We, here in France, were truly thrilled to attend the lecture that was to be given by David & Dania when they came to our annual congress on last September 26th.
What a disillusion we had in store !!!!!
The art of "Quick-Change", had been a well guarded secret for many years until the first lectures and workshops given by "Valerie" since five years ago.
David and Dania's first lecture in France was to be complementary to Valerie's and for magicians who were interested in this art. However, David's main concern seemed to be to convince the attending spectators just why they shouldn't be undertaking this particular craft.
On stage we discovered from left to right:
David, a colourful screen and Dania, a lovely bored looking lady sitting on a chair next to a table entirely covered with a multitude of dresses and various lengths of fabric.
David begins by questioning the spectators as to their motivation for attending his lecture:
Who has come out of simple curiosity ?
Who has a true interest in this particular art and wishes to really learn more about it ?
Who is simply dying to do an act just like David & Dania's ?
Throughout the entire lecture we will obtain absolutely no astonishing revelations nor implicit indications on how to create these costumes and no advice will be conceded.
"No questions allowed, ...... ??????? was David's only response, "We'll talk about that at the end of the lecture".
David believes that to include one or two costume Quick-Changes in an act would be an error in judgement and unjustifiable !!!!!! In his opinion, it is an Art in itself ..... !!!!!!!! This comes as a bit of a blow to the magicians !
David then produced a suitcase and had several spectators in the first rows test its weight....15kg..... which is the equivalent weight of all the costumes that Dania must wear for their 15 minutes performance and what is more ..... she has to dance as well !!!!!!
15 seems to be his favourite number .... everything is 15 ..... they have 15 years of experience in this field ... Dania wears up to 15 dresses for certain galas ..... (in truth their act usually last only about 4 minutes with 7 changes ...... !!!!).
According to David, if you aren't at least 58, .....Dania's height ...., it would simply not be reasonable to attempt a Quick-Change act ..... !!!!! ?????
To illustrate this point, David now proceeds to demonstrate their dressing technique and begins obviously from the last dress to the very first one. Dania leans forward onto the table while David snaps and zips her dresses on one after the other as he stands pressed closely behind her (this particularly "elegant" position brings forth [censored] and giggles from the audience).
Once dressed, Dania looked stressed and had more and more trouble breathing and must sit down to rest ......... and with only a mere 8 dresses on ....... ????????
He went on to explain how the colours of each consecutive dress must be very different from each other in order to give the proper effect and impact...... just in case his imitators might have missed the importance of this point ....... ??
He deplored those who simply want to copy them and explained that it has taken them more than 15 years ....... (15 yet again) ..... to find just the right fabrics and fastening systems of which, of course, he reveals nothing !!!!!!!
Speaking about copies, and as it has been written on several occasions, it would seem that their act was itself copied, or stolen or (bought I doubt) from the "Sudarchikovs" in around 1992, and is an exact copy of theirs with all the magic effects removed.
As for the last dress change which takes place under a shower of glittering confetti, David went on to warn us that this particular effect, which has been shamefully copied and reproduced by other Quick- Change artists all over the world, it is now protected by law in the USA. He went on to state that they are the only ones capable of presenting their act surrounded at 360 in circuses or basketball stadiums, which of course is obviously not true in view of several other similar acts who are performing at the moment on the circuit.
At the end of this lecture ...... or should I say, demonstration only ........, David continued to refuse to answer any of the numerous questions from his audience and simply replied that he will be happy to give this information and answer questions during his forthcoming workshops which he plans to organize hopefully in 2009 ........ for seriously motivated magicians only !!!!!!!!! And there you have it !!!!!!!!! It came as no surprise to hear whistling and heckling from a disappointed and disgruntled public for this master in deception.
Rudy Coby, who was also invited to our congress this year and was present for this unmatched moment in crafty deceit, opened his lectures the next day by apologizing and declaring that he actually felt embarrassed to be American when he saw how David & Dania had behaved so unashamedly in their dealings with the French and went on to add that as far as he was concerned, if anyone wanted any practical information concerning Quick-Changes, only Valerie could give them any productive and constructive advice!
David & Dania made themselves most unpopular during their stay and I simply wanted it to be known !