Magic Castle Larsen Legacy

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.

Postby CarloPanno » 07/18/10 06:41 PM

Richard Kaufman wrote:I've been told that this incident began when Milt wanted to modify the decor in the main lobby bar and the powers that be refused to let him do it.


What did Milt want to do? I know that the Hall of Fame has been recently ossified rather than in a state of constant flux (except for the picture of me) but what did he have in mind for the main bar?

--c
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/18/10 06:45 PM

The Prez OK'd Milt and Joe Hoffman's design verbally to Milt. I saw the graphics and what needs refurbishing.

But the "suits" jumped in and want to see samples of Milt's work... HUH???? They want paint color samples and stencil samples.

Don't they realize who built this place? And to start putting their noses in is a joke.

What's next? Put the project out for bids?
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/18/10 06:54 PM

HERE'S MILT'S REPLY TO THE SUITS

Mark: Just got your email. Robert said last night that he would okay the plan. I assumed that meant a green light!

As the founder of the magic castle I have had artistic and creative control over the club since it's inception. I will not be embarrassed by having to submit samples etc. to you and Dave Clement. John Shrum was the senior art director for NBC and Joe Hoffman has been a network art director and teaches design at USC. What are your credentials? I have created a Magic Castle, The Mayfair Music Hall, The Variety Arts Theater and Caesars Magical Empire What are your credits? I have produced dozen of stage shows and produced TV specials for three networks. What are your credits? I designed every inch of this club trusting professionals like John Shrum and Joe Hoffman. You have displayed that have no respect for me or the club that I have built over the past 50 years. I resent the fact that you are now questioning our artistic judgement. For you to question feasibility is crap --- Where were you when everyone told Bill and I the Castle was not feasible. The cost? The entire cost will cost about the same as the one Grosh painted scenic drop that you okayed for the awards show. The art gallery cost was less than the flower bill for that $100,000+ loss fiasco.

Since you will not proceed until you see a sample of the work to be done. We will not proceed under these circumstances. I don't need your permission to change the decor and concept of the Magic Castle. I was only asking the AMA to cover the modest cost. I have been here through many boards and many managers. I am the President of MCI, we own the trademarks and the fixtures. You seem to think I am one of the maintenance staff -- think again my friend. I don't work for you and you don't work for me.

Any suggestions I have for the betterment of the club will be presented to the Board for approval.

That being said I will now send the proposal to the board who may trust my judgement as they have in the past.

Milt Larsen
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Postby Brian Tolman » 07/18/10 07:42 PM

Personally, I think the whole castle is enough of a "sample" of Milt's work.
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Postby Geno Munari » 07/18/10 08:05 PM

Milt, Bill and Irene have done a job that all of us are benefiting from. The hard work, coming up with the cash, not getting a paycheck and going through much more than any member could imagine.

Milt is the reason why we have the Magic Castle.

The idiot that took those menus of the table should get an education in manners and life.

Lets all of us show our support for Milt. There will never be another Milt.

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Postby Pepka » 07/19/10 12:34 AM

As someone who is not a member, or has yet to visit the Castle, I really can't state much of an opinion on the recent changes. However, I can say that it's incredibly disrespectful to treat Mr. Larsen this way. What cahones these suits have!
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Postby erdnasephile » 07/19/10 03:42 AM

I'm a member, and this whole incident saddens me greatly.

I am also concerned about Mr. Larsen's statement that we lost "$100,000+" on the awards banquet.

Is that true?
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Postby CraigMitchell » 07/19/10 04:20 AM

Magic politics ;-(
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/19/10 11:10 AM

It's politics AND money.
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Postby Doc Eason » 07/19/10 11:51 AM

...and control.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/19/10 12:19 PM

An anonymous post from the AMA has appeared this morning that reeks LAWYER-SPEAK. This post bothers me more.
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Postby Terrence » 07/19/10 12:38 PM

Yes. It was created to keep the poster's identity secret, and to allow him to post anything he wishes to, and to lurk anonymously.

This type of account BTW is expressly forbidden by the Terms-Of-Use -- in force as I type this. But that could be wiggled around.

The fact that this poster is hiding behind the AMA's name is particularly odious. This sort of account is only granted to moderators, to protect them from sanction.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/19/10 12:40 PM

Why doesn't someone copy it and paste it here so we can read it.
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Postby Tabman » 07/19/10 12:42 PM

Doesn't Milt own all the fixtures et al at the Castle?
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Postby CarloPanno » 07/19/10 12:51 PM

Richard Kaufman wrote:Why doesn't someone copy it and paste it here so we can read it.


Scroll up a bit. Lisa Cousins posted it.

--c
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Postby Doc Eason » 07/19/10 12:59 PM

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Postby CarloPanno » 07/19/10 01:04 PM

Richard Kaufman wrote:Why doesn't someone copy it and paste it here so we can read it.


If what you're asking about is the new lawyer-speak post, I'll be happy to do the honors:

It's in a blue font, unlike the regular black. The author is identified as "Academy of Magical Arts, Inc." Icon is the little owl from the Magic Castle logo. Join date is 07/18/2010 and the post count is 1.
==================================
[color:#3333FF]
Everyone appreciates and respects Milt Larsen for what he has done in helping to create the club that we all love and have the pleasure of enjoying each and every day. His vision was, and is, the driving force behind the greatest haven for magicians in the world, as well as those who love magic. Milt is truly the Walt Disney of Magic.

Since 1968, Milt has created the back of the Friday lunch menu and delighted our members and guests with comments about people having lunch that day at the Castle, reminiscences, amusing anecdotes and interesting trivia. Milt's "Friday Gazette" has been a unique and interesting aspect of a truly unique and interesting place. Unfortunately, Milt's comments on the back of the July 16th menu departed from his usual amusing and whimsical tone and instead turned to an "editorial" which was inappropriate, hurtful to our employees and, more importantly, inaccurate in many respects. Milt's views on the direction of the Magic Castle, physically and artistically, are important and always taken seriously by the AMA Board of Directors and management. But while constructive criticism is always welcome, attacks on the AMA's employees with inaccurate information have no place in AMA materials - regardless of their source.

The AMA produces all printed materials within the Magic Castle, including the Friday Lunch Menu and cannot permit negative, inaccurate attacks on AMA employees in the form of "editorial" comments, or otherwise, by members, guests or others reproduced on AMA materials. Accordingly, the Friday Lunch Menu was replaced this week with a menu without such material on the back. This has never happened before, and it is hoped, will not happen again.

Similarly, such "commentary" containing negative, inaccurate attacks on AMA employees - at whatever level - will not be permitted to be published (or republished) on the Forums, which is owned and operated by the AMA and governed by the Terms of Use which all users of the Forums agreed to when they registered.

This all will pass and the AMA's employees, Boards, Committees and membership will continue to enjoy working and interacting with Milt at the wonderful institution which came from his vision, for many years to come. We all regret the incident with the Friday Lunch Menu and will be sure that it does not happen again.

-------------------------
Academy of Magical Arts, Inc.
(323) 851-3313
www.magiccastle.com
ama@magiccastle.com [/color]
==================================

Hope this helps.

--c
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 07/19/10 01:17 PM

Tabman wrote:Doesn't Milt own all the fixtures et al at the Castle?

Milt owns some and the AMA owns some. This biggest thing Milt owns is the name: "The Magic Castle."

I saw the proposed new colors and graphics and, frankly, wasn't all that crazy about them. But that's just me.

I'm still not used to what they did to the Close-up Gallery. But that's just me.

The cabaret nights dont bother me so much (though I do think that the guests should pay a tad more particularly since they get the run of the building afterward). But thats just me.

I know I pay the dues that fund the place and all that, but it will always be "Milt's House."

But that's just me.

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Postby Jonathan Townsend » 07/19/10 01:17 PM

How much are the menus going for on ebaY?

On the more adult side of matters - I don't see how airing that kind of concern in the format and language used on the Friday menu is endearing for him or his beloved Magic Castle. The message comes across as way too close to the "help I'm being held hostage in a chinese fortune cookie" message for my taste.

Much worse has been stated in much more sensative places without ruffling feathers. IMHO we may be neglecting the magic of language these days.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/19/10 01:21 PM

It helps for others to read it for sure. You then should scroll up to Doc Eason's link to see what Milt's partner in design, Joe Hoffman writes. THAT IS THE CRUX.
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Postby erdnasephile » 07/19/10 01:33 PM

Thanks for the information--it does help put things in perspective.

A couple of questions please: Does Mr. Larsen own the building as well as the fixtures? Are there any written guidelines on who gets final aproval on rennovations or has this always been a "handshake" agreement with Milt?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/19/10 01:38 PM

The building and land are owned by the Glover family.

The legal question of who owns "fixtures" and names has never been decided in a definitive way. In other words, one can claim to own things (either side can make this claim), but it has never been adjudicated, and thus no definitive statement can be made.
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Postby Pete Biro » 07/19/10 01:44 PM

Milt just posted this reply to the Anonymous post.

To all: I don't consider the statement as anonymous. I agree with it. My comments were not meant to criticize anyone. If I offended I apologize. We, the Larsens, appreciate the letters, calls, etc. assuring us that we have the respect all those concerned. With that I hope we can put this thread to rest. Milt
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Postby mrgoat » 07/19/10 02:00 PM

Sounds like someone got spanked. Interesting.
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Postby BruceWright » 07/19/10 02:14 PM

They closed the thread about this on the internal Castle forums.

So I finally joined Genii Forums. So that I can discuss the club I belong to. Sigh.

Politics sucks.

I imagine the whole thread on the Castle forums will disappear shortly.

Here's what I wrote about the rampant censorship and heavy-handed moderation of the Castle's forums. You know, in case that thread disappears magically.

Quoting myself:
Wow, wow, wow.

As someone who's been chatting on online forums for 30 years or so, I'm appalled when I see forums run so poorly. It's a rare site these days to see something this bad.


It's like the folks running things here have never seen what causes forums to collapse:

It's this behavior by the moderators.

I've seen it time and time again: posts of others edited without explanation, without a private message from the mod explaining the policy, without a policy followup by the mod in the thread.

See how people here are making a bigger stink about the censorship than they are about the actual issue of variety and music at the Castle?




Horrible, bad, self-destructive behavior on the part of the moderators of this forum.

If anyone wants to see how self-destructive a forum can get, keep an eye on these ones. I've seen the pattern dozens of times. Watch the next phases, they're fun!



Got to love the "anonymous" post above, by the club Herself. WHOOOO... That's priceless.


Hey, "Magic Castle Club" posting above. My advice? Get someone who truly understands community
forum moderation, and gets the web 2.0 interactivity of the 21st century.

This forum needs professional moderation. They need to stop running it like a home-owned bulletin-board system from the 1980's.
The fact that one can get a full accounting of the details of this Kerfluffle in the unprotected section of the Genii forums is awesome, and horrible for the club.

Great job "Academy of Anonymous Moderators" above. You now have the club airing its dirty laundry in public!


Which is why healthy moderated forums are preferable. Society isn't closed. Conversation isn't stifled just because you can censor a website

What instead happens is that the information gets out, and causes more people to hear about it.

Look up the Streisand Effect on wikipedia sometime.

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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/19/10 03:14 PM

The internet shines a very bright and uncontrollable light.
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Postby Terrence » 07/19/10 04:23 PM

Pete Biro wrote:Milt just posted this reply to the Anonymous post.

To all: I don't consider the statement as anonymous. I agree with it. My comments were not meant to criticize anyone. If I offended I apologize. We, the Larsens, appreciate the letters, calls, etc. assuring us that we have the respect all those concerned. With that I hope we can put this thread to rest. Milt


Hmmm... Maybe those dastardly moderators closed the thread at Milt's behest? ? ?
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Postby erdnasephile » 07/19/10 05:20 PM

With respect to all, if Milt is willing to put this issue to rest (as per his gracious statement), IMHO perhaps we might consider doing the same.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/19/10 05:30 PM

Once the internet genie is out of the bottle, it doesn't go back in. As Bruce wrote, go look at The Streisand Effect on Wikipedia.
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Postby Terrence » 07/19/10 05:55 PM

Your absolutely right Richard.

Of course, if one doesn't correctly identify the party or parties that are actually doing the censoring, and blithely assume that it is a group of "Moderators" on the Castle Forum who are doing the censoring, then you end up like Bruce, committing the "post hoc ergo propter hoc" logical fallacy, which can also be found on the Internet, and just throw out a wild-ass guess as a phish.
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Postby BruceWright » 07/19/10 06:19 PM

Terrance, I'm speaking of the censorship of the Magic Castle forums, which is rampant and mysterious. That is clear from my post.I did not blame forum moderators for censoring the menu. I have no idea who did that.

Though I do think the attitude is the same... somehow by eliminating messages getting out, political discontent will somehow be avoided, or nipped in the bud. The opposite is the truth.
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Postby Terrence » 07/19/10 06:31 PM

Bruce --- you have the correct idea. Believe me, my eyes are starting to fall out rolling watching this happen.

I have left you my phone number in a pm on one of the two Forums, now we're talking. Get back to me guy!
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Postby BruceWright » 07/19/10 07:03 PM

I just wanted to follow up on this by clarifying once more, It's the actions that I'm objecting to, and I'm not trying to blame anyone.

I'm just reiterating my opinion that attempting to quash discussion turns out to backfire 10 times out of nine.
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Postby Terry » 07/19/10 08:19 PM

Maybe Steve Brooks and his "moderators" are running the Castle forum?

They are experts at censoring material.
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Postby CarloPanno » 07/19/10 09:07 PM

Terry wrote:Maybe Steve Brooks and his "moderators" are running the Castle forum?

They are experts at censoring material.


There was a thread a while back about how some adult-entertainment producer used to bring his performers to the Castle and that just disappeared one day...

--c
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Postby Tabman » 07/19/10 10:20 PM

houdini's ghost wrote:...playing the piano and singing as good as she looked and doing a very wonderful eclectic Bobby Short, Page Cavanaugh, Michael Feinstein kind of repertoire. And I found her unusual and magical....


Ahhh Bobby Short!! Right on.
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Postby Alan Bursky » 07/20/10 01:24 AM

What I would like to know is, the post that was put on the Magic Castle forum signed by the "AMA", is this from the entire membership of the AMA? Is it from the B.O.D? Or even the B.O.T?
By what authority does someone have to put up a post using the name Academy of Magical Arts Inc.??????
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Postby 000 » 07/20/10 11:45 AM

Anyone know how much montly rental the Glovers receive?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/20/10 11:46 AM

Bursky, I'm sure you can figure out who put the message on the Castle board. It's probably the people who are in charge.
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Postby Terrence » 07/20/10 11:58 AM

It's probably Keyser Soze...
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