Yankee Gathering


S.A.M. Magic Center




Los Angeles Conference

On Magic History (2011)

Hudson River Museum (2012)

Yankee Gathering




Will Rock

(1907 - )

A Time-Line Of Will Rock's Life And Career

---Will Rock's real name was William George Rakauskas.

---Performed as "Will Rock, The Modern Monarch Of Magic Presents Thurston's Mysteries Of India".

---He performed the show from 1938 through 1942.

---Will Rock was born on April 25, 1907, in Lithuania.

-- He came to the US in 1912.

---Became a magician after seeing Eugene Laurant perform in March 1920.

---He practiced magic the next bunch of years until 1929 when he started touring.

---1931 he met the Great Raymond and Raymond asked him to be an assistant for his show.

---Raymond has Will Rock as his assistant and secretary for the next years or so.

---Rock and Raymond were great friends.

---Howard Thurston died in 1936.

---In 1938 Will Rock found out that Howard Thurston's illusions and magic was available for sale.

---He purchased these items from Jane Thurston, Howard Thurston's daughter.

---Jane Thurston sold him the Million Dollar Mystery illusion and a couple other magic tricks.  The purchase date was April 28, 1938.

---Jane Thurston and George White, Howard Thurston's assistant helped Rock with the illusions he purchased.

---There was actually a poster with a letter that was enlarged from Jane Thurston to Will Rock, dated June 7, 1938.  This was a letter about the sale of magic items.

---After purchasing some of the Howard Thurston props, Will Rock found out that Harry Thurston's (Howard Thurston's brother), had props available for sale as well.

---These other sales were in 1938 as well.

---Will Rock then met up with a man named George Boston.  George Boston was Harry Thurstons assistant at one point.

---In 1938 performed "Will Rock, The Modern Monarch Of Magic Presents Thurston's Mysteries Of India".

---The show played in hundreds of different towns.

---Will Rock's show ended when the war started.

---Rock went into the army.

---He was the entertainment director at Camp Leonard Wood in Missouri.

---It's said that Will Rock performed one full evening show each week in 1945.

---After the army days Will Rock never performed his show again.

Will Rock was smart to publicize his show with the word "Thurston" in it. 

This was meant to draw attention to his show but it never really caught on the way the real Howard Thurston show did.

In fact the Thurston used apparatus in the Rock show was not even considered his best stuff in his show.  It was his other magic that he performed.

It's interesting to think what the spectators or lay people thought at the time about Thurston's involvement with the show since "Thurston" was shown all over his show, although he used Thurston's name after 1936, the year Thurston died.



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