Thursday, July 31, 2008

Louisville Run-Down

Along with Fun #1 (that's Graham Putnam, company president, to you), I spent last week in Louisville, KY at the combined IBM/SAM convention. While many online reviews of said convention were negative overall, the small portion of scheduled events I took in were, for the most part, good. Were they "history making" or epic in the way that the convention organizers made them out to be? Not from my perspective. But were they good, solid shows and events? Absoultely - from nearly everyone's perspective.

For me, the stand-out act on the shows was a French hand shadow artist, Jerome Helfenstein. Part magic, part hand shadow act and part performance art, his turn during the International Gala stage show was, for me, the highlight of the convention. He combines traditional shadowgraphy with technology in an entirely new way, and in the process, elevates the entire art. Ray Crowe, watch out!

Beyond Helfenstein's act, I also enjoyed, as always, Rick Merrill in the close-up Gala and Michael Finney. Jon Racherbaumer and David Ben delivered back-to-back lectures on Marlo and Vernon, respectively, that were both well worth attending.

That's my short report from the front lines. Next week, I may not blog as I am off to Abbott's Get-Together, but will try to post another report from the front if at all possible. The week after, on Thursday (my usual day for posting), I'll be at another magic convention in Toronto - 31 Faces North. Again, I'll try to post, but no guaranteees.

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