Legendary Vegas magician John Calvert dies at 102

Sept. 29, 2013 at 11:24 AM

LAS VEGAS, Sept. 29 (UPI) -- Longtime Las Vegas magician John Calvert died in Southern California last week at the age of 102, his Web site said Sunday.

Calvert first hit the stage in 1919, the same year World War I ended, and was still baffling audiences in the 21st Century.

"Calvert plays the part of a magician better than any actor I have ever seen, except for Harry, of course," Bess Houdini, widow of the legendary Harry Houdini, once said, the Las Vegas Sun said Sunday.

Calvert, an Indiana native, made an estimated 20,000 stage appearances in his career and played Vegas from the early 1950s until 2008, when he performed at the age of 97 at Gary Darwin's Magic Club. His "Magicarama" show was considered the longest-running touring magic show in history, the Sun said.

Calvert's signature illusions included the floating handkerchief and conjuring up lit cigarettes at his fingertips.

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