HEY PRESTO (SECOND EDITION) (1947)
Westminster Theatre, London
On Tuesday, April 8th, Members of the Council attended the evening performance of "Hey Presto!" at Westminster Theatre, by the kind invitation of Mr. Jasper Maskelyne and Mr. Robert Harbin.
Upon glancing at the programme, one's attention was immediately arrested by the information that the production was being presented by Maskelyne & Devant, Ltd. Probably the majority of the audience attached no great significance to the use of this title on the programme; yet every experienced magician present, must have felt something of a thrill at seeing these two names, which so epitomise magic, coupled together once again.
The opening performer was Francis Watts, who presented a series of effects of the more intimate variety, in a very neat manner. Space does not permit of a description of every item, but mention must be made of the impromptu use of a number of articles borrowed from various members of the audience—a nice idea.
Second on the bill came Robert Harbin, M.I.M.C., whose faultless work and pleasing style are so well known to most of our members. Ably assisted by his page-boy, Hendriks, Robert Harbin entertained with a selection from his fine repertoire ; some of these items our members have had the opportunity of seeing at the Banquet, and at the recent Grand Festival. But he also included the discovery of a borrowed watch in a nest of boxes, and a production item which culminated in the surprising appearance of a stack of gold-fish bowls from a large silk. Robert Harbin has the all-too-rare faculty of putting an audience completely at ease and thus making his performance a pleasure to watch.
Kuda Bux then appeared, anticipating his regular feature by presenting a series of magical problems under the title of "Seeing is Believing."
The closing item of the first half of the programme was Jasper Maskelyne himself, looking as immaculate as ever. Outstanding among the effects presented by this famous performer, were the illusion "Through the Eye of a Needle' and the "Ropes and Rings." In both these items the performer was assisted by a number of youthful members of the audience, whose enthusiasm was reminiscent of the old days.
Source: The Magic Circular, Vol. 41, 1946. No. 455. July 1947.