While Ricky Jay has long been considered one of the world’s great sleight-of-hand artists, his career is further distinguished by the remarkable variety of his accomplishments as an author, actor, historian, and consultant. (Photo by Jesse Dylan.)


Ricky Jay is considered one of the world’s great sleight of hand artists. The former curator of the Mulholland Library of Conjuring and the Allied Arts, he is the author of two lauded histories of unusual entertainment: Learned Pigs & Fireproof Women and Jay’s Journal of Anomalies, both New York Times “Notable Books.” Among his other works are The Magic Magic Book for the Whitney Museum, Dice: Deception, Fate and Rotten Luck (with photographs by Rosamond Purcell) and Extraordinary Exhibitions. He has defined the terms of his profession for the Encyclopedia Britannica and the Cambridge Guide to American Theatre.

His one man shows Ricky Jay & His 52 Assistants, Ricky Jay On the Stem, and Ricky Jay: A Rogue’s Gallery were all critically acclaimed theatrical events. They were directed by David Mamet in whose films House of Games, Things Change, The Spanish Prisoner, Heist and Red Belt he has also appeared. Mr. Jay may be seen in many other films including Tomorrow Never Dies, Magnolia, Boogie Nights, and The Prestige. He has appeared regularly on television and has written and hosted his own specials for CBS, HBO, A&E, and the BBC. His boxed set, Ricky Jay Plays Poker, an album of classic and esoteric gambling tunes with an accompanying DVD of his of sleight of hand performance, was nominated for a Grammy award.

His consulting company, Deceptive Practices (with partner Michael Weber) has supplied “Arcane Knowledge on a Need to Know Basis” for theater, television, and more than a score of films including Forrest Gump, The Illusionist, and Oceans 13.

More information is available on the web site: www.rickyjay.com

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