- Hardcover: 440 pages
- Publisher: BoxOffice Books; 1st Edition edition (July 31, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0982463901
- ISBN-13: 978-0982463901
- Package Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 21 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,297,560 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Spellbound: The Wonder-filled Life of Doug Henning Hardcover – July 31, 2009
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Doug Henning put a new face on magic. He was the most successful and most beloved magician of his time. This sympathetic, insightful and meticulously researched biography tells the real story from his stage appearances on Broadway, in Vegas and on the road to his specials on the screen (the first of which remains the most watched magic show in world-wide television history with an astonishing audience of over fifty million viewers!). The details of his greatest illusions and of his tragically short but equally bizarre life are all here. It contains the facts. I know because I was there. --Charles Reynolds<br /><br />It s about time that someone paid Doug Henning his due. John Harrison does a great job of telling the story of Doug Henning s magic and the man behind that magic. --David Copperfield<br /><br />Spellbound: The Wonder-filled Life of Doug Henning is a fascinating look at the career and amazing life of one of the most important figures in contemporary magic. From Doug's humble beginnings, to his meteoric success on Broadway, to his international fame, John Harrison takes you on an amazing ride through the public and private life of Doug Henning. This book is required reading for anyone interested in a career in magic. --Lance Burton
It s about time that someone paid Doug Henning his due. John Harrison does a great job of telling the story of Doug Henning s magic and the man behind that magic. --David Copperfield
Spellbound: The Wonder-filled Life of Doug Henning is a fascinating look at the career and amazing life of one of the most important figures in contemporary magic. From Doug's humble beginnings, to his meteoric success on Broadway, to his international fame, John Harrison takes you on an amazing ride through the public and private life of Doug Henning. This book is required reading for anyone interested in a career in magic. --Lance Burton
About the Author
John Harrison became addicted to magic at the age of nine when his uncle gave him two suitcases full of old magic props. At the age of 13 he saw one of the first preview performances of The Magic Show starring Doug Henning and was instantly inspired by Doug's performance. That inspiration led to his becoming a professional illusionist for a brief time in the early eighties. Realizing he was better at the behind-the-scenes aspects of entertaining, he established and ran an entertainment production company for fifteen years. He is currently a senior attorney at a large international law firm, but magic remains his first passion, He dislikes small children, animals, and direct sunlight, but his friends and family find him quite likable nonetheless. He lives in Manhattan and Las Vegas with an acrobat.
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This is a very captivating read, tracing Henning's journey to super stardom from his humble origins as a self described "buck toothed Canadian kid" to a Broadway star to starring in some of the very best magic television specials ever seen. What was especially admirable about Doug's specials is that he in no way relied upon trick photography or creative editing as some current performers are shamefully doing. The magic the audience at home saw was exactly what viewers in the theater were seeing.
Doug's abilities as a magician were superb in every capacity. Unlike many, he was capable of performing the largest illusions or the most intimate close up wonders with style and panache. In other words, Doug wasn't just some guy relying on a bunch of trick boxes to work his miracles. It takes a special kind of endurance and capability to work illusions, and it takes a special kind of confidence and rapport to do sleight of hand. Doug could do it all and entertainingly.
That such a genuinely kind and gifted person should retire at the height of his career and turn away from magic for the last twelve years of his life is a terrible shame. One can only hope Doug indeed found his time working to further the TM movement and establish Veda Land fulfilling. The world can only wonder what heights he might have achieved if he'd focused on his magic instead.
My only complaint with this work is that there are more than a few grammatical errors -- roll instead of role, etc. -- and it could've been proofed more carefully. When one is paying this much for a book one doesn't like to be distracted by such elementary errors.
Nevertheless, I highly recommend this book to Doug Henning fans and anyone else curious about one of the world's greatest magicians. Doug was truly a remarkable individual, especially considering that the onstage Doug was virtually identical to the real man. He wasn't an actor playing the part of a magician; he was just himself an enthusiastic, energetic, wonder filled human being.
Highly recommended ... as Doug would say ... Whooo!
Harrison's choice of titles is most appropriate -- applied to both the subject matter, and to the story that Harrison tells. Indeed, I was spellbound by this book and it made me miss Doug Henning all the more. Those of us who were alive to see him and enjoy him are the lucky ones. Harrison gets five well-deserved stars from me for this remarkable biography.
Then came Henning in the mid '70s. This book details the incredible life of magic's biggest hero. A small town kid from Canada becomes a Broadway
star, then television star in such a small amount of time. You're taken behind the stage curtains, the stage hands and dancers, into the very heart of
theater magic and how difficult it is to produce. I sincerely hope that everyone who wants to learn how magic became mainstream and "cool" again,
reads this terrific story.
Most recent customer reviews
I was there when a lot of these events occurred
Well written and insightful book