Robin Leach has long been associated with his catch phrase "Champagne Dreams and Caviar Wishes" as he hosted the long running television show, "Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous" which focused on profiling well-known celebrities and their lavish homes, cars and other materialistic details. But Robin is also a "magic fan" who clearly loves and has a deep respect for magic and he is friends with many of the local magicians. Believe it or not, he is an honorary member of The Magic Circle. He also has a rather impressive collection of magic books in his library.
I saw Robin Leach at last year's MAGIC Live! who was trying to be inconspicuous as he chatted with Stan Allen. I later asked Stan about Robin's association with magic which led to this podcast. As a long time resident of Las Vegas and immersed in the lifestyles of local celebrities, Robin has a unique perspective on the history and evolution of the magic scene. I felt that he would make a perfect guest for the podcast to hear an "outsiders" perspective of magic, magicians, and the role they have played in making Las Vegas what it is today. I was not disappointed.
Today at age 75 his life hasn't slowed down. I was lucky to get an hour and a half of his time during the week I was in Las Vegas because of his tremendously busy schedule including his weekly vlog (video log) on You Tube, LuxeVegas.
Our discussion opens with Robin talking about making and enjoying a "proper" cup of tea. He then talks about his passion for magic and how he believes it needs to have a much higher ranking among the performing arts. He then chats about having been a guest of Bob Harbin and becoming an honorary member of The Magic Circle. He then goes on to talk about his favorite magician, Bill Malone. He also enjoyed watching Ricky Jay live in his Broadway performance, "Ricky Jay and His 52 Assistants".
He then talks about the evolution of magic on the Las Vegas "Strip" including from Norm Neilsen, Channing Pollock, Siegfried and Roy, Lance Burton, David Copperfield to Penn & Teller, Criss Angel and Amazing Jonathan to the newest show on the Strip, Jarrett & Raja. Although he sings the praises of many magicians, he is not a fan of hypnotists, and he also has advice for Mac King and Xavier Mortimer. Ultimately, he believes there are too many magicians in Las Vegas today though the art of magic still survives. He then shifts to talking about how hard it is to work in New York City but Monday Night Magic has proved to be the exception.
He concludes by giving us his three "D's" of show business: Dedication, Discipline and Diligence.
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