1.  about 100 female professional magicians in the world

2. about 5% of magic club membership represented by woman

3. there are no female magicians performing in las vegas

4. reasons:  mostly BS, but machoism, power, math orientation may be factors.

5. greatest female magician:  none listed

6. top 10 magicians ever born: link- http://listdose.com/top-10-best-magicians-ever-born-on-earth/

include:  #1 charlotte and jonathon pendragonThe couple met in University of California, where Jonathan was learning theater and Charlotte pursuing lessons as a gymnast and dancer then soon they got married. The fusion of both personalities’ skills helped them to create illusions, and soon they started performing magic. Their famous act’s include “The Interlude” where a woman crawls through a man’s chest and they were the first ones to perform it also they won a place in “Guinness Book of world records” for this illusion. Also more of their acts include, “Clearly impossible”, which was designed by Jonathan where a transparent box was fit to show the body of Charlotte from head to toe where he cut her into half. Also in a show they made 25 show girls vanish and then again reappear in front of live audience.

#4 ,magic babe ning.  she is the one also rewarded as the “South East Asia’s First Professional Female Magician” by all main newspaper’s and magazines. She is been inspired by “David Copperfield” by watching his shows when she was 5 years old.  Ning doesn’t like that the females are made to perform in magic acts by giving submissive roles to the male’s performing magic acts, which makes her enthusiastic towards her work. Now she performs with J C Sum in their illusion show across Asia. Ning performed South East Asia’s first ever mega escape called “The Impalement cage” on 5 July 2008, where she escaped from the handcuffs, locks, shackles and chains to free herself from a steel cage with a bed of 13 stainless steel spikes, timed to crash down on her in 90 seconds, also here she was blind folded and all this was done in live show in front of audience on large number. Also a show “The Impossible Journey” was staged by her were 3 people’s were shifted across the river in front of all people. The most famous one includes “The Impossible record” where on 27 June 2009; Ning & J C set a new world record with their performance of 15 grand illusions performed in 5 minutes.

7. Female magicians? You mean there's women out there who actually perform magic professionally? Yes - and they are gradually multiplying like bunnies from a hat.  

There are approximately 100 full-time female magicians in the world.

Women overall are a minority of the magicians who perform today.

For centuries, men have run the gamut in the world of magic; historically, women have been the magician's assistant;

pushing props on and off stage; getting shoved into boxes, being implemented in a myriad of torture devises; dancing and often, making the magic work while the magician gets the applause.

Now the shoe's on the other foot. However, instead of wingtips they are high heel pumps! Female magicians, also known as magiciannes, now have men do their bidding.

Many magicians' wives have done their share on stage, but almost always as assistants.

Today, husband and wife teams like Kalin and Jinger, share the applause, working as a team to create some of today's hottest illusions.





RANKING in order

of TOP 15:  some also appear on the next following list of top 100 list of contemporary magicians around the world.


Arian Black

Debbie Leifer

Dorothy Dietrich

Eusapia Palladino

Fay Presto

Frances Willard

Gay Blackstone

Joan Caesar

Kristen Johnson

Krystyn Lambert

Lisa Menna

Magic Babe Ning

Misty Lee

Princess Tenko

The Sorceress Cagliastro


Female Magicians

Melinda - First Lady of Magic

'Magic Babe' Ning

Angela Funovitz

Luna Shimada

Arian Black

Ava Do

Tina Lenert

Juliana Chen



Maria Gara - The SnakeBabe


Autumn Morning Star

Maritess - Queen of Magic

Princess Tenko

Trixie Bond

Annie Abbott



Kristen Johnson

Anna Eva Fay


Dell O'Dell

Celeste Evans

Lyn Dillies

Adelaide Herrmann

Dorothy Dietrich

Fay Presto

Becky Blaney

Sue-Anne Webster

Kitty Baldwin

Connie Boyd

Lulu Hurst


Blanka Absolon


Billy Kidd

Kristi Toguchi

Ai and Yuki


Crystal Sinclair

Sophie Evans

Romany - Diva of Magic

Laura London

Charlotte Pendragon


Suzy Wandas

Morgan the Escapist

Misty Lee


Terri Rogers


Krystyn Lambert







Joan Brandon

• Sisuephan, see Brian Gillis & Sisuephan

June Merlin

Kleo Dorotti

Alexanderia the Great

Gerrie Larsen

Ruth Dore

Lady Frances

Cath Jamison

Jania (b.?), aka Jania Taylor. American magician, MC, and speaker who graduated from the Chavez Studio of Magic in Colon, Michigan. Known for her manipulation prowess, Jania is one of the few women in the world performing a classic manipulation act.

Chérie Kay (b.?-2012) American magician and stage hypnotist who specializes in a variety of entertainment, including close-up magic, comedy/magic, illusions, motivational speaking and lecturing.

Frances Ireland Marshall (1910-2002), aka Frances Ahrens. American magician who specialized in children's shows. In 1938 she founded 'Magigals' with Bess Houdini (Harry Houdini's wife). She was married to magician Jay marshall.

Karen Beriss (b.?) American magician and speaker who specializes in corporate entertainment. In the 1990's, she teamed up with Mark Phillips who launched a trade show service called 'Thin Air Productions."

Julie Eng (b.?) Canadian magician who comes from a family of magicians, and has been a stage performer since she was a child. She has also been featured in the famous 'The Linking Ring' magazine.

Jayne (b.?), aka Jayne Corrigan. British close-up magician specializing in sleight-of-hand manipulation with cards and coins. She has performed worldwide, and is one of a hand full of female members of the prestigious 'Magic Circle.'

Connie Elstun (b.?) American magician and clown who has been performing magic professionally for 20 years. She specializes in children's entertainment and is the owner and operator of Connie and Co. 's Magic for Children.

Joan Dukore (b. 1976) American magician who started her career as a dancer, then later branched into magic. Based in Las Vegas, Joan has gained notoriety for her original routines and showmanship.

Diane Vira lane (1957-2008), aka Dazzling Diane, Snickerdoodle the Clown. American magician who hosted her own TV magic show in San Diego. She was also featured on the cover of 'The Linking Ring' Magazine.

Rita Del Gardi (b. 1902), aka Rita Prevette, American magician born in Nashville, Tennessee, and who was one of the foremost female magicians of her time. In her act she wore a formal gown without sleeves and performed the Vanishing Bird Cage. For her finale, she performed the Houdini Needle Trick.

Aimee Desiree (b.?), aka Mystia. American conjuror in the 1890s and wife of G. W. Hunter.

Beatrice Foster (b.?), aka Beatrice Fleming Foster. She performed with Howard Thurston and became his second wife on May 10, 1910, in New York City. They divorced on April 24th, 1914, in Bridgeport, Connecticut. She performed under the title, the "Queen of Magic" for ten years.

Minerva (b.?), aka Minerva, aka "American Queen of Mystery." American escape artist of the 1900s who was born Margaretha Gertz Van Dorn of German decent. She performed in America, Canada, Cuba, Germany, France, Hungary and England. She married Guy Jarrett, her second marriage, circa 1913.

Mohala (b.?), aka "Mohala, the Radio Mystic." American mentalist who was born Mary Robinson and who was the wife of Walter Edwin Floyd who performed a two-person mind-reading act as "The Floyds" in the early 1900s.

Okinu (b. 1895-?), aka Iwa Kato - Japanese magician, wife and partner to Tenkai. Okinu was an expert at sleight-of-hand and was the Teacher of female magician, Taki. Okinu Retired when Tenkai died in 1972.

Okita (b.1852-1916), aka Julia Ferret - British magician, wife and partner to Charles De Vere. In 1877, she performed a highly successful act in Japanese style, and was noted for her linking rings act. She toured England and France for many years and was the mother of "Ionia, the Goddess of Mystery."

Ellinor Redan (b. 1874-?), American magician who was born in Wernersville, Pennsylvania. She was the first woman member of the Society of American Magicians, and was married to magician Harry Redan. - female magicians

Mariana de lahaye (b. ?), aka Miss Mariana - French Female Illusionist who specialized in bird magic in the late 1800s.

Victoria Berland (b. ?), aka Empress of Magic - French Female magician who gained popularity in the late nineteenth century.

Abigail Price (b. ?), aka The Psychic Marvel - American Female entertainer who performed as a psychic, seer in the late 1800s. Price began performing on stage since the age of 11. She discovered a passion for the occult sciences in her formative years, and studied with the best masters in the field. She toured with Charles Carter in the early 1900s.

Elsa Amadria (b. ?) - French female magician who was France's top rated performer at the turn of the century and billed "Marvellous, Incomprehensible!"

Christine France (b. ?), aka Christine Moncenis - French magician who thrived in the early 1960's, traveling Europe, including a performance at the popular China Variety Theatre in Stockholm, Sweden in July, 1961. She later branched out in the music industry recording a psychodelic-pop single entitled, "La Magicienne" in 1969. She sang her single while performing magic on French TV.

Roberta (b. ?), American Female Illusionist who performed in the early 1900s.



Why Have Women Magicians Vanished?

Working magicians conjure up rationales — both beneficial and baneful — for why so few women perform magic.


Why aren't there more women magicians? Does the arena of legerdemain discourage women from an active role, treating them primarily as magicians' assistants? Male and (a few) female prestidigitators try to answer all these questions.

In the early 1900s, Adelaide Herrmann was one of the most famous magicians of her day. She inherited her husband Alexander’s magic show upon his death in 1896 and performed internationally for 30 years.

A hundred years later, few people could name her as quickly as they would Houdini, and few can name any contemporary female magicians as famous as David Blaine or David Copperfield.

Research studies show that female membership in magic clubs and performances hovers around 5 percent.

Why there aren’t more women magicians is an intriguing question, especially in an age when women are more likely to participate in comedy, acting, sports and music. What is it about magic that discourages women from an active role and sees them primarily as magicians’ assistants?

Perhaps by looking at this unusual hobby and form of entertainment, we can better understand how gender is performed and how differences continue throughout today’s society. What does magic tell us about the persistence of gender roles in our supposedly more egalitarian era?

Some might argue that women doing magic were historically linked — dangerously — to the practice of witchcraft. Others point to the all-male gatekeepers of the magic clubs and associations, the male-dominated images on magic kits and TV shows, or the problematic entertainment value of watching a woman saw a man in half

The old gender roles of men as instrumental and women as expressive gains some support when focusing on male magicians with their masculine instruments of power (wands, swords, and saws) and women with their sensitive feminine touch in a palm reading or female intuition in a séance.

Instead of speculating, consider the explanations from magicians themselves. Responding to a survey posted on various magic Web sites and boards (and thus not meant to generalize all magicians), 220 male and seven female amateur and professional magicians answered the question: Why aren’t there more women magicians?

Let’s first look at the answers provided by the seven female magicians:

• As a female magician myself, I believe that males can better identify with famous magicians, most of who are male, and therefore are more apt to develop an interest in magic.

Because magic at its heart is about power. Men in general have an internal desire to move into chaotic situations with power to bring about order. Is that not in essence what magicians do? Now, I know sometimes the magician causes the chaos in the first place — cutting the rope, tearing the paper, sawing the lady — but the magician always makes things turn out right. Women, by contrast, usually desire to build strong, intimate relationships with others, and this doesn’t always translate well to magic. Part of the great challenge in being a female magician is not simply to amaze people – which is crazy easy — but to put a deeper meaning into the things we do in order to build that relationship to a level where meaningful ideas can be exchanged.

• Because women have not seen themselves as magicians and have not been encouraged. Women have to invent for themselves ways to do things that men do not. Most magic instruction is designed for men with jackets. Women’s clothes don’t have pockets and women can’t reach into their breast pockets.

Magic books and magazines gear more for men in their advertising and descriptions of magic. It’s hard for women to find role models that they identify with. Also, women are under intense pressure to stay thin to perform, they are criticized more, where men often do not have the same pressures when performing.

• Like most performing arts, there weren’t many women as a lead performer. It wasn’t socially acceptable for women to be in a “lead” role since they were housewives and mothers of children. To break that mold took a lot of courage. Women were known as the assistants to create a beauty and distraction for the stage magician. So the lesser role was really played by the woman, yet the one with the most responsibility is the woman. It is the assistant who is the real magician.

• Just recently women are starting to appear in more science- and math-related jobs, and the same goes for magic. Men never take women seriously, and it is harder for some women to find mentors. Also women see a magician do a stage act with skinny models dancing around and have a hard time visualizing the woman doing magic with men dancing around her. Large men can’t be box jumpers, so [they] can’t have a male assistant in the box all the time, which adds to the difficulty of a woman performing.

• Why is this question always asked? Yeesh. Sociological, economic, political and biological reasons.

Many of the 220 men (80 percent white, 63 percent college grads, with a mean age of 43) said they often wondered why women weren’t more into performing magic and speculated about a wide range of biological, cultural and historical reasons.

In general, these amateur and professional magicians invoke some fairly traditional gender role stereotypes about men and women: Men are into objects, tools and gadgets with which they can demonstrate their control and power; women, on the other hand, are not competitive and are best suited (physically, emotionally) to assisting magicians.

While many of the men saw these differences as a function of society reinforcing gender roles and the magic world’s “gentlemen’s club” structure (and discrimination), a few located the reasons in innate biological and psychological traits, including physical size, the ability to keep secrets and even give birth. The often-debated “nature versus nurture” explanations about male and female differences can clearly be heard in these magicians’ voices when trying to make sense of this gender disparity.

To summarizing the key explanations, then, the actual words of the magicians are presented below by combining them into paragraphs organized according to the categories their responses most represent.


It’s rare to see women become interested in technology and gadgets to the same extent as men. I suspect the underlying reason is related to why it’s rare to see women interested in magic to the same extent as men. New technology is somehow very magical. Many tricks are one way or another technical, similar to boy’s toys. Magic has a very gimmicky side and guys always love gadgets. It’s the male need to know “how it works” that motivates them toward getting into magic. Pretty much any field that has to do with figuring out how things work has a lack of females (engineering, architecture, science, etc.). Maybe the male mind is more interested in how things work. It interests guys more in general to know how stuff works.


Magic suggests power, or a show or display of power. Magic attracts men for the most part because of this power, which is oft associated with men in patriarchal societies. The traditional persona of a magician — magic as a display of power — might not be appealing to many women. Boys begin magic when they are powerless. Boys who seek to become magicians believe that the arcane and esoteric knowledge compromising the secrets of magic will enable them to wield power over others; girls don’t pursue power as a means to influence others. People often first get interested in magic at ages 8-12. It’s usually boys, and they may like having secret knowledge. They may sense performance-magic as a type of power. Men feel more social pressure to be in control. It stems from the initial power trip most young men are on when they first begin the pursuit of magic (“I know something you don’t know”).

Competitive, Confrontational and Commanding

Sometimes it just becomes a competition to see who can pee the highest, and generally women don’t want to get involved in that. The initial steps in magic tend to be attempts to prove “I know something you do not.” This is a very confrontational relationship that is more typical of men than women. The “boldness” required to present yourself is, historically, a masculine trait. If the initial steps were more relational, as in “This is what we are doing together,” then I believe magic would be more attractive to women. Women don’t take command of the performing arena the way a man does. Many men can’t handle a strong woman. They are intimidated by strong women. Men’s egos typically won’t allow themselves to be upstaged by a woman. The classic image of a conjurer in the past century was a dominant, commanding figure, which is at odds with our Western idea of the feminine role. Magic, for the most part, is presented like a puzzle or a challenge to an audience by most practitioners. Women present magic more as an art form.

Hobby for Geeks

It’s the boys-and-their-toys syndrome. Magic is often considered a childish phase and fixation, which is more acceptable for men to have than it is for women. Magic may also suffer from the Star Trek syndrome: lots of uncool, nerdy geeks involved. Women tend to shun anything that is even remotely “unhip” or just not cool. Magic has a stigma of being geeky. Men are more likely to be socially inept and require a shield to hide behind for attention and social interactions. Insecure males get into magic as a way to make up for their social inadequacies. It is very much like being a computer geek, there is a lot of alone time and practicing.

Traditional Gender Roles

It’s about stereotyping and social acceptability. Parents give magic sets to little boys and dolls to little girls. The classic image of a magician is male, so more males are drawn to it as an acceptable hobby, and the next generation sees mostly male magicians and thinks it a pursuit for males, so the pattern perpetuates itself. There are not many female role models in magic. The “good old boys” kind of lock women out of the loop. There is plenty of “boys club” attitude among magicians. Women magicians aren’t encouraged or mentored. Women are not encouraged to find self-validation in nontraditional means. Young women are still very rarely encouraged to focus on anything that is not “wife,” “mother,” and now, maybe “career.” Society still places women at home. Even those with careers still do the majority of chores at home. Also, differences in social acceptance of keeping secrets may be a factor for magic. Men tend not to believe they have deceived a friend by keeping a secret (not restricted to magic) while females relate it to trust. Males accept keeping secrets such as customer base, market information, etc., as just another day at the office. Women “share” and aren’t generally the best at keeping secrets.

The Nature of Magic

Historically, women have been persecuted for participating in magic and women who practiced magic were historically identified with witchcraft. Perhaps people expect males to be wizards/magicians and women to be witches. Not many women want to be associated with the negative image of witches. Magic has always been presented as something of a fraternity, and for the longest time, magic clubs did not allow women to join (following the trend of most private clubs of the era). The traditional role of a male magician and his female “assistants” is not a social role that is easily transposed into female magician and her male “assistants.” This makes the road to being a successful female magician even harder since they have to create a whole new paradigm of what it is to be a magician in order to succeed. What females do when they are magicians is a more subtle type of magic whereas men do the sword through/cut ‘em up/more sadistic type of thing. Because women are smaller, they are better suited as the subjects for levitations and other illusions where close confinement is required. A woman’s hands are usually smaller than a man’s and therefore less suited for concealing cards and other large objects. It also seems to be more difficult to adapt women’s clothing with pockets for concealment of birds and other objects used in magic.


Brains are wired differently for men and women. Most of contemporary magic is presented as an analytical challenge/puzzle. This is analogue to the left part of the brain, which is the “male” part. Women are more right brain oriented and respond better to the emotional, lyrical and mythical. There are different interests between women and men, mainly due to a difference in their brains. This does not mean that women are inferior to men, just that they are different. Women are less solitary, on the whole, and more social, so magic does not appeal to them as a career because to become a successful magician requires a lot of solitary work. They are also truly magical mystical creatures: Women can deceive you without gimmicks. They are magical in and of themselves. The ability to create life from seemingly nothing is all a woman needs. They can perform the greatest miracle of all — giving birth to a live person. Woman can command men with that power. Men must resort to trickery to suggest such power residing in themselves.

Although there are many young female magicians entering the field, and despite less overt discrimination in magic clubs and performance venues, the continued male-dominance of magic highlights the entrenched values and social roles in our society today.

Looking at the increased number of women in other traditionally all-male occupations, such as medicine or law, obscures how many still view gender differences in areas characterized by issues of power and control. Perhaps only when magic’s gender imbalance changes can we declare that discrimination based on sex has truly vanished.

Why Are There No Female Magicians? Maybe Because We BURNED THEM ALL TO DEATH
0 annotations

Why Are There No Female Magicians? Maybe Because We BURNED THEM ALL TO DEATH

Now, even I'm not a goofy enough feminist stereotype to get all up-in-arms about 17th-century witch-burning as a tangible, pressing, current lady-problem. Buuuuuut...sometimes (all the times) we do feel the echoes of long-past injustices in our largely mundane modern lives. And aren't thought experiments fun? On the heels of the release of The Incredible Burt Wonderstone, the Atlantic asks possibly my favorite question in recent memory:


Why is this the first time I have ever seen a woman do a magic trick?

And I just have to say, SERIOUSLY, Y'ALL. There was a pretty intense campaign in this country to train women to never, ever do magic in public. And now we're surprised that there aren't gallant lady-magicians traipsing around Vegas pulling pine martens in tiny bowler hats out of the underpants of visiting sultans? (That's the kind of outside-the-box flair that modern magic is missing by excluding women, bee-tee-dubs.) Is it so far-fetched to think that ladies might have some lingering anxiety about appearing mystical and witchy in close proximity to many, many pitchfork and butane vendors?

Yeah, it probably is. But still. In interviews with both male and female magicians, the Atlantic mentions this [TOTALLY AWESOME WITCH] theory in passing, along with a gaggle of other possibilities. Based on rough estimates, magic is an extremely (and casually and unquestioningly) segregated vocation, with women making up only 3-8% of the professional magical workforce. Which is bullshit. Hermione's the best witch in their year—why does Harry get to be the chosen one!?

Maybe women shy away from magic for our own reasons. We already absorb enough abuse about being frivolous idiots—women have a hard time being taken seriously even when they're running the world—and, though I say this in the most loving way possible, magic is some pretty frivolous shit. Or, maybe, everyone's just so accustomed to women serving as decoration that it's hard to conceive of one running the show.

Right now, there are no female magicians headlining their own shows in Las Vegas—the "Magic Mecca" of the world, as Sue-Anne Webster, an Australian magician and lecturer on magic from Australia, puts it. And female magicians are enough of an oddity that, like Jane, Webster has found that "if you work with another magician, and that other magician is a male, people will naturally think you're the assistant. Which is annoying."

So what are the other theories? Well, there's the regular old boys-club stuff:

And when the Industrial Revolution came around, it was the golden age of secret societies and fraternities. These were generally men's-only clubs, and one of them was the Society of American Magicians in New York City, at Martinka's Magic Shop. Houdini was one of the officers.

The "math is hard/let's go to the beach" stereotype:

Another part of that is the same as how math and science often attract more boys than girls. Magic is a puzzle. I was in the math club—it's no coincidence that I became a magician.

The outfits (because ladies can't wear suits, I guess?):

Most magic that you learn assumes that you're wearing a jacket with long sleeves, and a pair of pants with pockets—so that if you put your hand in your pocket to put your pen away, you can secretly take out your gold coin. But you don't have a pocket in your gown! So you have to rework it into your purse or something. If you're hiding a couple of doves on your body somewhere, those are bumps.

And finally: Ladies have tiny hands, plus the road is grueling and makes it difficult to have a family. (You know how we baby-machines love our families.)

So, unsurprisingly, what this all comes down to is the same old self-perpetuating trap. Women were historically excluded from the magic establishment; discouraged from pursuing (or having confidence in their abilities in) math and science; expected to maintain traditional gender signaling (i.e. stuffing doves in gowns instead of just changing their clothes); written off as physically less capable instead of being encouraged to develop tricks friendly to smaller hands; and forever expected to prioritize duties in the home over their own ambitions.

Holy shit, did magic just become a flawless microcosm of the modern gender gap?

Who knew?

Anyhow, support your local lady-magicians. And kindly do not burn them. Good night.

Why Are There So Few Female Magicians? [Atlantic]

Photo credit: Wallenrock / Shutterstock.

Brophy Monday 08 July 2013 - 10:13 pm | | Brophy Blog
Used tags: , , , ,

No comments

(optional field)
(optional field)
To prevent automated comment spam we require you to answer this silly question.
Remember personal info?
Small print: All html tags except <b> and <i> will be removed from your comment. You can make links by just typing the url or mail-address.