Number 818 - 27th February 2016


Blackpool’s 64th Annual Magic Festival is reviewed by Walt Lees this week. "Formerly known as an annual convention, this blockbuster event has now upgraded its title to that of a festival. But, apart from this alteration in nomenclature, it was much the usual fixture-crammed, non-stop, wall-to-wall magic-laden feast aficionados have come to rely on for their regular fix after the dark days of winter. Somehow or other, the number of attendees seems to go on increasing. This year it even topped the 3,600 which was officially recognised in 2015 by The Guinness Book of Records as being the world’s largest assembly of wand-wielders, box-pushers and finger-strutters. So what is the mystique which sucks in so many, from all around the globe, to a cold, damp, old-style north-of-England seaside resort in the off season? Many will give different answers, but whatever it is, it works. Even in the age of on-line shopping, YouTube and dealer websites, a huge percentage of magicians and their families still want to be there in person, soaking up the sights, smells and sounds of actual (as opposed to virtual) reality. There is no substitute for experiencing the ambience at first hand rather than via a screen..." to read the full review Click Here. 27.2.16


Penn & Teller: Fool Us in Vegas, coming to Channel 5. In front of a live audience at the Penn and Teller Theatre in the Rio Hotel in Las Vegas, the world-famous duo challenge fellow illusionists to perform their most mystifying trick, then try to work out how it was done. Will Brian Brushwood's trick with dollar bills, Simon Pierro's digital magic, Handsome Jack's twist on an old paper trick, or Kyle Knight and Mistie's quick-escape baffle them? The prize for doing so is a spot in Penn and Teller's stage show in Vegas. Sunday 6th March, on Channel 5. See TV Magic for details. 27.2.16


Music, Magic and Comedy at The Old Vic, London. For their second Variety Night, The Old Vic welcomes back comedian Mark Watson as host for the evening that will feature a range of talent including poet and comedian Tim Key and world renowned magicians Jeff McBride and Eugene Burger. Music will be provided by DJ and musician MckNasty, sensational all-male vocal group, Only Men Aloud, winners of BBC One’s Last Choir Standing, Echoes of Ellington Jazz Orchestra and Matilda Lloyd, 2014 winner of the Brass Category of the BBC Young Musician of the Year and the BBC Radio 2 Young Brass Award. Sunday 6th March, at 7pm. The Old Vic, The Cut, London SE1 8NB (Map). 27.2.16


SAMS Convention 2016. Kenny Kerr writes: The 2016 convention will be taking place at Adamton House Hotel, Monkton (near Prestwick) on 6th, 7th & 8th May. Similar to the 2015 convention, the Saturday night Gala show will be replaced by a Dinner/Cabaret in the hotel. For the Saturday Night Cabaret, there has been a change in the line up and we are delighted to welcome one of Britain's top illusionists, Guy Barrett. Making up the rest of the show stand up comedy magician Mel Mellers and winner of the 2015 SAMS Stage competition, Steven Blair. Lecturers: Mel Mellers will be giving a lecture, Harry Robson will give his close-up lecture and Ian Davis (who has taken part in the UK Children's Entertainer of the Year, on two occasions) will lecture on "Kids Magic". Dealers: Harry Robson Magic, Ian Davis, Alan Duncan, Heidi Costumes and Jimmy Craig. Hotel Rooms: Rooms should be booked through our secretary Elizabeth McNamara or 01563 821241. Please contact Elizabeth rather than book through the hotel as it makes it easier to monitor the room allocation. Competition: David Ennis is running the competitions this year and can be contacted on or 07760 173392. The stage & children's competitions will take place on the Saturday afternoon and the close-up competition will take place on the Sunday morning. Application forms are on the website. For Registrations and more information visit 27.2.16


13th Annual South Tyneside International Magic Festival. Visitors from around the world are flying in for one of the UK’s most magical events, the 13th annual South Tyneside International Magic Festival, which coincides with English Tourism Week 2016 (March 5th - 13th). The festival will welcome performers and delegates from as far afield as Belgium, Holland and the USA. Highlights at the event, organised by South Tyneside Council, include two International Gala Shows, a Family Magic Extravaganza and a specialist convention for magic enthusiasts, all taking place at the Customs House, South Shields. This year’s Gala Shows, on Friday March 11th and Saturday March 12th, will feature magicians from across the UK, as well as American acts Chad Long and John Carney, Swedish star Malin Nilsson, German award-winner Alana and Belgian man of mystery, Rafael. The Family Magic Extravaganza, sponsored and programmed by MagicBox, will welcome a whole host of English entertainers, with a special appearance by Dutch performer, Mr Lido, on Wednesday March 9th. A full line up for South Tyneside International Magic Festival 2016 can be found at Tickets for the Family Magic Extravaganza, priced from £7 each, and the International Gala Shows, pried from £13 each, are on sale from the Customs House Box Office 27.2.16


The House of Q Cabaret. The March Edition: Hot on the heels of their "triumphant launch" (This Is Cabaret), The House of Q are returning to Cecil's London Bridge for an evening of music, magic, burlesque, spoken word, dance, drag, cocktails and more. Join burlesque vixen Felicity Furore, musical magician Neil Kelso and gender-bending clown Alexander Luttley and friends for "an extraordinary evening of cabaret" (Access London). Thursday 3rd March, from 7pm. Free Entry. More info: 27.2.16


Paul Daniels. Wayne Dobson writes: Everybody is aware of the professional differences that Paul Daniels and I have had over the past 35 years, but right now I would like to place that issue to one side. Ever since I learned about Paul’s very serious illness, I haven't stopped thinking about him and his family at this difficult time. He is the original pioneer of comedy magic and once he set that trend we all followed. Paul has made an epic contribution to the world of magic and he has my sincere admiration and respect. 27.2.16


The Northern Magic Circle present Morgan & West, and Luke Jermay. Danny Hunt writes: The Northern Magic Circle present Morgan & West, and Luke Jermay with their brand new masterclass. This is a pay to view event at the Northern Magic Circle convention and there are limited tickets left, so please asap! This exciting new masterclass will take place on Saturday 9th April at 9.30pm in the Harrogate Theatre. This not to be missed masterclass is an additional £15 for anyone with full registration for the convention or £25 for this event only. Other performers appearing at the convention are Paul Stone, Oliver Tabor, Wayne Goodman, Andi Gladwin, Two Minds Combined, the Magic Circle's Young Magicians of the Year Destiny and many more still to be announced. The Northern Magic Circle convention takes place at the Harrogate Theatre on the 9th and 10th of April. To book tickets for both this event and the convention please visit 27.2.16


The Magicians' Podcast this week features Mike Caveney, seen here in the UK just a few weeks ago when he appeared in The Magic Circle's Christmas Show. Listen to this podcast and catch up with previous editions at Also see 27.2.16


Roddy McGhie lecture, Kilmarnock Magic Circle. Kenny Kerr writes: Kilmarnock Magic Circle invite you to a lecture by Roddy McGhie. Roddy is a close-up magician with big fans among magic's big names. For many years, he operated 'under the radar' applying his talents to creating effects for his own close-up performances and creating unique, original effects for a number of TV productions. Roddy has always enjoyed performing (or showing off, as his wife calls it). He spent many years in punk bands in Glasgow before eventually deciding to take up magic professionally in his 20's. He now performs regularly at weddings, parties and corporate events testing out his new inventions with unsuspecting audiences. Glasgow audiences are a famously tough crowd, so the effects that Roddy brings to you in this lecture have stood up to this test. Roddy has carved out a name for himself over recent years as a creator of awesome, off-beat routines and crazy clever gimmicks. With the encouragement of David Forrest from Full 52 he has brought these to the market over the last few years. His effects Sew On, Incognito, LollypOp (with Danny Weiser) and Flux have been universally well received, with Flux becoming a worldwide best seller recommended by Cyril, Michael Weber and Luke Jermay among other big names. This lecture will invite you inside the mind and creative process of one of magic's true originals. Thursday 24th March at 7.30pm at Barrmill Hall, Barrmill Road, Galston KA4 8HH (Map). £10 cover charge for all visiting magicians. 27.2.16


Magicseen Issue 67 March 2016. From the publishers: Jeff McBride is one of the world's most iconic and recognisable magicians, and we are thrilled to have him on our latest cover and to get the chance inside to talk with the man who for decades has striven to push magic to new levels through his performances and his teaching. Along with Jeff we welcome German magicienne Alana to the Psychiatrist's Couch (she survives the ordeal rather well!), and we get up close and personal with US entertainer Paul Draper. The March issue also features 9 Good Reasons For Hiring A Close Up Magician in which we provide sound bites for you to use when discussing work with your potential bookers, we explain why business cards are still worth looking at as a publicity tool even in a digital age, and we get Jeremy le Poidevin to provide some salient thoughts for you to consider when buying the props for your new act. The Masterclass has gone international as we start a series in which the ideas each time will come from magicians who all hail from the same country - the USA gets us off to a great start with contributions from David Regal, John Bannon and Dan Garrett. Plus....we extract 20 inspiring quotes from Ian Keable's great book Stand Up, we let John Carney rule the world just to find out what might happen, we take you behind the scenes of the new sequel to the magic film Now You See Me, and there's loads more too to see you through the next couple of months. So don't wait another moment, get your copy right now from, the home of the UK's only independent magic magazine. 27.2.16


John Kimmons lecture, Bolton Magicians Club. Paul Goodman writes: John Kimmons, AKA Kimmo, has spent all of his working life in show business, beginning his professional career at the age of 15. Regularly performing for adults, children and family groups this lecture is sure to have something for everyone! As well as amazing material John has great tips on how to improve the workings of your show! Professional worked material and audience approved, this lecture is one not to be missed! Doors open at 8.30pm on Wednesday 2nd March at The Doffcocker Inn, Chorley Old Road, Bolton BL1 5QD (Map). Visiting magicians from other societies are most welcome. There will be an entrance fee of £5.00 for non-members. For directions to the Doffcocker Inn visit, 27.2.16


John Styles MBE is on the road again with his magic and 'Chelsea Pensioner' character act. The shows recapture the days of Music Hall and Variety. Alternating guest artistes include Bernie Clifton, Don Maclean, Anita Harris, The Grumbleweeds, and Freddie 'Parrot Face' Davies. Venues have included Wimbledon and Northampton. Yet to come: Telford, Leicester, Hereford, Epsom, Darlington, Derby, Kings Lynn, Nottingham, New Brighton and London's Brick Lane Music Hall. 27.2.16


Sean Goodman's Secrets lecture, The Magic Triangle, Colchester. Keith Norman writes: Sean Goodman is a full time professional magician. He is based in Norfolk and specialises in close-up magic for weddings, corporate events and private parties. In November 2015, he was awarded 'Wedding Entertainer of the Year' for the East of England, as voted for by the Brides and Grooms - an accolade which he is proud of. This will be Sean's second visit to The Magic Triangle, and like the first, his 'Secrets' lecture is full of workable routines for the close upper and mentalist. All effects have been worked in the real world - they aren't knucklebusting, but are suitable for the working pro and hobbyist alike. It is not a lecture packed with card trick after card trick! His recent release, Secret Servante, has received superb reviews worldwide and in the lecture Sean will share some of his favourite routines with it. Sean will also share some of his secrets regarding getting more wedding bookings - pure gold. If you are looking for a lecture full of practical material, then 'Secrets' is it! Visitors welcome. Admission £5.00 with tea or coffee. Sunday 13th March at 7.30pm at Straws, 21 Osborne Street, Colchester CO2 7DA (Map). 27.2.16


Wayne Dobson and Mike Sullivan of DTrik are pleased to announce that their two new releases Paul’s Balls and Misdirection flew out at Blackpool and they have extended their special offer. To take up this amazing deal, visit their new website and spend over £20.00 and you'll receive a brand new Wayne Dobson effect worth over £40.00! But hurry - time is running out! 27.2.16


Sam Beedle lecture - Bexley Magic Society. Roy Marsh writes: A date for your diary - this Wednesday, 2nd March, at Bexley Magic Society, Sam Beedle presents his lecture 'Magic and Mind Play'. We already know too many magic effects. But do we really take the time to improve on what we already know? Demonstrating and explaining a precise mixture of skill, humour and presentation, Sam Beedle hits the road this year with his premiere lecture, 'Magic and Mind Play'. Sam’s lecture on stage magic will certainly make you rethink your existing material and also inspire you to create new routines that fit your own style. Sam Beedle explores the pros and cons of working to music, developing existing effects to suit your own needs and also how to create a character from nothing. Throughout the lecture, Sam demonstrates how a character is applied during a performance and discusses how a last minute change in his usual routine completely transformed his life. A genuine worker of practical magic. Sam performs his acts at 200 events every year. Experiencing Sam Beedle’s lecture will give you a genuine insight into how his mind works and how he creates, develops and performs his unusual magic. Doors open at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. We can be found at Bexley Club for the Disabled, Barton Close, Bexleyheath, Kent DA6 8JP (Map). Visiting magicians are very welcome at £10 on the door. 27.2.16


Paul Hallas Fylde Mystics lecture. From the organisers: The Fylde Mystics are pleased to announce that on Tuesday 1st March we will be presenting a lecture from the brilliant Paul Hallas. A performer, creator of magic and lecturer of over 30 years this promises to be a great night. "Paul is a clever and creative magician. I was lucky to have known Paul and his magic even from the time before he moved to the USA. As it appears he is offering his lecture services to magic groups, I'll happily endorse this!" Dan Garrett. Visiting magicians are welcome - £5.00 per person, payable on the door, commencing at 8pm. The Fylde Mystics meet at The South Shore Lawn Tennis Club, Midgeland Road, Blackpool FY4 5HZ (Map). 27.2.16


Magicians Wanted. Lime Marketing write: Would you be interested in working on magic events for one of the most recognised brands in the world? Lime Marketing are on the hunt for fresh magic talent across the UK. We are looking for someone who is: Professionally skilled in magic; Willing to travel (expenses paid); A confidant performer; Organised. What is the job? Lime Marketing are a Midland’s based Marketing Agency who run Experiential Marketing Programmes for global brands. This programme in particular is a fun filled magic themed events programme for a well-recognised global brand, performing magic to all age groups. These events would be nationwide, during school holidays and weekends. If this is something you would be interested in, feel free to contact for further information or send over your showreel. We look forward to hearing from you. 27.2.16


And the Same to You. "The boxing-mad nephew of a pious clergyman embarks on an elaborate plan to keep his boxing career a secret." Starring Sid James, Brian Rix, Leo Franklyn, Tommy Cooper and Vera Day. Director: George Pollock. Wednesday 9th March on Talking Pictures. See TV Magic for details. 27.2.16


Britain Does Variety 2016. From the organisers: Britain Does Variety 2016 - A nationwide quest to prove that Britain really does have talent! Do you want to perform in front of talent scouts, top producers and some of the biggest entertainment bookers in Europe? Would you like to win a huge cash prize? Britain Does Variety is a talent competition for all types of acts, including Singers, Acrobats, Jugglers, Animal Acts, Novelty Acts, Impressionists, Dancers, Gymnasts, Magicians, Contortionists, Comics, Mime Artists, Musicians, Ventriloquists, Vocal Groups, Buskers, Beatboxers, Footballers, Crazy Acts, Entertaining Acts, Glee Clubs, Wacky Acts, Modern Variety, Musical Theatre, Show Choirs, Impersonators... if you're entertaining you can audition - pretty much anything goes! Auditions are being held across the country in February and March 2016, but book your audition quickly to avoid disappointment. 27.2.16


The 50th Birthday Tour Presents 'Magic Noir', Paul Abbey's first ever One Man Show! Tonight, 27th February 2016 at 7.30pm. Theatre Utopia, 1 Matthews Yard, off Surrey Street Market, Croydon CR0 1FF (Map). All tickets £10. For full details and booking info visit Click Here. 27.2.16


"The magic of The Vanishing Man at Vault Festival" Click Here • "Top Yorkshire magician Dynamo swaps Sheffield streets for arena stage" Click Here • "The magic of Penn and Teller in Vegas has left me totally spellbound" Click Here • "Oswestry home of Uri Geller spoon gorilla shut by overcrowding" Click Here • "Is Taylor Swift closing in on Uri Geller's Sonning home?" Click Here • "Inside Uri Geller's mind-bending mansion" Click Here • "Derren Brown's 'dangerous' suffocation stunt broke Ofcom rules after it was shown at 9am" Click Here • "Young magician to give charity performance" Click Here • Attraction on The One Show, Click Here • An Informal Evening With Olly Day is reviewed by Steve Majes this week, Click Here • "Philly trickster Francis Menotti combines magic tricks with motivational speaking" Click Here • "Impossible, Sunderland Empire, Until February 27" Click Here • Thanks for all your news this week - see you next week, Duncan. 27.2.16