A man full of magic, Harry Houdini (18741926), history's famous escape artist and illusionist was born Ehrich Weiss on this day in Budapest, Hungary the son of a rabbi. Searching for a better life, his family moved to the U.S. in 1878.
At first a card-trick performer and acrobat, by 1900 Houdini developed an escape act. The 5'5" artist trained hard to develop stamina and dexterity until he was able to escape from any restraint-- chains, handcuffs, prison cells, padlocked underwater boxes. Anything. He became an international star.
A reviewer called him "probably the most mysterious and wonderful entertainer the world has ever seen."
Self-confident with a flair for exaggeration, Houdini made things appear larger than life, creating things magical and teaching the amazing transforming power of the imagination. "I have tried through many sleepless nights to invent schemes to make an audience appreciate some worthy effort of mine," he said.
Of Houdini, contemporary illusionist David Copperfield said, "his message was that every obstacle could be overcome. The escapes were a metaphor that gave people hope."
Create a little magic today.