Richiardi Jr. (1923-1985)
Aldo Izquierdo Colosi
Aldo Richiardi Jr., Richiardi
Place of Birth
Richiardi possessed the ability of extraordinary illusionary and conjuration skills. He became infamous for his dramatic and gory stage presentations of classic stage illusions.
Richiardi Jr. wanted to become a doctor prior to getting into the magic business. It wasn't until his father's death that Richiardi picked up the magic wand and continued his father's legacy.
Richiardi Jr. was born Aldo Izquierdo Colosi, on November 24, 1923 in Peru.
He came from a lineage of magicians. His grandfather, who toured only in South America, was the first to use the "Richiardi" name; his father, Ricardo Richiardi toured the U.S., where he was killed in an auto accident.
Beginning his performing career as assistant to his father, he began performing on his own in Argentina in 1943 performing as "Richiardi Jr." and later billing himself as "the youngest illusionist in the world."
A few years later he came to the attention of U.S. magicians with a trophy-winning performance at the Texas magic convention.
With an elaborate illusion show, he toured through Europe and South America; he later appeared several times in the U.S., including repeated bookings in New York and Atlantic City.
Richiardi Jr. made his name with a series of stage shows featuring versions of established illusions, such as the broom suspension, the vanishing lady and the buzzsaw illusion.
What made his shows distinctive was that he used fake blood and other techniques to give the impression that he really was cutting or maiming his assistants. In 1949, Time magazine noted that these shock tactics had made his act one of the top earning stage shows in New York.
He continued performing in that city throughout his career, with shows such as The Incredible World Of Magic & Illusion, which ran at The Village Gate in New York in 1978.
He made many television appearances, including 24 on the Ed Sullivan Show, the most appearances by any magician on that landmark series.
In the 1970s he also starred in his own television show Chamber of Horrors, which was introduced by Vincent Price.
He received several awards, including Magician Of The Year, and a Performing Fellowship from the Academy Of Magical Arts; Magician Of The Decade from S.A.M.; and Variety Entertainer Of The Year from Atlantic City.
While performing in the Bahamas his foot was injured. Richiardi died from complications following surgery when both legs had to be amputated for infection and diabetic problems.
Richiardi's son continued the family legacy with his Black Art act. His son's first appearance was in O'Porto, Portugal, performing the Rice and Water at the age of four on the same stage as Aldo when he was four.
On 8 June 2007, Criss Angel stated on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson that Richiardi was one of his greatest influences.
Information courtesy of Wikipedia, Encyclopedia of Magic and Magicians, MagiPedia
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