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His Life And Following His Magical Footsteps

spotlight: the magic of eugene burger

Some of the extremely famend magicians of the 20th and 21st centuries, Eugene Burger shuffled off this mortal coil in August of 2017. Whereas his spirit has moved on from this life, Burger’s affect on the world of magic continues.

Terminal most cancers is what silenced magician Eugene Burger on this aircraft of existence on the age of 78. However, he took his forthcoming demise with grace and humor.

“Now I’m on the best way to the last word capital-M Thriller of life,” the award-winning magician stated of his terminal sickness.

He as soon as stated: “I did not select magic… magic selected me.”

About Magician Eugene Burger

eugene burger

Eugene Burger was born on June 1, 1939, and died August eight, 2017. The pleasant, partaking magician had a Santa Claus high quality about him, together with his lengthy beard, bald head, and spherical wire-rimming glasses. (His web site area is definitely “”)

Together with his commanding but mild voice and heat character, he was a well-liked, wanted magician in stage exhibits in addition to for tv appearances across the globe.
Whereas Burgen was based mostly in Chicago, Illinois, he traveled extensively. Nations the place Burgen appeared on TV to carry out his particular model of magic included the USA, Nice Britain, Canada, Belgium, Finland, and Japan.

Awards and Accolades for the Magician

His magic expertise garnered him awards by probably the most prestigious magician societies, together with Magic Fort in Hollywood, the Worldwide Magicians Society, and FISM (Worldwide Federation of Magical Societies).

The press additionally beloved Eugene Burger. Magic Journal dubbed Eugene Berger as one of many 100 most influential magicians of the 20th century. Chicago Journal referred to as the jolly magician “Chicago’s Greatest Magician” of their Better of Chicago Concern in 2003 when he was 64 years previous.

“Burger’s magic is just jaw-dropping,” wrote the L.A. Weekly.

Thinker, Instructor, and Sought-After Speaker

Eugene Burger was greater than only a magician. He truly went to Yale College and graduated from Yale’s prestigious Divinity Faculty with a Bachelor of Divinity diploma. He additionally had a level in philosophy and taught school courses on the topic in addition to comparative faith.

Burger additionally taught magic to different up-and-coming magicians. One of many locations he taught regularly was the McBride Magic & Thriller Faculty, situated in Paradise, Nevada. Burger was named “Magic’s Mystical Guru” on the Nevada faculty. He’s nonetheless listed on the McBride Magic & Thriller Faculty web site, and you should purchase a few of his recorded teachings and books there.

Prolific Author and Ebook Writer

Over the span of his lengthy profession, Burger wrote many books concerning the craft of magic, a complete of 15 bestsellers within the area of interest style. The bearded magician additionally wrote quite a lot of articles with reference to magic. His books on the artwork of magic (in addition to philosophy) included:
Magic & Which means: Revealed in 1995, a ebook that appeared on the intersection of magic, philosophy, and storytelling.

The Efficiency of Shut-Up Magic: Revealed in 1987, this 134-page guide offers insights on methods to captivate an viewers with close-up magic tips.

The Expertise of Magic: Revealed in 1989, this quantity explores nice themes within the historical past of magic and find out how to domesticate a fascinating, magical “expertise” for the viewers.
Spirit Theater: Revealed in 1986, this can be a fascinating guide concerning the historical past of seances and the way they have been carried out within the 19th century.

The Performance of Close-Up Magic

Thriller Faculty (with Jeff McBride): Revealed in 2003, this 450-page shade guide shares a number of the magic of Eugene Burger and Jeff McBride’s Thriller Faculty.

Whereas lots of Burger’s books are formally out of print, many used editions may be discovered at on-line shops, and specialty magic shops nonetheless promote Burger’s books.


Eugene Burger’s Magical Specialties

Eugene Burger was a extremely completed magician. Some name him a “magician’s magician,” though others say that this diminishes his really astonishing capacity to captivate a basic viewers (past simply magicians). Burger had three major specialties in magic:

There’s something particular about close-up magic. The intimacy of the setting is one factor.

The magician is seated at a desk not more than 10 ft away from the viewers. Many occasions, you’re nearer to the magician than you’d a on line casino vendor at a blackjack desk.

Burger was exceptionally gifted at any such magic, which required in depth sleight-of-hand expertise in addition to presentation and other people talents. He joins different luminaries within the close-up magic circle, together with David Blaine, Derren Brown, Michael Anmar, Shoot Ogawa, Jay Alexander, Teller (of Penn and Teller), and Jewel Aich.

Close-up magic

Certainly one of Burger’s skills was to appeal and disarm his viewers via his unassuming, pleasant persona. As you may discover from his “Three Coin Thriller” trick, Burger has a really pure presentation type that’s unaffected and “actual.”

Berger leads his members alongside a really shocking magic journey. Up till the very finish of the magic trick, his informal voice belays his skills. From his slight stuttering to the bits of “doubt” he pads in, Burger is harking back to some previous man you may run into at your favourite fishing gap. He weaves his story effortlessly like he’s simply capturing the breeze with you. He doesn’t give away his confidence or means till proper as much as the very finish of the trick with the reveal.

Mentalism is a type of magic the place the magician seems to be using psychic talents corresponding to thoughts studying, telepathy, and psychokinesis. 

Stage hypnosis (as distinguished from therapeutic hypnosis or hypnotherapy) can also be often utilized by mentalists.

As we’ve already coated, Eugene Burger was a grasp at managing and manipulating his viewers. Whereas his “Thought Sender” trick is just not pure mentalism, however mixed “psychological magic,” you possibly can see how he deftly guides his viewers, and particularly his goal, to the conclusion of the trick.


Different well-known magicians who carry out psychological magic embrace David Copperfield, David Blaine, The Superb Kreskin, Richard Osterlind, Derren Brown, and Joseph Dunninger.

Weird magic, additionally spelled with a “okay” on the finish of magic (weird magick), is a department of magic that began to realize prominence within the 1960s

It includes the in depth use of storytelling, typically with tales which might be creepy or a bit disturbing. Incorporating performs on phrases can also be an essential a part of weird magic.

The thought behind weird magic is to develop a story or weave a story, not in contrast to a ghost story at a campfire, that pulls the viewer in.

Bizarre Magic

Once we say that Eugene Burger invented the ebook on weird magic, we imply it actually. His guide “Unusual Ceremonies: Weird Magick for the Trendy Magican” got here out in 1991. The ebook just isn’t a textual content you can discover in a typical bookstore, however it may be discovered used on-line (and as a collectible) for costs starting from $40 to $70 or extra.

A reviewer on Amazon describes it as such:

“One of many classics of weird magick. Burger writes from a philosophical viewpoint and delves deeply into the which means of weird magick and its contributions to the bigger physique of magic efficiency. There are some results mentioned, and a little bit of historical past. However the actual focus is on the philosophical/theoretical underpinnings of this department of magic.

Whereas it’s troublesome to seek out YouTube movies of Eugene Burger performing weird magic, some small snippets can be found.

Considered one of his weird magic tips includes a easy spool of thread and a candle. Burger used totally different tales that used the thread for example his factors.

One model of the thread trick makes use of the thread as a metaphor for actual life. The second YouTube video, easy titled “Eugene Burger,” which sadly cuts out earlier than the complete reveal, makes use of Hindu mythology.

On this second model, Berger talks about Brahma (God) creating the universe in a really deep and mysterious voice. As he breaks the thread over the candle, he ominously studies on the inevitable destruction of God’s creation by the God Shiva.

Different notable weird magic aficionados embrace Christian Chelman, Robert Neale, Tony Andruzzi (also called Maskelyn ye Mage), and Burger’s good friend and colleague Jeff McBride.

Supporting the Group of Magicians

Maybe certainly one of Eugene Burger’s greatest contributions to the world of magic was his help of latest and up-and-coming magicians. He was greater than a magician, he was additionally a passionate instructor of the craft. He was recognized to be supportive and beneficiant with magicians who consulted with him for recommendation.

Maybe Burger’s dedication to supporting different magicians stems from the constructive reminiscences he had of visiting Chicago’s now lengthy gone magic outlets as a youngster within the 1950s.

It was at these magic outlets that he was capable of study from skilled magicians, who mentored him and encourage him to attempt magic tips that performed upon his pure skills and proclivities.
He wrote about his experiences in an article titled “The Unhappy Demise of the Magic Store,” which appeared in Magic Journal in Might of 2015.

Within the article, he laments the lack of these distinctive and particular magic outlets that have been obtainable in downtown Chicago, Illinois, in an space referred to as the “Loop.” He stated simply within the Loop 5 of those mystical magic outlets existed.

On the time he wrote his article, no extra have been left within the downtown space of Chicago.

As he defined in his piece, these magic outlets have been extra than simply about promoting low cost tips to younger, hungry magicians. They have been group facilities, the place magicians might mingle, study, and create friendships, a few of which might find yourself being lifelong.

The alternative of those outlets with Web magic shops has been a larger loss to the magician group, as Burger defined. Positive, you may save a couple of bucks on an merchandise, however it will not be what you anticipated as soon as it arrives in a package deal in your doorstep. You aren’t capable of make those self same relationships by way of on-line buying than you possibly can at an area magic retailer.

The irony, in fact, is that now, the primary approach a younger magician can obtain any type of tutelage by way of the now deceased Burger is thru his books, programs, and merchandise bought by way of the Web.

Following in Eugene Burger’s Magical Footsteps

For the budding magician who admires Eugene Burger and his superb legacy, what are a number of the steps to take?

1. Study Shut-Up Magic

Not everybody is supposed to be a David Copperfield with large, flashy magic that should attraction to giant audiences and contain large objects just like the Statue of Liberty. And, there’s something to be stated for the intimacy and enchantment of close-up magic. It could actually make an viewers member really feel extraordinarily particular and awed.

2. Get Good on the Artwork of Storytelling

One of many issues that really set Eugene Burger aside as a magician was his capability to inform a narrative in such a method as to captivate the viewers. Good storytelling is extraordinarily useful within the presentation facet of being a magician. On the subject of doing high quality weird magic, good storytelling is important.

Good storytelling is extra than simply remembering the “details” or storyline of a specific narrative. It’s concerning the pacing, selection of phrases, and the way you employ your voice, in addition to punctuating your tales with the fitting physique language. And that physique language could be a nice asset in relation to sleight of hand and deflection.

Eugene Burger Will Not Be Forgotten
The world of magic will miss Eugene Burger, however he won’t be forgotten. A captivating and devoted skilled magician, this bearded wizard was a tremendous performer, author, and instructor.