This isn’t specifically Niagara Falls-related, but it does pertain to Greg Frewin, so I figured I’d include it. Besides, it has some nice background information about him.
Greg Frewin got his first magic kit when he was seven years old. It was nothing fancy, just a bunch of simple magic tricks, a magic hat and other paraphernalia to instruct budding magicians about the art of magic. His parents ordered the kit after he saw it advertised on television. Frewin spent hours entertaining his friends in his hometown of Hamilton.
But it wasn’t until he was 12 and his grandfather took him to Toronto to see Canadian magician Doug Henning that Frewin truly became spellbound.
“Doug had a big illusion show, and after seeing that show, I told my grandfather that’s what I want to do, I want to be a magician,” said Frewin, 44, in a telephone interview from Niagara Falls, Ont., where he lives and performs. He performs Friday and Saturday at the Theatre du Casino du Lac-Leamy.
“Up until that point I had never seen a magician do a full, big illusion show on stage. For the most part I had seen the magic tricks my grandfather had shown me and what was in the magic kit. When I saw Henning’s show it was a whole new world, I didn’t know it was something that people did.
This isn’t directly Niagara Falls related, but it does have a tie-in…
Last week I was listening to an episode of On Point, a radio show on NPR out of WBUR in Boston. The episode was called The Magic of Harry Houdini and had information from one of his biographies, as well as information about a new museum exhibit. This got me looking on the Internet for more information about Houdini. I had forgotten about the Niagara Falls connection, but was reminded of it when reading the Wikipedia entry about him:
1968 – The Houdini Magical Hall of Fame was opened on Clifton Hill in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. At its opening, this museum contained the majority of Houdini’s personal collection of magic paraphernalia. One of Houdini’s death wishes was that his entire collection be given to his brother Theodore (also known as the magician Hardeen) and burned upon Theodore’s death. Against his wishes, forty years after Houdini’s death, the items were taken from storage and sold. Two entrepreneurs purchased the items and renovated a former meat-packing plant on Clifton Hill, Ontario, Canada, to house the museum. The Hall of Fame was moved in 1972 to its final location on the top of Clifton Hill. Séances were held every year at the museum on October 31, the anniversary of Houdini’s death. A fire destroyed the museum on April 30, 1995.