Number 707 - 11th January 2014


Ali Cook to top Blackpool Saturday Gala Show: Another scoop booking for Blackpool Magic Convention is that of Ali Cook, who having just finished his very successful theatre tour, is ready to wow 3,000 magicians at Blackpool. He is topping the bill on the Saturday Gala Show with some spectacular magic and illusions. Ali has also been flexing his acting muscles recently and will appear on TV in Mr. Selfridge as the Lead Reporter (series 2, episode 8). Another addition to the Convention on the Friday Gala Show is 93 year old Mark Raffles who says this is his "swan song" but nobody believes him as he is performing better than ever particularly on a recent Ken Dodd Show in Blackpool. The Convention is on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 21st, 22nd, 23rd, February and 2,300 seats have already been sold. It will be a complete sell out!!! Visit or contact Arthur Casson at email: to book. Derek Lever. 11.1.14


A Regular Little Houdini. Set in Newport docks between 1905 and 1913 a young boy grows from boy to man. He is obsessed with Houdini and magic. Houdini visited Wales twice in the Edwardian period sparking huge controversy with his cunning self promotion stunts. On both occasions, run-ins with Newport police eventually lead to arrest and a court appearance in Newport. We see the eight years, book ended by Houdini's two visits, through our boy's eyes. The biggest growth of the industrial period. Our boy grows to adulthood, measuring himself against the real working class heroes in his family whilst holding on to the ultimate dream of emulating his fantasy hero in Houdini. It is a moving, fantastical story of the imagination and spirit of youth, verses the cynicism of adulthood, in a ruthless industrial Britain. The whole story is told through a child's eyes and the informative historical element of the piece is delivered with the magic and enthusiasm of youth. He lives through and tells of the massive industrial growth of South Wales, the building of the transporter bridge, the Newport dock disaster of 1909, which killed 39 people. The show is very moving but also hugely optimistic. There are magic tricks and fantastical stories of monsters and Cyclopes and even an appearance by Houdini himself. Written and performed by Daniel Llewelyn-Williams. Directed by Joshua Richards. Dates: The Riverfront Theatre, Newport: January 23rd, 24th, 25th Click Here and Swansea Grand (Arts Wing): April 16th. 11.1.14


Conjuring at the Court - London: Comedy and spectacle in magic are the order of the day at Conjuring at the Court's New Year show on Thursday 30th January. It's the first visit to the Court for Danny Buckler (photo), whose brand of comedy and magic has been a huge success on cruises, in comedy clubs and at theatres all over the country. Facing off to him in the comedy shoot-out is Christian Lee, 'King of comedy magic' according to Time Out, and one of our most popular performers. Bharat Patel's fast-paced illusion act compresses the vivid colour and music of India into an enthralling feast for the eyes and the great Terry Herbert returns with his magic act that always has the audience in stitches. Compered by co-producer Russell Levinson. The show is in the lovely function room of the Drayton Court, 2 The Avenue, West Ealing, London W13 8PH (Map). Doors open 7.30pm and the show starts at 8pm. Come early to enjoy dinner in one of the bars or the lovely dining room. Tickets £10, from Russell Levinson. 11.1.14


From Russia with Love, for Valentines Day... Smoke & Mirrors brings you a night to remember on February 15th; Jasper Blakeley's Kockov Comedy Magic Show. Kockov's outrageous humour mixes with world-class mentalism to create the perfect combination for a truly unforgettable night of entertainment. Come and witness "The Man, The Mind, The Mullet" with tickets from £7.00 Click Here. 11.1.14


The David Berglas Award. The British Magical Society was formed in Birmingham, England in February 1905 and is the oldest magical society in Europe. Its first President was David Devant, and it initiated the start in the growth of the magical society movement in the U.K. in particular the formation of The Magic Circle in June of the same year. This Trophy is awarded annually to a British magician…."for service to magic in general or performing ability". Members of the British Magical Society are invited each year to make a nomination for this Award. The previous recipients of this Award have been Peter Warlock, Paul Daniels, John Fisher, Ali Bongo, Alan Shaxon, Pat Page, Roy Johnson, Ron Macmillan, David Berglas, Donald Bevan, Wayne Dobson, Jeffery Atkins, Derek Lever, Edwin Dawes, Elizabeth Warlock, Geoffrey Durham, Alex Elmsley, Paul Kieve, Mark Raffles, Terry Herbert, Roy Walton, Bob Hamilton, Derren Brown, Anthony Owen and Duncan Trillo. Nominations are assessed by a President's Committee, chaired by the President, with a membership of the five most recent Past Presidents. The B.M.S. is pleased to announce that the winner of the Award this year is Marvin Berglas. The Trophy will be presented personally by David Berglas, Honorary Vice-President of the B.M.S., and Past President of The Magic Circle, at our Annual Dinner on Saturday 15th March 2014 at the Tally Ho Banqueting and Conference Centre, Edgbaston, Birmingham. Paul Cadley, Secretary 11.1.14


Dynamo: Magician Impossible on the BBC, tonight at 5.30pm on BBC 1. "Series featuring one of the most exciting street magicians in the country. Dynamo has worked with celebrities like Will Smith, Diddy, Jay Z and Russell Brand. In this first episode he performs his spectacular matrix-style levitation, physically moves a girl's tan line and performs magic with rock legend Ian Brown." 11.1.14


The January Mark Leveridge Podcast. Mark writes: The January Mark Leveridge Podcast is ready for you to listen to online or download to any mp3 player, and this month I look back a little at 2013 and suggest ways to prepare well for the new year ahead, explain about E-Club Pro Elite, which is the new membership level for E-Club Pro, and I suggest that card flourishers have solved the problem that many magicians have of not getting enough credit for their magical skills! Other subjects covered include why it isn't always a good idea to get spectators involved in helping with our magic, why arriving too early at a gig can prove a problem and why some shows turn out to be more of a challenge than others. The Podcast is released every month, it is free, and you can access the latest issue plus all the previous ones from 11.1.14


Manchester Circle of Magicians - Jumbo Magic Auction: Monday 20th January at Salford Masonic Hall, Hemsley House, 41 The Crescent, Salford, Near Manchester M5 4PE (Map). Doors open at 5.30pm. Auction commences at 6.30pm. Members admitted free of charge. Non-members pay £3.00. Star Auctioneers: Mike Shepherd and Derek Lever. Hundreds of bargains available including books, DVDs, Close up magic, Kids magic and stage tricks. Further information from Derek Lever 01253 810113 11.1.14


Deception Podcast for Magicians: In conjunction with the Deception Convention, taking place in Liverpool this June, Jonti Sparrow and Aaron Hayes will take an irreverent weekly look at news from the magic community around the world, reviewing a new release, tackling a big question and listening to your thoughts on anything from, 'What colour sponge balls should I use?' to, 'Should the lady scream so much when I cut her in half?' With giveaways, competitions and special guests, this weekly show is not to be missed. Find it on iTunes or Stitcher or check out Jonti Sparrow, Convention Organiser. 11.1.14


Mark James Lecture - February Bookings. Mark James is now taking last minute bookings for his February lecture tour. The lecture includes a 20 minute cabaret set (unexplained), followed by two hours of lecture material. One half made up entirely of stand up magic, the other, close up. The lectures are accompanied by dealer Warped Magic and a fully-stocked dealer stand will be provided for each date. To book Mark and for more information email 11.1.14


Congratulations to Terry Herbert, who, last week, was extremely honoured to receive a trophy on behalf of the KGB, an exclusive organisation of arguably the world's finest children's entertainers, during their annual get-together which this year was held for the first time in London. David Kaye (Silly Billy) made the presentation of the trophy, engraved "Terry Herbert - For inspiring generations of children's entertainers around the world. KGB. London, 2014". 11.1.14


Chris Congreave Lecture Tour 2014. Tour manager Steve Gore writes: Chris Congreave has put together a new lecture for 2014. It's called "At Work and Relaxing". In the "Relaxing" part of the lecture there are 8 completely self working, but hard hitting routines. These aren't 'counting card tricks', but good, easy, workable stuff. Some using cards, money, mobile phones etc. Plus a routine that he has used for many years when he performs at restaurants for the 'Birthday tables'. The "At Work" part features some of the routines that he uses at his gigs that do use a bit of sleight of hand. Midlands based Chris Congreave is a Member of the Magic Circle and has been performing magic professionally for 14 years, full time for 9 years. He started out performing weekly at TGI Fridays and now works mainly at weddings and corporate events. He was also a panel reviewer and host on He has had several effects published in Magic magazine, Best of British and a routine in 3T a book by Mark Tams. His released DVDs include 'Flying Tonight', 'Pocket This', 'Pseudo Pickpocket' and 'Dupes' and his trick releases include 'Ice Coins', 'iContact', 'The Light', 'No diary diary', 'Childsplay' and '52 vs Joker'. Email with your date options. This isn't a set tour, so dates are flexible. As he is Midlands based, the fee is very reasonable and he possibly won't need accommodation. 11.1.14


Pocket Money by Wayne Dobson. "A complete sell-out at Magic Live. We all know when magic happens in a spectator's hand, it becomes more powerful. Pocket Money allows the magic to happen in a spectator's pocket. This is incredible for laymen; to have a coin vanish from their own pocket leaves them speechless. Five random coins from around the world are removed from a small velvet bag. They are placed onto the table. The spectator is asked to pick them up and drop all five into their pocket (any pocket). After two seemingly impossible predictions, they are asked to remove the last coin from their pocket. As crazy as it sounds the last coin has vanished from inside the spectator's pocket! The reactions this gets are incredible." Find out more and watch a video demo at 11.1.14


Ali Cook: Principles and Deceptions. Ali Cook is bringing his critically acclaimed one man show Principles and Deceptions to The Watermans Theatre, West London on Sunday 26th January. "Ali Cook is a historian of deception. He's a sleight of hand expert, a street magician, escapologist, stage illusionist and performer of thought control. "As well as escapology, Cook does jaw-dropping Derren Brown-style mind-reading feats, fabulously dexterous close-up magic, gruesome gross-out pranks and magic tricks the like of which you've never seen before" Steve Bennett, Chortle. Ali Cook's anarchic mix of comedy and magic has made him a headliner on the UK comedy circuit and he performs at celebrity events for the likes of JK Rowling and Damien Hirst. This is promises to be a great family evening out (8+) and a chance to see this terrific up and coming performer up close and dangerous. "Astounding" Mail On Sunday. "Staggering illusions" Metro. For more info and to book Click Here. 11.1.14


Magic Car Boot Sale, West Bromwich, Sunday 2nd February: The next Magic Car Boot Sale in West Bromwich, now in its 21st year, takes place on Sunday 2nd February at The Masonic Hall, Edward Street, West Bromwich B70 8NT (Map). Doors open at 9.30am and admission is £4. A few tables are still available. To book contact Alec Powell on 07831 115448. It's always a great social event and a chance to pick up some second-hand bargains that you can actually examine before you buy. With the usual selection of dealers including Harry Robson, Dave Charles and Adrian Sullivan. Alec Powell. 11.1.14


Ben Train lecture - Wolverhampton Circle of Magicians: On Wednesday 15th January, The Wolverhampton Circle of Magicians, welcome Ben Train. Ben's lecture will include impromptu magic, self working tricks and mentalism. Ben’s material has been featured in every major magic publication (including Genii, The Linking Ring, Magic Magazine, and MUM), and his critically acclaimed DVDs and books have been flying off magic stores shelves around the world. The lecture starts at 8pm at the ECC Sports and Social Club, Showell Road, Wolverhampton WV10 9LU (Map). Visiting magicians welcome for just £5.00. For more information contact Sue Oakley, Secretary of WCM 11.1.14


Zane's Magic Shop - January Sale! "Our January Sale is now on, with lots of tricks being greatly discounted, some by over 50%, including brand new releases! Also, we have just added several brand new products from the USA" 11.1.14


Michael Jordan's High Jinx Magic & Illusion show. "Michael Jordan's High Jinx Magic & Illusion show can be seen as part of Blackpool's Showzam Festival on 21st, 22nd & 23rd February nightly at 7.45pm. This brand new exciting variety show has something for everyone. A fast paced show filled with magic, illusion and circus skills with a welcome return of the House of Magic Dancers and some very special guests. "Blackpool's Number 1 show!" Trip Advisor 2013; "Unmissable, Great Family Fun" Blackpool Gazette; "Young, inventive and visually interesting.. excellent!" The Stage. Venue: The Horseshoe, Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Ocean Boulevard, Blackpool FY4 1EZ (Map). Prices, Children: £8.50 Adults: £10.00 Family ticket (2 adults, 2 children): £35.00. Box Office 11.1.14


Paul Megram (Colonel Custard) will be lecturing for The Home Counties Magical Society on Thursday 16th January at Shinfield Parish Hall, Reading RG2 9EH (Map). Visiting magicians welcome; £10 door charge. For more details visit 11.1.14


Paul Gordon's Card Capers Day of Magic, April 2014. Change of venue. All other details remain the same for Paul Gordon's upcoming Card Capers Day of Magic in April, apart from the venue, which is now The Royal Oak, Brighton Road, Worthing, Sussex BN11 3EE. See What's On for full details. 11.1.14


The Sooty Show at Manchester's Winter Wonderland is reported by Geoffrey Newton this week, Click Here. 11.1.14


The Card Collection Sale ends 12 noon Tuesday 14th January! 10% discount on goods ordered over £25.00, 15% on goods over £45.00 and 20% on goods over £75.00. Don't be late - don't miss out! 9.11.13


Joan Burford. The funeral of Joan Burford will take place at 2.00pm on Tuesday 14th January at Penmount Crematorium, Truro, Cornwall. Donations to be made to RNLI in lieu of flowers. Paul Scott. 11.1.14


"David Copperfield shows HELLO! around Caribbean getaway and introduces fiancée Chloe Gosselin" Click Here • "The Story Behind 'Bullet'" Click Here • "Escapologist and magician RUA to challenge celebrities" Click Here • "MP reveals past life as magician - with mixed results" Click Here • "'Don't worry, we prepared for it': TV Magician Paul Daniels' luxury home on River Thames is flooded" Click Here • "From Prince George to a life-sized balloon bike: Magician spends 12 months mapping 2013 in blow-up figurines" Click Here • "International magicians converge on Sydney" Click Here • "An illusionist’s effects permeate ‘Ghost the Musical’" Click Here • And finally, "Tech that makes the magic happen", Click Here • Your UK magic news is always welcomed - see you next week, Duncan. 11.1.14