The Outagamie County Historical Society (OCHS) and its Houdini History Exhibit of Appleton, Wisconsin will reveal Houdini's famous Metamorphosis Illusion when the exhibit reopens June 2nd. This has stirred up a tempest in a top hat as magicians all over the country including David Copperfield protest the exposing of this classic magic trick.
Metamorphosis is Houdini's signature act in which he is handcuffed inside a sack inside a trunk. He then frees himself and switches places with an assistant standing by the trunk. The OCHS display will let visitors climb in the trunk and see how it works.
Appleton is considered Harry Houdini's hometown. There is a Houdini "Metamorphosis" sculpture in Houdini Plaza in downtown Appleton.
Appleton hosts the "Houdini Days Magic Festival" in September. The festival organizers are also not happy with the OCHS's decision to reveal Metamorphosis.
Magicians say Houdini exhibit will damage trade
Houdini museum faces disappearing act
Houdini exhibit enrages magicians (with illustration of trick) [BBC, 4-Jun-04]
Houdini Exhibit Riles Magicians [TravelChannel.com, 8-Jun-04]
Substitution Trunk Trick [Google Answers]
Friday, March 26, 2004