National Magic Day is sponsored by the Society of American Magicians. Brought about the tribute Harry Houdini, who died on the 31st October 1926. Harry Houdini, for those who don’t know, was a Hungarian-born illusionist, who was most well-known for his crazy escape acts.
Escapology is the practice of escaping from restraints or other traps.
Although some people speculated that Houdini’s stunts were simply staged and fake, he gave himself a role in the field as the scourge of fake spiritualists. He was also very on top of his game when it came to people imitating his acts - he would sue anyone who copied his escape stunts.
The first act that attracted attention was on a tour of Europe. He challenged police forces to keep him locked up and would escape from handcuffs. His repertoire extended to chains, ropes slung from skyscrapers and underwater. One stunt saw him buried alive and only just able to escape to the surface, in a state of near-breakdown.
There are legends about his death - some say he drowned whilst trying to escape a water tank for one of his stunts, but others say he died from a blow to the stomach.
Either way, Harry Houdini made a lasting impression in the field of illusion. So much so, that National Magic Day was implemented to celebrate his life. There is even a museum in Pennsylvania to mark his work.
So, today, why not learn a magic trick or even combine Halloween with the day of magic, by choosing to dress up as a famous magician?
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