Historical lecture in Toronto
I am Corbin, and I will be performing a Historical lecture in Toronto. I am a magician, actor, historian and entertainer. My lecture is all about magicians and spiritualists in the 19th century. During this magical historical lecture I will be talking about the transitions magicians made in the 1800’s. As a result, you will learn about the development of magic and their methods. The lecture is an hour and a half long and is on March 25th in Toronto at the Browsers Den of Magic.
A Magical Historical lecture
I have been performing Historical lectures for many years, and have always been a student of History. I love learning where we came from and how things developed. As a result, I’ve grown a passion for history. My current lecture is titled “From Fair to Foul” and that describes the development of magicians. The magicians of the 19th century mostly began as traveling performers. Moving from Fair to Fair. The true magicians were travelling along the roads from public spaces to fairs and performing for groups of people wherever they may be encountered.
Distrusted performers becoming theatrical
Magicians were looked at as street performers. Not to be trusted, people watched with a hand over their purses. It was imagined that the magicians worked as distractions for pickpockets in the audiences. This was rarely the case, and often when there were pickpockets, they were there on their own. No records indicate they ever worked together. The perception persisted however and it was not until the middle of the 1800’s that magicians moved out of that space. In the late 1840’s a new magician came to popularity in France. Eugene Robert-Houdin turned magic into a theatrical art form and directed his performances to a higher class of audience. His success in doing so helped elevate magicians to a higher respect.
Better magicians loosing audiences
As the 1800’s moved on, magicians became better. However, magicians began loosing audiences. At the beginning of the 1800’s spook shows were popular. During a spook show, the performer would create the illusion of ghosts appearing. This drew quite a crowd, but in the middle of the 1800’s the audience dwindled. As magicians grew during the middle of the 1800’s Spiritualists did as well. Instead of creating the image of spirits, spiritualists would actually talk to the dead. As it was in the beginning of the 19th century, so it was at the end. Ghosts began to take audiences away from magicians once more. No one wanted to see a magic show, when they could go to a spiritualist and talk to a relative who has passed away! My historical lecture in Toronto goes into detail here.
The Battle of the magicians and spiritualists
The end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century saw a mighty battle. Magicians began debunking the foul spiritualists and the spiritualists began drawing more to their side. At every magic show, a magician would tell the audience how the spiritualists were doing their tricks. For those who believed, no explanation would change their mind. As a result there was quite a back and forth. Many lectures, talks and public shows were produced to sway audiences from one side to the other. It wasn’t until late in the 20th century that spiritualism really ended.
The true magic motivation
What was the true motivation for magicians? That is the question that my Historical lecture in Toronto asks. Were magicians debunking the foul spiritualists in order to gain back their dwindling audiences? Were they doing it for the good of many? The spiritualists were taking advantage of the poor, grieving and gullible. Perhaps it was a mix of all that and more. I invite you to join me for my historical lecture in Toronto. It’s going to be a fun and informative evening.
Contact me for more information 1-855-626-7246