Here's my favorite magicians of the modern day. This started out as a youtube message, but thought it would be a good thread.
There are some many great magicians to chose from, but I'd probably say Bill Malone. His humor is so obvious and hysterical, where as some find Jay Sankey to be hilarious, I find his humor to be random stupidiness with a few good lines in there. Bill Malone is also a very fluent card technician as well. I find a lot to aspire to when watching Bill Malone perform; he is able to turn even magicians into happy- go- lucky spectators.
On a different note, I appreciate David Blaine for what he has done for a multitude of specialties in magic, as well as "creating" the specialty of his "hit- and- run" street magic; astonishing people, and then leaving them stunned and confused without any recognition. Amazing. I never appreciated David Blaine until I read his book. It is refreshing to see his personal side, his morals, and where he came from. It really isn't about the fame for him, like it is for Criss Angel, Blaine just wants to see the world get along. I really respect him.
Also, I think that Gazzo should be recognized for his rugged, sarcastic humor, his ability to control a crowd, and his dedication to what magic once was, and his innovations to what magic is today. Gazzo truly is a legend in his respect, and I enjoy watching him work his magic (no pun intended.) Whit Hayden, another scoundrel, is truly legendary in the same busking category.
Lastly, I think that both David Williamson and Mac King deserve their own crowns for stage/ parlor comedy magic. They are just fun to watch, Williamson with his energy and humor, and King for his comedy. They are just great performers and deserve to be noticed.
There are many others to name, but these are my absolute favorites.
It would be my honor to hear who your favorite present- day magicians are and why too.