I’m sure television has destroyed a little of the mystery of magic and as a race maybe we are too sceptical but once upon a time, back in the Victorian and Edwardian days, incredible feats were performed on stage and a great rivalry existed between the masters of the arts. This is that extraordinary story.
In 1918 Harry Houdini performed a single illusion that has been hotly debated ever since: he made a live elephant disappear on stage. How did he do it? The answer lies in this dazzling tale of innovation, chicanery and keen competition that is the backstage story of the golden age of magic.
Hiding the Elephant chronicles the race among history's most legendary conjurers to make things levitate and disappear. A master illusionist and captivating storyteller, Steinmeyer introduces us to the eccentric personalities behind floating ghosts, disembodied heads and vanishing ladies and takes us backstage to reveal the mechanics of their mysteries. He carries us to a time when Queen Victoria held private séances and all of England believed in magic.
'highly entertaining study of magic's 'golden age' Sunday Times
Publication date: 06/10/2005
Publisher: Arrow Books Ltd
Format: Paperback (b Format)
|Publication date:||6th October 2005|
|Publisher:||Arrow Books Ltd|
|Format:||Paperback (b Format)|
|Genres:||The Real World,|
|Categories:||Conjuring & magic, History: specific events & topics,|
Jim Steinmeyer has designed illusions for David Copperfield, Ricky Jay, Siegfried & Roy and Orson Welles, and for six broadway shows including The Beauty and the Beast. A consultant for a forthcoming BBC documentary on the history of magic and producer of a Channel 4 documentary, he is currently working on Richrard Eyre's Mary Poppins and is a contributing editor of Magic magazine.More About Jim Steinmeyer