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Houdini and beyond: a historic magical mystery tour of the great showmen who inspired the likes of David Blaine, Penn & Teller, and Siegfried & Roy.
Today, Harry Houdini stands as the most famous illusionist and escape artist in history. But from the late nineteenth century to early twentieth century, magicians and escapologists who inspired—and were inspired by—Houdini packed vaudeville houses and local theaters across the globe. The Great Illusionists reveals the careers, lives, and sometimes shocking on-stage deaths of the greatest showmen to ever wow the world.
In addition to the astounding accomplishments of Houdini, marvel at the feats of Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin, the “Father of Modern Conjuring”; the Davenport Brothers, music hall mediums and devotees of the Spiritualist movement; the “Dean of American Magicians” Harry Kellar; master illusionists, the Great Raymond, David Devant, the Great Lafayette, and Chung Ling Soo; the novelty performances of The Human Fly and Datas, “The Living Encyclopedia”; and many more.
From vanishing acts and public seances to harrowing bullet-tricks and psychic wizardry, The Great Illusionists brings to life a unique history of entertainment.