MAGIC OF P.C. SORCAR, Sr.
..."SORCAR Show ran two and a half
hours, and we want to go on record as saying, it was the finest all round
magic show we ever saw, and that includes Thurston, Blackstone, Dante,
Kalanag, and any other of the greats we have seen in our long magic lives.....everything
he did was in the best magic tradition"......
..."It is not enough that a magician
mystifies his audience, he must also entertain and delight them as he (Sorcar)
does so well. It gives me great pleasure to recall that in his performance
there is no detail so small as to be unimportant to him. His attention
to details adds immeasurably to the performance as a whole. Such an attitude
as his in this regard is the mark of a genuine artist."....
-John Mulholland, Magician
New York, 1960
"IT CAN'T BE DONE"
(Article on Sorcar and his magic
by Arthur Leroy, Magician and Journalist, New York, USA. Reprinted from
Sorcar: Maharaja of Magic, with specific permission from its publisher
All India Magic Circle, India)
-Jay & Frances Marshall,
Editor of The New Phoenix Magazine
and Associate Editor of
The Linking Ring magazine respectively,
Sorcar performs his BY AIR MAIL:
A mystery in Egypt
Sorcar performing his SPUTNIK ILLUSION
"I am writing this on October 10,
1966 in New York. To this point 1966 has been a bad year for the "It Can't
Be Done" fraternity. All over the world the magical performers are reporting
that it has been a difficult year to secure bookings for their mystical
wares. Performers who have worked for years to establish their sales values
find that their earning powers have become less potent.
In 1966 if one spoke of that one
time glory of the field - the full evening illusion shows - the answer
was always, "It Can't Be Done". In 1966 lack of public demand, economic
pressures, union demands, bookers' apathy all combined to make it virtually
impossible to sell a full evening illusion show.
By October 10, 1966, the Chang show
had vanished like its own Asrah assistant.
By October 10, 1966, the Fu Manchu
show had reduced its size to virtually a suitcase show, but even this heroic
effort had not solved the problem.
By October 10, 1966, the Kalanag
show had changed hands and Helmut had shuffled off muttering his last "Nicht
Nazi". Richardini Jr. had closed his own big full evening show and had
made a try with the Kalanag show under Mrs. Kalanag's management. It wouldn't
work - it wouldn't work at all. So the wondrous, the graceful, the "Dynamo
of Deception", Aldo Richardini went back to a short twelve minute act for
Night Clubs, revues and all points West and East.
By October 10, 1966, the wonderful
Latin American Tichardine show had "tossed in the towel", and Richardo
Richardine, a charming performer had attached his abilities as a dancer
to his illusions, and with the most salable act of our generation. In spite
of this Richardo is having booking problems.
By October 10, 1966, Blackstone
had left us and not a living soul in the whole world was interested in
buying any part of the Blackstone titles. There was no show to buy. Warehouse
charges had long since consumed it.
By October 10, 1966, the Virgil
show, one of the most beautiful in the world, had reduced its load and
is operating on its spot dates with the emphasis on the "Mental and Hypnotic".
Virgil and Julie are now "talking a show".
By October 10, 1966, the Cecil Lyle
show had lost its creator and is rotting away in its crates.
The Dante show - rotting, chopped,
Cantarelli - gone - forgotten.
Chefalo - gone - forgotten.
Tihanyl - stranded his big show
John Daniel - talking.
Arhtur Leroy - pulling puppet strings
and looking longingly at my unused illusions.
October 10, 1966, one of the finest
illusion shows in the United States, the Mac Birch show, sold pieces by
piece. The man who was the logical and planned successor to Howard Thurston
has called it quits. He wants no more of a big show.
October 10, 1966, Prince Charming
SORCAR has built the biggest, most stupendous illusion show of our times.
"It Can't Be Done" but Sorcar IS doing it.
From a small start just a few years
back P. C. has built, created, improved, borrowed, financed, and best of
all sold the illusion show to end all illusion shows.
When there appear to be no future
for the full scale mystical Razz Ma Taz P.C. has brought forth a "Wonder
of the World" that appears to be highly salable.
Sorcar has built, purchased, created
opulent sets, beautiful costumes, big time lighting effects, and best of
all wonders, mysteries, illusions, deceptions from every country, every
age, every period. Wondrous forgotten marvels such as "Birth of a Pearl"
are part of Prince Charming's world of enchantment.
Sorcar believes in his future, and
unlike so many others, in the future of MAGIC as a means of entertainment.
He spends fortunes in advertising. Some of his mailing pieces are brilliant
beyond belief. He invests as if his product was not general magic but GENERAL
MOTORS. He appears to be determined that fabled, fabulous India will once
again become the Home of Mystery, and Prince Charming Sorcar its High Priest.
October 10, 1966, the Sorcar show,
product of India, is not only the largest full evening illusion show in
the world today, but because one man appears to have "guessed right" while
the rest of us "guessing wrong", IT IS THE ONLY FULL EVENING ILLUSION SHOW
EXISTING in its dizzy old world. Sorcar, a product of India, a nation that
exports few theatrical attractions - Prince Charming Sorcar has produced
for himself, his country, his profession, his love, a show that at this
moment is the only one of its kind in the world.
Over a period of twenty years I've
watched the Sorcar show in pictures and advertising matter get bigger,
glossier, fatter. One thing bugs me, as I look over a collection of twenty
years of Sorcar photos I observe the show gradually becoming bigger - fatter
and Prince Charming he's moving along with his show - he's becoming bigger
and fatter too. The rest of us starve - Prince Charming Fattens.
This is confusing because it plays
'hell' with an awful lot of rich nation - poor nation propaganda. My be
P.C. is proving that riches are creative, not material, but I do wish that
Prince Charming would continue to fatten his show but reduce his tummy.
October 10, 1966, It Can't Be Done
But Pratul Chandra Sorcar Did It. It Must Be Magic." (end)
"HE REALLY IS THE WORLD'S GREATEST MAGICIAN"
(Written by Jay and Frances Marshall, Magicians, Authors, & Editors,
Chicago, USA. Reprinted from TRICK TALK magazine, Chicago, USA)
is known to everyone in magic in the entire world, and to millions in the
many countries and continents wherein he has worked. We knew he had to
have a great show, and when we arrived in Calcutta to look him up,
we were thrilled to find he was about to open a long run in the New Empire
Theatre there. We changed our flight - what magician wouldn't have? This
we could not miss.
We found him backstage at rehearsal
and set-up, a task which takes about forty hours. In fact, the theatre
closed completely for one day to permit this. We found a dozen lovely Indian
girls working on silks and flowers, a stage crew of men lifting an
automobile from the alley to stage level (two floors up), a native orchestra
(Sorcar's own) playing wonderful Indian music with bells, flutes, drums,
etc. Everybody had a job, everybody was busy.
At the box office where Sorcar kindly
fixed us up with seats, we saw the advanced booking sheets, page after
page of sell-outs and growing sales, or weeks in advance. The line at the
box office was evidence itself. Just for fun, as we moved bout the city,
we asked all sorts of people if they knew P. C. Sorcar. Everybody knew
By opening night, he had the front
of the theatre alive with his publicity. The house was full, quiet a few
more men than omen, and of every Indian type and region, as characterized
by their turbans, dress, hair, etc.
The show ran two and half hours,
and we want to go on record as saying it was the finest all around magic
show we ever saw, and that includes Thurston, Blackstone,Dante, Kalanag,
and any others of the greats we have seen in our long magic lives. We base
the comparison on the fact that he had more personnel, more equipment,
more variety, his own orchestra, had taken over a big theatre for months,
Complete description is impossible
here. The show is one of large illusions, and beautiful stage settings,
opening with production number that fills the stage not only with silks,
flowers, clocks, numerous other items, but with people as well. Sorcar
has an ability to get laughs out of the most unlikely situations.
In this production number, girls and boys kept bringing out racks,
stands, T bars, etc. so that each time he seemed to have finished, they
brought out another empty one, and sighing, he went back to producing.
The audience got good laugh out of it.
from India" produced with a dozen assistants each in the garb of a region
of India, and bearing empty glasses, is a charming thing. A priest, in
an orange robe, comes in first, bearing a silver pitcher (very small in
appearance) on a tray. He tells Sorcar it is "Water from India". Now as
the assistants come with their glasses, Sorcar calls out the name of the
Indian region, and fills their glasses. Finally they are all lined up across
the stage in a most colorful pageant. Then they begin to leave the stage
one by one, emptying their glasses in a silver Lota as they go. This Sorcar
uses as a running effect throughout the rest of the show. "May next effect
- Water from India". It tickles the crowd.
His "Broomstick" number was captivating.
The stage was bathed in dark blue light, with a city street scene. Dawn
began to come on the city, and people began to move about. A little boy
on crutches was selling newspapers. Sorcar took him off is crutches, used
one in lieu of a broom and put the boy upon it. As the boy remained in
midair, poised on a crutch, Sorcar took the hula hoop away from another
playing kid, and used it over the levitated boy. At the finish of the trick,
the little lame boy threw his crutches away and skipped off stage. (The
boy was played by Sorcar's college student son.)
And so it went - number after number,
beautifully staged, costumed, and presented. He vanished a motor car full
of people, he did an "Eayless Vision" type of routine loaded with
laughs and with a large committee from the audience on stage - verything
he did was in the best magic tradition.
Sorcar performing his world famous "Water
SORCAR IN JAPAN
by Gasho Ishikawa, Magician, Author and Journalist, Tokyo Japan.
Reprinted from SORCAR:
Maharaja of Magic with permission from All India Magic Circle)
June 1937, one twenty-four year old Indian magician, fresh from college,
visited the shores of Japan by the P. & O. liner Sirdhana with his
selected magic show. He gave successful magic performances in Kobe on June
20th at the India Club, attended by the Prince of Mysore, Mr. & Mrs.
Saxsena (Indian Trade Commissioner), Mr. & Mrs. Inamdar, Dr. Godbole
(delegates to the World Education Conference), members of the India Club,
the Indian Social Society, the President, Indian National Committee and
Indian Trade Association in addition to all the Indian residents of Kobe
and Osaka. This show proved very successful and lavish reports were published
in all the Japanese newspapers. He later gave shows in Kobe under the joint
auspices of the Kansai Japan-India Society and the Federation ofBuddhist
Associations. Sorcar also performed in Tokyo under the arrangement of Late
Rash Behary Bose and others. Ananda Mohan Sahay of India lodge, Kobe organized
his Japan tour, which received very good receptions from both the press
and public of Japan. But the real hit was
on June 15, 1937 when Sorcar visited Nakaza Theatre, Osaka, where Japan's
Number One (Lady) Illusionist Ten Katsu was giving her full stage show.
Sorcar mystified her and she received Sorcar most enthusiastically and
gave various letters of introductions to the important persons. This news
of Sorcar and Ten Katsu appreciating each other's shows was published throughout
the world through the United Press news agency.
I was then the manager of Ten Katsu's Company From my young age I am very
fond of magic and allied arts and my association with Ten Katsu (one of
the world's outstanding stage illusionists at that time) gave me ample
opportunity in learning more about this most ancient Art of Magic. Even
in this advanced age, I could not get rid of
the Magic bug. I now devote
most of spare times in the researches on Magic, about the Art and Science
and Psychology of Magic. I regularly contribute articles on Magic in the
various Japanese magazines and newspapers. I have in the meantime authored
several text books on Magic for the juveniles and have written introductions
for a good number of top magicians who have visited Japan.
an interval of many years Sorcar visited Japan again in 1954 with his big
illusion show comprising tons of equipment and dozens of assistants. He
was brought to Japan by the Russian Impresario V.O. Dziubinski mainly for
the entertainment of the U.S. troop stationed in Japan. Sorcar gave his
shows at the Kurits Kodo Theatre, Tokyo, sponsored by the Nippon Beer Company;
Octagon Theatre, Yokohama and notably Takarazuka Theare, Tokyo at that
time known as Ernie Pyle Theatre. This mammoth Takarazuka Theatre which
is comparable to only the Radio City Music Hall, New York, is very gigantic
and requires very big eye-filling apparatus and company to properly stage
a show. On Friday, the 14th March 1954, Sorcar had his opening show i the
Takarazuka Theatre and made a hit with his visible sawing through a lady
with buzz saw and the vanishing of a new Ford car on the open stage and
many others spectacular stage illusions. Sorcar was then made Honorary
Member of The Japan Magic Association on 18th March 1954, and was accorded
Reception by the various small and big groups of Japanese Magicians.
Sorcar was given a big reception in the Dinner Party of Tokyo Amateur Magic
Circle, of which he was
already the first non Japanese
Honorary Member since June 1937, while Dr. T. Ogata was its President.
At that time Sorcar's Magic was filmed, taped and photographed from the
different angles for the future reference and records. Urataro Uehara IBM,
Iwaji kodama, T. Sakamoto, and many others became his first friends, and
rendered every possible help to the visiting Indian Magician. Sorcar with
his amiable nature, friendly disposition, and big eye-catching stage
illusion show made a great hit amongst all the Japanese Magicians. No wonder
that his photographs appear in many of the Japanese books on Magic. He
got spontaneous receptions from the Press and the Public of Japan. But
the Great Sorcar show IND-DRA-JAL made the real hit during his Cultural
Exchange tour to Japan in 1964. On 6th February 1964, I was present along
with hundreds of journalists and many hundreds of press photographers during
his opening performance at San Kei Hall, Tokyo, under the arrangement of
the Art Friend Association and the Embassy of India in Japan. I was delighted
to meet Sorcar both on and off the stage and
I wrote many illustrated articles
about his fabulous Magic show in the Japanese newspapers and magazines.
All the National magazines and newspapers of Japan published Sorcar news
and stories most lavishly. The Mainichi Graphic on 8th March 1964 and The
Asahi Picture News of 21.2.1964 (these magazines of America in quality
and size) devoted their valuable four Full Pages with the multi-colour
action pictures and portrait of SORCAR and his world famous INDDRAJAL.
His Cutting a Lady in Half with Electric Saw on an open table, Water of
India spectacle, feats of X-Ray Eyes, The Dragon Illusion, Floating Lady
(Aerial Suspension) were lavishly featured in all the Japanese National
Magazines and newspapers. Open any periodical, newspaper, even the monthly
juvenile magazines and you will find fantastic reports and dozens of action
photographs of Sorcar performing his miracles. On 3rd February 1964 his
show was televised by the Japanese Government NHK-TV.
full one month's run with full houses daily at the San Kei Hall, Tokyo,
the great IND-DRA-JAL party moved to other important cities of Japan with
the same show. That a Magic show can be so popular, so much lucrative and
so much astounding, was still beyond our imagination before this visit
of Sorcar to Japan. Japan has been visited by all the topmost illusionists
and magicians of the world but none of them ever got such fantastic reception
like the Great Sorcar. He has made the people of Japan Magic conscious
once again. The report of Sorcar being honoured by the President of the
Government of India by offering the award 'PADMASHRI' was known to the
people of Japan. The Yomiuri, National English Daily Newspaper of Japan
in its issue of February 6, 1964 stated under bold three lines heading
. . . "Invaluable Living Asset from India Brings Black Art". George V.
Nikolaidis published in another English Daily The Mainichi Daily News in
its issue of February 29, 1964 a big report about "Traditional Art of Indrajal".
On 28th February 1964 evening Sorcar and Company was given a Grand
Reception Party by the Indian
Ambassador Lalji Mehrotra which was attended by the top diplomatic officials
of other countries in Tokyo. Sorcar easily became the star attraction in
Tokyo. Sorcar easily became the star attraction and everywhere his fans
gathered in thousands to have his autographs and photographs. During the
shows, after the shows, in the airports, railroad stations, everywhere
Sorcar was received with profuse flowers garlands and bouquets. The highest
record was in Kushiro City (Hokkaido) on 27th April 1964 at 3-30 P.M.,
where Govt. Brass bands played, the Mayor of the City led the procession.
There was the traditional red carpet and the mile-long motorcade. Each
car had one big English Alphabet on it specially made of flowers and flower
garlands so that from the aerial view it will read: "THE GREAT SORCAR OF
INDIA WELCOME TO KUSHIRO". We have yet to see any top foreign dignitary
ever to receive such a fantastic reception. In every city Sorcar had full
houses, they clamoured for extra shows and further extensions. But
Sorcar stayed only FOUR months and then had to
leave Japan, due to previous
engagements in other countries But he assured another visit in his earliest
kept his promise. Sorcar and company visited Japan with bigger and better
show . . . they came to Tokyo from India on 29th December 1965. He repeated
his same success again this year and toured for full FIVE months. This
year the authorities booked the biggest possible theatres, sometimes the
sports centers and stadiums to accommodate the maximum number of audience
in each show. He opened at the Koshei Nenkin Hall, Tokyo having a seating
capacity of over two thousand in each show. the house was completely sold
out weeks in advance, so extra matinee shows had to be laid everyday at
2 P.M. at Yen 1500 top admission prices. Unfortunately, I could not attend
the Gala Opening Show of Sorcar this time, as I was in hospital. But luckily
the whole show was fully televised by the Fuji television directly from
the koshei nenkin Hall.
the whole show from my hospital sick bed. I saw the familiar face, I heard
the familiar voice addressing the crowd and the sky-rocketing applause
of the most enthusiastic Japanese audience. Sorcar's wardrobe is always
exotic and flashy, his orchestra in complete harmony with his illusions,
his smart assistants work with precision, flawless and perfect. His set,
scenery and lighting effects are most stupendous and above all his strong
personality and showmanship was prolifically commanding.
I have seen him appearing from the huge BOOK OF MAGIC on the pages of which
are the pictures of
Houdini, Robert Houdin, Kio,
Kalanag and our own Ten Katsu. The whole audience howled in joy when they
saw the life-like picture of Ten Katsu. There was a tear of joy in my eyes
when I found the King of Magic, my friend Sorcar appearing from the blank
India page. Sorcar showed illusion after illusion in quick succession.
In his hands everything worked like a miracle. Motor car vanished with
many passengers on board, the girl vanished from the suspended net, lady
astronauts took their aerial flight via Sputnik (Rocket) Illusion. Girls
were made to appear, disappear mostly from unlikely places, cut into pieces
with electric saw. There was an amazing Black art routine ending in beautiful
Cleopatra. The whole show ran like a well tuned engine. Later, I met Sorcar
on many occasions even in private, his hotel room where we had long long
heart-to-heart talks on Magic. Sorcar says, "When asleep I breathe Magic;
when awake I work Magic." Really SORCAR himself is MAGIC. When shall I
see him again???
(Written by Krishan H. Gandhi, Journalist, Nairobi, Africa). Reprinted
from The East African Illustrated Weekly Picha,
SORCAR: THE MASTER MAGICIAN
Sorcar performs his "Fastest Trick in the World"
Nairobi, Kenya State, Africa, March 1, 1959)
of international fame, P.C. Sorcar, has arrived in this country. He opened
his East African tour in
Nairobi last week at the Liberty
Cinema in the presence of a capacity crowd. He had arrived in Nairobi earlier,
accompanied by his troupe of
15 assistants and about 10 tons of equipment, direct from Tehran.
is an expert in his art and is considered to be the greatest magician in
the world. He proved this during
his shows here.
highlights of the gala performance in Nairobi was the sawing of a woman
in half. This he did in a very
realistic manner by a power-driven
circular saw. The woman was at first hypnotised and then placed on an open
table on the stage and then
cutting half through her stomach, to the amazement of all present. It was
not just the
cutting of the woman in half,
the woman was actually lifted from the table and shown to the public in
two halves! To
the relief of the audience,
the woman who was sawn in half, later appeared on the stage-hale and hearty.
It is said
that during the performance
of this item in Singapore at least 30 people fainted. To perform this very
Sorcar and his entire party
was air-lifted from Calcutta to New York to appear on the Coast to Coast
television network of American
National Broadcasting Corporation. For this act, Sorcar was paid a sum
item which created a sensation was when Sorcar cut off a piece of tongue
of one of his assistants,
who, he said, "talked too much".
Before he did this, he invited all the doctors and press reporters present,
stage to enable them to have
a closeup view of this act. Sorcar explained that he was able to do this
operation by sending back all
the blood in the tongue to the heart. A pin was pricked in the tongue to
and when no blood was left in
the tongue, a piece was cut off and was inspected by those present on the
piece was later on joined to
the tongue. The doctors and reporters confirmed that the tongue was genuine
that of an animal or an artificial
one made of rubber or sponge.
performed many other equally good and interesting items. One, which brought
the house down, was when
he asked several members of
the public to write on a blackboard any figure or sentence in any language
world. No sooner had those concerned
written whatever they wished than Sorcar immediately read back the figures
and sentences or copied the
drawings on the same board- all this when completely blind-folded with
a dark thick
handkerchief tied on his eyes
which had also been plastered with wet flour dough. Other items included
a number of
card of tricks and several items
in which he vanished his assistants as well as several birds from the stage.
scene he produced four alive
ducks from an empty trough by firing a shot in the air with a gun. During
the last item
of the show, while performing
on the stage, he disappears from the stage and reappears in the auditorium
theatre while the onlookers
are all wonder struck to see him appear in the auditorium from nowhere.
own orchestra provided excellent Indian background music during the performance.
The stage was
very nicely decorated and the
background curtains were really very attractive and provided good settings
individual item. At the end
of the programme, Sorcar praised the beauty that is Nairobi. He said that
he was greatly
impressed by the hospitality
of its people and commended on the number of cars that were to be seen
in the City.
who is 46, was born in India in a family of magicians. He has travelled
around the world though this
is his first trip to Africa.
We are indeed fortunate to have amongst us a really great and world-renowned
artist in the
name of Sorcar.