Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Grave of Cesareo Pelaez

Photo used with permission of Eric D. Cade
 Cesareo Pelaez was the founder, creator, producer and choreographer of the longest running resident magic show in the U.S.. The show was called Marco The Magi present Le Grand David and His Own Spectacular Magic Company. Cesareo played the part of Marco the Magi and the show ran for 36 years.

Born Oct 16, 1932 in Santa Clara Cuba. As a boy, is father took him to see many of the traveling theatrical shows that would visit the island. These included shows by FuManchu, Richiardi Sr. & Jr., Change and Dante. These grand productions had a profound effect on Cesareo and they would later become the inspiration for his ultimate theatrical dream, a resident magic company.

In the 1960s, as Castro was taking over Cuba, Cesareo decided to flee his homeland in sake of a better and safer life. In time, he would become a professor of Psychology at Salem State College and he would remain in this position his entire life until retirement.

But while he was busy teaching young minds about psychology during the day, in the late 1970s, he was putting together a group of people who would buy a theatre, refurbish it and eventually put together their own unique magic show based on the types of shows Cesareo saw as a boy.

In 2005, Cesareo suffered a stroke. He did eventually recover and return to the stage for a short time, but his health was in decline. On March 24th, 2012, Cesareo finally passed away. The company of performers who had stood by his side for so long finished the season without him. Then a few months later they decided to put the Cabot St. Cinema Theatre up for sale. In February 2014, the props, costumes, posters, curtains and everything from the incredible show went up for auction, thus ending any hope of a return of this once grand show.

Cesareo is buried in St. Mary's Cemetery in Beverly MA. His stone is located in the back at the top of the hill, just along the center trail.