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Friday, May 19, 2006

The Magical World of Glenn Bishop

Glenn Bisiop - Bish the MagishGlenn Bishop, also known as "Bish the Magish" is a long-time friend of mine. He is a second generation magician & hypnotist, currently living in the St. Louis area.

Back when he lived in the Chicago area we worked together on several occasions. I'm fairly certain our paths first crossed at a New Year's Eve gig in the northern suburbs some time around 1988. Back then he had a cable access program called the "Magical World of Glenn Bishop". The show featured his own magic and illusions, guest performers, and a lot of horsing around. I appeared on the show a few times and still have some of the tape to prove it. It will take a lot of alcohol or sexual favors (or both!) for me to send it out, so all you Andy Martello collector's out there, keep that in mind!

Glenn has always had a lot of big plans and ideas about marketing & selling entertainment acts & products. He's also a good friend with a good act. I've not been able to see his hypnosis show in all these years, but I hear he does that program to delighted audiences more than anything else these days.

I mention Glenn because I found out he has a blog. Now if you are a fan of magic, love stories about show business, enjoy photos of CLASSIC performers, and are genuinely interested in reading some good material about all of the above you should definitely check out his blog. If you know where to look you'll even find a mention about little old me!

Glenn recently posted about a show we did together at an old theatre in Viroqua, WI. I'm all but certain it was the Temple Theatre. It was a cool theatre in dire need of some love and attention (translation: MONEY) for repairs. In days past it housed some of the greats of Vaudeville. If I am thinking of the right place, it seems that there has been some love and money spent there since then and that makes me very happy.

Viroqua was the home of the National (or possibly the WORLD) Ski-Jumping Championships and that single event was the biggest draw that has ever played there before or since our little show. Naturally our show (we actually had two scheduled that weekend) was scheduled the exact weekend of the ski-jumping. To make things even more fun, we had to drive through an awful snowstorm to get there, all to find out we were destined to have a minimalist crowd for both of our shows. We were professionals. We were ready to bring on the goods, nonetheless.

My fondest memory of this show had nothing to do with my actual performing on stage. Rather, I enjoyed visiting Dan Mott, one time producer of Glenn's TV show and current host of his own radio program in Viroqua. Dan helped put together this theatre show and brought the performers on the radio with him to promote the program, answer calls, and so on.

I, being a comedian (translation: ASSHOLE), couldn't resist the urge to have some fun at the expense of the competing ski-jumping championship. During one of my segments I broke in with a special announcement of paramount importance. Out of the blue I announced on the radio that the championships were, quite suddenly, CANCELLED! Everyone in the studio was busting out in hysterics as I rattled on some improvised tale about there being, "just too much snow to carry on such a silly event." It was pretty funny.

Of course, nobody told me that the ski-jumpers had spent about ten grand in advertising at the station (We spent less...translation: ZERO) and I caused something of a minor panic for a brief amount of time. Of course I knew that most folks could figure out I was joking, especially after I made a point of spelling it out to everyone later on in the show. Hey, I was just out for a laugh.

The two shows went pretty well and there was about 1/2 the theatre filled each time. We all enjoyed some friendly people, home cooked meals, a little pocket change, two long drives, and some good times.

Glenn Bishop, Andy Martello, Dan Mott, & Friends in ViroquaPlease stop by Glenn's site and say HI. Check out some of his DVDs if you're into learning a few card tricks or just like magic. Hey, you can even leave a comment on the Viroqua post and comment about how devastatingly handsome I am. I, the "top comedy juggler", am the really fuzzy looking one in the tuxedo. He really needs a better scanner, if not a better camera. LOL!


Blogger golfwidow said...

Dude, everybody's fuzzy.

6:15 AM

Blogger Glenn Bishop "Bish The Magish" said...

I was reading your blog, thanks for the plug and I hope you are doing great.

That picture I used to use when I was performing at "Bit O Magic". Bill Weimer used to call me the winner of the young Orson Well's look alike contest.

Those were the days.

Great to see you old friend.

9:01 AM

Blogger Andy Land said...

Same here, Glenn. Good to see you out and about. Love all the old phoitos and stories you've been posting at your place. I'm sure all the magic geeks are shining their wands every time they visit. lol

9:08 AM

Blogger Webmiztris said...

I went to a hypnosis show one time. I got picked to be one of the people to go on stage and get hypnotized. I didn't become hyponotized, but I kept going through the motions because I didn't know what the protocol was. If you don't become hypnotized, should you just leave the stage? Gosh, I felt stupid!

12:24 PM

Blogger Andy Land said...

Well, young lady, here's a little secret that most hypnotists won't ever tell ya. Your story is pretty common.

It happens quite often and most folks will play along and enjoy the fun for the very reasons you described.

In general, most folks who volunteer to be on stage, especially for such a show, expect to do oddball things and can use the hypnosis to get them out of people thinking they're really that crazy.

But don't tell anyone. Shhh. ;)

10:38 PM

Blogger Glenn Bishop "Bish The Magish" said...

It is interesting about hypnotism and the fact that many people have no idea what hypnotism is.

And when they go under they don't know that they go under. I can't speak for other hypnotists but I can tell if they are not under, under light hypnotism or deep hypnotism.

I get rid of the people that are not under. Keep the others even if they are only under light hypnotism.

Because once they relax, they go deep very fast and often are the best subjects for a show.

As a hypnotist that entertains the audience I do not consider it my job to prove that the subjects are under or not. Often they will say that they are not under if asked - and they were.

My job is to do a good show and entertain the audience.

10:49 AM

Blogger Andy Land said...

That's probably why you're still a working entertainer after all these years. You entertain the audience.


5:20 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Max is a little late checking in with you Andy. I well remember the Viroqua gig and Glenn's show where you had the Teddy Ruxpin and that lovely centerfold of "Yassar"!! It really didn't get any better than that!
We were all a bit younger then. What worries me these days is the fear of getting younger still...and then comes birth!

Always and with love,

Max Stout (

9:28 AM


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