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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 20, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta Wednesday, June 20, 1973 THE LETHMIOQI HIRAIB 3S 'Great Manzini9 muscles his way out of chains Quebec exhibit entertains Escape artist Mono Manzinr has seven pairs of handcuffs binding his arms before going into a swimming pool during his act The 27-year-old escape artist says that his escapes ore real thing and not the illusions performed with trick equipment by many of Today's magicians. KITCHENER. Ont. (CP) In gold lame bathing trunks, chest expanding and con- tracting as he draws in and expels great gulps of air, Mario Mnzini stands at the edge of a three-foot-deep in- door pool looking like a real- life Tarzan, capable of swing- ing on a jungle vine or wres- tling with an aJligator. Except for the handcuffs. Seven pairs of them binding his arms together from thumbs to elbows. With a final gigantic intake of air that swells his chest out to its full 45 inches, Manziiu plunges into the pool sinking to the bottom while a barker for his act calls out the sec- onds. At the 30-second mark up comes ''the Great Man- zini.'' arms spread wide apart above his head, free of the manacles which had been put on him by a security guard at the Kitchener auditorium where he was appearing as part of the nightly stage pre- sentation of the annual sports and vacation show Later, the 27-year-old Man- zini who stands 5-foot-7 and weighs 175 pounds, said that his escapes are the real thing, not the illusions performed with trick equipment many of today's magicians, but pat- terned after and emulative of the feats of the famous Houd- ini. who was both a legitimate escape artist and master of il- lusionarj magic Inspired It was seeing a film clip of Iloudim. in fact, that inspired the New York-born Manzini to a career which in the last 10 years has been expanded to include such unrelated acts as fire-eating stunts and singing and playing guitar. But escapes, including most of those done by Houdini. are what have appealed to him most since that night more than 20 years ago. "I was maybe four or five years old at the time. I was just sitting watching TV with my mother and father and the news was on and they said the wife of Houdini. the fa- mous escape artist, had passed away and then there was this film clip showing him upside down getting into a straitjacket. "It was so fascinating "o me. I Wa3 juol a kid but I can sdll remember seeing it. Wow. it did something to me. I asked my father, 'Who was And he told me it was Houdini and he could escape from anything, anything people put on him, and I said, 'Wow, I want to be like that.' "I used to dream about all this stuff, and all the while when I was a kid I'd get the other kids to tie me up and I'd always be able to get free.'' Shed handcuffs When he was about 17, introduced to the oper- ator of a New York entertain- ment place that featured magicians, fire-eaters "and all those weird, different, strange acts you can't see anyplace else." "He asked me if I could get out of handcuffs. I said I'd never tried it. So he went up- blaii s and goi a pair ami put them on me and I got out of them, same method as I used By VICTOR STANTON Kitchener- Waterloo Record for chains and ropes, just forcing them off. "I started work there the following week.'1 Since that time he has per- formed his escapes through- out the United States and Canada with circuses, at exhi- bitions and the Canadian National Exhibi- tion in Toronto and the West- ern Fair in London. theatres, nightclubs and uni- versities and on television. He has been enclosed, bound with chains and cuffs, in a packing crate and low- ered into New York harbor; he has been locked into 20 to 30 pairs of cuffs and shackles, neck collars and leg irons, stuffed into a mail bag which is then locked with a steel bar and two padlocks and in turn placed bottom-up into another mail bag which is tied up with rope, he has been sus- pended from roof tops, hang- ing upside down with his arms confined in a strait- jacket and additionally se- cured by handcuffs and from all such confinements and restraints he has es- caped. Death risk Escapes under water and up in the air always involve danger, he said, and doing some stage escapes, from such entrapments as the mail bags and plastic bags, there is risk of possible suffocation Does he have a death wish. then" He explained his feel- ings in a more positive way: "After you've been near death, you appreciate living more." Probably his closest brush with death came a couple years ago at Lake Gteorge. N.Y. Bound with 10 pairs of cuffs, including ones provided by the local chief of police, he was thrown off a pier into about 15 feet of water. "The weight of the cuffs took me down so fast that I lost part of my '-ealh and I thought my -ms had burst, there were such pains in my head. I never worked so fast in life And the thing was they had told me that if I couldn't get out, that if I wasn't up in a minute and a half or some such time they had a lifeguard and he going to jump in and save me. I was under longer than 1 w as supposed to be and when I came up the lifeguard was just standing there I asked him why he hadn't jumped in and he said it was too cold and he figured I'd get out anvwav PARIS (CP) to travelling exhibit called Quebec en bref (Quebec in many Frenchmen now know that Que- bec is a province in Canada, that it has a labor force of three million and that it is the i woi Id's principal producer of asbestos The exhibition, which started in April, is a brainchild of Jean Leblond, the Quebec delega- tion's newly-appointed press tache in Paris. j It includes audio-visual pr- sentations in several booths picting different aspects of Que- 1 bee life. 1 The exhibition also expose? the French public to Quebec's already well-known cultural j heroes, Robert Charlebois Gil- les Vigneault, Pauline Juhen and Felix Leclerc. Mr Leblond says the exhibi- tion was popular wherever it went, especially Brittany, home of many of Quebec's original in- habitants. Breton personalities like Jean Montaufray. mayor of Gourin. a small town in lower Brittany. have promoted the exhibition vigorously The travelling exhibit is usu- ally scheduled to arrive in a town to coincide with local fes- tivities or holidays to large crowds Sturdy 6-legged gym set It't sturdy frames ore mode of 2" diom tubular steel with unit-welded top bar. It's safe swing chains are safety-tested to 750 pounds, bolts have plastic safety cops to assemble hanger unit comes prewelded, so there's less for you to do Complete with 2 swings, slry-icooter, 17" wide 2-seater lawn glider ond 4'8" slide bed. Dura-Kool form-fitting polyethylene seats won't get hot In sun Nylon bearings. Top bar about 11'2" overall; about 6'1" high overall, basp arpo SIMIIAR TO KIUSTRATION Gym without Slide. Top bar about 9 6 overall height about 6'1 6'9' long JT OO Won 52.98. Each 47.70 WITH SLIDE 61 98 Deluxe sfeeiwail pools 58 Rigid rims ond steel uprights in wall give extra-strong support for active pool play. 18-gauge corrugated steel frame hot baked-on enamel design; vertical upright supports snap in tasily at top ond bottom. Sturdy vinyl liner has "med" rim to pre- vent slippage; easy to Pool about 7'fl" fliom. x 20" deep 6och I7.5i about 9'9" Horn x JO" deep Wos loch 25 STORt HOURS: doily from 930 o m. to S 30 p. m nnt) Fridoy 930 o m, to 900 p m. Centre Village Moll, Telephone 328-9231. Dears Super sets of polyester double knit Yes Super sets you'll live In from morning tii night, right through the seasons. Easy on care in hand washable polyester double knit. Shown are only 2 of 9 styles. Long sleeves, short sleeves, sleeveless in th" group. Tops are In assorted prints on a white ground. Pants in color co-ordin- ated deep shades, Navy, black, brown, plum, and red. Misses ladiei' STORS HOURS: Open daily from 9-30 o m lo 5.30 pm; Thurt and Fri 9 30 o m to 9 00 p.m. Centra Village Mad 328-9231 ;