Terry Nosek. The Amazing Dr Sigmund Fraud.
I met Terry Nosek while I was planning a Las Vegas Celebrity Séance. I was committed to communicating through the veil and hosting the world’s first Lenny Bruce séance and the idea was that Lenny would communicate right back at us. That was where Mr. Nosek came in. The venue for the séance was Bally’s Resort and Casino in the heart of the Las Vegas strip. I had enlisted Ross Johnson, the most convincing mindreader in the world, to perform the séance with me. However anyone who has dabbled in the séance as performance piece can tell you “…it takes a village to achieve special effects in the dark.” Well, OK, not an entire village but a serious undercover crew fully equipped with flashlights, and (if you’ve been studying ‘séancemeister’ Eugene) creepy luminous bird gizmos waiting in the darkened room.
Terry Nosek was my undercover administrator as we did our best to scare and amuse the four hundred people in our audience. The best part of the séance was that it allowed me to get to know Terry and his wife Barbara. Almost instantly Terry became a very special friend whom I prized dearly.
I suppose there might be a more generous and selfless person in the magic community than Terry Nosek but if so then I am yet to meet them. I’m not holding my breath for them to turn up either! I have been performing magic for over forty years now but I am a very private person and can count on one hand the true friendships I have made in this business. I have never found a better friend or kinder gentleman in my magical journey.
Actually our first encounter was in Hank Lee’s magic store in Boston. We didn’t meet in person but that was when I purchased a copy of Terry’s book “The Mental Magic of Sigmund Fraud.” This was a perfect book, smart and clever magic that had laughs galore. Ten years later Frank Zak introduced me to Nosek in person and I began to realize how tiny a tip of the iceberg that book was when you were dealing with the delightfully devious mind of Dr. Fraud.
Terry had a dry, unassuming quality that covered an amazing knowledge of magic. If I had a questions about a specific effect or routine all I needed to do was call Terry. If he didn’t know the answers he would quietly do some research and before you knew it an email would arrive with detailed responses my question. Better still the next time we’d meet he would have a manilla folder packed with detailed notes, facts and information about the topic in question. His knowledge was ocean’s deep and his research immaculate.
Terry Nosek was also a superb entertainer who performed for every kind of audience from full-scale corporate shows to wandering mindreading. He was a very successful performer in Chicago’s highly competitive comedy club circuit. You have to be a pretty damn funny magician to make an impact in the hermetic world of stand up comedy and Terry was just that kind of performer getting big laughs while performing strong magic. Every aspect of a routine was simplified and polished until it was exactly right. No amount of care or attention to detail was too much.
Best of all Terry was able to take his intricate knowledge of comedy, magic and mentalism and actually put it into application. As modest as he was informed Terry Nosek was something very special and a credit to all that is good in magic.
I miss him.