Harry Anderson, an actor who starred as the kindhearted, zany Judge Harry Stone on the long-running NBC comedy “Night Court,” was found dead early Monday at his home in Asheville, N.C. He was 65.
The Asheville Police Department, which confirmed the death, did not release a cause but said no foul play was suspected.
Mr. Anderson, who spent nine seasons presiding over a fictional Manhattan courtroom that played host to a steady stream of oddballs, was nominated for three consecutive Emmys, from 1985 to 1987.
“Night Court,” which ran from 1984 to 1992, more than held its own against juggernauts like “Cheers,” “The Cosby Show” and “The Golden Girls” during a storied period for television sitcoms.
“Night Court” was nominated for 31 Emmys and won seven. John Larroquette, Markie Post, Richard Moll, Charles Robinson and Marsha Warfield starred alongside Mr. Anderson.
Judge Harry Stone shared more than a first name with the actor who played him: Both the character and the man donned colorful ties, were magicians at heart and were superfans of the jazz great Mel Tormé, known as the Velvet Fog, who made several guest appearances on “Night Court.” Mr. Anderson was a eulogist at Mr. Tormé’s funeral in 1999.
While he earned critical acclaim and amassed a devoted fan base on “Night Court,” Mr. Anderson never fancied himself an actor. “I’m a magician, or a performer, by nature, and that’s always what I’ve been,” Mr. Anderson told WGN-TV in Chicago in 2014.
“I was never really an actor,” he said. “I was a magician who fell into a part on ‘Cheers.’”
His role as the swindler Harry (the Hat) Gittes on “Cheers” — he appeared in six episodes, four in the first two seasons — led to his break on “Night Court” after he impressed the legendary television executive Brandon Tartikoff.
Even Harry the Hat echoed Mr. Anderson’s real life. In 1985, he told People magazine that he used to run a classic street hustle, the shell game, in San Francisco, where, at 21 years old, he had his jaw broken by an opponent who was livid at the game’s outcome.
Mr. Anderson, one of three children, was born on Oct. 14, 1952, in Newport, R.I., and spent much of his childhood on the move, often performing on the streets for money, he told People. By 16, he had lived in many cities including Chicago, New York, St. Louis and New Orleans. He landed in California at 16 years old and from there found success as a comic magician, which opened the door to his acting career.
About his mother, he said to People: “She was a hustler, yeah. She did a lot of things. We moved around a lot, and she had a lot of men friends.”
His childhood, though, was not bad, he said, adding that his dubious background should not be viewed any differently from his mother’s. “I respect my mother; she was very concerned with taking care of us,” he said. “She did what needed to be done to try to keep us together. People find my criminal days amusing, but they find her background shocking. I don’t draw any line.”
Mr. Anderson told People that his father was a salesman who was mostly absent from his life, and that he had not seen him for 15 years before his death.
Mr. Anderson is survived by his wife, the former Elizabeth Morgan, and two children from his first marriage, to Leslie Pollack: Eva Fay Anderson and Dashiell Anderson. Information about other survivors was not immediately available.
Before “Night Court,” Mr. Anderson appeared on “Saturday Night Live” several times. He hosted the show at the height of his fame, in 1985.
After “Night Court,” he played the newspaper columnist Dave Barry on the comedy “Dave’s World,” which ran on CBS from 1993 to 1997. In 2008, he appeared in an episode of “30 Rock” titled “The One With the Cast of ‘Night Court.’”
In 2000, Mr. Anderson and his wife, Elizabeth, moved to New Orleans, eager to return to his roots. They opened the nightclub Oswald’s Speakeasy, where he performed, as well as a magic and curiosity shop, Sideshow.
After Hurricane Katrina in 2005, though, tourism flagged and they were not able to keep their businesses alive.
The Andersons discussed their decision with The New York Times in 2006, the year they moved to Asheville.
“I had more people in my car last night,” Mr. Anderson said, a reference to the thin crowd at Oswald’s.
He and his wife had also become captive to the depression that affected many in New Orleans at the time, Mr. Anderson said. Despite efforts to support their community — Mr. Anderson opened his club for what he called French Quarter Town Hall meetings — and maintain their businesses, they decided to call it quits.
“I’m glad we tried to stay,” he said, “but I don’t want to be the person I will be if I stay here.”
Longtime Phoenix costume and magic shop closing after 72 years
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Easley’s Fun Shop in Phoenix
One of Phoenix’s oldest family-run businesses, a Halloween staple for many, announced Friday it would be closing after 72 years.
Easley’s Fun Shop, which has anchored the same spot at 509 W. McDowell Road for decades, made the announcement on its Facebook page.
Dear Friends and Family;
After 72 years of being a family business, we have decided to just be a family. This will be our last Halloween. Thank you for all your love and support over the years. We have loved being part of your lives.
The Easley Family
The message did not specify a specific date or reason for the closure.
It drew an immediate reaction among the store’s fans.
“Oh no … I just love going there have bought so many wigs and items even when it’s not Halloween. Love you guys thanks for all the amazing memories you have given,” wrote one customer, under the comments on the Facebook post.
“Bummer. Thanks for the many memories,” said another.
“As a kid, my dad and I spent a lot of time at Easley’s. He always speaks very highly of all of you. Hope you enjoy the time with your family,” added another of the more than 200 comments posted by Friday night.
The shop was opened in 1947 by founder Bert Easley, a former vaudeville magician whose name was long associated with the store. It started out as a magic shop, then spread to costumes, accessories and other gag gifts and novelties.
It has been run by generations of the family ever since.
Get your April 2018 Lota Newsletter hot off the press right HERE!
i.b.m. ring 55 1st annual combined installation s.a.m. & i.b.m banquet PLUS, dinner and show by tomas of chicago.
seating is very limited……
WE ARE ON TARGET TO SELL OUT.GET YOUR RESERVATION IN A.S.A.P.
This is an event you don’t want to miss @ $20.00 per person and a meal you won’t forget.
a show you’ll love.
show your support for both clubs new boards. incoming and outgoing board members
Saturday may 19, 2018
dinner …6: 00 p.m.
lecture Sunday may 20,2018 3:00 p.m.
pueblo Norte senior village
7090 e MESCAL STREET,
SCOTTSDALE, AZ 85254
special lecture Sunday 3:00 p.m. by Tomas from Chicago. same LOCATION. free to paid up members $20.00 GUEST. pay your 2018 club dues and get this lecture free plus all the upcoming lectures.
Ring 55 Ring Report March 2018
The theme for this month’s meeting was perform an effect from a magic magazine. This was another great meeting as all who attended got up and performed. Each member was encourage to look through their old and new magazines and not only show a trick they learned but also bring the magazine or article with them to share with those that were interested. There is a LOT of good magic in all of those magazines. Besides learning something new many of us got good feedback on how to improve the effect we performed. For example I admitted that while I liked the ring and rope effect I did I was stumped for a presentational angle. Thanks to some ideas I’ll be able to create a nice routine.
First up was our Treasurer Bob Coluzzi who did Fred’s Miracle with jumbo cards and a wooden stand. This is one of those effects that looks so good you almost don’t want to know how it’s done. Almost, we are still curious magicians.
Next was Ring 55 guest Saul Shatz from Chicago. Saul performed a Coin Matrix effect from an unknown magazine.
Scott Israel performed a piece called Poker Chip Divination. This Glen Gravatt effect came from a February 76 edition of Genii Magazine.
Jay Gorham showed us two effects the first was The Last Will and Testament by Ken DeCoursey and was printed in the January 1993 Linking Ring. The second was Royalty Of Cards from Linking Ring Vol 49 #7
Ron Wilson showed us a very clean coin vanish he learned from an old Abracadabra Magazine.
Last but not least David Goldberg demonstrated Wilmarth’s Miracle from the February 2018 Issue of Linking Ring. Those in attendance were stunned that David did not do another card trick this time around.
Ring 55 April Meeting
Hello All Ring 55 members. April is here Our April meeting will be Tuesday April 17th at Pueblo Norte in Scottsdale. The theme for this month’s meeting is:
SHOW ME THE MONEY MAGIC!!!
In honor of April 17th Tax Day when Uncle Sam does money magic of his own by making it vanish from your account and magically reappear in his. We are all encouraged to perform magic with money. Any kind of money magic. Coins, bills, mental effects with money. Many of us may be limited to penny effects since it will be tax day but hey a penny is still money.
Still on the topic of money this is a gentle reminder that dues are due. When you come to the meeting be prepared to pay up. It’s just $35 for a year of fun. On a side note our treasurer Bob Coluzzi was inspired by the recent Greg Wilson lecture to learn the art of pickpocketing. This is a VERY useful skill for someone in his position. If you haven’t paid your dues Bob may try it out out on YOU.
April is also April Fools month and this is one subject that I’m not fooling about:
The END of my term as President IS HERE!! It’s April time to throw me out of office and do your civic/magic duty and elect new officers. We do need new officers to continue on the fun of Ring 55 Please consider volunteering to serve as a club officer.
Social hour is 6 to 7pm with meeting starting promptly at 7pm.
Reminder eat something BEFORE you come as there is no food.
7090 E Mescal St.
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
Andre Kole SAM Assembly 248 Upcoming Events
Thursday, April 19th Chris Rawlins (and election) 6:30
Chris Rawlins is a Professional Mentalist, from the North of England.
In 2010 Chris published his first manuscript Mind Experiments, with the guidance of Kenton Knepper, which received critical acclaim from the Magic and Mentalism community.
Since 2010, Chris has shared more of this thoughts in various forms, 2012 saw Chris’s release of Roulette. A book full of Mentalism routines and some theory, that received great acclaim and comments from Bob Cassidy, Luke Jermay, Graham Jolley, Mark Elsdon, Marc Paul, Banchek, Peter Turner, Colin Mcleod, Chris Cox and Luca Volpe, to name a few. Roulette has since seen a second printing, been released as an ebook and also been recently translated into French.
In 2013 Chris spoke at much respected The Sesssion Convention, about the release of his clipboard peek REVEAL. Luke Jermay said REVEAL was and is “The ultimate clipboard glimpse.” This, like the rest of Chris’ work, received fantastic reviews, acclaim and comments from the Magic and Mentalism community. Soon after Chris toured Europe, lecturing all over France, the Netherlands and beyond.
2014 saw Chris release his first stand alone DVD with Vanishing Inc Magic, Leading Thoughts. Featuring live performances of effects from Chris’s catalogue, alongside some previously unpublished routines and ideas.
In the past 5 years, Chris has gained a strong reputation for creating modern, unique and creative material. Uri Geller says that “Chris is a creative, original thinker and a truly great performer, his skills and talents mesmerised me. I highly recommend you all to see him in action.”
Currently Chris works full time as a Mentalist and Performer, entertaining the real world, and sharing his routines, methods and approach to Mentalism in the Magic world.
May 19th & 20 Sat./Sun. Combined Installation IBM/SAM with Show 19th by TOMAS & lecture 20th.
Limited to 60 participants ONLY contact Bob Cozzari email@example.com ASAP @ Pueblo Norte
June 3 Sunday Spain’s outstanding illusionist , 2017 European FISM winner Adrian Vega @ Park Terrace
IBM meeting Tuesday March 20th regular meeting topic “tricks you’ve learned from The Linking Ring”
IBM West is doing very well and more details as they develop
MAGIC IN THE VALLEY:
I WOULD LIKE TO ASK YOU DO ME A BIG FAVOR. MY GRANDSON IS IN A CONTEST FOR THE BEST DESIGNED MUSIC STUIDO AND I WOULD APPRECIATE YOU VOTING FOR HIM. i REALLY DO THINK HE HAS THE BEST DESIGNED STUDIO.
HIS NAME IS DANE BLAESING #5.
PLEASE GO TO …. http://www.gikacoustics.com/ AND PLACE YOUR VOTE.
TANKING YOU IN ADVANCE