- Houdini's Movies
- Les merveilleux exploits de Houdini à Paris (1909)
- The Master Mystery (1918)
- The Grim Game (1919)
- Terror Island (1920)
- The Man From Beyond (1922)
- Haldane of the Secret Service (1923)
- Velvet Fingers (1925-26)
- Medium Well Done (1937)
- Religious Racketeers (1938)
- Houdini Picture Corp.
- Film Developing Corp.
- Filming locations
- Unmade Movies
- Deconstructing Houdini '53
- Beatrice Houdini
- Theo Hardeen
- Cecelia Weiss
- Mayer Samuel Weiss
- Jim Collins
- Franz Kukol
- Martin Beck
- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- J. Gordon Whitehead
- Edward Saint
- Jacob Hyman
- Leopold Weiss
- Carrie Gladys Weiss
- Bernard M.L. Ernst
- Charmian London
- Jess Willard
- H.P. Lovecraft
- Sherlock Holmes
- Other magicians
- Full Bibliography
- By Houdini
- For Kids
- Wild About Harry Bookshelf
- Houdini His Life Story (1928)
- Houdini The Man Who Walked Through Walls (1959)
- Houdini The Untold Story (1969)
- The Life and Many Deaths of Harry Houdini (1993)
- Houdini!!! The Career of Ehrich Weiss (1997)
- The Secret Life of Houdini (2006)
- The Metamorphosis: The Apprenticeship of Harry Houdini (2012)
- The Witch of Lime Street (2015)
- The Life and Afterlife of Harry Houdini (2019)
- The Official Houdini Seance
- Terror Island screening on Catalina (2018)
- Visiting the Copperfield Collection (2018)
- 278 Open House (2017)
- Los Angeles Conference on Magic History (2015)
- Official Houdini Séance, San Francisco (2015)
- Houdini Historical Roast (2015)
- Midwest Magic History Weekend, Marshall (2015)
- The Grim Game premiere in Hollywood (2015)
- Houdini at Hollywood Heritage (2014)
- Official Houdini Seance, Fort Worth (2012)
- Magic Collectors Weekend, Chicago (2011)
- Houdini Art and Magic exhibition (2010-2012)
- Tony Curtis at The Magic Castle (2009)
Friday, November 8, 2013
Discovering Houdini's Los Angeles Orpheum
Here's another one for those in town this week for the Los Angeles Conference on Magic History. If you are Houdini location hunting downtown, you might be excited to discover the Orpheum Theater on Broadway with full marquee and towering sign still atop the building. Of course, it was at the Los Angeles Orpheum where Houdini had his famous verbal joust with Jess Willard in 1915. But keep those cameras holstered, because you're in the wrong place!
The Orpheum Theater at 842 South Broadway was actually built in 1926. The historic Orpheum from Houdini's era is located a few blocks away at 630 South Broadway and is now called the Palace Theater. This was the site of Houdini's encounter with the heavyweight boxing champ.
Houdini actually performed in three different L.A. Orpheum theaters during his career. In 1899 he performed at the Grand Opera House at 110 S. Main St., which was the theater the Orpheum circuit used at the time. In 1903, Orpheum built their own theater at 227 S. Spring St. It was here that Houdini performed in 1907. That theater become Fischer's Lyceum in 1911 when Orpheum moved into their spectacular new theater at 630 South Broadway.
This was Orpheum's home during the Golden Age of Vaudeville. It not only saw performances by Houdini (in 1915 and 1923) but also Al Jolson, Sarah Bernhardt, the Marx Brothers, W.C Fields and Will Rogers. It was renamed The Palace in 1926 when the fourth and final Orpheum was built down the street. Today it is the oldest of the remaining Orpheum theaters in the United States.
While the first two Orpheum theaters are long gone, the Palace/Orpheum still stands. You can even still see read the Orpheum name on the facade. Today it is a rental space for film shoots and live venues.
Below are photos I took on November 3, 2013. The lobby was gated off on this day, but the good news is the theater occasionally allows tours. I will be watching for the next tour and hopefully bring you photos of the stage where Houdini bested the Champ.
Thanks to Patrick Culliton for guiding me via cellphone down Broadway to Houdini's correct Orpheum. For more on the Palace Theater visit the official website.