Wednesday, February 22, 2012
It seems my boy just can't stay out of trouble. Another faithful reader alerted me to this one, which appears in the Silverman book on Houdini. Try as I might to locate a newspaper article, I've come up empty handed (so far).
Houdini was performing in Norfolk VA at the Colonial Theatre and got into a dispute with the management. One thing led to another and Houdini got arrested, again! My first article about Houdini getting arrested actually had the Theatre Manager bailing him out. But this time, it's the manager who had him locked up. Why?
It seems that while on stage, Houdini had some derogatory remarks about the theatre management. (no, I don't know what he said) According to Silverman, the New York Office told the manager to withhold $400 of Houdini's money as a fine. Houdini had finished his last show and was wrapping things up when he found out about the deduction of funds. Never one to be shy about things, he marched out on stage, while another act was performing and addressed the audience and told them what the management had done, then proceeded to demand his money.
The Colonial Theatre Manager had no choice but to call the police as Houdini was causing quite a scene and apparently wouldn't leave. When the police arrived they took Houdini to the jail for disorderly conduct. A fellow performer paid Houdini's bail, though it doesn't say 'WHO' that fellow performer was.
I can't help but wonder how many other performers had gotten fined over the years but didn't have the nerve that Houdini had to cause a scene. And I don't know if he ever got his $400. My guess is no.