The Circle of Life

Happy News! I am a grandfather twice over now! Yes, Baby Scharton Has Arrived!

Clark Michael Scharton was born Tuesday, February 10th weighing in at 6lbs 8oz, 19.5 inches long. My son Cole and his wife Amanda are more than happy as they welcome their first child.

You may be wondering, “Why the name Clark? ” Well, I may be responsible for planting that seed long ago. When Cole was a little boy I introduced him to Superman and he became an instant fan. In fact, so much so that as a youngster, he wore a Superman cape wherever he went for over two years.

Cole is taking a few days off to be with his wife and new baby as they settle in and become acquainted with each other. It’s the beginning of a chapter in their lives and the end of regular sleep patterns.


News of Clark's birth was all over social media.

News of Clark’s birth was all over social media.


Clark Michael Scharton born Tuesday, February 10th.

Clark Michael Scharton born Tuesday, February 10th.


This new addition to our family reminds me of the circle of life — we welcome a new life into the world juxtaposed against the loss of two of magic’s greats this week. Both Rene Lavand & Dean Dill passed away on the same exact day, Saturday, February 7th, 2015.

Both Lavand andn Dill will be missed. Both gifted the world of magic with their talents and passion for our Art. Both made an indelible mark on our community. Both made us want to be better magicians. In short, both made a difference. And if THAT isn’t’ success, than I don’t know what is…!

Look for more baby pictures in next week’s blog.

Dean Dill

Dean was a good friend and someone we’d done business with for over a decade, so his passing comes as sad news.

Dean Dill was a magician and effects-designer who lived and worked in Glendale, California. His performance focused mostly on close-up effects, and he had a particular passion for and expertise in coin magic. He created and marketed a number of effects, including “Dean’s Box,” “Blizzard”, and “A New World” (created with magic innovator Michael Weber).

Dean was a Magician’s Magician, and very well known at the nearby Hollywood Magic Castle in Hollywood, and has had some very famous magic names sit in his barber chair. After a haircut, it was usually off to the close-up table for some magic tricks.


Dean was a frequent visitor to Johnny Carson’s house to work on coin and card tricks with Johnny for years before Johnny convinced him to go on the show, and that probably wouldn’t have happened had Johnny not announced his retirement.

So when Dean was finally ready, he gave the word to Johnny and he appeared on the Tonight Show in November 1990. His appearance on the show would become one of the highlights of his entire career.

Below is the 2-part interview that Dean Dill gave to street magician Kozmo of Reel Magic Magazine in August of 2008, telling how he got started in magic and how he met Johnny Carson for the first time, how he befriended Johnny and his wife, taught Johnny magic tricks, and how he eventually performed on THE TONIGHT SHOW.

Dean Dill Interview

Rene Lavand

Héctor René Lavandera, usually known as René Lavand (24 September 1928 – 7 February 2015), was a magician from Argentina specializing in close-up performance. He appeared in Ed Sullivan’s and Johnny Carson’s television shows as well as numerous performances at Hollywood’s Magic Castle.

After losing a hand at the age of 9 in a car crash, Lavand endured a gradual entry into the magic world, self-taught because, in his own words, “all books and techniques are for two-handed magicians”. After working as a cashier in a bank, at the age of 32 he appeared in Buenos Aires’ Tabarís Theater, following which his career took off, leading to world tours.


The catchphrase he used to close several of his tricks is “No se puede hacer más lento” (Spanish for “it cannot be done any slower”), referencing the intentional slow pace at which he performs.

A tribute to the passing of the master; even the cards weep.

A tribute to the passing of the master; even the cards weep.

In between international tours, he resided in Tandil, Argentina and adapted a train car which he turned into a magic saloon where he taught illusion. He also co-wrote (with Richard Kaufman) the book “Mysteries of my Life”. The book is an autobiography as well as an instructional book on Rene’s magic.

Lavand died last Saturday February 7th of pneumonia in Tandil, aged 86.

Here is the master performing what some have called…

“The Greatest Card Trick Ever”


Signed Lithograph of the Maestro

Coincidentally, we recently had a lithograph come in as part of a collection with Rene Lavand as it subject. Our client met Lavand at a convention and ended up having dinner with him. He purchased the lithograph and Lavand signed it. Later he had it professionally framed.

It will surely make a great display piece for a den or magic room for any Lavand aficionado or enthusiast.

A beautiful triple-matted framed lithograph, signed by Rene Lavand

A beautiful triple-matted framed lithograph, signed by Rene Lavand


Have yourselves a great weekend my friends.

Until next time,



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