Day Two started early for me withe the Order of Willard breakfast at 7:30. I coordinate this annual breakfast meeting of those who have 25 years or mnore of membership in the T.A.O.M. This year's speaker was Arthur Emerson who spoke about his seeing and meeting with Kalanag, Klingsor and Sorcar. A fascinating history down the historical lane of magic. Following the stage contest (which only had two adults and maybe three junior competitors) was the close-up contest (with six adults and one junior) that were all strong competitors.
Chip Romero is a cruise chip magician and a noted collector of magic and magic memorabilia. Of particular note, he has a collection of Billy McComb and Doug Henning props. Today he brought along many of the props from his collection including a sub trunk, Disembodied, Shadow Box, Sands of Egypt and more. But Gene Anderson shared the stage as he told stories heretofore never heard about his close association with Doug Henning. Few people have heard what a close confidant, mentor and friend that Gene was to Doug. Fascinating stuff.
The President's Surprise after lunch was honoring Marshall Brodien, Wizzo the Wizard from the Bozo Show and maker of TV Magic Cards and over 230 magic sets. Johnny Thompson has been friends with Marshall since he was 16 and he spoke extemporaneously about his association and friendship and paid homage to Marshall getting him involved in magic and working trade shows. John Moehring, author of Marshall's biography, spoke about how he came to write the book. At the end, books were available for being signed by John and Marshall.
The afternoon concluded lectures by David Stone and David Ginn. The evening show was spectacular and billed as a Comedy Showdown featuring Fielding West, Rob Zabrecky and the Great Tomsoni and Company, all emceed by Tom Mullica. After the "competition" the Judge took the stage, Harry Anderson, costumed in his robe as Harold T. Stone from Night Court, and declared them all winners. He also gave one of the most memorable lines of the convention, "Rob Zabrecky looks like Edgar Allen Poe looking for Sudafed." Later, Tom Mullica later said, "it was Rob's dancing that kept him out of the military."
Following the show, there was a charity auction that benefited the Alzheimer's Foundation and the Ronald McDonald House. Several thousands of dollars were raised for many items that were non-magical such as a script from Blazing Saddles signed by Mel Brooks, signed boxing gloves by Carl Weathers (Apollo Creed from Rocky 3) and other movie memorabilia.
The late night lecture was on using social media as a marketing tool in magic.
Time stamps for this podcast:
00:00:08 - I introduce Arthur Emerson who gives an interesting mini-lecture about some of his magic history and his brush with some of the greats in our history including Kalanag, Klingsor and Sorcar.
00:30:25 - T.A.O.M. President, Mark Jensen, talks about some of his challenges in putting together this convention and all the talent, plus his vision of the convention.
00:44:10 - Walter Blaney gives us a story about meeting his idol, Harry Blackstone, Sr. and Russell Bruce, who worked in the prop department with Siegfried and Roy. Russell tells us several anecdotes about the Masters of the Impossible including his perspective from back stage when Roy suffered his tragic accident on October 3, 2003.
01:04:27 - I.B.M. International President, Bill Evans, and his wife, the First Lady, Pam, talks about his convention tour of the world as part of his duties as President.