Handcuff King. Escape Artist International Superstar. Since his death eighty years ago, Harry Houdini has continued to captivate generations. Now, renowned magic expert William Kalush and bestselling writer Larry Sloman team up to find the man behind the myth, from the passions that drove Houdini to perform ever-more-dangerous feats to his secret life as a spy, and the pernicious plot to subvert his legacy.
After years of struggling on the dime museum circuit, Harry Houdini got a break that thrust him into the spotlight performing for royalty and commanding vast sums. At a time when spy agencies frequently co-opted amateurs, Houdini went to London and developed a relationship with a man who would run MI-5; for the next several years, he travelled to Germany and Russia and routinely reported his findings. After World War I, Houdini set out to infiltrate and expose the seamy world of fake spirit mediums, triggering the wrath of a group of fanatical Spiritualists led by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Death threats became an everyday occurrence, but the group would pose an even greater danger to Houdini's legacy.
As exciting as any good thriller. The Secret Life of Houdini traces the arc of the master magicians life from desperate poverty to worldwide legend, and initiates the listener into the arcane world of professional magic.
William Kalush has been a dedicated student of the art of magic for more than 25 years. Founder of the Conjuring Arts Research Center and publisher of Gibeciere, an esteemed magic history journal, he has helped create several world-famous magic stunts and prime time network television specials.
Larry Sloman is an award-winning author best known for his collaborations with radio personality Howard Stern on Private Parts and Miss America. He became interested in magic history after working with David Blaine on his best-selling memoir Mysterious Stranger.
Adam Grupper's film credits include Music and Lyrics By, Night at the Museum, Two Weeks Notice and It Runs in the Family On television: The Sopranos, Third Watch, Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU and Law and Order: Criminal Intent. His Broadway credits include Baz Luhrmanns La Boheme, Guys and Dolls, The Secret Garden, City of Angels and Into the Woods.
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