Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Doug Henning Blue

That's right I am talking about Doug Henning Blue today.
I was looking at the photos I took when I was over at Thom Rubino, the illusion builder, as we are going to be restoring an old Doug Henning "Things that go bump in the night." Those props were beautiful with the Henning blue, clouds, and rainbows. It's funny because it became a standard blue for a lot of magic props in the 80's.  I have such great memories of going to the warehouse in Santa Monica and hanging out. They had a stage set up in the back with all the crates. The cast would rehearse facing the back of the stage which was a wall of mirrors, when the routine was perfected, they would then turn around and rehearse like they were on stage. I found him to be a delightful person who truly loved magic.

Top to a Doug Henning Cutting in Half
Sigh! Well back to the Bump... Thom has one at his house. It was used on a Henning tour, and later used in Siegfried & Roy's show with the production of a cat at the end. The prop is in great condition considering it's age, use, and travel abuse.  It has been Siegfried & Roy'ed and will need some love and attention. Now I am just like the next magician and loved S&R's show. They took magic to a completely different place and it will be a long time before we see anything like them again. I loved their show and saw it several times both at radio city music hall and in Las Vegas. BUT I loved Doug Henning. When I saw him for the first time on television I realized that I to could be a magician. He was so different from the standard men in tuxedos. He made magic... magical, he brought wonder, and a child like excitement to his performances, and at that moment I wanted to be a professional magician. Suddenly all those people who said I could not be a magician because I was a woman, they lost their voices because magic had a new face and it was Doug Henning. So if I have to pick and choose between performing this routine like S&R or Doug Henning then there is no choose, it is Henning all the way.
The Bump props current appearance as used in Siegfried & Roy's show. 

The photo above is what the prop looks like currently. you can see it is very much in theme with Siegfried and Roy's show.  The photo below is a still taken from "The Magic Show," with Doug Henning sitting on top. I get so excited when I look at this photo and think about having this in my show. It would not be possible without Thom and Vinny. The two of them have kept the prop since it left the S&R show, and it has just been waiting for several years.This Bump has an amazing lineage and I hope to continue it with my show. S&R have panels on the outside, so I have already talked to Thom about saving some of the panels. I know I want to keep a panel at my house on the wall in my magic room as a piece of magic history, and so does Thom.

The Bump prop as it appeared in Doug Hennings "The Magic Show."

Once those panels are removed the prop will see a little bit of a face lift before heading off to the artist to be restored to its former Doug Henning Blue and the original Henning design. I am so excited. This man stirred my imagination when I was young. 30 years ago he made me realize I could do more than just dream, and he is still making my dreams possible today.
Thank-you Doug Henning, and your Doug Henning Dare to Dream BLUE!
Below is a link to watch Doug Henning performing "Things That Go Bump In The Night."



  1. i saw Doug Henning in The Magic Show on Broadway when I was a wee tot. I loved him and I looked forward EVERY year for his TV specials.

    Doug changed my life.. and the way I look at magic is FAR more though his eyes than any of the TV Magic that's happening these days.

    Good for you for restoring this prop and furthering Doug's legacy!

  2. What a wonderful memory. I had the album from The Magic Show on Broadway and must have listened to it a hundred times before I actually got to see the show. It's one of my fondest memories.