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Stage Illusions and Entertainments
by Prof. Levani


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Stage Illusions and Entertainments by Prof. Levani

Excerpt from the Preface:

This Handbook is unique in its way. It endeavours to explain the work of the amateur stage carpenter and scene-painter; it gives instruction on producing various stage noises and effects, has a well-illustrated chapter on the art of theatrical make-up, and, in addition, reveals the secret of black art or Oriental magic. It is also a detailed guide to the making and manipulation of manikins or marionettes, and shows how to build and manage a living marionette theatre and how to make ventriloquial dolls. Novelty entertainments, such as rag pictures, etc., and paper manipulations are the subjects of special chapters; and the final feature is one for which many demands have been madeā€”full instruction on the making and working of a Punch-and-Judy Show.

It is hoped that both the amateur and professional entertainer will find in the pages of this book much solid information of a thoroughly helpful nature.

This book has one of the most detailed build instructions for the Legless Lady Illusion I have seen in books of this generation.

  • CHAPTER I Amateur Stage Building
    • An Easily-made Stage for Home Theatricals
    • An Extensible and Portable Stage
  • CHAPTER II General Stage Carpentry
    • Rollers
    • How to Rope a Roller
    • Making Profile Boards
    • Making Wings and Set Pieces
    • Borders, Ground Rows, etc.
    • Practical Doors and Windows
    • Vampires or Roll-outs
    • Floor Traps
  • CHAPTER III Scene Painting
    • Methods
    • Colours
    • Canvas
    • Brushes, etc.
    • Priming
    • Preliminary Work
    • Painting a Street Scene
    • Interiors
    • Draperies
  • CHAPTER IV Stage Noises and Effects
    • Horse's Hoofs and Cart Wheels
    • Birds and Insects
    • Animals
    • Dancing
    • A Crash
    • Wind
    • Thunder
    • Rain
    • A Fire with Pot Boiling
    • Fire
    • Snow
    • Lighting
  • CHAPTER V "Making-up"
  • CHAPTER VI Black Art or Oriental Magic
    • Stage
    • Proscenium
    • Curtains, etc.
    • Lighting
    • Apparatus
    • Performers
    • Preparation
    • Effects
  • CHAPTER VII Making and Manipulating a Manikin Theatre
    • Theatre Framework
    • Stage
    • Proscenium
    • Curtains, etc.
    • Lighting
    • Figures
    • Stringing
    • Manipulation
  • CHAPTER VIII A Living Marionette Theatre
    • Framework
    • Stage
    • Proscenium
    • Curtains, etc.
    • Figures
    • Manipulation
  • CHAPTER IX How to Make Ventriloquial Dolls
  • CHAPTER X The Legless Lady Illusion
  • CHAPTER XI Pictures: Smoke, Rag, Sand, etc.
    • Smoke Pictures
    • Rag Pictures
    • Hobble Skirt
    • Seascape
    • Lightning Sketches
    • Sand Pictures
    • Dissected Pictures
  • CHAPTER XII Paper Manipulation
    • Paper Tearing
    • Paper Folding
  • CHAPTER XIII Making and Working a Punch and Judy Show

1st edition 1923, 152 pages; PDF 94 pages.
word count: 30356 which is equivalent to 121 standard pages of text