Sometimes you do something, and quite accidentally it turns into something else altogether. Two weeks ago I wrote about Women in Magic. One of the women was Shelley Carroll. I had several photos of her, but she looked the prettiest to me hanging on the the arm of Ivano, so I used that photo.
The blog wasn’t about Ivano, but if any of you read the comments, there was a touching one from his grandson, who said his grandfather had died when he was 9, but he has wonderful memories of him. The thing that is weird about this is that I already started a blog on the year 1985 which was the year that we dedicated the convention to Ivano, who was our guest of honour that year and who performed at the convention. I was going to mention that in the blog, and continue on with other dealers, as I had started with them in an earlier blog. But the dealers will have to wait. I’m sure Ivano’s grandson will enjoy reading about his grandfather and seeing some photos.
Acton-Vale is a small town in the Eastern Townships in Quebec, Canada, the home of IVANO who wrote a book in 1983 celebrating 50 years as a magician, artist, and photographer. He became a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians (IBM) in 1933.
I remember the drive to the picturesque little town of Acton-Vale to meet him. Jean Prendergast was with us. He was a friend of IVANO’s and made the introductions. Phil asked IVANO to be the guest of honor and to perform at our next Magie Montreal convention. He was delighted by the invitation and we by his acceptance. Phil remembers him showing us his studio and especially some rag paintings. It was an enjoyable afternoon. He gave us a copy of his book which he autographed and drew a little picture of a rabbit. Sweet memories!
5 responses to “1985 Great year for Magic! Ivano honoured at Magie Montreal!”
Pingback: The Great Magician
IVANO was a membership of international brotherhood of magicians in 1934 exactly and a membership of Society of american magicians in 1966
And A remenber Jean-Pendergast!!! A good friend ,he died maybe 7 or 8 years after my grandfather!!! A great funny guy!
Thank you for the info. We knew Jean well and he was funny, especially when he did his baseball routine.
As long as I live I will not forget Jean Pendergast. He used one line I will never forget. He held up a board with a hole in it. He looked at the audience and asked, “You know why the hole is there….because the wood is not!” I still use that line in many different forms. And every time I can still see Jean and hear him in my head.
Jean Prendergast was a dear, dear friend and one of my primary mentors. I met him for the first time one day, with his good friend (and fellow magician “Denis”. The three of us were hired to perform magic to the passers-by, in the newly opened Bell building on University near St. Jacques Street. We became fast friends after that first encounter, spending many long hours in Jean’s cozy basement bungalow (n Longueil) discussing magic and stage comedy at great length and practicing “moves” on one another. Once we even video-taped one another performing my silent cups and balls routine to help in the learning process (really for me, more than him). And when we said the secret password in front of his self-crafted bookcase to make it “magically” open, then passed behind into his tiny yet enchanted workshop to repair one of my (many) broken props, or to create a new gadget, it was like entering another world –a hidden dimension. We shared laughter, thoughts, knowledge and most of all good humour (as well as some bad humour ! 😉 with one another as the hours whisked by ever so quickly. And how Jean could ever find that single odd metal (and much needed) minuscule screw from amongst the hundreds of other “lost” screws stored preciously that large glass jar of Jean’s was a true mystery unto itself. What a character. What a fountain of knowledge and what an encouraging friend Jean (Gaspard the Great) was for me. His passing has left a large hole, as the years following his untimely death have swept by. And, the hole is there simply, of course, because Jean is no longer there. Though I cherish the fact that he “was” there and that I was fortunate to have gained his confidence and his friendship at the time that I did and for so many years. Thank you Jean!