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

Posts: 9
Joined: May 21st, 2008, 12:17 pm

Re: Tribute To Robert-Houdin

Postby veegates » May 27th, 2008, 12:53 pm

Thank you!!
That puts it into perspective!.
By the way.... where do the batteries go?

Mr. Stickley
Posts: 75
Joined: March 14th, 2008, 7:05 pm

Re: Tribute To Robert-Houdin

Postby Mr. Stickley » May 27th, 2008, 7:15 pm


Absolutely beautiful work on your version of Antonio Diavolo!

It is great to see. There are a couple of projects like that I wish to complete when I get my new house/shop and all is in order.

I'd love to talk with you about it.


Posts: 9
Joined: May 21st, 2008, 12:17 pm

Re: Tribute To Robert-Houdin

Postby veegates » May 27th, 2008, 9:04 pm

Hi Keith,
Thanks for the positive words.
I would love to help with your upcoming projects. Always looking for something new to do.
Thanks and hope to hear from you!
You can contact me through my website. It is

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