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the great houdini

Musical by Paul Graham Brown

Book, music and lyrics by Paul Graham Brown
(German translation by Moritz Staemmler)

Harry Houdini is the greatest escape artist of all times. He fascinated the masses in the early years of the of the 20th century and became one of the world’s most famous entertainers. To this day his name is synonymous for magic.

But the image of a man who could never be held back is a facade. Behind it is hidden a young boy who had been rejected by his father, and who as a Hungarian immigrant feels he has to push himself to unimaginable extremes to find his place in the United States of America. As he does so he unleashes powerful feelings in those around him, frequently pushing himself and his loved ones to the point of no return ...

"The Great Houdini" combines the magician's glamorous and spectacular show business world with the melancholy and desperation of the private man in his search for respect, trust and love. (text by Theater Hof)

"It's not dull for a second. Catchy melodies and great voices. It's a feast for the eye and the ear, [...] Paul Graham Brown's "Houdini" sets itself apart from other "new" musicals." (

"This Musical is really worth seeing. With its catchy, humorous and also sometimes melancholy songs, it creates a very special atmosphere [...] Highly recommended. Don't miss a chance to see this show." (www.

Production history:

Premiere at Theater Hof, October 2014
Showcase reading of the Czech language version "Velký Houdini" (Translation: Barbora Hancilová), Divadle na Orlí, Brno, Czech Republic, December 2014

Cast size:

6 women, 4 men plus choris & ballet

Scored for full orchestra (Flute, Oboe, Clarinet 1 (Bass Clarinet), Clarinet 2, Bassoon, Horn 1, Horn 2, Trumpet 1 (Flugelhorn), Trumpet 2, Trombone 1, Trombone 2, Tuba, Harp, Percussion, Drums, Piano/Keyboards, Full Strings)

Performance rights available from Felix Bloch Erben Verlag, Berlin