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Top 10 Greatest Modern Magic Tricks

by nathaaan90
fact checked by Alex Hanton

Magic has been around for hundreds of years and since the greats like Houdini, many more magicians have set about changing the face of magic. This is the list of the 10 greatest magic tricks ever televised. They are the writer’s own opinion and are based upon the idea of the trick, the execution, entertainment value, professionalism, and shock factor involved.


Richard Ross
Linking Rings
9 of 50 Greatest Magic Tricks – Linking Rings Trick

Richard Ross was a Dutch magician well known for his brilliant sleight of hand ability, as well as appearing to be almost as surprised as the audience by the tricks he was performing. This airing of the trick was in 1983. Keep a close eye on the rings as they intersect and come away from each other; while being a simple routine, it is, by any standards, flawless. If you like this one you will also like his Multiplying Clocks.


David Blaine
David Blaine (remove girl teeth)

David Blaine is a well known illusionist and endurance artist, famous for his high – profile feats of endurance and numerous street magic series and television appearances. He has been hailed as the modern day Houdini. In this trick, he pulls a girl’s teeth out before making them reappear in her mouth when he blows on her. This will shock you.


Paul Daniels
Chop Cup
8 – Chop Cup (1985) – Paul Daniels

Paul Daniels is an English magician who has had success through various TV performances, programs, and live shows. Chop Cup, is fast, interactive and incredibly entertaining. As Paul Daniels says in the clip, it took him near to 300 performances to get it right, and the effort shows. The sleight of hand is perfect and the work of a master.


Harry Blackstone Jr
Floating Lightbulb
Blackstone Jr. Floating Lightbulb Miracle Classic of Magic

Harry Blackstone Jr, son of Harry Blackstone Sr (also known as “The Great Blackstone”), sadly died in 1997. His father was born way back in 1885 and between them, the pair had been presenting magical performances for a long time. The clip is from his act ‘The Floating Lightbulb’, which shows a lightbulb, lit, with no means of electricity, floating around the stage and the audience for examination.


Lance Burton
4 of 50 Greatest Magic Tricks – Doves Trick

A master of magic, William Lance Burton now performs nightly in Las Vegas but his career has featured numerous television performances featuring brilliant feats of magic. He is an award winning magician from Louisville, Kentucky, and started performing magic at age 5. His dove act has been chosen for the sheer professionalism and skill with which he performs the illusions.


Criss Angel
Walking on water
Criss Angel Walks on Water

Criss Angel is the darkest magician on this list, famous for his television shows Mindfreak, Believe and Phenomenon. He is well known for his spin on the darker side of magic performing tricks such as pulling a woman in half, and getting himself run over by a steam roller live on air. In this illusion, he attempts to show a pool of people he can walk on water and does so whilst they watch and swim around and under him.


David Copperfield
Vanishing Statue of Liberty
David Copperfield – Vanishing the Statue of Liberty

By magician’s standards, making an object disappear is either a simple case of deception, illusion, sleight of hand or misdirection. That’s fine for say, a card, or a piece of jewelry, but what about something bigger? Siegfried and Roy were made famous in Vegas for their vanishing elephant illusion but Copperfield thought he would take it a step further and make the Statue of Liberty in New York City, disappear. It has to be seen to be believed.


The Pendragons
3 of 50 Greatest Magic Tricks – Metamorphosis

The Pendragons are a husband and wife team of magicians from America. They are well known for their fast and dangerous illusions. In 2006, Jonathan Pendragon fell on an arrow while rehearsing a dangerous bow and arrow trick. The arrow pierced his liver, stomach and heart, but since, he has made a full recovery. Their metamorphosis illusion is regarded as the fastest trick in history.


Penn and Teller
Bullet Catch
Penn and Teller Magic bullet catch complete

Featured before on Listverse, Penn and Teller’s bullet catch is not only incredibly dangerous but also incredibly brilliant. They mix Penn’s enthusiasm with Teller’s muteness perfectly and mix in subtle humor which makes the act highly enjoyable.


David Copperfield
Death Saw
David Copperfield – Death Saw

David Copperfield is officially the most successful magician in history, selling over 40 million tickets to shows and grossing over $1 billion to date. He has 10 Guinness World Records, has 20 Emmy awards, a Living Legend award and numerous others, as well as being the first living magician to have a star on the Hollywood walk of fame. His success however, isn’t the reason he has bagged the number one stop on this list. His tricks are larger, more impressive and more dramatic than any other magician, and he has the on stage presence, charisma, and movements which has made him the archetype for great magicians all around the world.

fact checked by Alex Hanton