Penn and Teller is a two-man magic and comedy team, specializing in gory tricks and clever pranks, who have become associated with skepticism and Las Vegas.
Teller does not speak on-stage, though there have been occasional exceptions. He was born Raymond Joseph Teller on February 14, 1948 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He attended Amherst College and taught Latin at Lawrence High School in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. He is an expert on the history of magic. He had his name changed legally to Teller. He began his trademark of not speaking as a way of dealing with audience hecklers.
Penn Fraser Jillette, the talking magician, is the larger of the two (6'6"/1.98 m to Teller's 5'9"/1.75 m), and was born March 5, 1955 in Greenfield, Massachusetts. He attended Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Greatest Show on Earth Clown College - but he's apologized for this. He became disillusioned with the type of magic acts that present magic as "real" by watching The Amazing Kreskin on the Johnny Carson show. He attended a performance by The Amazing Randi with Teller at the age of eighteen which suggested the idea of presenting magic as an openly acknowledged trick rather than as a mysterious power. He appeared as Drell on Sabrina the Teenage Witch, He also is/was the voice announcer for the U.S. based cable network Comedy Central.
Teller began performing with a friend, Weir Chirsamer, as the Ottmar Scheckt Society for the Preservation of Weird and Disgusting Music: they joined up with Penn Jillette and renamed themselves the Asparagus Valley Cultural Society.
Their tricks include Teller hanging upside-down over a bed of spikes in a straightjacket, Teller drowning in a huge container of water, Teller being run over by an 18-wheel tractor-trailer, Teller swinging over bear-traps on a trapeze, and knives going through Penn's hands.
They have made television guest appearances as a comedy team on Babylon 5, and Teller has played Mr. Boots on Dharma & Greg.
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2 Television Shows
4 Books by Penn and Teller
5 External link
Books by Penn and Teller