Thursday, December 21, 2006

Henning Headlines at First Night Annapolis

On December 31, 2006, Ring 50 Past President Eric Henning will be the headline family entertainer at First Night Annapolis. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., he'll be performing a special 30-minute show five times throughout the evening in the 600-seat Key Auditorium at St. John's College. Even though Henning is in the event's largest venue, only 10% of the expected 30,000 visitors will be able to see his show. "It's a great honor, but also a great opportunity," said Henning. "It's going to be challenging to fill such a large space with magic!"

Purchasing a souvenir admission button to First Night Annapolis 2006 allows you access to all of the fantastic venues and are available through www.FirstNightAnnapolis.ORG and select local Giant Food and Ledo's Pizza locations in Anne Arundel County. Since 1990, Maryland's capital city has been transformed every year on December 31st into a swirling theatre-without-walls, a non-stop stage where the easygoing atmosphere erases barriers between performer and audience. This festival offers spirited indoor performances in buildings seldom used for anything the likes of what First Night Annapolis brings to them and surrounding streets as well.

Beginning with First Act’s performances where children big and small are entertained in highly interactive environments throughout the evening’s First Night Annapolis programming, family-centric performances run right up until our traditional “March to Midnight” for the waterfront fireworks finale!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

"Holiday Magic" at Ring 50 Meeting

Ring 50 President, Dwight Redman, opened the December meeting. The 12 guests were introduced to the 65 members attending the meeting. Mike Taggert gave an update on the progress of “Magi-Whirl 2007”. So far we have received contracts from eight dealers with the possibility of two more. The Saturday night Gala show line-up will have some top performers led by our own magical master of ceremonies, Bob Carnathan. For more information on “Magi-Whirl 2007” go to Mike reminded members wishing to put an Ad in the Gala Program to be sure and submit it to Bob Patterson before March 23, 2007. Dwight then opened the “Holiday Magic Show” teaching us how to do the color changing silk.

Arnold Fuoco did a routine showing a picture of Rudolph but he had no red nose. After repeated attempts he proudly displayed his red nose, then his red nose vanished and appeared on Arny’s nose. The Christmas season always has candy canes and the Holiday Magic Show was no exception. The Amazing Fuoco brought out his candy canes with tassels (ala striped Chinese sticks) and entertained us with an amusing routine including a tassel in the pants.

Tim Cannon, our newest member, baffled the audience with a cut and restored rope routine in which he showed us how sharp the scissors were by accidentally cutting his finger. After applying a band-aid he went did a modified Martin Lewis "Snacks Alive" vanishing coke bottle in a bag and produce a can of Pringles and tennis balls. Then he pulled pieces of newspaper from his pockets and socks and performed Mark Mason's "No Tear-Torn & Restored Newspaper".

Don Freedman presented a Cost Analysis Simulator routine. Geoff Weber played the role of the contractor who submitted the cost proposal. Bob Patterson was the cost estimator who was holding the contractor cost proposal in a sealed envelope. Kevin Sievers acting as the contracting officer calculated the cost of the contractor’s proposal using a psychic calculator to create a random number that identified a page, a line, and an image out of a book of over 175,000 clip art images. When Bob opened the sealed envelope inside was a large version of Santa Claus that matched the selected one in the book of clip art.

Noland Montgomery performed Rich Marotta's routine called "Mugged," in which the performer recounts how he was robbed at gunpoint. The magician places the cash from his wallet, his wrist watch, and finger ring in a ski mask, as he re-enacts the robbery for the audience, but then demonstrates how he outwitted the thief making the three items disappear from inside the mask and reappear in their original locations, with the cash back in the wallet, the watch back on his wrist, and the ring on his finger. Noland followed this with a Joe Lefler's version of "mental epic" in which three members of the audience are asked to think, respectively, of a city, a means of travel, and a dollar number, and send their thoughts to the magician telepathically. Noland ultimately demonstrated that he has correctly read the spectators minds using a white board to record their telepathic waves.

"Mr. Magic", Bert Udovin, pulled four quarters from the air and dropped them into a bag. These changed into a dollar bill when the bag was emptied. Next he then found three rabbits in an "Empty Coin Purse". The rabbits changed from one in each hand to two in one hand. Then all three magically go from the magician’s hand to join the assistant's one. Bert ended with the "Dove Pan" where he tore some paper to make an animal and placed them in the “Dove Pan”. Suddenly a rabbit appeared in the pan.

Jim Flanigan (TVP) opened with a Santa clown presentation of the Professor's Nightmare in which he made three varying strands of blue rope turn into three equal lengths. The rope appeared to be tangled into a mess only to come out as one full length. Then Jim pulled a chicken and four eggs out of the Santa hat as a prelude to doing a holiday version of Grandma's Necklace. A young lady from the audience, Molly, held a wand as two pieces of rope were tied over it. Four colored scarves were wrapped around the ropes and two solid rings dangled from the strands. When the wand was taken away and waved over the ropes, all of the scarves and rings fell to the floor. Next he did a Spiderman coloring book presentation. Jim ended the set with a card prediction using Tom Onosaka's Frame-Up in which the chosen card appears in a framed drawing of a whole deck of cards.

The legendary Rick Beatty came on stage with a warning for everyone that power tools are not toys, showing a large nail thru his finger. There was a search for Rudolph’s nose that began with Rick finding them in the pockets of the kids present (d-lites) then progressing to solid noses that kept disappearing and reappearing then multiplying into four (sponge balls). And for his grand finale, a recitation of the classic poem entitled, “Twas The Night Before Christmas”, but was it tragically interrupted when the mouse he was holding was accidentally smooshed.

Geoff Weber announced his gig Friday nights 15 & 29 December at the "Haad Thai" Restaurant. He then demonstrated the powers of the mind by making a randomly selected bell from the five that were suspended by a cord from a wand to swing.

“James Wand” (aka James Munton) invited all the kids on stage to help him. After some fun bits of business, he asked one of the kids to select a card that was shown to the audience and returned to the pack. He asked the other kids to each pick a number which when added together came to 14. Using the skillful touch of a gambler, James cut exactly 14 cards The kids helped James count the cards and the 14th card just happened to be the original selected card! James then led the kids in a cheerful rendition of "We Wish You a Merry Christmas!" to close the meeting...

~ ~ Bob Patterson