Broken Wand - Ricky Jay

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Broken Wand - Ricky Jay

Postby toucana on November 25th, 2018, 8:48 am 

Ricky Jay (Richard Jay Potash c.1946 - 2018) has died in Los Angeles. He was widely regarded as the finest card mechanic, and sleight-of-hand artist of his generation.

He was raised in Brooklyn New York, and began learning stage magic from the age of 4. His grand-father Max Katz was the chairman of the Magic Circle and introduced him to many of the most famous illusionists from the dying vaudeville tradition of stage magic.

Ricky Jay ignored warnings from his family not to pursue magic as his main career, and turned professional at 18. He found a niche in the emerging psychedelic counter culture of the 60s and recalled once performing a cabaret spot sandwiched between LSD guru Timothy Leary and Ike & Tina Turner.

Ricky Jay moved to California and settled in Venice Los Angeles where he lived for the rest of his life. He soon became a popular novelty artist and guest on LA based TV talk shows. This led in time to regular roles in several TV drama series and also a significant number of cameo film roles.

He quite often played the role of a card hustler, as in David Mamet’s film ‘House of Games’ (1987). David Mamet became so fascinated with his Jay’s skills that he later directed an entire film about him called ’Ricky Jay and His 52 Assistants’ (1996).
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