Profr. Hennicke in his Unrivalled Entertainment of Magic and Mystery...which have never before been performed in these Colonies. BRISBANE SCHOOL OF ARTS.

Profr. Hennicke in his Unrivalled Entertainment of Magic and Mystery...which have never before been performed in these Colonies.

Brisbane: Rogers & Harley, 1868.

Silk theatre bill with green ribbon border, 355 x 238mm.

Colonial Magic and Mystery

A rare commemorative silk theatre bill on the Lieutenant Governor's attendance at "Professor'' Hennicke's fabulous amusements at the Brisbane School of Arts. According to notices in the Brisbane Courier these entertainments of "Magic and Mystery" were to take place for "Three nights only" from Monday 29th until Wednesday 1st July 1868; Lieut. Governor O'Connell "and Suite" attending on the second night (being Tuesday 30th, not 29th June, bill misdated). The various acts included in Professor Hennicke's unrivalled entertainment, included the headline act The Sphinx or "Talking Head" described in the press of the day as "one of the most incomprehensible illusions ever exhibited to an audience". Similarly, his "Crystal Bottle or The Wines of Mystery" illusion was later described by one Tasmanian commentator as "altogether something beyond comprehension". He is compared favourably with the "great Wizards of the North" (!) for Hennicke's bottle is "pure crystal... yet out of this bottle he can pour any wine or liquor asked for without a moment's hesitation... port, sherry, chateau margaux, champagne, absinthe, brandy...": a useful trick in Australia.

A rare commemorative silk theatre bill on the Lieutenant Governor's attendance at "Professor'' Hennicke's fabulous amusements at the Brisbane School of Arts. According to notices in the Brisbane Courier these entertainments of "Magic and Mystery" were to take place for "Three nights only" from Monday 29th until Wednesday 1st July 1868; Lieut. Governor O'Connell "and Suite" attending on the second night (being Tuesday 30th, not 29th June, bill misdated). The various acts included in Professor Hennicke's unrivalled entertainment, included the headline act The Sphinx or "Talking Head" described in the press of the day as "one of the most incomprehensible illusions ever exhibited to an audience". Similarly, his "Crystal Bottle or The Wines of Mystery" illusion was later described by one Tasmanian commentator as "altogether something beyond comprehension". He is compared favourably with the "great Wizards of the North" (!) for Hennicke's bottle is "pure crystal... yet out of this bottle he can pour any wine or liquor asked for without a moment's hesitation... port, sherry, chateau margaux, champagne, absinthe, brandy...": a useful trick in Australia.

Hennicke was a celebrated illusionist, travelling throughout Queensland, New South Wales and Tasmania, there performing with The Barlow Troupe. He seemed to have spawned imitators for a notice in the Brisbane Courier informed the public earlier in 1868 "The gentleman who has given several performances in Brisbane under the names of Professor Hennicker, Abda-Shah, &c., requests us to state that he has no part in any performances at present taking place in this city and that it is without his consent that he has been publicly announced as appearing in any such entertainments." This entry spawned an arch response from the Secretary of the South Brisbane Mechanics Institute Henry Hoghton (perhaps trying as arts administrators everywhere to encourage patronage) "... Mr Osborne has never, during my short acquaintance with him represented himself anything but what I have found him --a pleasing and clever performer and gentleman. Mr Abda Shah, Professor Hennicker, or whatever else he may call himself, may (colonially speaking) 'shut up', for Mr Osborne certainly never has, and (my sentiment of him being correct) never will require to avail himself of any prestige from any person, however great in professions or aliases."

No doubt this was all very good for business. Certainly Hennicke's illusions and tricks were admired, and he was feted as a gifted practitioner of legerdemain.

Price (AUD): $1,500.00  other currencies Ref: #4504230

Condition Report