Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1)

Book by Steve Cohen
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4.6 | 14 reviews
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Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1)

25.00 usd

Book by Steve Cohen (25.00)

In stock.
Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1) - magic
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Evergreen by Steve Cohen. In his first book written exclusively for magicians, the exceptional Steve Cohen explores how he came to create the persona of the Millionaire's Magician, and the motivations behind his monumentally successful show in New York, Chamber Magic. If you intend to put your own show together or are curious about this intimidating process, this book will show you how. The through-line is Steve's belief that magicians ought not be trendy or topical, but instead "evergreen."

Astonishing Essays is our most ambitious publishing project to date. It's a TEN-VOLUME collection of small, attractive books that will make you a better magician. The concept is simple: we pair the very finest intellects in magic with a topic they're passionate about. Each collection can be read in one sitting; it's meatier than an article but shorter than a full book. Think of it as "novella" size. Brew yourself a cup of coffee, get comfortable in your favorite chair, and open Astonishing Essays to be transported to a new world. These books will challenge the way you think about your magic and expand your horizons.

Softcover. 57 pages.


Customer reviews for Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1)



Short and sweet book. A great source of inspiration to get started with your magic show.
Steve Cohen knows what he is doing, and in his book, he pours all the work behind the curtains before creating his successful show .
A must-read for all magicians who are looking to perform and sell a show!



I got so much from this booklet. Steve gives you all the little nuances you need to remember when considering an evergreen show, including things you've probably never considered (until it was too late). I've reread this several times and keep getting new information each time. This isn't a complex deep dive, but is a great overview for anyone considering a local show.



I really enjoyed this volume.

Steve comes across as intelligent, likeable and quietly determined. His ambition to put on a classy Victorian style parlour show is described, and boy has it paid off for him!

Some of Steve's practical performance tips are jewels. Now I wear an ejis undershirt to every gig!

If you are serious about putting on a show, buy this.



This certainly was an interesting read. I, like many of us I’m sure, struggle at times to look past my own opinions and ego to see where others are right. This essay was so well written and thought out, that it really opened my eyes to just how wrong I was about a lot of things. I look forward to putting some of these ideas into practice and seeing how that impacts my performance!



Short but very sweet. Advice on preventing sweat worth price of admission!



Steve Cohen has written a really great "how to" manual of building a show. While Steve pulls back the curtain on how he developed his show, he doesn't give away everything which is refreshing. People will be able to use this book as a guide and not a way to steal Steve's act.



There is a lot of published material around tricks and techniques, but not so much about structuring a full length show and everything that comes with it.

Steve Cohen has put together one of the most successful magic show in recent years and the knowledge and information on this essay reflects that experience.

If you are looking to put together a well structured magic show to perform for lay audiences this is filled with valuable information.

Highly recommended!

VI Monthly


This book or essential essay was fantastic. I really like the concept of parlor magic and having a show that is like an institution and embedded in the town, community or city it is in. The advice given from themes of magic, venue and to your costume/wardrobe is first rate. A ton of the invaluable advice Me. Cohen gives falls in line with the survey Josh Jay conducted on what audiences really think about magic, published in Magic Magazine. This book really goes into what it takes to make your show an Evergreen. If you want to know what that means, then pick up this amazing essay.



loved this book



For anyone who is trying to create a local show that lasts for a long time, this essay is a must. I have tried to perform a regular show for quite some time. The tips and details included in this essay have changed my perspective about different areas. I’ve always admired what Steve Cohen has done for magic and if this book helps others to create their own local magic shows, there’s a bright future for magic around the world.



I loved this essay. It’s not going to be for everyone but if you have ever thought about trying anything similar to Mr Cohen’s show this is a must read.



DISCLOSURE: I have personally known the author over the last 30 years but this review is entirely unbiased. “No great thing is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen.” --Epictetus Over twenty years ago, one of my great magician friends told me about an ambitious plan he had devised. Around that time, several magicians had begun experimenting with one-man shows, likely influenced by the late Ricky Jay who performed his long-running one-man show “Ricky Jay & his 52 Assistants” (1994) in New York. My friend planned to create his own show too, but with a twist. He proposed to recreate an actual “salon” as popularized in 19th century Europe, and pay homage to his role-model, the great 19th-century magician Johann Nepomuk Hofzinser. This new show began its life titled "Mystery Salon" but was shortly after changed to "Chamber Magic". The magician’s name is Mr. Steve Cohen and I believe this project served as the starting line to his success. His public show has been running for nineteen straight years and is consistently sold-out every performance despite the steep ticket price of $125 to $250 per seat. (For the past year, Chamber Magic has been ranked as the #1 show in New York City on the TripAdvisor website, including all Broadway shows.) As the famous magic writer and chief editor of Genii Magazine, Mr. Richard Kaufman wrote in Genii, “There seems to be a recent outbreak of good magicians performing one-man shows. Anyone doing this in a hotel venue has Steve Cohen to thank, since his Chamber Magic created the modern template.” Besides his successful show at the famous Lotte New York Palace Hotel and so many TV appearances, he also wrote the best-selling book Win the Crowd (Harper Collins, 2005); he performed his sold-out show Theater of Wonder (2012) at the world-famous Carnegie Hall; he created and starred in a 2 hour TV documentary Lost Magic Decoded (2012) on the History Channel; and he just released his graphic novel, The Millionaires’ Magician. His success is obvious at a glance. Many magicians, especially those in the younger generation, may say that they want to be like him, but this mission is not so easy. It’s impossible to perfectly recreate what he has accomplished. Some young magicians have made attempts but ultimately took on more than they could handle, creating something that was painful to watch. If you want to “mine” his performance material from this essay for your own overnight success, unfortunately, this book is the wrong place since that was not the author’s intent. But there is good news. Steve Cohen finally detailed his real secrets and the “behind the scenes” process about how to create a show from scratch. In other words, this is a documentary written in a simple and honest language, about one serious magician who deeply loves magic, and how he diligently worked to realize his dream over twenty straight years. I will refrain from revealing any contents from the essay, but you’ll be amazed how much he has poured solid thinking, passion, and heart into his ninety-minute show. This is not just a short-term or temporary project that enables the performer to brag that he is self-producing a show. It is about a longer-term, lifestyle commitment. Hence, this essay is titled Evergreen, named for the tree that is always in season. These are not cheap tricks. Even you have no intention to create your own show, you’ll learn a lot from this essay about what it is like to perform in the real world. (If I may add to his essay, another important factor about Mr. Steve Cohen is this: he effectively focused on building a career before diving into the world of a professional magician. In other words, he is a well-educated person who studied at Cornell University and Waseda University in Japan. I believe his academic career also helped lead him to later success.) I highly recommend this essay for every serious student of magic (especially if you are a young magician who wants to learn more than the latest card sleight). If you enjoy this book, I also highly recommend his best-selling book Win the Crowd. This is a book has been translated into six languages for the public, but we magicians can learn a lot, too.

VI Monthly


Many will not agree and I know Josh and Andi will have put a lot of work in to this project, but I was left a bit disappointed with this project. For those that are considering putting together a salon show or show at a fixed venue, this book will be invaluable as Steve Cohen shares years of experience and knowledge of what worked and did not work in setting up his show.

However, for those that are not considering this the Essay is an interesting read but I don't feel is value for money compared to other books out there. Also not sure I like the size of these books as they are an awkward height/shape to fit in a bookcase alongside other books. Personally, I would have preferred to pay $150 for all of these volumes to be published in one standard book vs. these small booklets.

For the performer not looking to set up a salon show, I feel that you will get better value from a book like McBride's Show Doctor or put your money toward a book like How To Make Love The Steve Spill Way. These both have some similar advice that is more broadly applicable to different types of magic, different settings, etc... and are great reads.



I was disappointed with the content. I bought this to learn about the business of producing a small magic show. The contents of the book are mostly about the authors inspiration, the types of props and tricks to use, what to wear, how to arrange seats, etc.

There was almost nothing in here about how to market a show or attract audience members.

I have no doubt this info would be valuable to a magician just starting out. I also have no doubt that Steve Cohen puts on a great show. For me, this booklet just wasn’t useful.


Professional Review Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1)

Community questions about Astonishing Essays - Steve Cohen (Volume 1)

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  • Kyle asks: How many essays in the series are currently available? Is it only 3 so far?

    • 1. Vanishing Inc. Magic responds: Three at the time of writing this. At least seven more expected.
  • Chi Han asks: When the trailer says 'Limited to 750 copies', does this mean there won't be a reprint? Is this really just a limited run?

    • 1. Vanishing Inc. Magic responds: Correct - 750 copies. They will not be reprinted.
  • Richard asks: So this is for just 1 book? How do I get the other 2?

    • 1. Vanishing Inc. Magic responds: If you search for "Astonishing Essays" on our site, you'll find the ones that are currently released.
  • Sean asks: Will there ever be a box set of all 10 essays available?

    • 1. Vanishing Inc. Magic responds: If we ever release any kind of box, it will also be available separately (for those who have already purchased the individual issues).
  • Danny asks: How do I purchase from the USA site?

    • 1. Danny answers: Button on the bottom rhs of the page
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  • Danny asks: How do I purchase from the USA site?

    • 1. Danny answers: Sorry I seem to have posted multiple times.
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