Ricky Jay is the greatest playing card magician in the world, probably in history, and he will appear at Cornell Cinema on Tuesday 24 September for the showing of a movie about him, "Deceptive Practices."
Mr. Jay lived in this area in the 1960's, rumor has it, and spent hours practicing shuffles at the bar at the Rongonvian Embassy, although in following his career over many decades, we have never heard him talk about this chapter of his life. We are a little surprised he is scheduled to be here.
We are also surprised the show is not already sold out (we got our tickets), and will be shocked if it is not sold out at least somewhat in advance. Every few years, Jay performs a limited run show in a small theater on Broadway, and tickets are impossible to get for anyone less illustrious than, say, Jay-Z. Of course, the appearance at Cornell is not a show, and might be no more than a few spoken words, but Mr. Jay is a great story-teller and historian of both show business and the con. Chances are, brief appearance or not, at some point Mr. Jay, showman that he is, will produce a deck of cards and ask someone to pick one, any one.