Magicians' Biographies - Letter G

Read about the man who predicted Houdini's death, the magician who created "The Shadow", the world famous magic restorer, and more!

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Gabriel, Joseph
(b. 1958) American magician (real name Joseph Gabriel Wierzbicki) who gained fame with his beautiful and startling dove act which concluded with the production of two giant macaws. He was first noted as the illustrator for a number of magic books.
Gacs, Rezso
(1911-1987) Hungarian magic personality. Extremely well-known in Eastern Europe, he had a clever magic and pickpocket act. Mentor of Kovari.
Gali-Gali, Luxor
(1902-?) Egyptian magician whose real name was Mahguob Mohammed Hanafi. Though he was brought up in show business (his father was a magician also called Gali-Gali), he found his greatest fame after becoming an American citizen in 1944. He found success performing on television and in Las Vegas, and is best remembered for his cups and balls routine that ends with the production of live baby chicks. Appeared on the 9/12/48, 4/17/49, and 4/29/51 broadcasts of the TV program Toast of the Town, the early version of The Ed Sullivan Show.
Ganson, Jack
(1886-1951) English magician thought to be the first to specialize in bartender magic. Father of Lewis.
Ganson, Lewis
(1913-1980) English magician and author, best known for his Routined Manipulation, though he wrote nearly 60 other books on magic as well.
Garber, Homer Chalet
(?-?) American magician on the Redpath Chautauqua circuit around 1910. Performed magic as one of three acts on the bill; he also played the banjo and saxophone. Part of the Garber-Howe Entertainers around 1910.
Garcia, Frank
(1927-1993)(birthday May 8) American magician, legendary for his skill with cards and knowledge of gambling cheats. Prolific author card magic books, co-founder (with George Schindler) of New York's School for Magicians. Billed as the "Man With the Million Dollar Hands".
Gaughan, John
(born 1939) American magician, master illusion builder and antique magic restoration expert. His illusions include a patented method of flight for stage, created for David Copperfield, as well as countless complex illusions for David Blaine, Criss Angel and Doug Henning. He is a world-renowned expert on antique magic illusions, especially those with clockwork parts, and has been a leading force in restoring and preserving these illusions. His recreation of the chess-playing Turk is a mechanical marvel. Based in Los Angeles.
Gawle, Kay
Female fair concessionnaire who briefly had a solo mentalism nightclub act
Read the biography of Kay Gawle!
(?-?) Traveling magician in America, circa 1880. Mentioned in a poster for magician Prof. H.B. Reynolds.
Gauthier, Prof.
(?-?) French magician performing in the mid-1800s. May have invented, but at least popularized the Guillotine Illusion. The poster gauthier-1896.jpg advertised this ghastly magic trick. His success with this illusion greatly influenced Benevol to feature the Guillotine Illusion in his show.
Geller, Uri
(b.1946) (birthday December 20) Israeli psychic entertainer who has gained international fame by promoting himself as the real thing. His U.S. television appearances beginning in the 1970s gave a huge boost to psychic entertainment by inviting the viewing audience to get involved at home, inviting them to put non-working watches on top of their TVs, and during the show, the hands of the watches moved. Also famous for his spoon-bending routines. Faded from American TV after the disastrous Tonight Show performance in which magician Johnny Carson exposed Geller's method of "seeing" through sealed film canisters. Briefly back in the American public eye in 2005, when he acted as publicity agent for Michael Jackson, another disaster. Long-running professional "feud" with James Randi.
Gemmill, Paul
(1889-1976) American magician who worked as both "Paul Gemmill" and "Paul Fleming". Assistant first to Eugene Laurant (from 1909 to 1910) and then to Karl Germain (from 1910 to 1914).
Georgia Magnet
The name given to the act of any female magician who, despite her diminutive size, could resist physical pressure from a number of male volunteers who were unable to lift her or otherwise move her. The act was called a resistance act, and was variously performed as a psychic or purely physical phenomenon. See Annie Abbott, Lulu Hurst, and Mattie Lee Price.
Germain, Karl
(1878-1959) By 1915, he was one of the most famous magicians in the world, known for his stylish and elegant performances, and his wonderful color posters
Gibson, Walter
(1897-1985)(birthday September 12) American magician and prolific author of both magic instruction and magic history books. Was the ghost writer for many magicians who "wrote" magic books, including Howard Thurston, Harry Blackstone Sr. and Joseph Dunninger. His third wife was Litzka Raymond, widow of The Great Raymond. Lived in Eddyville, New York, in a large farmhouse with separate rooms reserved for each type of book that he wrote, including a room for writing magic books and a room for writing The Shadow series of books and scripts. Credited with inventing Nickels To Dimes and Oil and Water effects.
Giddings, Adelaide
"The Zomahs" second sight mindreading act with her husband, Alfred
Read the biography of Adelaide Giddings!
Giddings, Alfred
"The Zomahs" second sight mindreading act with his wife, Adelaide
Read the biography of Alfred Giddings- see image!
Gilbert, Alfred Carleton "A.C."
The legendary American toy and magic manufacturer was a magician and a star athlete
Read the biography of A.C. Gilbert - see image!
Gilbert, William
Gilbert & Sullivan wrote a magic-themed operetta titled The Sorcerer
Read about The Sorcerer - see images!
Giuliani, Filippo
17th century Italian water-spouter who billed himself as "The Water Wizard" or "The Water Drinker". He could drink seemingly incredible amounts of water, then regurgitate the liquid in a spectacular series of arching streams from his mouth. He had a specially built mouthpiece which would allow him to spray up to a dozen streams of water from his mouth at one time.
Glenroy the Midget
(1887-1919) American magician (real name Glen Mead Royston) who was one of several successful magicians of short stature.
Goldin, Horace
(1874-1939)(birthday December 17) Polish-born world-famous illusionist (real name Hyman Goldstein) noted for his lightning-fast performance style. One of the most important stage illusionists in history. He is credited with inventing the Sawing a Woman In Two illusion and the Buzz Saw illusion. In 1938, he introduced the young female magician Lucille Barnett to the London stage. His autobiography is It's Fun To Be Fooled (1937), and a good biography is Val Andrews' Life, Dull It Ain't (1983).
Goldston, Will
(1878-1948)(birthday September 23) British magician, magic dealer, and author of numerous books, including the famous "Locked Books"
Goodliffe, Charles
British magician who founded the "world's only magic weekly", ABRACADABRA.
Gowango the Great
(?-?) African American magician who was performing around 1890-1900. In the heyday of blackface performers in vaudeville, he was thought to be the only authentic black magician working in 1899.
Grant, Gary "The General"
(b.1965) American professional basketball player and amateur magician. Point guard for Seattle SuperSonics, L.A. Clippers, New York Knicks, Miami Heat, Portland Trialblazers. Ranks second in Clippers' franchise history with 2,810 assists and shares the L.A. Clippers record with 21 assists in a game.
The Great Lee
(?-?) American magician on the Lyceum and Chautauqua circuits.
Green, Eddie
(?-1950) African American comedian, singer and songwriter who got his start in vaudeville as a child magician. In 1918, he wrote the classic song, "A Good Man Is Hard To Find", the torch song made famous by Bessie Smith and Sophie Tucker. In a 1949 short comedy film called Mr. Adam's Bomb, Green plays the title role of Adam Jones, who is suspected by his neighbors of building a bomb in his room. In the story, Adam Jones performs a comedy magic act in which he pushes a knife blade into the skull of an audience member, who just happens to be a policeman investigating Jones' suspicious behavior. A rare comedy gem, this was Green's last film appearance, as he died unexpectedly the next year.
Greenberg, Hal
American magician who entertained as part of the Army's Special Services
Read the biography of Hal Greenberg!
Greenfield, Felix
Radio mentalist as "The Man of Magic" and early TV magician
Biography of Felix Greenfield - see image!
Greystoke, R. Temple
(1901-1973) American magician, real name Wreford "Ray" Stough Price. Performed also as "Prince Price", "Ali Baba" "Bey Shan", and most notably "Ra-Mona". Had great success on the Lyceum and Chautauqua circuits in the 1920s and early 1930s with his magic act featuring wonderful trained dogs. Changed his professional name to "Greystoke" after a song titled "Ramona" became popular. Is credited with popularizing the "Spook Show" formula in the Eastern states during the 1940s. His show was called "Horrors of Hell". Died of Parkinson's Disease.
Griffin, Jack
(?-?) American comedy magician who played the Redpath Chautauqua circuit in the 1920s. Also played an instrument that combined the guitar, ukelele, banjo, violin and tea kettle.
Griffiths, E. Ray
(1912-1965) British magician, stage name "Fabian", who was the first assistant editor of Abracadabra magazine.
Grigg, Johannes
(Also spelled "Brigg") Late 17th Century Hungarian magician who excelled with his skills at Cups and Balls, despite the fact that he had only one hand. Even more amazing, he performed an equilibrist (balancing) act, even though he had no legs.
Guitar, Pressley
(April 4, 1940 - February 6, 2022) American magician who used his real name. Inventor and magic manufacturer, specializing in trick coins. Invented the mechanical version of Cigarette Thru Quarter, as well as the Copper Silver Brass Transposition Coins. He was granted U.S. Patent #3,822,879 for his Coin Magic Device. Convinced that his device was being copied and marketed by other magic companies without financial credit to him, Guitar bitterly quit the magic business in the early 1980s, selling off any stock on hand and never making another commercial prop. (Some information contributed by Jerry Guyer)
Gunnarson, Dean
(b. 1964) Energetic Canadian escape artist; recipient of the first Houdini award; featured performer on numerous TV specials and official successor to James Randi.
Gwynne, Jack
(1895-1969)(birthday April 12) One of the superstars of American magic. Illusionist who created the Temple of Benares illusion as a variation of Culpitt's Doll House illusion. Also invented the Flipover Box. Subject of Jack Gwynne: The Man, His Mind and His Royal Family of Magic by David Charvet. Buried in Lakeside Cemetery in Colon, Michigan.
Gysel, Robert H.
(1880-1938) American mentalist, specialist in lock-picking. Stage assistant to Houdini for five years, and secret assistant helping Houdini in his exposure of fake psychics. Strangely, he predicted Houdini's death in a letter to a fellow magician.