April Magic

“Magic exists. Who can doubt it, when there are rainbows and wildflowers, the music of the wind and the silence of the stars? Anyone who has loved has been touched by magic. It is such a simple and such an extraordinary part of the lives we live.”
— Nora Roberts

From Dr. Larry Hass, Associate Dean:

Larry Hass

April Magic

After this long, difficult winter, the glorious month of April is here. There is no fooling around on this April 1: spring is on its way—a time of rebirth and renewal.

In my family and Jewish tradition, it is a time for cleaning and cleansing. Not a chore, but a delight: throw open the windows, wipe up the dust, turn a new page!

With this fresh start in mind, I would like to mention one of my deepest commitments: to perform magic for people rather than “tricks.”

Have you recently thought about this difference? Or has it all become “just tricks” to you? Which pieces in your repertoire are more like magic? Which ones feel like empty, clever tricks?

One way to answer these questions is to look carefully at the reactions you are receiving. After you perform a particular piece, does your audience feel energy, delight, and wonder? (You can tell by the smiles and the palpable excitement.) Or do they say things such as “You fooled me,” or “You really had me with those cards until all the spelling and counting.”

During the spring, I renew my commitment to the pieces in my repertoire that create magic—energy, delight, and wonder—and to set aside the rest. Every garden needs pruning so gorgeous new things can grow. But even more important, people in the world today hunger and hope for magic in their lives, not stupid, stinking tricks. They have quite enough of those—thank you—from advertisers, marketers and salesmen of all kinds.

No, no: the people around us need magic. The world needs your magic. As a magician you have a great gift and a calling. Please go forth this spring with a renewed commitment to magic . . . and fewer tricks.

Important Announcements

1. We have just released the 2014 Premier Member Video.

This 45-minute video was filmed in the Hollywood Hills in January for our Premier Members of the Magic & Mystery School. It features Jeff McBride, Eugene Burger, Larry Hass, Bryce Kuhlman, and George Parker in a fun conversation about commercial close-up magic. Jeff, Bryce, and George each teach a great piece of commercial magic that has not appeared on video before.

The only way to receive access to this video is to become a Premier Member of the School (the $100 level). And please remember, $80 of your Premier Membership fee goes directly into the Scholarship Fund that provides need-based financial aid for magicians who need a “hand up” getting the magic education they need to be more successful in magic and in life.

If you are not already a member of the Magic & Mystery School, or if you haven’t yet renewed your membership for 2014, we ask that you please do so. Of course, there are excellent benefits at every membership level, but more importantly, your membership helps us provide the gift of magic education for people in need.

2. Magic and Medicine in the latest issue of MAGIC Magazine.

The April 2014 issue features a 6-page article about our dear friend Dr. Ricardo Rosenkranz. Ricardo is not only a Guest Teacher of the School’s Magic and Medicine CME Seminar, he has also pioneered a Magic and Medicine curriculum for first and second year medical students at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

In this article you will learn all about Ricardo and his extraordinary program, and you will quickly understand why our recent Magic and Medicine CME Seminar earlier was completely sold out. You will also enjoy many photos of Ricardo, Eugene, and me taken at one of our Magic and Medicine teaching programs.

Please note: whether you purchase the iPad or print version of MAGIC Magazine, you will receive access to a video of Ricardo’s smash-hit P.E.P. talk on Magic and Medicine from last year’s Magic and Meaning Conference.

3. Important News about the 2014 Magic and Meaning Conference.

First, we are delighted to announce that Rob Zabrecky will be the Keynote Presenter for the Conference.  Rob Zabrecky is the two time winner of the Stage Magician of the Year award at the Magic Castle, and he is the primary medium at the Magic Castle’s famed Houdini Séance room. If you have seen Rob perform, then you know he is a great, distinctive talent. If you haven’t yet had the chance, this is a perfect opportunity for you to meet him, learn from him, and enjoy his work.

Rob Zabrecky
Photo credit: August Bradley

Second, the Conference is already over half sold out. If you plan to attend (October 15-18), I encourage you to register as soon as possible. To do so, please go here:  http://www.magicalwisdom.com/events#469.

Third, the “Call for Presentations and Performances” has now been posted online, and proposals have been coming in. If you are attending the Conference and would like to propose a 20-minute presentation and/or a performance, please do so at your earliest convenience. The deadline for proposals is July 15, 2014. To learn how to make a proposal, please go to the Call for Presentations and Proposals page.

4. The Magic & Mystery School hosts the Lance Burton Youth Seminar at the IBM/SAM Combined Convention.

Continuing a long tradition, Jeff, Eugene, Bryce, and I will be hosting and teaching the Teen portion of the Lance Burton Youth Seminar at the IBM/SAM Combined Convention in St Louis. The Youth Seminar runs from June 29-30, 2014, and the Convention itself runs July 1-5.

If you are the parent of a teenager or a child, please consider putting this event on your family vacation calendar. There is no extra charge for the Seminar. Last year, Lance Burton spent the whole day with us doing hands on teaching with the teens. For information about how to register for the Lance Burton Youth Seminar, please go here: http://ibmsam.com/youth/.

5. We have just posted new classes and events for 2015.

A 3 Day Master Class is being held on March 18-20, 2015; Magic for Speakers and Presenters is March 22-24, 2015; and The Magic and Medicine CME Seminar will be held March 26-29, 2015. (In 2015, the Seminar will include an additional day of programming and will also include a spouses program led by Dr. Marjorie Hass.)

Also, the 2015 Magic and Meaning Conference has been posted. Because of Jeff’s touring schedule, we had to move it forward a couple of weeks. It will be held November 4-7, 2015.

To register for any of these events, please go here: http://www.magicalwisdom.com/events.

Final Words

We truly appreciate all of you who stay connected to the Magic & Mystery School. Thank you for supporting our efforts to be the kind of magic school we want to be: full of heart, committed to excellence, and generous to others who need a hand!

Larry Hass
Associate Dean

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