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Jac Olten

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Jac Olten

The Gen Sept. 1959
BornAlred Mihiel
April 13, 1913
Marseilles, France
Diedcirca 1995 (age 82)

Jac Olten (1913-c.1995), who also gave himself the title of 'Count', was a professional manipulator who toured France, Germany, England, Africa, and the United States.


It has been widely reported that at the start of the World War II, he was imprisoned in the 'Stalag 13' Prisoner of War Camp in Germany. His released was assisted by Helmut Schreiber (who would later perform as Kalanag) on November 13, 1940. Schreiber obtained apparatus and engagements for him. His internment however may have been related simply to military service of some kind. After the war, Olten wrote a letter testifying to Schreiber's help on his behalf and worked with Kalanag on at least one occasion.[1] Al Sharpe recounts the story that Olten told him of his time in Germany in the May 2004 issue of Magicol (No. 151).

Olten performed an act, modeled after Cardini and Frakson, wearing white gloves, manipulating billiard balls, cards, silks and cigarettes. He later included Horace Goldin's version of the Sympathetic Silks.

In 1966 Olten emigrated to the United States and worked for the "Dutch - American Cruse Lines". [2]

Lewis Ganson stated in The Gen that he was one of the friendliest magicians and always generous in his help to others by imparting the vast knowledge he has of magic. He appeared on B.B.C. Television.[3]

A letter from Jerry Lukins published in Hugard's Magic Monthly (March 1956) reported:

"In Nice I met Jac Olten. I was so impressed I came back the second night to see his two shows again. He worked beautifully with silks- Sympathetic Silks, cigarettes, very novel card effects and in one show he works with puppets. They were stunningly beautiful and were all made by him."


Sometimes referred to as Jack or Jacques.


  1. Information and request for more information from descendent on the Genii forum
  2. Höller, Hannes. European Jewish Magicians 1933-1945. (1999): 55
  3. The Gen September 1959