Carny Sideshows: Weird Wonders of the Midway

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Step right up, Ladies and Germs, and feast your eyes on the incomparable wonders of a hidden world! Be astonished! amazed! disgusted! by brazen acts of self-destruction that no natural human body should be able to withstand!

Carny Sideshows

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  • Carny Sideshows


Tony Gangi, professional magician, lifelong sideshow devotee, and card-carrying graduate of Coney Island’s famed Sideshow School, guides you through the stupendous techniques and proud traditions of this shocking and fascinating realm of entertainment. - Learn the secrets behind Breathing Fire! Sword Swallowing! The Bed of Nails! Pounding Spikes into the Head! - Enter the mysterious worlds of the Snake Lady, the Human Blockhead, and more! - Meet sideshow greats like Melvin Burkhart and Ward Hall. - Discover today’s dedicated entertainers, like Todd Robbins, Harley Newman, Tyler Fyre, Thrill Kill Jill, Donny Vomit, The Black Scorpion, and more! - See what it takes to enter this underground yet welcoming world as a performer. Features interviews with Penn Jillette and Todd Robbins and Penn Jillette’s ode to the sideshow, the “10 in 1” monologue as performed by Penn & Teller Editors’s Note: Not for the faint of heart, weak of stomach or easily grossed out. So go ahead, how can you resist?! Tony Gangi, a Philadelphia native, never actually intended to make his living by shoving nails up his nose. He left the corporate world to become a professional magician and proprietor of one of the few flea circuses remaining in the world (“Live fleas do, in fact, perform circus tricks,” he says. They just need to be “trained the right way and treated with kindness.”) He’s now mastered straightjacket escapes, fire-eating, and napping on a bed of nails. He is currently working on his presentation for walking barefoot on broken glass. This is his first book. He hopes it is not his last.

Additional Information

Author Tony Gangi
Publisher Citadel
Page Count 222pp
Publication Size 6 x 9
Publication Notes softcover, b/w
Publication Date February 23, 2010
ISBN 978-0806531342

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