Lance Burton (b. 1960)
William Lance Burton
Magician, Illusionist, Entertainer
Place of Birth
Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Burton possesses the ability of immaculate execution when performing his craft. He handles each magic act with perfect precision and finesse, as exhibited in his dove manipulation act which garnered him the title of "World Champion Magician."
Burton's stage shows are ladened with classical music. He is a financial supporter of the Las Vegas radio station KNPR - the only classical station in Southern Nevada.
Lance Burton was born on March 10, 1960 in Louisville Kentucky. His discovery of magic began at the tender age of five as a result of being taken to a Christmas party by his mother.
Performing at the event was magician Harry Collins. Little Lance volunteered to participate in a trick known as "The Miser's Dream."
Lance was amazed and fascinated as the magician plucked silver dollars out of his ears.
From that moment on, he was hooked and wanted nothing more than to become a professional magician.
A neighbor, hearing of young Lance's new interest, gave him a book, "Magic Made Easy," It contained 10 tricks, all of which Burton systematically mastered and performed for his neighborhood friends, charging them five cents each.
Magician Harry Collins noticed Lance's interest and took him under his wing when was in his teens, teaching him the fundamentals of magic. Lance practiced for 11 years before performing professionally.
In 1977, Burton still in his teens, entered his first magic competition and took first place. In 1980, shortly after his 20th birthday, he was bestowed the "Gold Medal of Excellence" from the International Brotherhood of Magicians.
Burton decided it was time to pack his bags and move to Southern California.
Bill and Milt Larsen immediately signed him up for their annual "It's Magic" show and used their contacts to have him introduced to all of America by Johnny Carson on "The Tonight Show."
His appearance made Lance Burton an overnight sensation.
The offers poured in for the new star. Lance accepted an eight-week trial engagement at the "Folies Bergere" in Las Vegas. His contract broke all records by being extended for nine years.
In 1982, Burton's career skyrocketed when he competed at "F.I.S.M.," an international magic competition in Lausanne, Switzerland, winning the "Grande Prix" that recognized him as a "World Champion Magician."
He was both the first American and the youngest performer ever to win this prestigious award.
Burton was invited back to "The Tonight Show" with Johnny Carson nine more times, for a total of 10 appearances and has appeared 5 more times with Jay Leno as the host. He continued on to appear on many television shows and star in his very own TV specials.
In August 30, 1993, he married magician Melinda Saxe, also known as "The first Lady of Magic." Their marriage dissolved and they divorced a year later.
In 1994, he entered into a contract to star in, produce and direct a new and lavish version of his "Master Magician" show in the Monte Carlo Resort & Casino which opened on June 21, 1996.
This 13-year contract is the longest legal agreement ever given to any entertainer in Las Vegas history. He was given a $27 million theatre built especially for him and designed to his specifications which has been named "The Lance Burton Theatre."
Burton has recently extended his contract at the Monte Carlo through 2015.
For more information, visit
Lance Burton's official website.
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