Will Rock Presents... - Thurston's "Mysteries of India"
Leo Behnke
Prentice Taylor (2007)
In Collection
Pictorial biography
Laguna Beach, CA, Unitied States of America  English
Behnke, Leo: Will Rock Presents...
©2007 Prentice Taylor
Hardbound, 132 pages

The Family 1

Chapter Two
The Raymond Years 9

Chapter Three
The Thurston Show 37

Chapter Four
The World Intrudes 57

Chapter Five
A Changed World 69

A collection of Will Rock photos and publicity 79


Will Rock Presents... by Will Rock.

Product Description

Will Rock was one of America's best least known illusionists, and he had a fabulous career in magic, but no one knows that much about him...until now. Rock married Ruth and they had a daughter, Gretchen, who is bringing this biography to you. All of Rock's diaries, route books, booking correspondence, photographs, and triumphs have been brought out of storage to present his story. Will Rock bought the Thurston show and made a success of it during the worst financial period of America's history, the 1929 - 1939 Depression. But his life started long before that, and now you can cheer his successes and share his despairs as he studies the art of magic, and slowly builds up a first-class illusion show. His story takes you from the time he leaves lithuania at the age of five, through his developing years in America, lets you troupe with him through the theaters of the United States, being drafted for the army in World War II, and then into the postwar period when show business was severely fractured. For the first time, you can read the complete life of Will Rock.


Prentice Taylor, Laguna Beach, CA, 2007. Hardcover. Book Condition: Fine. 1st Edition. 4to - over 9¾ - 12" tall. Fine copy in pictorial boards. No dj, as issued. Unread appearance. Pictorial biography and tribute.
Product Details
No. of Pages 132
Height x Width 11.0 x 8.0  inch
First Edition Yes
Original Title Will Rock Presents...
Original Subtitle Will Rock Presents...
Original Publisher Prentice Taylor
Original Country United States of America
Original Language English
Original Publication Year 2007
Personal Details
Read It Yes
Location Magic Library (Home) Shelf B
Purchase Price $29.95
Current Value $50.00
Condition Mint
Owner Bryan-Keith Taylor
Will Rock

William George Rakauskas
April 25, 1907
Vilnius, Lithuania

May 4, 1995 (age 88)
Mt. Clemens, Michigan

Will Rock (1907-1995), an electrical engineer, performed in "The Modern Monarch Of Magic Presents Thurston's Mysteries Of India" from 1938 through 1942.

His family immigrated to the U.S from Lithuania, settling in Detroit. In the "Who's Who in Magic" column of the Sphinx (May, 1931), he stated he was born in No. Auburn, Massachusetts, although both his obituary in Genii and Leo Behnke's book "WILL ROCK PRESENTS..." states he was born in Lithuania and immigrated to the U.S. with his his family as a young boy.

Rock decided to become a magician after seeing Eugene Laurant perform in 1920. He practiced magic for years until 1928 when he started touring, just as the Great Depression was starting.

In 1931 he met the Great Raymond, whom asked him to be an assistant for his show.

After Howard Thurston died in 1936, Rock purchased some of his illusions from his daughter, Jane Thurston. Then he found out that Harry Thurston (Howard Thurston's brother) had props available for sale as well.

In 1938, he started to perform as "Will Rock, The Modern Monarch Of Magic Presents Thurston's Mysteries Of India". His full evening show toured the United States and Canada, playing 300 cities in a four^year period.

Will Rock's show ended when the war started and he joined the army. He became entertainment director at Camp Leonard Wood, Missouri, where it is said he presented his full-evening show on the average of one night a week.

After the war, he retire from performing, opening a dry-cleaning business.

Who's Who in Magic, The Sphinx, Vol. 30, No. 3, May 1931, page 2
Tops Magazine, Vol. 10, No. 7, July 1945, Will Rock -- Magic for Uncle Sam!, page 4
Obituary Genii Magazine, Vol. 58, No. 9, July 1995, Obituaries, WILL ROCK, page 698
Explanatory Program of Will Rock by Ray Muse in Genii 1956 September
Will Rock Presents... by Leo Behnke (2007)