2021 Official Houdini Séance

The Official Houdini Séance has taken place at numerous locations throughout America and internationally with prestigious groups of Inner Circle members. This year is no exception. Houdini experts and magic historians will convene at Potter & Potter Auctions in Chicago, Illinois for the Official Houdini Séance® October 31. The event has been a tradition since Harry Houdini, the world’s greatest magician died on Halloween in 1926. Admission is by invitation only.

The Chicago area was important to Houdini’s professional life. He had relationships with the local magicians as president of the Society of American Magicians and often performed his escape and magic act in Chicago while touring on various vaudeville stages. During his last trip to Chicago in 1925, Houdini presented his “3 in 1” Show of magic, escapes, and spiritualist phenomenon.

Harry Houdini died at Grace Hospital in Detroit on Halloween 1926 from complications of acute appendicitis. He had told his wife, Bessie Houdini —and close friend, confidant, and mentalist Joe Dunninger — that if he died, he would make every effort to communicate with the living and established a secret code to guarantee proof if indeed he was successful. Every year since his death, Houdini séances have been held to see if Houdini could come “across the veil” and prove the spiritual afterlife existed.

After 10 years, Bess Houdini declared her séance efforts over; however, Houdini’s brother Hardeen took up the torch and continued the tradition for many more years. There was never a sign from Houdini. When Hardeen passed away, his protégé and magic collector, Sidney Radner, was directed to continue the séance and did so every year until his death in 2011 at the age of 91.

For many years prior to his death, Sidney was accompanied by his good friend, Tom Boldt, in this endeavor. Now Tom, along with Sid’s son, Bill Radner, continues the tradition. They have selected a small group of Houdini experts and enthusiasts to be part of the “Inner Circle” who sit at the séance table each year.

Aside from Radner, he will be assisted by co-séance director, Tom Boldt who worked closely with Radner for many years. Handcuff expert Fred Pittella, Houdini collectors Dr Bruce Averbook of Ohio, and Robert Somerdin of Florida and Houdini historians Midge Markey from Washington, and Paul Rosen from Delaware will also take part.

Will the spirit of Houdini return?

The Official Houdini Séance® is by invitation only.  Members of the media may contact Mr. Radner for press passes and/or additional information at 413-531-3333 rendar1@aol.com or Tom Boldt at tom.boldt@boldt.com 920-428-2335.