I don’t remember when or where I first saw Gene Anderson perform, but I remember loving it. I was thoroughly entertained, and when it was over I wanted more. What I do remember was a NYCAN Convention in Syracuse. They had an organ player to back up the show who was not the best. Romaine and Gene were walking along side us as we went back to the convention hall after the show and Gene said to Romaine, “Where did they get that organ player from?” and Romaine, who was going to perform the next evening said, “Yes, he’s awful, I’m not using him. I’m using my tapes.”
The man in back of us, who I believe had something to do with organizing the convention piped up, “Hey, that’s my son you’re talking about.” So Gene said, “He can’t play. Why did you give him the job?” and the guy said, “He’s has to start somewhere!”
The son was there as well. I remember Gene going over to the kid and said “I want to talk to you.” He put his arm around the kid’s shoulder in a gesture of friendship and said,” Listen kid, you gotta get good…..fast!”
That’s the way I remember it. I phoned Romaine to make sure and we both had a great laugh.
But I digress. We knew we had to have Gene at Magie Montreal and we did in 1989. He did not disappoint! He was the M.C., he did his act, and gave a wonderful lecture called the Part Time Pro. He stressed that just because you were not a full time magician did not make you an amateur. You could be a professional magician if you went about your magic in a professional way, even if it was only part time.
In his book, Newspaper Magic that he wrote with Frances Marshall of Magic Inc in Chicago, he shares his stuff with the magic community. After more than 20 years later he’s still at it as a sought after entertainer and a lecturer.
When we had our Sunday night party at our home for the out of town entertainers and dealers after Magie Montreal 1989, he liked to hang out in the kitchen. We had a large kitchen. He said that was always where the real action was. He’s a real down to earth guy, who happens to have a lot of talent. Here are some photo’s from 1989 Magie Montreal. Were you there? Do you remember? Enjoy!