8 Magicians Who Died During a Performance

Magic offers a twofold thrill: 1) the how-did-they-do-it nature of tricks and illusions; 2) the often serious danger magicians seem to place themselves in. While you may assume much of this danger is for show, there's a sordid history of magic acts that killed the magician. These magicians who died during tricks aimed to awe and delight audiences but learned the hard way what happens when illusions go wrong. If nothing else, this list proves magic is a dangerous profession requiring extensive knowledge.

Magicians who died performing span generations and come from many countries and cultures, giving a reminder of the public fascination with the medium. Surely that fascination stems, in part, from a general lack of understanding of how tricks and illusions work. Magician stage deaths surely only increase mass interest in the craft because they highlight how much danger these entertainers put themselves in, and play to the religious and occult underpinnings of magic's ancient origins.