GEORGE DEMOTT'S SIMPLIFIED DEVIL STICK ROUTINE ILLUSTRATED BY JOE MARSH
1. Starting position
2. Toss Devil Stick up in air and catch on hand sticks as in No. 1.
3. Toss D.S. in air one full turn and catch between hand sticks and immediately start rocking it back and forth between hand sticks.
4. Turn D.S. over between hand sticks one full turn in air to the left, and then to the right, and continue this, alternating right and left pitches. Then back to rocking motion of No. 3.
5. Toss D.S. in air with two full turns to left, and two full turns back to right and continue, rocking motion as in No. 3.
6. Tilt D.S. from stick to stick at upper end. Do this about a dozen times and then back to rocking motion of No. 3.
7. Work the D.S. into horizontal plane and spin it round and round between hand sticks. Continue this about a dozen spins then back to No. 3.
8. Same move as No. 6, then back to No. 3.
9. Catch D.S. on to of hand sticks as in No. 1.
10. Toss D.S. high in air and transfer left hand stick to right hand. Catch D.S. as it descends by center with left hand and do the "wrist twirl" as done with batons.
SHOOTIN' THE BREEZE with ROGER
Doug's new booklet, "How to Book and Play School Assemblies" is off the press and ready for delivery. Many jugs have written expressing an interest in this publication since we first mentioned working on it, over a year ago. In Doug's concise, unpadded style, he reveals the inner workings of independent school booking. If you ever intend to work schools and do the booking yourself you will want to read this publication. You can get an autographed copy by dropping Doug a buck, % Box 711, Tulsa -- Many inquiries have been coming in for instructions for manipulating Devil Sticks and in this issue we are happy to present George DeMott's Simplified Stick Routine.
We remember years ago when we ordered a set of sticks from Van Wyck we received the set but no instructions. What a situation - we didn't know whether to toss, balance them, or what, so we stuck them away in a closet. George, incidentally, has favored us with his new photo montage and booking folder which is replete with action shots.
October 6th who should drop in but Larry Weeks who was USO ing at Muskogee and bussed in to Tulsa to repay our visit to Juggle Inn about a year and a half ago. We talked and ogled juggling for almost 10 consecutive hours but we'd hate to be quoted on anything that transpired during the last three hours. That guy has more ideas salted away than you could shake a devil stick at but darn if we could put enough pressure on to get him to release a few choice items for publication in you know what -- but we enjoyed trying anyway. One thing we like about Larry is that he doesn't beat about the bush and when we asked for some juggling ideas for publication he showed us why he feels he cannot author such articles. Here are the reasons -- If the ideas are his original ones he doesn't want to reveal them until he has used them in his act and discarded them. If the ideas are not original ones, their revelation might put Larry in the dog-house with other pros who might claim them as originations. That is, in brief, why more pros will not share their juggling knowledge in printed form. Now we believe it neither wise nor ethical to print another man's material word for word and action for action but we do believe that progress is made only by taking a basic idea and elaborating on it or changing it to fit your style. There are very very few original feats performed by jugglers today. Almost without exception they have seen or heard of a trick - have added some bit of business or perhaps performed the same basic move with an entirely different object and called it original. The problem of originality is one that, like in every other field of endeavor, can never be completely solved to the satisfaction of everyone involved, but we do believe that the more ideas that are published the easier the solution becomes for only by checking what has been printed before can you know what variations and developments can be considered new or different.
Another point in favor of printing and gathering together of as many ideas as possible is that it makes it easier to develop a new routine. Take any page of Joe Marsh's novelty juggling ideas and sit down for a few minutes. Several variations of each idea he presents will come to you if you just mull over the possibilities. You may even surprise yourself and find that by a few minor changes you have a trick that exactly fits your style of working. Yet if you didn't have these ideas pictured in print before you the task of developing some thing for your act becomes more difficult. By coincidence, a week after Larry's visit we receive Doug's article, "What's Wrong With Juggling", which is printed in this issue. Read it over a couple or more times - that's pretty straight shootin' -- or do you think so? -- Lecture ended.
Lorraine Stevens penned that she was working a routine for an ice show and inquired if anyone could give her the secrets to unicycling on ice. Then a little later another letter informing us she had broken her ankle while ice skating and will have her leg in a cast for about 3 months. Lorraine says, "I am thinking of a new act to do. I sing but have never put it to use - maybe something cute could be worked up on the Dorothy Shay style. Will go out on crutches. It will be some time before I'll be able to skate again. In the meantime I'd like to learn some new juggling." Come on Jug Juggleson- how about a routine for a gal with a broken ankle.
Lew Henderson who is resting in K.C. after a strenuous season with Bailey Bros Circus sends a few shots of the Henderson Trio in action and puts in an urgency call for 17 inch wooden hoops. Anyone having three or four, or more of the 17 inch wooden concave bentwood hoops like we formerly sold, and willing to sell them, please contact either Lew or the Bulletin. If you are not using your set of hoops they will be greatly appreciated by the Hendersons.
Al Conner reports he is starting 36 weeks school work after a busy Fair season, and relates of a Swede on the Fair circuit who unicycles and juggles 6 hoops, or five clubs and with a specialty of a one finger stand with finger in a quart bottle. "Some trick" says Al -- George DeMott starts another tour for the Bureau of Lectures of University of Kansas which will probably bring him into Tulsa later in the season. George reports a visit with the Elgins at Bloomsburg, Pa. the last of September -- John Loksa reports considerable juggling doings in Cleveland the latter part of Sept. with Charles Carrer at Alpine Village, The Ice Capades with Trixie, and Ben Beri at the Palace Theatre. John also writes of a report that Jimmy Savo will appear in a picture with Frank Sinatra called "Barnaby" in which he plays the part of a juggler. "I have enclosed a snap of myself doing the parasol trick. The stand that you see at my feet is made to hold my apparatus. It holds my clubs, balls, parasol, cane, hoops, etc. and makes it mighty handy when performing out in the open away from tables, chairs, etc."
Topper Martyn sends the book, "Shake the Bottle" which contains an excellent page of his pics and a page or so of anecdotes. Very enjoyable reading, thanks, Topper. Martyn further writes, "Joe Marsh came to spend a few days juggling with me in London some time ago and we tried to look up those jug articles mentioned as being in the Harry Price collection at London University Library, in one of the early Bulletins. Well, Harry Price is a famous spiritualist and 99% of the collection are books on Spooks so Joe and I were taken for a couple of cranks at the library and didn't have much success in locating the jug books and bits. We thought the librarians expected us to do the Indian Rope Trick any minute. Anyway I wrote to Harry Price and he replied that most of his collection was stored in packing cases in the basement of the library and that there was nothing of any interest to jugglers in the collection. Topper sends the dope on the rolling coin in light shade which we'll print in a future Bulletin. -- Want to learn to be an excellent boomerang hat thrower? Go to Blowing Rock in Great Smoky Mountains (Western N. Carolina). Throw your hat off the rock and it will come back to you. Paging the Elgins!
JOHNNY JOANNIDES, ANDRE REVERHOS, SERGIO CHIESA, VINICIO CHIESA, HARRY LIND, FREDDY FORGEUR
JOHN LOKSA -- a prop's prop
LORRAINE STEVENS -- a cast for a prop
WHAT'S WRONG WITH JUGGLING? by DOUG COUDEN
Juggling today has reached a stalemate. This is due, I believe, to the fact that pros do not like the idea of having "tricks of the trade" made public property. This idea was expressed in a letter from Larry Weeks in which he stated that he did not believe that tricks or trade secrets should be published in the Bulletin. Perhaps others among the pros have this same idea. judging from the deep silence which prevails among the pros - neither Roger nor I receive informative letters any more from professionals perhaps it would be best to bring the whole matter to a head and call for a showdown on this idea.
True, the subscription list is the highest it has ever been, but the correspondence from professionals has dropped to practically nothing. Why? Surely I am not the only pro juggler in the country who believes that the Bulletin should be the medium of dispensing an all-out, uncensored type of material. What is holding pros back? There are many who are better qualified to write jug material than I am, I have had about fifteen years at it and many others have had many more years of experience as well as a better education than the writer.
Roger, in publishing the Bulletin, has done more for juggling than anyone else in the entire history of the art. All the material I have written for the Bulletin (enough to fill a book) has been done just for the heck of it as I have no financial interest in the sheet and, of course, the pub is not a money maker, so I have received no financial rewards for my prolific scribing. I have been glad to do it, though. What I do not understand is why others in the pro class do not devote some of their time and effort to making the Bulletin interesting. It certainly is not the American way to pan the writer or Roger behind our backs. Let's have the courage to come out in the open and have a frank discussion of whatever gripes the pros.
Just to subscribe is not enough. To make the Bulletin a medium of expression for all jugs, there is a real need for the ideas of many and not just a few. To survive, the Bulletin needs a number of writers. It should not be left to just a few. If, for instance, you do not like my corny stuff, the solution is simple - just start contributing something yourself. I could go on and on writing about juggling but I believe it would be more interesting to readers generally if there were a number of regular contributors.
If you like the Bulletin why not do something to keep it going? Remember, a column on juggling in the Billboard expired years ago because the same attitude prevailed then, "Let the other guy do it". Surely Roger will not continue indefinitely with J.B. in the face of indifference on the part of the subscribers. Come out in the open with your gripes. That's the American way. Let's have no gestapo among the jugs.
(Ed's Note: Doug has pitched the question hard and straight -- Can you answer? The Bulletin pages are open to any and all pros who can and will put their finger on "What's Wrong With Juggling")
INTERNATIONAL JUGGLERS ASSOCIATION NEWS
A LETTER FROM YOUR PRESIDENT-
Fellow Members of I.J.A.: As you all know, our organization was formed for the purpose of promoting and advancing the art of juggling and preserving its history in all its forms. In order to make that purpose more than mere words, each of us must do his part. One way is to contact every juggler you know or see and tell him what we aim to do. Show him how the I.J.A. can help juggling and help all jugglers everywhere. If possible, sign him up. Let us make sure, though, that we increase our membership by adding jugglers and not just joiners. Along with our plan to advance our art, it is my belief that one of our first tasks is the establishment of an official glossary of terms. Through its use we will all visualize the same thing when a trick or a juggler is discussed. This is a very large undertaking and the help of each of you is not only desirable but a necessity.
Through the pages of the Juggler's Bulletin we will begin to publish a series of these terms. As each of you see these published lists, look them over carefully, if you disagree, write in and tell us. Each of you is invited to send in your description of tricks and moves and what you call them. By our next meeting we should have quite a list, a list that will have been commented upon by the membership. This can be edited and adopted or otherwise at our next official business meeting.
By now you have received your membership card, heed the pledge on it. You are the beginning -- I am proud to be among the first of what should become a lasting and beneficial organization. Let's all work together to make juggling as a fine art, recognized as such throughout the world. Jugglingly yours, Art Jennings
STUFF AND THINGS by JOE MARSH
In off the red!
Manchester, England. Ever see a billiard table that waLks around and even tops the bills at the leading music halls? Well, we have one over here at the moment appearing under the name of Joe Adami, The Human Billiard Table. A really amazing performer he is. Joe plays a complete game of billiards on his back, wearing a green coat with Pockets filled to his shoulders and waist, also pockets on his shoes and chest. To see him make really tricky "cannons" and "in-offs" is a revelation and he claims to be accurate 99 shots out of 133. I have seen him do his act many times and never a miss yet. The balls are pushed along by the muscles of his back. The only other juggler I know of who works with billiard pockets is King-Repp, a German juggler, but he does not play the game in the grand manner of Joe Adami. I think this act is unique. My daughter, Brenda, who is just eleven years old, is quite an accomplished juggler now. She specializes in ball bouncing, doing a very nice routine with 3 and 4 balls. She also tosses 3 balls very nicely, does plate and cloth spinning and a spot of plate juggling. Brenda wonders if any of the Bulletin readers in America have daughter jugglers. If so, she would like to hear from them. How about it, you young jugs? We have a chimpanzee over here doing a juggling act! He works the stick-and- ball, does a club routine and a spot of balancing. Looks like being tough on us humans, if this goes on. The chimp is called Gubi. By the way, I am always pleased to hear from any jugglers and would very much like to receive photos of any act for my collection. How's about it? (Joe's address appeared in May Stuff & Things. Good work, Mr. Marsh from Manchester. Anyone else? -- Doug)
JUG JUGGLESON'S LETTER by DOUG COUDEN illustrated by JOE MARSH
Dear Roger. Well, we joined the By Golly Repetoire Players in Pa. just before they headed south. My arm was in a sling and By Golly said I couldn't play no parts that way but asked could I do acts and I said yes. Well, Roger, I used my noggin for the first night and here's how I done it. I buttoned my coat around my bum arm and By Golly introduced me as the Great Juggleson, European Novelty One Armed juggler. Marie assisted me and the act went like wildfire. I framed an act with tricks you can do with one hand like balancing a lit lamp on my head and juggling two plates in my right hand. Then I done the water spinning trick with a glass of water in a hoop and kicking up a saucer, cup, and spoon onto my head then comedy stuff with 1 plate. For the grand finale I closed with the fire baton spinning with tent blacked out while Marie was spinning the fire hoop, and it knocked them off the benches. Marie is clicking in all her parts now and I started to make myself generally useful in the candy pitch. It was hard to lug around the box of prize candy pkgs and make change with one hand but I sold as much as anybody. It leaked out I done a free act and By Golly said if I put it on opening night we'd only have to do 5 changes so I jumped at the chance but we only get 50 bucks per week as a team which aint right. Well, we got by for the first week as I done my old Convict Act in the striped suit, the One Armed European act and novelty juggling in the white tux. Marie assisted me and for the 4th night we worked double again in a mental act which we rehearsed good. Then we were stuck but the Toby which is a cross between a clown and a comedian had some magic tricks in his trunk which he lent us so we done magic to fill. Not bad, not bad. Instead of lugging around a heavy iron manhole cover for my Great Manhole Cover Trick I use a heavy wood lid off a big dill pickle barrel. So Long, Jug.
RAMBLINGS ABOUT JUGGLING by GEORGE BARVINCHAK
After seeing different jugglers perform, isn't there a routine or a bit of business that always stays fresh in your mind? -- Like Ben Beri doing the tambourines to beautiful musical arrangements; Charles Carrer with the plate and bottle; Paul Nolan shouting his introductions to various tricks; Trixie hopping around the stage in her cute way, from one routine to another; The Swifts calling their partner Cecil, - first it's Cecil, then Casil, then Cesspool; Bobby May with his encore of catching the cigarette and lighted match in mouth and lighting the cigarette; Billy Barvin, tops for mugging; And of course the late W.C. Fields in his own nonchalant way; Whitey Roberts smashing plates on the platform getting laughs for his misses; Larry Weeks with his fast baton finish; Art jenning's novel giant club tossing; Marty Lynch's club toss up from between his legs getting a big howl -- all of which shows the vast possibilities in juggling, profiting the most by developing your own individual style of presentation.
Now at the music store can be purchased the Christmas Gift album "Our Lady's Juggler" narrated by John Nesbitt. Highlight of this memorable tale is that sequence where after the humble juggler performs his routine at the altar, the statue of the Virgin Mary comes to life and wipes the beads of perspiration from the minstrel's brow. The author of this story must have been a juggler.
Saw 14 year old Colleano go through a three and four club routine at the M.A.E.S. (Eastern States Magician) Convention and he did everything in the book with his three club jug. A nice act destined for a rosy future. Jos. Fleckenstein and yours truly enjoying a cup of coffee at the same convention and discussing the next juggler's Session.
The following reviews are reprinted from Stanyon's "MAGIC". These reviews are of interest both as a historical record of feats accomplished by jugglers in the past and as a source of material that, streamlined, would be new and acceptable entertainment for present day audiences.
EXPLANATORY PROGRAMMES See every issue from No. i, Vol I., to present date.
ALFREDO MARSCHALL, JUGGLER. OXFORD, LONDON, NOVEMBER 30TH, 'O9 "A DANGEROUS GAME IN A NAVAL PORT"
Stage set as a Naval Port - Sailor on "Sentry Go."
JUGGLING WITH CARBINE, &c. - Performer appears and, taking carbine, bayonet, and case awav from the sailor, juggles the three pieces (shuffle) finally handing them back again to the sailor who places them aside. Life-buoys, somewhat smaller and lighter than the ordinarv article, and with which he proceeds to juggle, shower of two in each hand while standing side on to the auditorium for the purpose of displaying the "circles" to advantage; concluding by throwing the buoys, with great precision, over the head on to the shoulders of a sailor attendant standing in the rear-ground.
BALANCING SAILOR - Sailor places top of short pole (about three feet long) against his stomach, where is a small turn table; performer picks up the pole carrying the sailor and balances all on his forehead; sailor now turns on the pivot afore-mentioned. A small cannon (minus carriage) is next placed on the top of a short pole suitably shaped to receive it, sailor then lays prostrate on cannon while the performer picks up and balances the lot on his head; now, while the balance is maintained the sailor fires a pistol at an empty frame on the opposite side of the stage, when a portrait of His Majesty King Edward VII instantly appears in the frame.
BALANCE OF LARGE CANNON AND SAILOR - Attendants bring forward a large polished cannon (minus carriage) and, having attached the ends of a double rope to rear and front parts, a sailor gets astride the cannon, when the whole is pulled into the air by the main rope passing over a pulley wheel in the "flies". The performer now comes forward with a special pedestal, the upper end of which he passes right into and through the cannon at about the centre, then places the other padded end on his head. The attendants now slack the rope so that the performer receives the whole of the weight which he then maintains in perfect equilibrium for some seconds. In conclusion the performer takes the pedestal away from the cannon which is then lowered on to the floor of the stage.
BALANCING A SMALL PIECE OF TISSUE PAPER ON NOSE - This is not a very important feat in itself, it is, moreover, comparatively easy to do so; It was no doubt introduced for the purpose of striking the greatest possible contrast between the weights to which the skillful juggler must accustom himself.
CANNON BALL, TENNIS BALL, AND PIECE OF PAPER - Juggles the three objects in the form known as "the shuffle", a feat, owing to the dissimilarity of the several objects, usually considered very difficult. It is not, however, so difficult to the expert as it appears to be to the spectators.
WITH ONE POLISHED CANNON BALL - Passing the ball from the bend of one elbow to the other ; rolling it rapidly round the head; rolling it down the back and catching it between the legs; passing it from one hand down the arm across the body (back and front of head), and up the arm into the opposite hand; throwing it high in the air and catching it on the nape of the neck, &c.
BALANCING SHELL ON PEDESTAL - The shell is laid on its side on the top of the pedestal suitably shaped to receive it, the opposite end being balanced on the chin. The pedestal is then knocked away and the shell is caught on The nape of the neck.
Four men here lift full sized cannon, mounted on carriage on wheels, on to the base of a sloping track, all in readiness for the concluding feat.
CANNON BALLS ON SEE-SAW - Three polished cannon balls are now placed in cups arranged in the form of a triangle and situated at one end of a board pivoted at the centre on a stand raised about a foot from the floor. The performer now places one foot on the opposite end of this see-saw and presses it down sharply, the result being that the balls are thrown upwards and towards him and he catches them one in each hand and one on his back; He then throws the one from his back over his head and juggles the three, concluding by throwing them in succession over his head on to the nape of his neck and jerking them thence right off the stage.
WITH EIGHT CANNON BALLS - These are arranged in a row in a trough like stand placed on the floor of the stage. An attendant picks them up one at a time and throws them in the direction of the performer, standing in the centre of the stage, who, ducking his head, catches them on the back of his neck, jerking them thence right off the stage, following those used in the previous trick.
SHELL AND SEE-SAW - A large polished shell with copper bands is laid on suitable supports on the end of the see-saw, as in the case of the balls above described; the performer presses his foot sharply on the raised end of the board with the result that the shell is thrown up and over his head and caught on his shoulders.
CANNON ON SLOPING TRACK - A rope is now attached to the REAR of the cannon by means of which it is drawn to the top of the sloping track afore- mentioned, and in which position it is fired, doubtless to prove its strength and solidity. The performer now takes up his position immediately in front of and facing the base of the track which finishes with a sharp curve in an upward direction. When all is ready he gives the word "let go". Then like a flash the Cannon rushes down the steep incline, when the curve at the base causes it to jump into the air over the performer's head and to alight on his back and shoulders, he ducking his head to receive it in such position. The under side of the carriage, doubtless padded, comes to rest on the performer's back, the wheels, by virtue of the rotation imparted by the rapid run down the track, continuing to spin with great velocity.
N.B.-The performance, which struck me as being very original, was certainly most deserving of the continual and prolonged applause it obtained. The above is but a rough outline of what actually happened, to be appreciated the performance should be witnessed.