Number 761 - 24th January 2015


Beat the Wand - late night at the Blackpool Convention 2015! From the organisers: You know the score by now. But if you don't... Beat the Wand is an interactive magical variety talent show. You have 3-5 minutes to blow the audience away with your act. Non-magic acts have proved to be more popular with the audience, so we would love to continue the variety aspect this year. Juggling, Escapology, Contortion, Geek Magic, Bizarre, Occult, Mind Reading, Ventriloquism, Mouth Juggling, World record attempts... Of course magic is welcome in the show, but remember the audience is 99.9% magicians so whatever the act, it will need a novel twist or presentation to capture the audiences interest. There were some fantastic spoof magic acts last year which also went down very well.


If you are interested in performing, here are the rules: Your act must last a minimum of three and a maximum of five minutes; Five giant wands will be thrown into the audience. After an act has performed for one minute the "voting" begins. Once a wand holder has seen enough of your act they will place their wand in the air. If five wands are in the air the act will stop but if an act reaches three minutes they are safe and will be allowed to finish their act; Of all the acts who reached the three minute mark and "beat the wand" the audience will decide the winner by Clap-o-meter; Performers will be supplied with a hand mic, a table and two chairs. There are no cameras or screens in the bar so close-up/table magic will not be suitable. The top 3 acts will receive a trophy with the winner being awarded a free gold registration for Blackpool 2016. If you are interested, or know someone who would love to be involved or need any further info then please email 24.1.15


The South Tyneside International Magic Festival Convention returns with a weekend of lectures, workshops and performances in March. Event organisers, South Tyneside Council and magician John Archer, have just released a full itinerary for the popular event (, which annually attracts professional performers from around the globe.

This year’s convention, which is expected to be a sell-out, begins with a children’s show and lecture by family magician Russ Brown and lectures by multi award-winning mentalist Satori and card expert John Carey. At the end of the day attendees will be given free entry to a public Gala Show, featuring performances by six acts, including illusionists Diamond and Jade and mind-reader Luke Jermay, as well as access to an exclusive Midnight Show.

Day two will begin with lectures by eccentric and theatrical performer Kieron Lefever and dynamic mind-reader, Atlas, followed later by comedy magician The Great Nardini and mentalist Luke Jermay. Saturday’s afternoon session will offer visitors the chance to enjoy a special close-up workshop with Luke, along with card masterminds John Carey and Gordon Bruce, followed by a second public Gala Show featuring comedy magician Michael Finney (photo), children’s entertainer Dave Andrews, illusionists High Jinx and many more.


The Festival will close on Sunday March 15th, with lectures by card manipulator Gordon Bruce and multi-award winning Michael Finney, and master-classes available with Atlas and Looch and Satori at 3pm, although these must be pre-booked at an additional cost. A variety of magic dealers will also be exhibiting throughout the convention. Tickets for the convention, which runs from Friday March 13th to Sunday March 15th, are available now priced at £65 per person. For more information, or to book, call 0191 4247986 or email Further details can also be found at 24.1.15


Crafted With Carey - a major new book release from Magicseen Publications: Magicseen is delighted to announce the impending publication of a brand new hard backed book from well known and respected UK magician John Carey. The 200 page photo illustrated book features a fine collection of about 70 routines from John as well as contributions from magical friends such as John Bannon and Peter Duffie. John Carey has a marvellous facility for creating practical methods to achieve a wide variety of plots, and this book mixes together the best from his previous DVDs and publications, together with some new material. The magic is mostly with cards (although there is a little coin magic too), and all of the material is suitable for magicians of intermediate ability and above. Crafted With Carey will be officially published on 20th February 2015 at the Blackpool Convention, but you can pre-order it now. Place your order by 14th February and you will also receive a link to download a free ebook version of Best of British, another of Magicseen Publications' fine book titles. If you are going to the Blackpool Convention you can also pre-order and collect the book at the convention, saving on postage. Crafted With Carey can be pre-ordered right now from 24.1.15


Mind reader Kennedy and Illusionist Andrew Green are the first artistes and lecturers to be announced for this year's Northern Magic Circle Convention in April. From the organisers: Kennedy (aka Ken Dyne) has been one of the UK's most prolific creators and performers of mentalism for over 12 years. He performs at corporate events the world over and on luxury 6* cruise ships across the globe, entertaining people with his ability to figure out and manipulate their thoughts. In his lecture, Ken will share his real-world working routines from his highly acclaimed book, 'Bairn' plus some never-before revealed material exclusively for our convention attendees. Andrew Green is recognised as one of Britain's best illusionists. Upon leaving college he went straight into working in professional theatre and during the following years toured with several production companies developing his unique brand of magic. Andrew is a much sought after commodity when it comes to booking top class entertainment for prestigious events. The Northern Magic Circle Convention takes place on 11th-12th April 2015 at Harrogate Theatre, Oxford Street, Harrogate, North Yorkshire HG1 1QF (Map). Tickets available from or email 24.1.15


The Magic Circle Close-up Magician of the Year 2015 takes place on Monday, 26th January. The current holder, James Freedman, will be defending his title against strong competition from Andi Gladwin, Will Houstoun, Matthew LeMottee, Noel Qualter, Brendan Rodrigues and Henri White. The winner will be become The Magic Circle Close-up Magician of the Year 2015 and will receive the Devano Trophy. The competition begins at 7.30pm at The Magic Circle Headquarters and is open to Members only. For membership details visit 24.1.15


The Magicians' Podcast features Ben Hanlin this week. Listen to this Podcast and catch up with previous ones at Also see and iTunes, Click Here. 24.1.15


Rare Opportunity! ITV write: We’re making the next series of Tricked for ITV 2 and we’re looking for a magician/runner for the production, to support our magic producers Nigel Mead and Martyn Rowland. The job entails helping devise and prepare tricks and gimmicks for Ben Hanlin, and gaining experience on the hidden camera shoots. It would suit a young magician looking to gain experience in TV. Starts in early/mid Feb, for 15 weeks. Pay is slightly above a TV runners wage. Contact Andy Scott 24.1.15


An Evening of Close-up Magic with Tom Crosbie, Coventry Magic Circle. James Cannon writes: The Coventry Magic Circle are delighted to welcome Tom Crosbie, a brilliant young magician, to our society. It's easy to see when you watch Tom's entertaining style why he has been voted York's Magician of the Year four times in a row. Even just a few inches away from you he will leave you asking "do that again." He takes magic into the 21st-century. The focus of this lecture will be on everyday objects. Tom creates magic at the fingertips with almost anything. This promises to be a great evening of magic. Visiting magicians welcome, £10 door charge. 8pm-10pm on Tuesday 27th January. Venue: Bentley Road Social Club, Bentley Road. Nuneaton CV11 5LR (Map). 24.1.15


Geraint Clarke 'Polymath' lecture now booking. Steve Gore writes: Creative magician Geraint Clarke from Wales is touring with his brand new lecture "Polymath" in November 2015. His unique style of impromptu miracles using everything from borrowed phones, playing cards and even chewing gum has taken the magic world by storm lately, with some of his miracles being used by TV magicians all over the globe. Polymath is a lecture packed with Geraint's original take on impromptu magic for magicians or hobbyists of any skill level, and contains some exclusive new effects that are yet unpublished. "That's Awesome" Chris Kenner; "...a creative rising star in magic" Daniel Madison; "...Great Stuff!" David Copperfield. "Magicians, take note! Geraint Clarke is very good!" Ben Hanlin. Please email to book your preferred date: 24.1.15


Dundalk Day of Magic. J Hobart writes: The Dundalk Day of Magic (3rd May 2015) website: contains full details of how to register at €50 and €35 for non-magician partners - including a three course meal, all lectures, dealers and the Gala Show. In addition four names have been added to the bill - Pat Fallon, Rodd Hogg, Murray The Magician and Liam O'Neill. 24.1.15


Damian Jennings ( is performing a new one man show on Valentine’s Day, in Arundel, West Sussex. It will feature Damian performing card and parlour magic, a new alter ego doing a cups and balls routine in really bad French, and headlining again, after performing and lecturing at last year’s International Magic Convention, will be Tony Sagittarius (, the sexiest mind reader in the world. Last year the show sold out, so book tickets in advance at 24.1.15


Alan Shaxon The Sophisticated Sorcerer - The Lecture, at Merlins of Wakefield. Steve Short presents his 'Alan Shaxon The Sophisticated Sorcerer' lecture for Merlins of Wakefield on Wednesday, 11th February. Cost £7.50 to include refreshments. Steve starts the evening in an entertaining way with details from Alan's life, influences, and performances, and illustrates his talk with a number of photographs and film clips, telling how Alan became interested in magic; his friendships with other performers, particularly Robert Harbin. Following a short break, Steve will present and explain a number of Alan's effects, including the classic 'Confabulation', Alan's take on Robert Harbin's 'Captain's card trick', and many more. This promises to be a great evening of entertainment and magic, so please book early as spaces are strictly limited. Click Here to book. 24.1.15


Become a modern day magician with Marvin's i-Magic for iPhone and Android. "Marvin's Magic has won the hearts of trainee magicians for numerous years, offering sets to create illusions of varying complexity. From the basic cup and ball tricks to intricate card magic, the company has provided the tools needed..." Click Here. 24.1.15


Pre-Convention Magic Auction, Blackpool. From the organisers: "Blackpool Magicians' Club are holding a Jumbo Magic Auction on Thursday 19th February (the day before the Convention) at 1pm in the Pavilion Theater, Winter Gardens, Blackpool. Star Auctioneers Derek Lever and Mike Shepherd will preside over a vast array of bargains including books, DVDs, Stage Magic, Kids Magic, Close-up etc. Hundreds of items available. If you have registered for the Convention entry is free of charge otherwise £3.00 on the door. Persons who are banned from the Convention are also banned from this event. Further details from Derek Lever email:" 24.1.15


The Black Project by Looch: "Over a decade in the making, 2015 will be the year of ‘The Black Project”, the definitive work from Award Winning Mind Reader & Mentalist, Looch. Already being heralded as the Mentalism release of the year, this enormous project will consist of two hardback books covering material from Looch’s close-up and stand-up shows over the last ten years. In addition to the books, The Black Project will also include Performance Footage, Audio Interviews, Mind Reading Memoirs, Professional Business Advice for Mentalists and other Downloadable Content. Looch is giving away a sample chapter from the forthcoming project, which can be found here:" 24.1.15


Paul Pickford 'House of Magic' Lecture, West Midlands. Stuart Millward, House of Magic UK, writes: "Paul Pickford lectures at House of Magic UK, 80 Brook Street, Stourbridge, West Midlands DY8 3XB (Map) 7pm-9pm on Monday, 26th January. Paul Pickford released a DVD with Alakazam at the end of last year and has been a professional magician and card expert for over 20 years. His dedication to improving forgotten sleights, as well as creating sleights of his own, has earned him a reputation in the magic underground. Paul has decided for the first time to show and explain some of the methods that he has developed over the years in his first ever lecture. Paul's DVD, 'The V S Project' was a big seller at Alakazam: 'The VS Project showcases some of Paul's outstanding card creations, his approach to sleight of hand, the psychology of timing and misdirection as well as his interpretation of some classic effects. Paramount on these DVDs is Paul's use and handling of a superb, and often overlooked, Marlo sleight including all of his finesses, subtleties and timing, in exacting detail.' People can book a seat (£10.00) by contacting the shop at or ringing the shop on 01384 373209." 24.1.15


Get Your Act Together, 7pm on Sunday 25th January on ITV. "Stephen Mulhern hosts a new series in which some of our best-loved stars join forces with top variety acts to put on a special performance. Each week, five different celebrities get to learn brand new skills, from contortion to fire dancing, ventriloquism to acrobatics, juggling to plate spinning to magic. The celebrities and their mentors then take to the stage together to perform in front of a studio audience, who decide which celebrity - along with their mentor - has entertained them the most and will go through to the live final." This week's show feature illusionist Jamie Allan. See TV Magic. 24.1.15


Manchester Circle of Magicians: Monday 26th January. Mike Hinde writes: At 7.30pm, Danny Hunt, Carl Royle and Philip Partridge will take questions and discuss 'The Business of Magic' followed at 8pm by Danny Hunt's lecture 'The Secrets of Escapology and Spirit Mediums'. For more details visit or email 24.1.15


Be A Purple Banana by Jez Rose. From the publishers: In his second book, due to be released at the end of March 2015, behaviourist Jez Rose reveals the Purple Banana Principles. Be A Purple Banana is an honest, uplifting, personal journey where science and psychology meet emotional intelligence: what makes ordinary people able to do extraordinary things? With effective, real-world strategies to achieve extraordinary results from ordinary people, Be A Purple Banana is poignant, practical, funny and so much more than any other ‘self-help’ or ‘how-to’ book available. Why are some able to achieve so much more than others? Is it possible to learn to be extraordinary? The foundations to becoming a more effective salesperson; a better parent; a more effective teacher; a more efficient leader and a happier person are all here. If you want to drive higher performance, this is the book you'll need. Be A Purple Banana: getting extraordinary results from ordinary people. Jez comments: "I’ve worked with many thousands of people to help them understand and change their behaviour over the last ten years and I began to ask myself ‘What makes some people extraordinary? What makes them stand out?’ and ultimately, ‘How, exactly, do you become extra-ordinary?’. This exploration into why we do what we do – and how to change our behaviour for the better, forms the basis of Be A Purple Banana." 238 pages. Hardback with illustrations. Foreword by Sir Ranulph Fiennes. Preface by David Berglas. Afterword by Claire Lomas. For more information and to pre-order with a £5.00 saving visit 24.1.15


Dr Roger Woods AIMC was installed as President of The Modern Mystic League (Blackburn & District Society of Magicians) for the third time on 11th January, 2015. He is a lawyer, magician, musician, author, lecturer and publisher. His interest in conjuring began with a David Nixon magic set when he was ten years old. Roger was a Solicitor and then Barrister with the Crown Prosecution Service for over twenty five years, but since his retirement has been able to spend more time with magic. He is an Associate of the Inner Magic Circle, previously Chairman of The Modern Mystic League, and a member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians (Order of Merlin Shield), the Northern Magic Circle (President 2013 - 2014) and the Cavendish Knights of Close up Magic. Roger, who has five degrees in law and the arts, has lectured extensively on law and magic since the 1980s. He offers magic talks suitable for all kinds of clubs and societies. He has written a number of books on magic history (several co-authored with Brian Lead MIMC) and won many awards. Details appear on his website Apart from magic history and biography, Roger’s main interest lies in close-up magic, although he strongly believes that a wide curiosity in all aspects of magic is the most fruitful. Roger has recently published two new books; details below. (Photo: Trevor Dawson AIMC, right, Centenary President 2014, passes the MML Presidential Chain to Dr Roger Woods for 2015). 24.1.15


Chris Van Bern: The Busy ‘B’; The original British magician and Variety Performer by Roger Woods is a biography of Chris Van Bern (1872? - 1950) christened The Busy 'B' by The Magician Monthly in 1911 because of his versatility as a variety performer. His presentations were original and he was something of a 'character'. He became a member of so many local magic clubs throughout the UK that it is believed his record has never been surpassed by anyone. A generous man to all magicians he co-authored A Whirlwind of Wizardry with De Vega. His career lasted over 40 years. There is a particular interest for The Magic Circle as in 1946 he donated all his magic society medals and jewels to the Society’s museum. This paperback book is available on and the ebook version on 24.1.15


The Centenary History of The Modern Mystic League (Blackburn and District Society of Magicians) 1914 – 2014 by Roger Woods. Available on This book of 189 pages tells the story of Roger’s local society from the founding by nine Blackburn gentlemen in February, 1914 to the present day. Fully illustrated in colour, eleven chapters set out the ups and downs of the MML with the final chapter detailing the events of the Centenary year, 2014. 24.1.15


Extreme Clowning are in need of new magic equipment to enable them to continue their work with people with dual sensory loss, so that they may enjoy entertainment and popular culture. To help, email JJ at or visit for more information. 24.1.15


Professional Comedian and Magician, Mowgli, has kicked off 2015 with the release of two brand new products for the magic community on his all-new website. One is a routine direct from his professional act, and another which is the secret to his creative writing process which he uses to create his own shows and write material for others. See: 24.1.15


Correction. In my 'Magicians Podcast' interview with Richard Young last week I stated that I was the 'first magician' to street perform in Covent Garden following the market's transformation into a tourist destination in the early 80's. My memory/knowledge got this one all wrong. There were in fact a number of magicians and magic related acts who had worked there before me. I was the first magician to perform a 'silent manipulation' magic act, but not the first 'magician' and the Podcast has now been edited to correct this (thanks Richard). Funnily enough, I did try busking before my Covent Garden days, as a teenager back in 1978 in Leicester Square, with just one trick, a balsa wood Dancing Cane that I'd re-modeled into a Star Wars lightsaber! I'd painted it with yellow fluorescent paint, added a hilt, and even wore a homemade cardboard Darth Vader mask, just to finish things off... Needless to say this was not the start of a new career and I only ventured out with it twice; once with my older brother Richard lending moral support, and once with Russ (Stevens), much to his amusement. I lasted about an hour on both occasions, just about making enough for a cup of coffee and a tube fare home. I've still got that dancing lightsaber. It's on stand-by, if all else in life fails. Duncan Trillo. 24.1.15


"Copperfield conjures new tricks from tech" Click Here • "Review: The Illusionists 2.0, Arts Centre Melbourne" Click Here • "Meet conjurer who writes poems for top magicians" Click Here • "Review: Magician Criss Angel gives only illusion of his best work at Easton's State Theatre" Click Here • "Criss Angel's 'Mindfreak' mesmerizes sold-out State Theatre crowd" Click Here • "Illusionist, Darcy Oake entertains to sold out Painted Hand Casino" Click Here • "Huddersfield magician Michael Jordan back on stage in home town" Click Here • "First Look: 'Now You See Me 2' Adds Daniel Radcliffe and Lizzy Caplan to a Stacked Deck" Click Here • "Illusionist keeps magic alive" Click Here • "Criss Angel delights fans during Bethlehem appearance" Click Here • "Interviewing Criss Angel: Illusionist tells how he came to magically appear on Easton's State Theatre stage" Click Here • "Daniel Radcliffe Returns to Magic With Now You See Me 2" Click Here • "Learning will be magic for pupils" Click Here • "Mistress of mind games" Click Here • Your UK magic news is always welcomed - see you next week, Duncan. 24.1.15