Terri Rogers (1937-1999)

Terri Rogers was Born Ivan Southgate in Ipswich, England on May 4, 1937. Rogers was a somewhat isolated youth but determined to build a career in variety.

Rogers developed a technically highly proficient ventriloquism act with her dolly "Shorty Harris," first of all appearing as a supporting act in music halls in the 1950s.

Like her contemporary fellow ventriloquist Bobbie Kimber, she began life as a man but underwent gender reassignment surgery in the early 1960s. This brought her some short lived notoriety but did not hamper her career.

Rogers won acclaim for her appearance in the 1968 review "Boys Will be Girls" and went on to become a highly regarded performer on the UK cabaret circuit.

From 1971 onwards she was a regular, though somewhat incongruous, guest on TV on the "The Wheeltappers" and "Shunters Social Club."

Her cabaret career eventually extended internationally including appearances at Las Vegas and The Magic Castle and on US TV.

Her work as a magician was always something of a sideline but she was an ingenious developer of magic tricks including illusions for David Copperfield and Paul Daniels.

She was an expert on "topology", the art of creating illusions with shapes, and wrote three standard texts on the subject. She was particularly known for illusions with Borromean rings.

Among her other marketed effects are "World Of Mind" and "Star Gate" in 1985; she has also written a book called "Secrets - Original Magic Of Terri Rogers."

Rogers died in London after a series of strokes. She was survived by her life partner Val Andrews, also a magician.

Information courtesy of "Encyclopedia Of Magic And Magicians" and "MagicPedia."

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