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Inescapable: The Life and Legacy of Harry Houdini

June 24, 2018 @ 10:00 am - January 21, 2019 @ 5:00 pm

 

On view June 24, 2018 – January 21, 2019

 

 

Harry Houdini wasn’t born. He was invented.

 

The world’s most famous magician began life as Erik Weisz, the son of a Hungarian rabbi. In 1878 immigration to the U.S. transformed Erik Weisz into Ehrich Weiss. It was the first of many transformations for the man who would become the first international superstar.

 

Inescapable, curated by local performer and magician David London, tells the story of how Ehrich Weiss became Harry Houdini and investigates the technologies, marketing prowess and entertainment trends that transformed him into a superstar. On one level, the exhibit is pure fun – incorporating magic, escapes, seances, films, rare artifacts and hands-on illusions.  On a deeper level, the exhibit pulls back the curtain, revealing the story of the man behind the image.

 

In addition to the exploration of his early life, visitors will find sections illuminating stages of his life and career:

 

Setting the Stage describing the struggles of Houdini’s early life and the difficulties faced by his father, artifacts include a Hebrew bible that belonged to Rabbi Weiss.

 

The Self Liberator featuring a spectacular display of reproduction posters, photos and press clippings, as well as original apparatus, including a straitjacket and milk can that he used in his performances.

 

On the Cutting Edge investigates his exploration of new technologies and also features clips from his film career and a chance to listen to a rare recording of his voice.

 

Houdini’s Third Act: Exposing Frauds showcases his crusade against deceptive spiritual mediums.

 

The Final Bow/Curtain Call sets the record straight on the events that led to his death and explores the séances to contact him by his wife, Bess.

 

Houdini in Maryland shines a spotlight on his appearances in the state where he performed close to 100 shows during his career. This section also features Houdini’s personal diary from 1898 turned to the page recording his first tour of Maryland (before his success) where he where he repeatedly reports “no dinner,” as he could not afford to eat.

 

Throughout the exhibit, visitors also will have the opportunity to try out some of Houdini’s magic tricks, including the world’s smallest version of Houdini’s biggest illusion – making a five-ton elephant “vanish.”

 

 


Inescapable: The Life and Legacy of Harry Houdini is made possible in part through the generous support of our donors:

 

The Joseph & Harvey Meyerhoff Family Charitable Funds

Larry Boltansky

Jacob & Hilda Blaustein Fund for the Enrichment of Jewish Education

 

PNC Greater Maryland

The William G. Baker, Jr. Memorial Fund

creator of the Baker Artist Awards, www.bakerartistawards.org

Gert & Izzy Freedman

 

The Richard and Rosalee C. Davison Foundation

The Hackerman Foundation

Carroll A. Weinberg, M.D. and Charlotte Cohen Weinberg Foundation

 

Ira and Michelle Malis

The Kaplan-Kronsberg Family Charitable Fund

Donation arranged by David London from the Leonard A. and Linda K. Greenberg Charitable Foundation, Bethesda, MD

 

Greif Family Fund

Bill and Melinda Becker

Jeffrey Scherr and Wendy Jachman, the Alvin and Louise Myerberg Foundation

The Wolmans

 

Sheldon and Saralynn Glass

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Kaye

Gay Wise Foundation

Shelley and Sheldon Goldseker

 

In Memory of Max and Rose Winder

Larry and Evelyn Kamanitz Charitable Fund

The Chertkof Family

 


Public Programs:

 

The Psychic Contest
Sunday, July 1st at 1pm

 

Houdini Unbound
Sunday, July 15th at 1pm

 

Mrs. Houdini: The Woman Behind the Magician 
Sunday, July 29th at 1pm

 

American Immigration During Houdini’s Day, 1878-1924
Sunday, August 19th at 1pm

 

The Pursuit of Conjurors
Sunday, September 16th at 1pm

 

Street Show, Sideshow, Stage Show 
Sunday, October 7th at 1pm

 

Magic and Monotheism 
Sunday, October 14th at 1pm

 

Capturing Houdini 
Sunday, October 21st at 1pm

 

Houdini’s Magical Halloween Family Day
Sunday, October 28th

 

The Official Houdini Sceance
Wednesday, October 31st

 

Houdini in Hollywood 
Sunday, November 4th at 1pm

 

Film Screening: The Grim Game 
Sunday, November 4th at 2pm

 

The Might Atom
Sunday, January 13th at 1pm


Media inquiries should be directed to Rachel Kassman, Marketing Manager at rkassman@jewishmuseummd.org / 443-873-5163.

Details

Start:
June 24 @ 10:00 am
End:
January 21, 2019 @ 5:00 pm