I Blogged Myself

Why do you always come here? I guess we'll never know. It's like a kind of torture, To read this blog, y'know.

Welcome to the most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, Muppetational blog since Kermit left just a little bit of the swamp in his pants.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Muppet Question # 22 Answered

At some point in the deep dark past (I’ve been unable to locate the actual question anywhere – perhaps it was in an email that has expired from my useless email account), Javatari asked something like ...

Who was the only magician (to my knowledge) to ever appear as a guest on
The Muppet Show?



His name was Doug Henning, and he was a Canadian magician who died of liver disease seven years ago. He was featured as the special guest star in the 21st episode of season four of The Muppet Show.

Henning’s magic shows were unique, in that he did away with the traditional “top hat and tuxedo” outfit in favour of bright, multi-coloured casual clothing and tights (“ooh err”).


Doug performs an illusion with Doglion
and the poorly-costumed 'Bird Dancers'


Most notable about him was his long, bushy moustache and long, wavy hair. Very ‘hippie’ for the time – and not what was normally expected of a stage magician. He also had an extremely broad and infectious smile.

He is credited with reviving the magic show as a form of mass entertainment in the 1970s and for popularising it on television. No doubt his appearance on The Muppet Show helping him quite a lot in that regard.


Doug performs an illusion for Robin
using two tiny handkerchiefs


Henning was nominated for Broadway's 1975 Tony Award as Best Supporting or Featured Actor in a musical for The Magic Show.

Perhaps most interestingly, Doug Henning ran for the House of Commons in Canada as a candidate for the fringe Natural Law Party in 1993.


Doug Henning
1934 - 2000



.

5 Comments:

At Thursday, March 29, 2007 4:54:00 pm, Blogger The Man at the Pub said...

Wow, that guy sure fitted right in. He actually looks like a muppet! Love the buck toothy grin. I don't remember him but your Muppetshow knowledge is extraordinary.

Nice one Bevis. Thanks for keeping alive good things, all too easily forgotten.

 
At Friday, March 30, 2007 1:19:00 pm, Blogger Javatari said...

Henning was known to be a really nice guy, and although his magic ain't really my style, he is fondly remembered in magic circles. Well done Bevis.

 
At Tuesday, April 10, 2007 12:14:00 pm, Blogger BEVIS said...

The Man At The Pub, I don't think I've spoken directly to you like this since you took on this new name/identity, but I like it! Welcome (sort of*). I love your comment about him looking like a Muppet. Very true. And thanks for the compliment - Muppet Show knowledge is a good thing indeed!

* Not that you're "sort of welcome" ... you're certainly very welcome, but it's only "sort of" that you're new here, if you know what I mean. (*sigh*)

Javatari, thanks. I certainly recall that in that episode of the show he came across as a really nice guy (in as much as it's possible to tell these things on TV). However, the term "in magic circles" puts me in mind of a large pentagon painted on the floor in goat's blood. I know it shouldn't, but it does. Too much Buffy, do you think? :)

 
At Sunday, April 22, 2007 4:40:00 pm, Blogger W said...

Henning was great and ran in my riding. My brother voted for him and wrote a paper on him for his politics class.

Thanks for this Bevis, nice to remember such a lovely man, who took the time to talk to me and my brother. And who was such a big part of my childhood.

 
At Monday, May 18, 2009 3:03:00 am, Blogger MARGUARITA said...

Doug Henning was more than a magician. When I saw him in "The Magic Show" on Broadway, he was charming and amazing, but much more was revealed about this man when I saw him at Adelphi University in New York in the 70's. He spoke of life being the real illusion, and that we make it as magical as we choose. He explained that life is like climbing a mountain, the higher we climb. the greater awareness we have. Most of the people just wanted to see "tricks", and you could see his sadness at that realization. Later, after the show,I told him how I understood what he was saying, and how meaningful it was to me. His whole face brightened, and I could feel an aura of such a gentle and loving individual. What a man of peace, a spirit beyond the realm of this earth.

 

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