Magic in Las Vegas

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Areeb Malik
Posts: 31
Joined: May 5th, 2008, 9:13 pm

Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Areeb Malik » October 20th, 2003, 9:05 pm

Hello Forumers,
I am going to be in Las Vegas at the beginning of December (Monday and Tuesday) and would like to do 2 things pertaining to magic:

1. Go to a show
2. Go to a magic shop

Can people who are familiar to LV offer some advice on how to spend these 2 days? I am more interested in going to a close-up show rather than a stage show, but I have heard that a new Greatest Magic Show on Earth has opened at the Sahara. Any info will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
-Areeb

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 20th, 2003, 10:55 pm

Areeb;
Vegas on Monday and Tusedays are not very good "magic" days...

First - Shows...

Check the listings when you arrive - there are several magic shows on the strip worth seeing - FIRST AND FOREMOST would be to catch MAC KING (Comedy Parlor Magic at it's BEST!)at Harrahs (Afternoons 1 and 3 PM) The cost is under $20 and is WELL WORTH IT! He may be "Dark" on Mondays - again, CHECK ALL WHEN YOU ARRIVE - times and shows do change!
Another Afternoon favorite is Rick Thomas (Stage magic show with tigers)at the Tropicana - again, under $20 (coupons in the hotel papers will save you more $$$!)
World's Greatest Magic Show(Sahara), Lance Burton(Monte Carlo), Showgirls of Magic(San Remo), Dirk Arthur (Plaza - Downtown), Amazing Jonathan (Flamingo Hilton),etc. are all evening shows. Times and costs vary - again, check the hotel papers for coupons and times...

Steve Darci has a close-up show at the Orleans - Not sure , but I beleive that is a sunday night only show,... Then again, show times do change!!
*******************************
Magic Shops...

There are two... (unless you count the "Tourist Trap" shops on the strip - and be prepared to pay a LOT more than normally charged in magic shops for the tricks!)

Planet Mirth Magic Shop AND Denny & Lees are ACROSS THE PARKING LOT FROM EACH OTHER!

Denny & Lees have all the current items for sale you see in the magazines HOWEVER - as is stated on their door - DO NOT GO IN UNLESS YOU ARE A PROFESSIONAL MAGICIAN!!!! They do not wait on Children, families, or beginners - this shop is STRICKLY for PROS ONLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(O.K., so thats what their sign says...)

Planet Mirth is collectable and hard to find items as well as inexpensive items commonly found in magic shops all over the country. Earl is the shop owner and is VERY knowledgable on this subject as well as anything Circus or Clowns (he himself having been a pro clown with ringling Brothers for many years AND was Ronald McDonald for well over 20 years!) He has a Circus collection in the back as well as Large stage illusions for sale and lots of close-up items - Last time I was in, he had well over 60 DIFFERENT TYPES OF EGG BAGS on display!
(Hint - Do NOT walk into this shop acting like a "know it all" magician... You'll get thrown out in a hurry and you will miss a true treasure of Las Vegas!)

The Shop hours for Planet mirth are 10 AM to 8 PM but call in advance - he closes early and opens late often...
Denny & Lee are 11 AM to 7 PM - Both shops are "open" 7 days a week...

These two shops are located in an industrial park at 5115 South Industrial Road- Not far from New York NewYork, Excalibur, MGM Grand, and the Tropicana - should be less than a $5 cab ride from any of these hotels...

*********************************
It's really to bad you will not be there over a wednesday night - Gary Darwin (a Las Vegas Institution!) has held a Magic Meeting on wednesday nights in Vegas for well over 40 years now! ALL THE GREAT CLOSE-UP "Gods" ARE THERE!
Allen Ackerman, Shoot, Michael Little, Lou Brooks, SO MANY OTHERS!!!!!!!!!! Everyone drops in each wednesday night and you never know WHO will drop in too! Held at Boomers Lounge (not far from Palace Station and the Rio) they start showing up around 10 PM and "magic" goes on until the wee hours of the morning...

Hope this all helps!
The most important thing is to ENJOY YOUR TIME IN LAS VEGAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Enjoy!
Tiny :)

Rob Signs
Posts: 58
Joined: October 1st, 2008, 1:06 pm

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Rob Signs » October 21st, 2003, 10:05 am

I'd have to agree with the "MAC KING" show being a must see. I get to Vegas about three or four times a year and if possible, I always go to the Mac King show. It rivals any other show there.

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 21st, 2003, 2:57 pm

Don't forget Penn and Teller ! At the Rio . I got lucky and was able to see Siegfried and Roy this year . I also highly reccomend Mac King .
Peace
Amazing Dick :cool:

Scott Fridinger
Posts: 234
Joined: March 16th, 2008, 3:36 am

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Scott Fridinger » October 21st, 2003, 4:40 pm

****It's really to bad you will not be there over a wednesday night - Gary Darwin (a Las Vegas Institution!) has held a Magic Meeting on wednesday nights in Vegas for well over 40 years now! ALL THE GREAT CLOSE-UP "Gods" ARE THERE!****

Is this something anyone can just go to, or do you need to get an invite to this? Thanks.

I have dealt with Denny and Lees for years at their first shop in Baltimore, and they have an excellent selection, haven't been to the one in Vegas yet, but I am sure it is good.


Scott

Ted Leon
Posts: 57
Joined: March 3rd, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Las Vegas

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Ted Leon » October 21st, 2003, 5:08 pm

Scott,
The only requirement to Gary Darwin's meeting is a love of magic. Just show up and enjoy. Introduce yourself and join in.
Ted (Leondo)

Joe Gallant
Posts: 38
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Boston

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Joe Gallant » October 21st, 2003, 6:18 pm

Michael Close at the Houdini Lounge at the Monte Carlo is a must-see. He's there Tuesday and Wednesday nights (8PM-1AM). World-class close-up and great piano music - a perfect combination.

It's free, but don't forget to tip :)

Robert Allen
Posts: 616
Joined: March 18th, 2008, 11:53 am

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Robert Allen » October 21st, 2003, 6:34 pm

Definately tip. I believe that Michael Close is paid a pittance to be in the lounge as a piano player, but he performs magic as a labor of love, to bring back the lounge magician acts of yore. There should be a large snifter on the piano for tips. Last time I was there and we got an extensive and friendly close up show, my friend and I each left $20. Don't be cheap.

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 21st, 2003, 6:40 pm

Now y'all got me wantin' to go to Vegas! ;)

mark
Posts: 165
Joined: August 28th, 2008, 5:59 pm
Location: Washington State, U.S.

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby mark » October 21st, 2003, 8:45 pm

Yes, definitely tip for Michael Close, but in the event you are at a table without a table tent, the latest policy is that he doesn't walk from table to table looking for a performance spot. You have to solicit the services from either Michael, your server, or bartender. He is a kind man, and a wonderful musician as well. He is so good on piano that you won't find yourself impatient for the set to last, you will be too busy enjoying the music. That guy is the best of both worlds. What a find for Houdini's lounge (or should I say, good thing he found them, since he had to point out the advantages of a 'two fer.')

Ray Banks
Posts: 98
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Ray Banks » October 22nd, 2003, 6:48 am

Regarding Michael Close:

I was there last April and was waiting on some friends to show up. I had toalked to Michael before he started the piano and he knew I wanted to see him perform.

When he got up to perform for a table, he came over and asked if I would like to join that group (my friends had not shown up yet). Of course I did and was quite amaxed at his work.

As I was leaving, I ran (literally) into some other friends (it was a convention) and we went back in and he performed for them and me again.

Great piano, Great magic, Great guy.

As he says in his Magic column: "Highly Recommended".
Pick a card....Any card....NO not THAT card..THIS one!

Ray Banks

Ray Banks
Posts: 98
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Ray Banks » October 22nd, 2003, 6:52 am

Re: Magic Shops in LV

I always go to Planet Mirth to spend some time (and some money) with Earl.

I probably will never go to D & L again, not because of their sign about "pros only" but because the guys working there didn't seem to care whether anyone was there or not. They were more interested in working on a move with the cups and balls or some such than assisting the customer.

This may have changed but the sign on the door will turn off anyone---even a pro!
Pick a card....Any card....NO not THAT card..THIS one!



Ray Banks

Oliver Corpuz
Posts: 105
Joined: May 9th, 2009, 8:33 am

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Oliver Corpuz » October 23rd, 2003, 2:53 pm

RE: Magic shops

At this year's LVMI, I asked Denny why he wasn't promoting the D&L vegas location very much and he basically said the retail space and inventory isn't exacty the way he wants it yet and that the vegas location is basically operating in "stealth" mode right now, open but not really trying to draw much attention to itself.

Perhaps the "pros only" sign is currently up because the store is not yet fully stocked, staffed and in a condition ready for off the street retail traffic. The store isn't a magic pitch booth orientated towards selling svengali decks and glowing thumbtips to lay people on vacation (there is plenty of that on the vegas strip), rather it currently serves as a convenient place local and visiting magi can stop by and stock up on some needed supplies or purchase a book or DVD while on the way to and from the airport.

I've been to the D&L vegas store at least a dozen times and always was greeted when I came in and politely asked if I needed any assistance. So possibly Ray's experience was not typical.

Planet Mirth is also a shop to visit too. Earl is very friendly and has some collectible and vintage magic apparatus for sale.

It is kind of strange seeing two magic shops right next to each other... but that's Vegas for you. The relationship between the two neighboring shops seems quite amicable, as one of the staffers in D&L even suggested I check out the vintage cups and other neat stuff Earl has in his shop.

RE: Close-up magic.
Check and see if Armando Lucero is performing walk around at the Excalibur. His matrix routine is astonishing. Also, Apollo Robbins and Shoot Ogawa were performing at the Shadow Bar at Caesars. The magic on their cultural exchange DVDs is incredible. Call both casinos and check if they are performing.

- Oliver

Ray Banks
Posts: 98
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Houston, TX

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Ray Banks » October 24th, 2003, 6:45 am

Originally posted by Oliver Corpuz:
RE: Magic shops


Perhaps the "pros only" sign is currently up because the store is not yet fully stocked, staffed and in a condition ready for off the street retail traffic.
Well, the sign was pretty mean sounding. It basically said if you are not a pro don't come in here.

I've been to the D&L vegas store at least a dozen times and always was greeted when I came in and politely asked if I needed any assistance. So possibly Ray's experience was not typical.
Maybe so I have not been in the store for a year and a half. Maybe next April, when I go back I'll give them another chance.....as long as they accept me as a 'pro'!

On another note.......

Kevin James just opened a show at the Sahara featuring a rotating cast of magicians/entertainers.

Some words about it are here:

http://www.kjmagic.com/forum/index.php? ... 5e039431ef
Pick a card....Any card....NO not THAT card..THIS one!



Ray Banks

Jeff Eline
Posts: 647
Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Jeff Eline » October 24th, 2003, 8:20 am

I just got back from Las Vegs last night and I saw a bunch of shows.

I first saw the Amazing Jonathan at the Flamingo and it was very, very funny! Same basic show as his two Comedy Central specials except with the F word. But it's great seeing it live. Really funny! Opening for Janathan was Brian Gillis and his wife. They did a mentalism show that was very good as well.

Next I saw the new show at the Sahara, "Worlds Greatest Magic Show" with Joseph Gabriel, Jeff Hobson, Nicholas Night and Kinga, Sylvester the Jester, The Majestix, Kevin James. Billy Furguson did walk around before the show started.

Jeff Hobson is absolutely one of the funniest MC/magacians out there. Amazing timing, great lines, and wonderful routines.

I had never heard of Nicholas Night and Kinga, but their act was very nice and beautiful. Kevin James' act was clever, unique and entertaining!

Unfortunately, the house was barely full, maybe 100 people in a 300 to 400 seat theater. It was only the third night for the show. So, I hope they can get the word out because it was an entertaining evening.

Next was Mac King's show on Tuesday. I must say that I didn't have the highest expectations. NOT that I thought it was going to be bad, but I expected a nice little magic show. It was, without a doubt, my favorite show. Funny, well crafted, nothing extraneous, funny, clever, funny, well paced and funny! If you're going to Vegas, you HAVE to go see Mac King's Show.

That night I saw Lance Burton. What can be said of his show, that hasn't already been said? Simply one of the best large scale productions I've seen. And his way with the kids is very endearing.

The last night I saw O at the Bellagio, which is a whole different kind of magic.

A note about Mike Close. Unfortunately, his is not at the Houdini Lounge any longer, nor is he at the Eiffle Tower Restaurant (he was just playing piano there). Before traveling to Las Vegas, I emailed him and he explained that conditions had changed (economy) and he was not performing at those venues any longer.

If you're near the Paris hotel, there is a strolling magician (can't remember his name) that walks the faux streets of the hotel. He did some very good close up stuff and was very friendly as well.

Finally, Frank Zakk, magic bartender, is at Hot Shots in North Vegas, but it's the graveyard shift - Sunday thru Wednesay Midnight to 6am. Details at Denny & Lees.

Oliver Corpuz
Posts: 105
Joined: May 9th, 2009, 8:33 am

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Oliver Corpuz » October 24th, 2003, 8:41 am

The point I was trying to make about the "pros-only" sign is that the store is really not set-up to serve the general public (laypeople) coming off the street. More specifically, you won't find fake doggie doo, fart bombs, stink bombs, gag lottery tickets, fake vomit, over-the-hill gag gifts, Halloween costumes, cheap low end 'plastic' magic tricks, magic for dummies books, and beginners magic kits inside. To make money, a magic shop open to the general public needs to stock that kind of inventory and needs to have people able to demonstrate and teach those tricks and also willing to wait on people coming in off the street looking for a "free" magic show and loitering. The D&L Vegas location is not set-up for the general public. Not too many lay people coming off the street inquiring about $200 Johnson Cups, looking for a leather himber wallet, or books like the James File or Ibidem.

They do not interrogate your magic knowledge when you first walk in, require some sort of secret handshake, flash of credentials, or require any character references to prove you are a "pro" to be able to shop there. (The fact that they let me inside to shop proves that their definition of pro is very, very loosely defined and interpreted as broadly as possible).

I dont believe the sign is meant to deter semi-pros, amateurs or even magic hobbyists and accumulators from coming in and shopping, rather it is to warn lay people that the store is not set up to serve the general public. Perhaps there may be a better way of conveying that message, but Im confident the sign doesnt mean that only professional magicians that make their living off magic are welcome. Very few would be allowed in if that were the case.

Also, if you do go back and find your experience lacking, you should call Denny and make him aware of the problem so he can address it. I doubt conditions would improve if you simply stopped shopping there.

- Oliver

Stefan Fisher
Posts: 71
Joined: January 22nd, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Santa Clara, CA

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Stefan Fisher » October 25th, 2003, 8:18 pm

First of all, if you're in Las Vegas, see Mac King if at all possible. The show is very funny and full of great magic.

I've been to the Denny and Lee shop in LV and found the staff very knowledgeable and friendly. Same for Planet of Mirth.

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 26th, 2003, 7:11 am

Inside of Harrah's Hotel you can find a Booth where Mac King tickets are given out for free. The Catch? The tickets are for two people and you each must purchase a drink $6.95. This is far less than his $16.95 original price. Where is this Booth? Just join the Harrah's Hotel Slot Club and viola...you've got yourself some Mac King tickets!!

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 27th, 2003, 3:05 am

As for the Denny & Lee shop - I am afraid BOTH Oliver and Ray are right (to an extent)

The reason the sign got posted was because they were tired of "lay" people coming in and "looking" around... For some reason, this bothered them - BEFORE the sign went up, they would stop you at the door and say "sorry we only sell to pros"...

I know of a VERY well known and respected Corporate magician who has been "in the biz" for more than 40 years, who came into Earl's Planet Mirth shop, then said "I think I'll go check out the neighbors"...
He walked back into Earl's shop less than 2 minutes later?!?

He said he opened the door to D&L's, took 2 steps into the shop and was told by the guy behind the counter (a real cocky young close-up kid) "Sorry, we only cater to working professional magicians"
With this said, he said "O.K." and walked out (he was not about to start telling the kid who he was...) and walked back into Earls shop.

Another sale lost for D&L.

The kid no longer works at D&L's - but it took MANY people bringing this to Scott and Jenny's attention to get this to happen.

Also, another problem with D&L is the smoking. Everyone has the right to smoke - no problems with that. However, the items you purchase at D&L's is filled with a musty smoke odor. I have heard many customers complain of this. It's to bad the employees couldn;t find a place to smoke that would not ruin the high end products they sell. Then again, If you read Denny's web site, he feels a "smoke filled room" IS a magic shop...

To each his own...

In the end, it is the sales from customers that keep magic shops open.

And finally, everyone seems to find it odd two magic shops are so close together... Yet have you ever driven down a city street and seen 2 gas stations across the street from each other? Grocery stores located within a block of each other - even fast food restaurants build across the street from each other... It's to bad that entire industrial complex that Denny & Lee's and Planet Mirth are in is not FILLED with magic shops and magic suppliers (costumers, illusion builders, etc.) Now THAT would be a "magic Complex" that would draw a lot of people in to see!
:D
Tiny

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 27th, 2003, 12:12 pm

I'm sorry to inform you all that Michael Close is now longer at the Monte Carlo hotel.

Further, Armando Lucero will not be at Excaliber for the next few months. I believe he'll be doing the Castle within the next month.

Definately check out the new Sahara Show called, "The World's Greatest Magic Show."
The Running order is
Joseph Gabriel
Nicholas Night and Kinga
Sylvester the Jester
The Majestix
Kevin James
and Jeff Hobson as the emcee.

User avatar
Rennie
Posts: 942
Joined: January 23rd, 2008, 12:00 pm
Location: Manteca, California

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Rennie » October 27th, 2003, 1:07 pm

I just returned from Las Vegas on Sunday ( 10/26 ) and I visited both shops, Planet Mirth and Denny & lee's. Planet Mirth is the type of shop magicians hang out in and swap stories and new moves, the owner Earl is a great guy. You do have to search the nooks and cranies though as you will probably find something you have been looking for. Denny & Lee's shop is definitely out of the question if you are a non-smoker ( very strong stale smoke smell ) and the shop is not the cleanest around, however they do have a good inventory and I was not turned away because I did not look like a pro.Visited the Houdini shops also ( as stated priced for the tourist ) but did purchase the new 6 disc dvd of bro. Hamman for $59.95 seemed like a good deal. Saw Lance Burton but sadly did not see anything new from the last time I saw his show. Went to the Showgirls of Magic show ( topless ) fairly decent magic and a couple hilarious comedians, good show but small theater.All in all for purchasing magic go to 5115 Industrial Rd. and see Earl or Denny & lee's place.
The effect is the important thing, how you achieve is not !!

Guest

Re: Magic in Las Vegas

Postby Guest » October 27th, 2003, 1:29 pm

Went to Planet Mirth a couple of Fridays ago.
The Sign out front said open at 10:00
Ten came and went, no Earl.
Ten Thirty, no Earl.
Talked to the nice owner of the Yoga Studio next door.
Ten-Forty-Five, No sign of Earl.
Eleven O'Clock Denny and Lees opens so I go over and spend an hour or so perusing their establishment.
Twelve-Thirty Leave with my purchases from Denny and Lee's, still no sign of life at Planet Mirth.
Twelve-Forty-Five peek in windows for one last time and say good by to a couple of interesting looking props I would have liked to get a better look at.
Denny and Lee's may not compare to Planet Mirth, but at least they were open.


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