"A fascinating journey that covers not only the history of legerdemain, but why the practitioners do what they do, as well as their perceptions of why the audience needs them."

TV Guide


"Magical PBS documentary will enchant viewers . . . a must for magic fans . . . Palmer does an admirable job keeping the special on track. His respect for magic is evident, and it's apparent he enjoyed the task of assembling this engaging documentary."

- Elizabeth Arneson, Daily News, Lebanon, PA


"As with Vaudeville and his award-winning Death: The Trip of a Lifetime, Palmer weaves together a fun, enlightening profile of what magician Jeff McBride calls 'history's oldest, make that, second oldest profession.'"

- Bill Pedigo, Everett Herald, Everett, WA

The Art Of Magic



First broadcast on PBS in February 1998
Co-production of Lark International and KCTS Television
Executive Producer Dave Davis
Written and narrated by Greg Palmer
Using archival footage and stills, this documentary explores the world of professional magic through its performers--both the greats, such as Lance Burton, Cardini, and Siegfried and Roy, and those who play the small lounges. Early practitioners (Isaac Fawkes, Cagliostro and the Fox Sisters) and 20th-century masters (Cardini, John Nevel Maskelyne, Harry Houdini and Channing Pollock) are also featured. The program was first broadcast internationally in three parts, then was re-cut and broadcast as a 2-1/2-hour special by PBS. Available only in VHS.

Note: Greg said of the "alleged" companion book that it was "written by hacks who seem to know very little about magic. Or writing. They had absolutely nothing to do with the creation of the television programs."