“Women have served all these centuries as looking-glasses possessing the magic and delicious power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size.”
– Virginia Woolf
Abigail here, checking in from the House of Mystery in Las Vegas. Jeff’s new show, MAGIC AT THE EDGE is up and running, and everyone is having a lot of fun with WONDERGROUND on the weekends, too! During the week, Jeff still has time to work with individual students in private sessions.
Recently, one of his students was sharing how he really hates to show his wife any magic, because he feels like she’s his worst critic; she’s not enthusiastic about watching his newest effect, and is always telling him what he’s doing wrong.
Hearing him made me start thinking… As a woman in love with a magician, I am in a unique position. I’m the one, primarily, who he has the opportunity to “practice on.” So, I think one of the things a magician would benefit by remembering is to always approach with care. There’s a big difference between, “Hey, c’mere, I want to try this on you,” and “My darling, when you have a moment, I have something I’d really love to do for you.” Once I’ve had the chance to see a new effect, I need to remember that this is an expression of my beloved’s creativity, and it will do me good to respond with care as well, after all, this is the man I love, right?
Of course, I’m going to want to give honest feedback. I mean, to allow him to continue performing an effect while flashing or fumbling would be akin to sending a five year old to school with his pants on backwards. I don’t want the “other kids” to laugh, right?
I want to be sure to start with positive feedback first, so my magician doesn’t feel shot down. I’ll tell him what I liked, even if it’s just the idea behind the effect, and then I’ll tell him, clearly and kindly, what isn’t working. Often, I’ll offer my ideas on how the problem could be solved, whether it’s by shifting his finger position, changing his body posture, clarifying his script, or videotaping a move so he can see what I see. It’s all coming from a place of wanting to see him succeed, because I care… because I love him.
Part of what makes my feedback valuable is that I’m genuinely interested in magic. It’s one of the creative activities that Jeff and I share. We have other interests we share as well, like music, ballroom dancing, and fire circles. But when it comes to magic, I have nearly twenty years of experience both onstage and behind the scenes, as well as at the Magic and Mystery School. So I know what to look for, and I know the lingo….
Maybe your wife or partner doesn’t have the same extensive experience. Maybe she doesn’t know a flash from a pass, when it comes to prestidigitation. But, if she loves you, she still wants you to succeed, and she still wants to help you to grow in your creativity, just as you would want for her, right? So, remember, maybe she’s not your worst critic, but your best friend in disguise. Approach her with care; ask her nicely for her help, and you may find a wonderful ally in your magical world.
Yours in the mystery…
I just got back from our first Magic & Martial Arts conference. It was a blast! Jeff and I decided that it was very much like the first year of Mystery School… a collection of very cool people with no agenda other than to explore together.
I think my favorite part of the weekend were the various demos. We watched some amazing footage of Aaron Crow freaking out audience members with martial mentalism. To even the score a bit, co-host Tom Meseroll sliced a watermelon balanced precariously on Aaron’s stomach. Other demos included some amazing Georgia Magnet work by Sensei Strange, Iron Shirt Chi Kung from Zamora and some scary chain whip moves from yours truly. I can’t wait to see the video…
While there were only nine attendees at this event (plus Jeff and myself), they will form the core group for next year’s conference. The talents present, both martial and magical, were astonishing. I was honored to have spent the week with such inspirational people.
Magic & Meaning is coming up in a few weeks. I’m really sad that I won’t be able to go, but Jen and I will be hosting some of the Shao-lin instructors here in Phoenix for our annual Elder Master visit. This year Jeff and Eugene are trying something new: they’re turning the conference into the “TED Talks” of magic. I hear Larry Hass has quite a lineup of presenters.
Finally, I want to apologize for the amount of “press” we’ve been sending you. If you’re like me, your filters are set pretty high for this type of stuff. But Jeff is really excited about the show and Wonderground and, apparently, so are the audiences and press.
Yours in better magic,
THE SHOW AND NIGHTCLUB IS A BIG HIT! Read the reviews:
Lance Burton, Criss Angel, Johnny Thompson, Eugene Burger, Chris Kenner, Jason England, and many other top magic names attended the MAGIC AT THE EDGE show, and WONDERGROUND last weekend! Photo: Richard Faverty/Beckett Studios
Anyone who was with us last week witnessed amazing card manipulation by Spanish National Champion EDUARDO, the high weirdness of ZAMORA The Torture King, the surreal magic of Jordan Wright and many others! Watch the video at StreetOfCards.com A special awards ceremony was held for Steve Dacri, who received Close-Up Magician of The Year from Tony Hassini, president of the International Magicians Society.
EVERY WEEK WE WILL PRESENT NEW TALENT AND INTERNATIONAL STARS OF MAGIC AND VARIETY! Comedy magic, Stage magic, Close-up, Street & Strolling Magic, Variety, Art, Sculpture, Film and Video, Dance, Performance Art. For details go to http://www.vegaswonderground.com/
Just look at the amazing line up we have for you this weekend: Steve Dacri – IMS Close-up Magician of the Year! Jeff McBride – Presenting New Parlor Magic creations Chris Randall – Performing his competition stage act Nancy Roth – The Psychic Ventriloquist The Dymonds – Las Vegas Lounge Magic Scott Hitchcock – International Stand Up Magic Paul Draper – Mind-bending Mentalist Don Hahn – Up close magic creations MIDNIGHT MAGIC The return of ZAMORA with an entirely new act! (You’ve been warned!) Avant garde films and video art by Jordan Wright. Street and strolling magic with Tommy Wind, George Millward, and more! DJ Master Leo Diaz spins early evening smooth down-tempo & ambient chill …after midnight: house and techno mash ups. Dance animation by THE MOJO-A-GO-GO GIRLS
Plus: Live art installations by Areeya, Katlyn, and other Las Vegas artists. Psychic sideshow! by Morganne and Danita. Twisted Sculpture by B. A. Lunatic and Roger Godin. Magicians-only private session table (show your “pass” to get in) Coming up in the next weeks: Sept 13 & 14: Jeff’s 48-hour Birthday Bash! Saturday the 13th: The New World Rhyhmatism Ensemble – Middle Eastern Dance with Joshua Levin and Deborah Nervig and special guests. Sept 19 & 20: MAGIC AND THE MARTIAL ARTS! Students of martial arts will converge on the WONDERGROUND to mix magic and the skills of the Asian masters! FISM winner Aaron Crow, Sensei Strange, Kinetic Shiva, Tom Meseroll, Bryce Kuhlman and a possible demonstration by the Chinese Shao-lin Center. UPCOMING: SEPT/OCT Kubilay Tuncer – TV star and magic celebrity from Istanbul Berk! – First Place Winner of the Turkish TV show PHENOMENA with Uri Geller God’s Favorite Mind Reader! – Luke Jermay Buster Balloon – Twisted Variety Abraca-drag with Mona Lott Matt Black – The New Card Act! The WONDERGROUND is a co-creation of so many talented artists. It is an honor and a pleasure to share my showroom with all of you! Spread the word… it is happening at WONDERGROUND! Please feel free to forward this information to your lists and friends! See you there! Jeff
“It’s one of the most stunning and incredible illusions you can imagine. Acclaimed magician Jeff McBride rolls up his sleeves to his shoulders to prove there is absolutely nothing there at all. Then hundreds of playing cards individually appear from his fingertips, pour from his mouth and race from his arms and elbows. He then flicks them at Guinness Book of World Records speed so fast they actually bounce off the floor and land perfectly in a pile 30 feet away. It’s not just mind-boggling — it’s
– Robin Leach on Magic at the Edge
Photo: Richard Faverty/Beckett Studios
All is well in Las Vegas. McBride Magic at the Edge is up and running. The dream has become a reality. After 21 years of performing in other people’s shows, we finally have opened our own room. Please join us for the fun and magical adventure! (details below)
Photo: Richard Faverty/Beckett Studios
The press night of the show we had 2 standing ovations…I guess the show is a big hit! People are asking me about our show schedule. We have shows each night at 7:30pm, and if you come Fri and Sat, just stay on for our after-party at the Wonderground.
AWARDED BEST MAGIC SHOW 2008
This Wednesday we had a pre-show awards ceremony. Our friend Tony Hassini presented our show with the award.
I would also like to thank all the Mystery School magicians and local magicians who are showing up to contribute to the magical extravaganza that is the Wonderground.
Yours in magic,
McBride: Magic at the Edge
August 21 through Thanksgiving
Nightly at 7:30pm (except Tuesdays)
Sound Trax Showroom at Palace Station
For tickets, call (702) 221-6756 or visit
Wonderground: A Magical Club Experience
Every Friday and Saturday, 10pm until 2am
Sound Trax Showroom at Palace Station
Visit VegasWonderground.com for more information