Special NOVEMBER - Page 6

THE BEGINNING Jonathan Todd prepares to battle COVID .

Jonathan Todd was born and raised in Los Angeles - and his love of magic was kindled by his grandfather Julius A . Traum , who lived in New York and was working with Edwin H . Land , the man who invented Polaroid . It was Land and Traum who had created the concept for making moving pictures and through a mutual friend Land knew Houdini and together Jonathan ’ s grandfather and Land filmed Houdini doing an escape on top of a train . It was after meeting Houdini that JAT got bitten by the magic bug . Jonathan describes his grandfather as a ‘ dandy ’; a person who was very stylish and , and full of life and bravado . He remembers “ Gramps ” turning up wearing spats over his shoes . He was bigger than life to 5 , 6 and 7 year old “ JT ”. It was during one of his trips that his grandfather gave Jonathan a Timex watch and The Amateur Magicians Handbook by Henry Hay . What is interesting is that the book was very small and the pictures were a mirror image . Because Jonathan used to hold the book to keep it flat with his right hand , he would learn all the sleights with his left hand . It is for this reason he performed all his magic with his left hand , which he finds an advantage as it throws the audience off following the normal eye line .

By the time he was 12 he had joined IBM and The SAM . He says he was so into magic that he identified as a magician at that age . At 15 he decided to start working professionally and very quickly built up a clientele . Starting out at $ 25.00 he realized he could charge more and his fee after a month increased to $ 100 . He says , “ In the early 70 ’ s a hundred dollars bought you a lot of magic .” The first published story on
“ He was fortunate while growing up that nobody told him he couldn ’ t do something . This has served him well throughout his life .”