Magic Should Be Entertaining

Jean Boucher

Jean Boucher came into the shop a little while ago to stock up on supplies. I found it fascinating to learn that Alan Greenberg got hooked on magic by watching the movie Houdini when he was a kid. When I saw Jean and his beautiful daughter, Alyson,  come into the shop, I wondered what got him hooked. This is his story and he’s sticking to it. Jean was about 9 when he saw a Zombie performed on TV on a circus show. He was awe-struck. When he got a magic kit as a present he threw out the thumb tip as it was too big and he didn’t know what it was for.

He bought a book on Houdini and found a book on back palming in the library

His interest waned during the years but he started playing cards at CEGEP (Quebec’s post secondary school) as he had a 3 hour break without classes. He suddenly remembered his card book and thought he could learn second deals, etc. to “help him win” at cards. He went to the yellow pages and found Le Grand Marcis, who had a little shop on Bienville. He saw all these magic tricks but he didn’t want that, he wanted to learn sleight of hand card magic so he could cheat.

Wim Vermeys, Marcis, and Phil - Magie Montreal

Marcis sold him Derek Dingle’s book on card sleights. The book of course was in English and is not a beginner book to say the least.  Furthermore Jean couldn’t speak English at that time, but he managed. He learned sleight of hand and became interested in magic again.

He didn’t know other magicians but when he attended a magic auction at Marcis’ he saw many people there and they all seemed to know each other but they didn’t know him.

Mac King, Jean Boucher,David Williamson, and Carl Cloutier

What are you doing here? They asked him. He shrugged his shoulders. He came for the auction. Someone gave him a deck of cards and told him to do something; so he did a trick for them. Their jaws dropped open. Where did you learn that? They asked. He pointed to a black book behind the counter. A book?

Jean craved books. He never told me if he cheated at cards or not but he mastered hundreds of card tricks.

Michael Ammar

Then one day he met Michael Ammar who told him he only needed 10 tricks to earn a living. Ten tricks! It blew him away. It was then that he learned about the tricks having to be entertaining.

Since then Jean has been working for 15 years on cruise ships doing 25 cruises a year. Besides this he performs in Casinos, for corporations, etc. He carries a small bag. He’s big on books and entertainment.

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3 Comments

Filed under Alan Greenberg, Books, Carl Cloutier, David Williamson, Mac King, Magic, Magie Montreal, Marcis, Phil Matlin, Wim Vermeys

3 responses to “Magic Should Be Entertaining

  1. The best advise, I can give to new aspiring magicians is: don’t try to become the best skilled magician… people don’t care if your technique is impeccable, people want to be entertained!
    Learn to ENTERTAIN… not 6 invisible Pass.
    Why am I still working  in the best avenues in the world with my broken english?
    Because I make people laugh!
    Hang out in comedy club and develop your repartee (wit).
    Some of my personal favorites entertainers in no particular order:

    Juan Tamariz (talking about someone who can entertain with broken english)
    Mac King
    Jeff Hobson
    David Williamson
    Steve Spill
    Terry Seabrooke
    Mel Mellers (I love Dry British Humor)

    Like

  2. Very well said, Jean. Magician’s take note. Jean really knows what he is talking about.

    Like

  3. Jean, I’ve always respected you and not only are you entertaining. You truly create that special sense of wonder that all magicians should be striving for.

    Like

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