Alan Shaxon has Passed Away

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Postby John Bowden » 10/28/12 07:17 AM

It is with a heavy heart that I inform members here that Alan Shaxon, former President of the Magic Circle has passed away. Deepest Sympathy to his wife Anne and family.
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Postby Matthew Field » 10/28/12 07:17 AM

It is with great sadness that I must report the death of Alan Shaxon in the early hours of this morning, as reported by Brian Sibley, Chairman of The Magic Circle. Alan was a past President of that institution.

Alan was a good friend and an innovative magician, as well as being the face of The Magic Circle for five years. He played the part of a magician on an episode of the "Mr. Bean" TV show. He was a regular attendee of the Monday night meetings of the Circle and enjoyed showing the latest close-up trick or technique he was working on.

His two books, "My Kind of Magic" and "Practical Sorcery" are excellent. His innovations include the very popular Confabulation, the Shaxon Flap gaffed envelope, and the nudist deck which he handed out and gave away at the conclusion of the effect.

He had a great deal of the apparatus of the late Robert Harbin.

But beyond all of that, he was a nice man and a real gfentleman. His devotion to the Circle, his appearances on stage with his wife and assistant Anne as well as his daughter Julia were always memorable.

I last spoke with him in a phone call about three weeks ago, just before I left for the Genii Bash in Orlando. He was recovering from lung surgery and was in a cheerful mood, as he almost always was.

Magic has lost one of its greats. My condolences to Anne, Julia and his brother and family.

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Postby Marco Pusterla » 10/28/12 07:29 AM

Oh! What a bad news!

My condolences to Alan's family.
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Postby hugmagic » 10/28/12 08:22 AM

Very, Very Sad. I always enjoyed talking with him and watching him work. Such a class act. As a close friend of Robert Harbin, he gave a glimpse into Harbin's genius in his own performance. I know the last time he worked Abbott's I asked him to please write another book. His first two books will stand as simple but practical magic treatises for years. Watching him work from the wings and preparing his props was a lesson in prop management. A true, true professional and gentleman.

My sympathies go out to Anne and the family. Rest in Peace.

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Postby Brian Tanner » 10/28/12 09:59 AM

This is sad news indeed. He will be missed.
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Postby Andrew Pinard » 10/28/12 11:26 AM

Alan was a quiet and gentle giant in magic. He was very generous with his time and knowledge and many performers in the UK and abroad are the recipients of his largesse. His charm and enthusiasm were infectious.

I met Alan only once in August of 2011 in The Magic Circle clubroom. A group of us had gathered and I was encouraged to present my Troublewit routine. Alan seemed particularly taken with it and took a few moments to ask me about the routine and had some very kind words for my performance. I deeply appreciated his generosity and interest in my work.

Performers here in the U.S. might only know Alan through his infrequent performances on television, most notably (for me at least) in the Mr. Bean episode "Mr. Bean Goes to Town" where he portrayed cabaret performer Eddie Spangle. He lectured to magicians periodically, and he produced at least one set of notes ("Lecture Special") but some of his knowledge and wisdom can be found in "My Kind of Magic" (1970) and "Practical Sorcery" (1976), both published by Goodliffe.

Shaxon was a pillar of magic in the UK and a constant supporter of up-and-coming generations.

His publications on magic will have a positive impact on those performers willing to seek them out and study them. The material is commercial, direct and displays a profound knowledge of how audiences "process" magic.

He will be deeply missed. My thoughts are with him and his family...

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Postby Dustin Stinett » 10/28/12 11:53 AM

Sad news indeed. My condolences to his many fans, friends, and family.


PS: On a "housekeeping" note, John and Matt posted at the same time (John's first by mere seconds) starting two threads on this sad news: I merged them, hence the two reports in a single thread.
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Postby Jim Riser » 10/28/12 11:55 AM

Another of the good guys is gone. This is very sad news. Just a few months ago Alan and I were discussing a rather unusual reel that he had. Those who have lived through some very good times in magic history are vanishing way too quickly. He has touched many over the years and will be missed. RIP.
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Postby Matthew Field » 10/28/12 12:16 PM

Scott Penrose posted this link to Alan performing Zig-Zag and Blades of Opah, both Harbin illusions, on a TV show hosted by the Amazing Randi.

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Postby Scott Penrose » 10/28/12 07:51 PM

Thanks Matt

Those who knew Alan will testify to the fact that he was gentleman both on stage and off. In addition, he was a mightily fine all round magician. A pleasure to watch and a pleasure to spend time with. We will all miss him very dearly.


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Postby Richard Kaufman » 11/02/12 10:23 AM

The funeral for Alan Shaxon, MIMC, will take place at 1:15 pm on Tuesday 13 November at St Mary's, Church Street, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, KT12 2QS.

Following the service, there will be a private crematorium committal, but friends are invited to make their way to the reception which will be held at Burhill Golf Club, Burwood Road, Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, KT12 4BX

The following link provides a map of the location:

It is requested that there only be family flowers (although The Magic Circle will be sending a floral tribute on behalf of Alan's 'Circle Family'), but it is Anne's wish that anyone wanting to make a charitable donation in Alan's memory, do so to The Maskelyne Endowment Fund of which Alan was a trustee and the income of which "may be applied to provide monies for grants and bursaries to or for the benefit of Members of the Society in connection with projects or activities which advance the art of magic."

Donations can be sent to The Maskelyne Endowment Fund ℅ The Magic Circle, 12 Stephenson Way, London, NW1 2HD
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Postby MickNZ » 12/26/12 10:24 PM

Alan appeared on an episode of Mr Bean as magician Eddie Spangle, starts around the 17 minute mark.
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