Steve gets new Handcuffs!

AN ESCAPE artist and magician has bagged a “priceless” New Year gift after completing an escape in honour of his hero Harry Houdini. Card trickster and performer Steve Spade got his quick hands on the set of handcuffs, which are over 100 years old and were originally used by the greatest escape artist ever, after winning them in a bet with a US film crew. The Limerick magician was interviewed for a television documentary on Houdini, for the Discovery Channel, when the crew challenged him to complete Houdini’s famous “100-foot of rope escape challenge” in 60 seconds. Spade (27), was told he could have the set of handcuffs, which the TV crew had in their possession, if he managed to escape in time.

 

Just when it looked like he would fail, Spade managed to free himself, much to the surprise of the crew, who then handed over the handcuffs. “The handcuffs were issued in Paris in 1906 and they are signed by Houdini’s brother Theo Hardeen. I said the cuffs were priceless  and to the right bidder you might get millions. I said I’d pay €10,000 for them when the crew asked me to appraise them,” Spade said.

“When they put the challenge up to me, I suddenly thought, ‘this documentary will be seen in 98 countries worldwide’, so I was under pressure to get it right. “Forty seconds into the escape and I wasn’t getting out of it. I started to panic. Then suddenly I flicked a ninja-type kick and I got out.  The crew’s faces dropped and I beat my own record for the escape too. It dawned on them that they’d lost the cuffs. They were slightly  annoyed I think,” Spade added. According to Spade, the crew purchased the handcuffs at an auction in America, complete with all the necessary paperwork.

Spade is currently in talks with MTV about a show and is also rehearsing to emulate more Houdini escape acts.

– David Raleigh

Irish Independent

Steve Spade burned at the Stake

The self-styled “magician with attitude” plans to recall the era of witch-hunting this weekend… The Hot Press Newsdesk, 11 Sep 2012

Steve Spade, the self-styled “magician with attitude” from Limerick, is to be burned at the stake this weekend. In an act billed under the title of ‘Sacrifice’, Spade – who is heavily influenced by the legendary escape artist Harry Houdini – will be tied up and set alight at King John’s Castle in Limerick. He will have a matter of minutes to effect his escape from the ropes and chains with which he will be bound in advance.

Space, whose stage show combines magic with mentalism and escapes, is best known for his appearances on RTE television’s The Daily Show earlier this year. His work to date has seen him share the stage with Pat Shortt, Tommey Tiernan, Jason Byrne, PJ Gallagher, Colin Murphy, David Mc Savage, Neil Delmere and Des Bishop as well as Limerick compatriots Rubberbandits.
He has also impressed a wide range of celebrities, including Kevin Spacey at the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival, who was forced to ask “Can I have my watch back?”. He has also variously wowed Metallica’s James Hetfield, MGMT, Florence & The Machine, Calvin Harris, Example, The Coronas, Bressie, Glen Hansard, DJ Ahmed, Aslan, Royseven, Keywest, Ham Sandwich, Irish Model Georgia Salpa, Derren Brown, Keith Barry, Jedward and Irish rugby star Paul O Connell. Spade made a guest appearance last night at the launch of the Hot PressYearbook 2012/13. Sacrifice, which opens its doors in King John’s Castle at 7pm is part of the Elemental Arts and Culture Festival.

Steve chats with Ian Dempsey

Could you free yourself from metres of chain and several padlocks, in a matter of minutes, while underwater?

It’s all in a day’s work for Limerick stunt artist Steve Spade, who this weekend plans to enter the Abbey river near the Locke Bar trussed in chains.

Steve has been undergoing intense training for this stunt and will have to hold his breath for upwards of three minutes as he frees himself from the chains — only to then have to break free from a huge wooden box.

Limerick search and rescue units will be on standby.

The planned escape from the river deep is the latest rung of the escapology ladder for Steve, who has already performed numerous other feats, including a live straight-jacket escape during Limerick’s St Patrick’s Day parade.

On Saturday, Steve will be bound in about 9m of steel chains, which will be fastened by four padlocks. He will then be secured in a reinforced wooden box, which will be lowered into the river.

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