Here is a quick LVMI rundown from my point of view. It is not inclusive of everything... unfortunately my mind cant recall in the span of this writing everything that occurred Others that were there feel free to fill in the stuff I forgot to mention.
Sunday, September 15:
After 2 hours sleep, get up and hop on a plane for a 5 hour flight to Vegas where I lose another 3 hours on the ride to the time change I already know the late nights are going to make me delirious, but I look forward to it!
I get to my room, unpack my crap and head out to the convention rooms 30 min. before it opens.
There is a small group already gathered outside the room watching Roger Klause work a deck of cards.
At 11:00 AM we get into the dealers room, grab our name badges and look around. Most of the dealers arent open yet.
1:00 PM Gary Norsigian lectures. Gary has a high energy, rapid paced lecture style. He was quite entertaining. He sort of has a mafioso style to him.
Afterwards, back to the dealer room where the dealers are now pretty much all there. I tended to personally spend my time over at the Todd Lassen table drooling over his coin gaffs, and performing a few bits of coin magic. I also found myself over at the Bob Kohler / Joe Porper / Thomas Wayne table. If you read Bobs website you will see that these three gentlemen are all teamed up on a major revolutionary holdout of Kohlers and Bob Fitchs. There were bits of talk about it here and there but nothing to see. Bob had Ultimate 3 Flys, Black Envelope DVD, and Troy Hoosers new DVDs for sale. Along with Thomas Wayne and Joe Porper custom made wands. Joe also had a beautiful cups and balls sets that came with a wand and beautiful crafted wooden box. All this stuff is on Bobs website and I would recommend taking a look!
I also had the pleasure of seeing Dean Dill perform Deans Box and Explosion, and a few others of his routines at his booth.
4:00 PM - Nathan Kranzo lecture. Nate has a cool, calm, and collected lecture. He has a subtle humor that fits him quite well. He performed most of the material on his Out of the Box DVD. I particularly enjoyed his one coin thru a sheer silk routine.
I then went and took a quick one hour nap for the dinner break I was getting delirious from lack of sleep and I knew a late night was to be had.
At 7:00 PM I went back to the dealers room before the 7:30 cocktail party by the pool. Shoot Ogawa was there. If you have not heard about this young Japanese magician, trust me, you soon will. I am a coin guy. Shoot was doing some things that were causing me some serious eye turmoil. One very beautiful thing is his one coin and a purse frame routine. You will swear he has no coin when he starts he shows you his hands really fairly. Then he pulls one out! Then he proceeds to continue with a routine that makes the coin appear and disappear from the purse frame. Included was a really nice phase where he has a coin at his fingertips, passes the purse frame over the coin, and the coin is gone, removes the frame, its back, and he repeats a few times its a really nice looking phase.
7:30 PM Cocktail party poolside. This was a nice way to mingle and meet a few people. As you looked around you could see both conversations as well as magicians performing effects for each other in small groups. A small crowd gathered when Garrett Thomas started performing a few coin bits and his ring thing. Shoot Ogawa started doing some of his coin routines, and then a small table with a close up pad was placed between Shoot and Armando Lucero. Both guys did a mind frying matrix session. I see another group gathered over on the side and walk over to see the Buck twins doing their card manipulations.
9:30 PM - Open Jam Session. Open Jam sessions were the parts where attendees would perform (as opposed to the lecturers). Daryl showed up and kicked the Jam session off with a card routine. I did not jot down all the performers, so I dont remember every performance. What stood out in my mind was a guy named Chris Randall performing a 3 coin routine (similar to Troy Hoosers exTROYdinary) but Chris was using Jumbo coins. He did a nice work making them all appear and disappear one at a time. There was another young guy (unfortunately I forget his name right now someone can post his name) that did a really nice torn and restored card that caused a bit of buzz in the room. He had video tapes he was selling. I think you will be seeing this tape hitting all the magic shops in the future. Shoot Ogawa did his Ninja Rings routine which use 4 small I think 4 inch rings. It was a thing of beauty. The session ended with a hilarious Siegfried and Roy parody.
11:30 PM Lee Asher had a workshop that cost extra to attend. I suck with cards so I did not attend. I was still up around 2:00 AM or so when it let out and all the guys were bamboozled by Lees stuff.
I spent much of the night talking with Apollo Robbins. Apollo has a really nice personality and performing wisdom WAY beyond his age. Todd Lassen asked Apollo to show me a coin routine. Apollo launches into his coin on the shoulder routine nailed me every time. The coin kept showing up on my shoulder. Then before I knew it Apollo was handing me stuff back that I had in my pockets, and he handed me my watch back!! Apollo was also doing some really beautiful coin vanishes and changes I never saw before. I come to find out he and Shoot Ogawa are friends and work on coin stuff together. Their work brings coin magic up to your face, so that their face is also part of the magic (thus keeping their face in frame which would work great for TV work). This is something I plan to play around with. Apollo talked a lot about body motion, and how martial arts and salsa dancing is used in his pick pocketing and magic. It was really neat stuff much of the same things that he would cover in his lecture on the last night. I was really impressed with his philosophies.
I finally rolled into bed at 3:00 AM (6:00 my time argh thank God things dont start early in the morning).
Monday, September 16:
11:00 AM - Garrett Thomas lecture. Garrett lectured on the material from his new video Any Questions. Garretts two major highlights are his ring thing which is honestly quite startling the first time you see it. He can take his ring of and make it instantly pop back to his finger and jump from one finger to another. You really need to see it, words do not do it justice. The other highlight for me is Garretts Big Coin Little Purse routine where he pulls multiple jumbo coins out and back into a purse that is too small to contain the coins. Again you need to see this, it is beautiful. Also included was some work with a flipper coin and a modified downs palm he calls web grip.
2:00 Open Jam Session. You know, there was some really good bits of magic during these sessions, and people really enjoyed them. Unfortunately because many of the performers are attendees (many I never met before) I cant really remember all the names. I should have took notes during these sections. The first jam session on the first night for some reason is easier for me to recollect. All of the Jam sessions were a really fun part of the convention. I dont remember if it was this session or the last, the Buck twins did their card manipulations.
4:00 Chris Korn lecture. Chris started with a really nice card to envelope routine where one card actually becomes part of the envelope! The rest of Chris lecture was on coin magic. He provided an extreme amount of detail on the retention pass he uses, and featured a few of his coin routines (quite good I must add) that he created in the 1980s.
8:00 Ask the Pros Panel Discussion: This was a time where all the lecturers could field questions about performing magic, and philosophies behind it. Mac King showed up for this panel and fielded many of the questions.
10:00 Aaron Fisher lecture. Unfortunately I missed this. I got caught up sitting at a table listening to Chris Kenner talk about magic, and working with David Copperfield. All the card guys were raving about Aarons lecture, and mostly all bought his book.
12:00 AM Bob Fitch/Bob Kohler workshop. This section was really unique. There were no magic tricks or routines taught or performed. Bob Fitch spoke close to 3:00 AM to a riveted audience on topics such as calming exercises, voice training, body and facial language, theater principles and how they relate to magic, as well as real life stories on some of the pros and how they improved their acts through Bob Fitchs workshop. Bob received a standing ovation after departing his wisdom.
I stayed up till 4:00 AM working with Thomas Wayne on Troy Hoosers Charming Chinese Challenge. Thomas has added a few touches on the effect that I believe will be showing up in the upcoming Kohler Productions DVD release of Troys routine.
Thank GOD again lectures dont start early in the morning.
Tuesday, September 17:
11:00 Eric Mead lecture. Eric has a really funny aloof lecture style, kind of like a buddy sitting down and showing you some stuff. Eric provided really nice teachings on false shuffling using Zarrow shuffles and Up the Ladder cuts. Eric enjoyed being able to share the sublime (as he called it) moments in routines where the magician is so far ahead, or has gotten away with so much, that most of the work is done and the spectator has no clue. Usually these points are only known by the magician; it is fun to be able to share those moments with fellow magicians in a lecture setting. A really cool trick Eric taught us was something he worked out with Paul Harris on how to shake up a can of any carbonated beverage and have the fiz, pop, spray transfer to a can not shaken. Meaning the can shaken is opened with no explosion, and the can not shaken explodes when opened.
2:00 PM Apollo Robbins Lecture. Apollo did much of what I described in my talk with him on the first night. Beautiful coin work, watch stealing, coin loading under watches, how to load a spectators pocket, place a rubber band around a spectators wrist, the philosophy and body language he uses in his pick pocket act, and reading peoples body language. His lecture notes got sucked up within minutes.
4:00 PM Open Jam Session. I do remember Joey Burtons (I am pretty sure that was his name) beautiful crystal ball manipulation to music. I did not count them, but I think he had 10 large crystal balls in his hand which he manipulated to music and made it look effortless. Armando Lucero did a nice ball from mouth routine to music as well. I am sorry to all the other performers I really enjoyed most everything I saw at these jam sessions, I cant recall everyones act, there was much good stuff!
7:30 PM Bob Fitch lecture. Bob showcased his legendary coin work and taught about sleeving, topiting, and pocketing coins as well as sleight of hand vanishes and reproductions. Bob gets so much mileage out of one coin its unbelievable.
Somewhere between this lecture and the Super Star Show Chris Kenner walks in with a stack of Magic Man Examiners that he had sitting around. Everyone around obviously shelled out cash as soon as they hit the table. This was HIGHLY unexpected, and as someone who was looking for a set of these for quite a while, one of the most fortunate events to happen.
9:30 PM Super Star Show. This was an open show of all the lecturers and a few other pros (like Armando Lucero doing coin matrix work) performing. Guests of the hotel were invited to attend. A few things that stood out for me was Eric Mead demonstrating his phenomenal juggling skill with 3 lemons. I had no idea Eric was that good, and he was extremely entertaining as well. Chris Korns act was WAY over the top and practically had the audience peeing themselves laughing. Chriss stuff is pretty risqu. He did stuff from his FISM act including the infamous card from his rear end routine. Apollo brought a layperson center stage and did his pick pocketing act. At the end of the routine Apollo had the guys watch, car keys, and various papers and cards. The look on the guys face when Apollo handed all this stuff back was priceless. Bob Fitch had a splendid coin routine which had a finale of him dumping a glass full of coins into his hand, which (the coins) immediately disappeared! Stunning! At the end we got a sneak peak of the movie "Shade" as we got to watch stars performing gambling sleights in various scenes. The movie was narrated live by Paul Wilson who served as technical advisor for the film.
This convention was a total blast and a nice cozy size. Great talent, great people, and a lot of fun.