One Magic Moment
Dracut Magician Pulls Off a Hat Trick
by Dana Bisbee
Magicians are always making
things materialize. But one local illusionist's feat has left
his colleagues agog.
The Boston Herald
In the past 15 months, Magic by George of Dracut has three prestigious
conjuring awards in the magic world's equivalent of the Oscars,
the Emmys and the Olympics.
Last summer, George won gold medals from both the International
Brotherhood of Magicians and the Society of American Magicians.
The two groups have awarded a combined total of just seven gold
medals in the past 20 years. George is the only magician to win
In July, he scored his Olympic medal - a third-place finish at
the World Congress of Magic in Portugal. Held every three years,
the contest hosts more than 2,500 international illusionists.
``I was just competing to get myself and the act up to a certain
caliber,'' said George, one of 10 magicians performing in Boston
on Saturday night at ``Magicale 2000.'' The performances will
cap a daylong magic expo at the Copley Theater in the New England
``I just tried to do my best,'' he said. ``I was numb after winning
the gold medals. I felt the same way at the World Congress. I
just want to do my best. Winning awards is the icing on the cake.''
The particular cake being iced is George's signature routine,
a 7-minute performance he calls ``The Clock Act.'' He has spent
12 years perfecting it.
``Performers are often known by one thing they do,'' he said.
``I want people to say, `You're the guy with the clock.' ''
The timepiece in question is a large grandfather clock he built
to give the act a unique context. As described in ``Genii,''
a professional magician's magazine, the Clock Act involves appearing
and disappearing doves as well as strange goings-on with the
``When I started, it was a generic bird act,'' he said. ``So,
when the curtain opened and there was a bird cage onstage, everybody
knew what I was going to do. I wanted something unique.''
George, 38, has been a professional magician since age 10.
``Like most kids, I did magic as a hobby,'' he said. ``My folks
had a summer home in Wolfeboro (N.H.) and the woman across the
street hired me to perform at her grandchild's birthday. She
paid me $10 and said, `You're a professional magician now.' ''
He worked his way through college performing magic at restaurants
and weekend parties. He graduated from the University of Lowell
with a mechanical engineering degree.
But the mechanics he really wanted to engineer were magical.
He and his wife, Holly, worked for five years on cruise ships.
Now, his stage act is seen on land-based stages worldwide.
``I'm doing better in magic than I would at engineering,'' he
The names of the magicians who inspire him are not well-known.
``The magicians I liked growing up were Richard Ross, Shamada
from Japan and Norm Neilsen,'' he said. ``They do an act similar
to mine. Not big, flashy illusions, but they focus more on the
performer and silent acts.''
George advises aspiring magicians to learn more than illusions.
``Learn all you can about performing in general,'' he said. ``A
big problem is that everyone focuses on tricks. But you also
need performance skills. It's the same as an actor, because it
In the end, the audience's desire to believe is the magician's
``People,'' George said, ``find magic fascinating.''
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