Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

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Matthew Field
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Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Matthew Field » July 7th, 2014, 5:20 am

I am a great admirer of Charlie Frye's work. He nails it when he describes much of what is wrong in juggling and magic by saying that too often the performer's act is ego based.

Jon Racherbaumer, in the July Genii cover story, asks Charlie who his favorite magicians are, and Charlie says it's the four C's -- Cardini, (Tommy) Cooper, Carl and Kaps (yes, he says, he knows that last one's not really a C).

Carl?

Is he referring to his idol, the great George Carl (comic, clown, physical comedian)? I love George Carl's work, but was he a magician?

Anyone have an answer?

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Tom Gilbert » July 7th, 2014, 7:19 am

I haven't found anything saying he had a magic interest, but I can imagine Charlie being a big fan. There seems to be a little bit of George in his act.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Richard Kaufman » July 7th, 2014, 10:26 am

George Carl, who is referred to elsewhere in the article.
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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby AJM » July 7th, 2014, 12:17 pm

I remember George Carl as he often used to appear in UK variety shows - he used to crack me up.
Always considered him more of a 'mime' act.
I've not read the article so apologies if I'm repeating anything from the piece.
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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby AJM » July 7th, 2014, 3:45 pm

If memory serves, George Carl also appeared in the film Funny Bones with Lee Evans and Jerry Lewis.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Joe Mckay » July 7th, 2014, 10:25 pm

If Charlie really did just have magicians in mind - maybe he was referring to Carl Ballantine?

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Matthew Field » July 15th, 2014, 4:38 am

I received this on Facebook from Charlie Frye himself, for which he has my thanks:

"I saw on Genii forum you were asking about who I was referring to as Carl. I was referring to George Carl, and yes, he did do magic. One of his bits was the dancing spoon which later Tommy Cooper did. He loved magic, and was working on a comedy magic act as he got older. He and Mac Ronay were friends, so it was in that style. I don't write much in forums so if you'd like to pass that along, be my guest."

I had no idea that George Carl was interested in magic.

By the way, if you don't know who George Carl was, do yourself a favor and search for him on YouTube.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Joe Mckay » July 15th, 2014, 1:29 pm

Just want to pass this article along - since I think it will be of interest to Charlie Frye (and others).

Here is what I wrote on a different forum:

------------------------------------------------------

This is an interesting article.

It has a lot of resonances to the world of magic. Particularly the differences between how amateurs (and YouTubers) approach the art-form. Versus the way a top professional approaches it.

In this case - the greatest juggler in the world ended up getting to the stage where he decided to quit juggling. To become a builder.

http://grantland.com/features/anthony-g ... on-fagone/

Not magic - but will be of interest to a lot of us who are interested in the differences between the amateur and professional mindset.

------------------------------------------------------

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Bill Mullins » October 1st, 2014, 10:59 pm

From 1969: six minutes of George Carl.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Bill Mullins » July 4th, 2015, 10:37 am


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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Matthew Field » July 4th, 2015, 12:52 pm

George Carl has a big part in one of my favorite films, "Funny Bones."

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Jon Racherbaumer » July 7th, 2015, 1:35 pm

Not to chime in too loudly but my hasty "take" on the tricky notion of what defines a "magician" or what defines something as being "magical," I'll submit this:

When a performance is deeply mysterious and other-worldly, it's magical.
When a performer does something inimitably skillful and that tests credulity, it's magical.

In regards to the latter, Carl was magical…and as far as I know, nobody duplicated his act to the magical degree Carl did.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Bill Mullins » July 7th, 2015, 1:56 pm

Jon Racherbaumer wrote: Carl was magical…and as far as I know, nobody duplicated his act to the magical degree Carl did.


And lets hope no one ever tries to duplicate his act. Rather, lets hope that people like Bill Irwin (who is himself a master) continue to mine the same veins of physical comedy, developing their own styles, and make us laugh just as hard.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby IrishMagicNews » July 7th, 2015, 3:43 pm

Bill Mullins wrote:
Jon Racherbaumer wrote: Carl was magical…and as far as I know, nobody duplicated his act to the magical degree Carl did.


And lets hope no one ever tries to duplicate his act. Rather, lets hope that people like Bill Irwin (who is himself a master) continue to mine the same veins of physical comedy, developing their own styles, and make us laugh just as hard.



Unfortunately somebody has. I was at a [censored] little Circus in Ireland a few years ago and saw a mimic/clown do a terrible recreation of it. I posted the full review of it on IrishMagicNews here.

http://www.irishmagicnews.com/irish-mag ... ircus.html
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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Jack Shalom » July 7th, 2015, 4:30 pm

Joe Mckay wrote:
This is an interesting article.

It has a lot of resonances to the world of magic. Particularly the differences between how amateurs (and YouTubers) approach the art-form. Versus the way a top professional approaches it.

In this case - the greatest juggler in the world ended up getting to the stage where he decided to quit juggling. To become a builder.

http://grantland.com/features/anthony-g ... on-fagone/

Not magic - but will be of interest to a lot of us who are interested in the differences between the amateur and professional mindset.

------------------------------------------------------

What a fascinating read. Many thanks.

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Re: Charlie Frye's Favourite Magicians

Postby Bill Mullins » June 5th, 2018, 12:08 pm

Nice video of Charlie and Sherry Frye from the 2009 MDA Telethon.


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