Number 309 - 27th May 2006


Gary Young's 10th Top Secret Magic Day - next weekend! The Gala Show stars Terry Seabrooke, Vizage, Alec Powell, Russ Stevens, Duncan Trillo, John Lenahan and Marc Oberon (with pre Gala Show close-up magic from Ed Stivala). Four major lectures are scheduled from Russ Stevens, Marc Oberon, Martin Sanderson and John Lenahan. With magic dealers: Practical Magic, The Magic Zone, DTrik, Sanderson Magic, RSVP Magic, Paul Gordon, Albion Magic, Alakazam, Bradford Magic Studio and Zane's Magic Shop. The venue is The Bedford Corn Exchange, St Pauls Square, Bedford MK40 1SL (Map), right in the centre of the market town of Bedford (just outside Milton Keynes). Gary tells us that the venue and facilities are superb. A perfect theatre, a nice suite for the dealers and plenty of places to sit, relax and chat. Plus a magic café and bar. Reserved seating for the whole day costs just £25.00 (or £28.00 on the day, if still available). Visit for more information and to book. 27.5.06


International Magic Weekend, November 24th - 26th. The first two names have been released for this year's International Magic Weekend in London. Ray Crowe (Australia) and David Regal (USA), will both be appearing in the UK for the first time. Ray Crowe (photo) was one of the hits of FISM in Den Haag, and the first Australian magician to be featured on any of "The World's Greatest Magicians" TV specials. His work blends traditional skills with contemporary presentations, and his signature piece "The Shadows" is one of modern magic's great fusions of theatre and the allied arts.


David Regal (creator of many unusual but highly commercial effects such as Sudden Deck and The Disposable Deck) has spent the last few years as one of the top comedy TV scriptwriters in Hollywood, working on shows as diverse as Rugrats and Everybody Loves Raymond. This hasn't prevented him from producing plenty of magic. His effects are capable of fooling well-posted magicians, yet are exceedingly entertaining to laypeople. What's more, because of David's singular and sometimes unusual methodology, almost all of the effects are surprisingly easy to perform. He will be performing both close-up and in the Gala Show, and will also be lecturing which, with his writing and comedy background, is a fantastically entertaining presentation - a fact recognised by The Magic Castle when they awarded him "Lecturer of the Year."


More names will be announced in future weeks. Last year, Derren Brown made an unadvertised appearance in a special Q&A session... this year the organisers plan more such surprises. More information and registrations: Special convention rates are available from the Novotel (part of the Convention venue) on 020 7666 9000, or there is budget accommodation available just over the road at the Euston Premier Inn, telephone 0870 238 3301. 27.5.06


The X Factor - Battle of the Stars, 9pm, 29th May on ITV1, and every night until 5th June. "The X Factor is back... but not as you know it! The heat is on. Starting on May 29th for 8 consecutive nights, nine celebrity acts will be putting their vocal talents to the test. They've been rehearsing in the shower, singing into their hairbrushes and practising their dance routines in front of the mirror. And now, for one gruelling week, our celebrities will be battling it out live to see who really has the X factor. Not only will they have to sing live in front of the nation - they will face the challenge of singing in front of the judges, Simon Cowell, Sharon Osbourne and Louis Walsh." X-rated celebs unveiled, Click Here. 27.5.06


No illusions: Malkovich is 'Howard' reported by Borys Kit in the Hollywood Reporter: "John Malkovich has signed on to play the title role in Bristol Bay Prods. and Playtone Prods.' 'The Great Buck Howard.' Sean McGinly is directing the comedy from his own script, which follows a luckless magician (Malkovich) and his assistant as they struggle to reinvigorate his career." To read the full story Click Here. 27.5.06


Zane's Magic Shop is now advertising with MagicWeek. Zane has been a successful professional magician for many years, presenting both close-up and stage magic. "The business/shop was set up to provide the magic fraternity with commercial magic that's practical and works well in the real world - the shop sells a large variety of magic tricks and accessories that meet the needs of both the absolute beginner and the professional performer." Visit today! 27.5.06


Bible miracles? Just another magic trick. "Magical duo Barry Jones and Stuart MacLeod are hitting religion with more tricks from the Bible," writes Alastair McKay in the Times. "'People think because it's a magic show it will be Paul Daniels,' says MacLeod. 'They think it will be a family show — forgetting that we're in the same slot as Bo' Selecta!' For all the controversy, Jones and MacLeod's act is oddly gentle. The magic is framed in comic sketches, with the duo playing characters, such as the conjuring vicars (with their love of improbable religious metaphor) and the boy whose tongue is possessed; an affliction that causes Jones to swallow razor blades." To read the full article Click Here. Tricks from the Bible, Channel 4, 10.30pm, June 2nd. See TV Magic. 27.5.06


Blackpool Summer Magic. The Pleasure Beach presents Mystique (photo) through to November 5th, starring Richard de Vere, and the Grand Theatre is staging two different variety shows. The afternoon show will feature illusionist/juggler Andrew Van Buren and the evening show illusionist Guy Barrett, son of well known ringmaster Norman Barrett. One day a week at the Tower Circus Danish illusionist Kim Kenneth, previously seen in this country in Billy Smart's Circus, is presenting the Kim Kenneth Illusion Show which also includes German quick-change act Sylvia Brumbach and a new act from Bubu Endresz, together with artistes from the Tower Circus. "Artist taps into the extraordinary" Click Here. 27.5.06


Late Night Radio Magic. On Friday, 2nd June, at 10.45pm California based mentalist Joseph Atmore recreates a 1940's era radio show based on the work of The Amazing Dunninger. (Some good seats are still available for this special event, see What's On for more information). Then on Saturday 3rd June at 10.45pm Radio 1's resident magician Chris Cox and Radio Magic's Jay Fortune feature in the 'Late Night Magic' Cabaret at the Jermyn Street Theatre in London's West End. Box Office 020 7287 2875 or book online 27.5.06


The Heirloom Bonus Pack: Additional cards, routines and effects... "Uncle Charlie's been at it again! Not only was he a gambler but he also dabbled in mind reading and magic! Included in this special pack Uncle Charlie provides you with the photos to add to your performance of 'John Kennedy's Mind Power Deck' and 'Bob Cassidy's Chronologue' as well as some very special bonus cards including the five ESP symbols. This pack comes complete with thirty two custom printed photographs and some great routines. Charlie is your favourite Uncle, so never leave home without him!" Due for release in the next few days, together with Spirit by Mozique, a sensational "Haunted Deck" effect. For more information, and to pre-order, visit 27.5.06


The North Western Society of Magicians, based in Barrow in Furness, Cumbria, held their annual close-up competition last week, before a packed house at The Lisdoonie Hotel, Barrow. Ten members each performed a 10 minute spot and the standard was reported to be very high. Congratulations to Phil Robinson (photo), a member for less than a year, who is an amateur performer but managed to beat two professional members to win the 1st place trophy. Joel Dickinson came second and Dave Simpson third. The audience quickly warmed to 'Phillipe' as he performed his spot as a "funny Frenchman" complete with dodgy accent. Phil was more than surprised to win as it was the first time he had entered one of the Society's competitions. Website Click Here. 27.5.06


Sam Beedle became interested in magic at the age of just four. After receiving his first Paul Daniels Magic Set he became hooked on the art of making the impossible possible and his performances have grown ever since. Sam has now launched his own Magical Theatre Company, 'Modern Magic' and is ready to hit the road... "Modern Magic is a team of artists and technicians with a great passion for modern theatre. With their unique approach to magic they intend to turn the world of deception upside down and set new standards for the average magician. Sam Beedle says, 'I dislike the way magic is viewed today, it's old fashioned and has had its time... It would be nice to re-vamp and show something different for a change.' Modern Magic have their own a repertoire of illusions, but also like displaying their smaller ideas onstage. With every performance they produce, it has the Modern Magic twist and with their unique sense of drama, humour and 'wow factor', their shows raise adrenaline and excitement like nothing else..." Modern Magic will present "Out of the Blue" at The Corn Exchange, Rochester High Street, Kent on July 8th. See for details. 27.5.06


Jason Palter's Third Degree Burn is reviewed by Tom Lauten this week. "This effect does everything it promises. Now, credit where it is due, a number of other effects have offered a "blister effect" before and they work very well indeed, what's more it is a very convincing visual effect, but none have ever offered a free choice of 52 cards. I think the cool thing is that this is a card trick without cards… kind of an ultimate 'do something' challenge effect, one that will leave spectators rather impressed indeed." To read the full review under 'Tricks' Click Here. 27.5.06


The Magic Circle Collectors Day. There is still time to purchase tickets for The Magic Circle Collectors Day on Saturday June 3rd. Doors open at 9.30am and the day will finish by 5pm. There will be talks on subjects such as Dunninger the American mentalist, and sideshow illusions. There will also be demonstrations of old tricks and film clips including Fogel's hypnotism, Houdini performing card tricks, and Annemann's bullet catch. Tickets (£30 including lunch) from The Magic Circle, telephone 020 7387 2222. 27.5.06


Congratulations to Michael McMillan who was awarded the Ann Warlock Close-up Entertainer of the Year trophy at the recent Scottish Magical Championships in Greenock in April. Michael has a residency at TGI Fridays and the popular Edinburgh Cabaret Club, is busy with corporate work and hopes to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. 27.5.06


Da Vinci Code Playing Cards on Waddingtons Number 1 stock! Pre-order from Perfect for the Da Vinci Code Book Test, available as an instant download from and featured last week. 27.5.06


Radio Magic news. June sees the world famous Magic Circle visit Radio Magic. On June 5th, editor of The Young Magicians Club magazine Secrets, Mandy Davis, joins them. Magic Circle President Alan Shaxon can be heard on the show on Monday 12th and international magician Scott Penrose (photo) joins them on Monday 19th. For more information, and news of other upcoming items, visit 27.5.06


Funny Paper. Samuel Patrick Smith's Funny Paper is now being distributed in the UK exclusively by Practical Magic. The paper comes out six times a year and is aimed at the children's/family entertainer. 64 pages, A4 in size, it features first class articles by leading US entertainers together with some UK contributions. The subscription rate is £32.00 per year, or order a sample issue for just £3.00. Full details: 27.5.06


Chinawhites Magic Night. Earlier this month magician Sav organised the first Chinawhites Magic Night featuring stage performances from Sav, Steve Faulker and Peter Wardell, dark magic from Alex Crow, and close-up magic from Noel Qualter and Robert Fox. Click Here for more from the night. Sav and Noel topped off the week with a flying visit to Dubai - literally. They flew out in the morning and returned from the corporate event in the evening. 27.5.06


Jack Diamond (Graham Roe) has once again broken the world record for Dice Stacking. He successfully achieved this by stacking 27 casino dice at York's ArtSpace Gallery as part of the York Magic Festival 2006, witnessed by people from all over England. 27.5.06


Mark Shortland takes 'the cup and ball routine' to new heights as he performs at Liverpool Football Club to celebrate one year on from their stunning European Cup victory in Istanbul. Mark, a Liverpool fan since 1977, was part of the celebrations which also included mad Liverpool fans The Coral, and Kopite poet Dave Kirby. The most asked question of the night... "Can your magic bring the Premiership back to Anfield next year?" Watch this space, says Mark! 27.5.06


Paul Gordon lectures at the Associated Wizards of the South on June 6th at 8pm at the Conservative Club, 74 St Annes Road, Woolston, Southampton SO19 9FF (Map). Tickets for non members are £5.00 each, available on the door. If you live locally then this would be a good opportunity to visit the club with a view to joining. For more information contact Phil Wedgbrow on 07739 407147. 27.5.06


Dirk Losander arrived in the UK last Sunday, via Eurostar. Between Sunday night and Monday morning thieves broke into his car, which was in a secure car park, and stole most of the items he was planning to sell during on his lecture tour. No doubt the thieves will probably dump the stock, but readers are asked to be on the lookout just in case. Luckily, he still has his lecture props, so the tour is unaffected. New retail stock will be flown in. For lecture dates see What's On. 27.5.06


Derren Brown's final wickedness plays the Hammersmith Carling Apollo tonight, Saturday 27th May (booking line: 0870 606 3400). This is your last chance to see the Olivier Award Winning Show • "The Magic of John Gabriel opens the 2006 Aremenian Awards, in Los Angeles" Click Here • Going to Bournemouth this weekend? are offering 10% off all stock to all walk-in customers this Sunday and bank holiday Monday • "Hypnotist teaches dangers about driving drunk" Click Here is having a closing down sale • "A world sleight-of-hand champ who's heavy on ambition" Click Here • That's it for another week, have a good bank holiday weekend, see you next week, Duncan. 27.5.06