What do sculpture, painting,
wood-working, magic, motion pictures, acting and screenwriting have to do with
the United States Military Academy? All are fields that its graduates have
entered after serving in the military. A sample of West Point graduates
who are successfully working in the fine and performing arts follows.
Dick Steiner '68 spent 21
years in communications as a Signal Corps officer before retiring from the
military in 1989. He turned an enjoyable hobby, reserved mostly for
weekends, into a fun, lucrative and full-time career. According to Army
Times (2 March 1992 issue), "Like magic, (he) has merged the various
parts of his life and pulled success out of a hat."
Steiner enjoyed magic as a child
growing up in Minneapolis, but it wasn't until he met magicians Fred Cook and
John Bannon, a former Air Force officer, that he found the inspiration for his
craft. "I've read hundreds and hundreds of books on magic, (but) the
catalyst was meeting a magician."
As a magical entertainer, Steiner
has traveled around the country performing for a variety of audiences: his
specialty is providing entertainment for corporations and organizations.
He performs strolling or close-up magic at cocktail hours, private parties,
hospitality suites and conventions, and also performs stage shows as the
after-dinner entertainment at banquets, often introducing a corporate theme or
product into his presentations. Steiner combines magic with mentalism and
includes mind reading, forecasting the future and other aspects of ESP in his
Steiner provided magical and
mentalist entertainment at the 1992 Army-Navy Football Game party in
Annapolis. Most impressive was this prediction of his: "Just before
game time I was interviewed on the Navy football radio network and was asked
for my prediction of the results of the game. I predicted that Army
would win in an exciting game, 24-21, which turned out to be fairly close to
the actual score [25-24]."
list of clients includes 3M, Xerox, Coca-Cola, Blue Cross/Blue Shield and the
1991 World Championship Minnesota Twins. He also performed at the White
House for the 1989 American Bicentennial Presidential Inaugural Show,
"From George to George... Two Hundred Years." This summer, his
magic will be featured at the major-league baseball All-Star Game.