U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

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Diego
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Joined: June 16th, 2008, 11:29 am

U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Diego » July 21st, 2016, 8:03 pm

Last night at The Magic Castle, Tom Ogden did a very good presentation on the life and creations of U.F. Grant, the magic dealer/inventor.

In some catalogs, "The Brassiere Trick" (aka The Bra Trick) is listed as "Grant's Brassiere Trick", (or similar title) Also in his films of Grant performing his products, among them is The Bra Trick. (it that his daughter or niece he used as the "volunteer" in the film?!)

Does anyone know if Grant actually invented, or acquired/bought the rights to this product?

Is there anything in print showing someone else selling it before Grant did? Or performing it before Grant sold it?

Be interesting to hear what anyone can share about this.

Philippe Billot
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Location: PARIS - FRANCE

Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Philippe Billot » July 22nd, 2016, 2:15 am

It seems that the first ad of the trick Startling Brassiere Trick by U.F. Grant appears in 1944.

Diego
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Joined: June 16th, 2008, 11:29 am

Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Diego » July 22nd, 2016, 3:13 am

Anyone have record/knowledge of The Brassiere Trick being performed and or sold prior to 1944?

Max Maven
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Location: Hollywood, CA
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Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Max Maven » July 22nd, 2016, 3:47 am

It is embarrassing that I can provide information on this.

The trick began as a feature in the act of Howard Brooks, in the late 1930s. After U.F. Grant marketed it, other dealers put it out (it was relatively easy to make), and there were other claimants (Eddie Cochran in the U.S., Vivante in England).

In 1946, Card Mondor marketed "The Hollywood Brassiere Mystery" -- same pay-off, but instead of being based on the 20th Century Silks it was based on the Cords of Phantasia.

By 1950, Grant felt the need to advertise to his wholesale customers that what he sold was the original:

"DON'T BUY A COPYCAT
M.D.A. members will be pleased to know that GRANT can supply them with the ORIGINAL BRASSIERE TRICK outfit. Now supplied with real 18" silks at no increase in price. Outfit is the BEST MADE. Illustrated envelope - THREE DOLLARS Let GRANT, the rightful owner supply you with this fine trick. DON'T BUY IMITATIONS - get
the original whether you are an individual or a dealer. M.D.A. members protect one another."

It's notable that Grant does not claim invention; rather, that he is the "rightful owner."

Finally, as a coda, by 1944 Grant was also marketing "Houdini Outstripped," George McAthy's variant done using a male spectator, ending with the production of boxer undershorts.

Well, you asked.

Diego
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Joined: June 16th, 2008, 11:29 am

Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Diego » July 22nd, 2016, 4:14 am

Yes I did, and thank you Max for answering with very insightful information.

The Bra Trick brings to mind a favorite quote from the preface in the chapter of apparatus magic, from, "The Amateur Magician's Handbook":

"What magicians will buy in a magic store to me, is of never-ending dismay. For not only to they buy these contraptions, but some of them, actually perform them."

performer
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Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby performer » July 22nd, 2016, 6:51 am

It is an awful trick and I do not approve of it. Still, at least it is old fashioned sleaze which is always preferable to modern sleaze. I did read somewhere (possibly Vernon or Ricky Dunn) that the trick was actually invented by Howard Brooks.

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Q. Kumber
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Location: Manchester, England

Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby Q. Kumber » July 23rd, 2016, 7:26 am

It may surprise a lot of you but Vernon did The Bra Trick in a public performance.

performer
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Re: U.F. Grant / The Brassiere Trick

Postby performer » July 23rd, 2016, 8:25 am

Well, he shouldn't have done. Quite disgraceful. He was probably influenced by his friend Howard Brooks whom he rated as one of the two most entertaining card magicians he had known. The other was Larry Grey.


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