Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

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P.T.Widdle
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Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby P.T.Widdle » May 26th, 2016, 9:35 am


Brad Henderson
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby Brad Henderson » May 26th, 2016, 10:30 am

I can't remember where I was (maybe automatacon) but someone introduced themself to me and said he was Kaymar and used to work the letterman show. We chatted a bit. last I saw Kaymar was many years ago and we all change as we get older. I know i would have never thought it was him just upon seeing him. Or it could have been someone just trying to be clever.

performer
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby performer » May 26th, 2016, 1:28 pm

Brad. Did the guy you spoke to have a distinct accent just like Kamarr? That would be a major clue I imagine even if his appearance had changed.

You know, you can say what you like about Kamarr but his appearances were good entertainment. He is one of the few magicians I have seen whom Letterman could not overshadow with his usual smart alec interruptions. In fact Kamarr always seemed to get the better of him. In point of fact Letterman and Kamarr had a great rapport together in the way I have not seen other magicians succeed with. The proof of the pudding is that he was on so often.
Whatever he had worked.

Ted M
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby Ted M » May 26th, 2016, 3:19 pm


Meir Yedid
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby Meir Yedid » May 26th, 2016, 8:59 pm

Brad,

I didn't see him at the Automatacon but it is very possible that he was there since his daughter works at the museum. He actually phoned me a few weeks ago and he is doing fine.

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MaxNY
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby MaxNY » May 27th, 2016, 1:37 am

He is often seen hanging around the New York Scene. I worked a gig with him for IBM once a few decades back. IBM went through a series of layoffs, and the held an outdoor "Magic Day" for their employees, Kamarr did a full show full of all the standard props, and some really pretty gals, it was fast paced, and very entertaining. As a side note he was hired to be the Magician at the 1963 World's Fair in New York. The show was created by Mark Wilson, and once it was established Kamarr filled in. He has the chops!

Meir Yedid
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby Meir Yedid » May 27th, 2016, 5:11 pm

I believe that one of Kamarr's assistants at the World's Fair was.... Pamela Hayes... Who later became Pam Thompson of the Tomsoni & Co. fame.

Kamarr also used to cover for Jeff McBride at Club Ibis in NYC whenever Jeff was away. He also performed on the same bill as him after the club changed it's name and format. Kamarr's regular stage act was very solid and entertaining...

P.T.Widdle
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby P.T.Widdle » May 27th, 2016, 8:20 pm

I assume it was the Letterman people who came up with the moniker, "The Discount Magician," which incidentally, I notice does not appear anywhere on Kamarr's web site. I guess it's unsurprising that Kamarr would want to drop Discount Magician (or maybe that "character" belonged to the Letterman show?), because it's not very dignifying outside of the TV show appearances if one wants to play it straight. I would imagine that without Letterman to badger him, Kamarr The Discount Magician is hard to pull off alone (unless you're Carl Ballantine).

Despite Kamarr's "chops" and distinguished early career, by the time Letterman saw him, he obviously saw something else - a late career, tacky, maybe not very good journeyman, whose earnestness with his performances, cheap tricks, and Borch-Belt-ish style was something that Letterman could play off of for laughs.

Actually, I can sort of see Mark Lewis in that role today. Where's your Letterman, performer?

performer
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby performer » May 27th, 2016, 8:32 pm

Widdle, my boy. You know as much about showbusiness as I do about the care and breeding of Japanese butterflies. Rather than Letterman "badgering" Kamarr I rather think it was the other way round. I consider the gentleman in question to be a real pro. Since this board is full of amateurs (and there is nothing wrong with that) they are not really in a fit position to comment on professionals. After all we do not tell the rest of you how to drive your buses, do we?

As for me on Letterman I could never match the entertainment produced by Kamarr.

P.T.Widdle
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby P.T.Widdle » May 27th, 2016, 9:53 pm

performer wrote:As for me on Letterman I could never match the entertainment produced by Kamarr.


You underestimate yourself, performer.

performer
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby performer » May 27th, 2016, 10:58 pm

This is true. Modesty has always limited my potential.

Leo Garet
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby Leo Garet » May 28th, 2016, 8:58 am

performer wrote:After all we do not tell the rest of you how to drive your buses, do we?

You might not, Sir, but that puts you in a very very small minority.

Where I come from the only people who aren't capable of doing a particular job are the people doing it. The people who aren't doing the job are the only ones qualified.

Which means all of us.
;)

performer
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Re: Whatever happened to Kamarr The Discount Magician?

Postby performer » May 28th, 2016, 9:57 am

I think a better response to me was the one that Bob Elliott used frequently. He used to say, "Don't forget that it was professionals who built the Titanic!"


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