Hugh Nightingale


Hugh has been performing magic for about 15 years, the last 10 years as a full time professional. What began as a hobby to entertain his own children, has quickly grown into a business that takes him all over the country and into Europe.

Hugh attained his BSc (Hons) Degree in Agriculture at Wye College, University of London. On leaving University he spent 10 years as farm manager before he started running his own farm. He now lets out the farm and works solely on his magic, either as an entertainer and performer, or as a consultant and adviser in his business, MagiCo. Hugh’s main niche for his work is in corporate and Society circles presenting close-up magic, or his 40-minute cabaret (a comedy-magic-patter act). He has also written a magic book for children.

Hugh creates ‘a touch of magic’ to promote, charm, baffle, sell... simply to entertain and is a member of the Magic Circle (AIMC with Silver Star), the International Brotherhood of Magicians and the Kent Magicians’ Guild.

Hugh’s answers to those compulsory questions!!

Top Trick?
"I always close my cabaret with the Gene Anderson newspaper tear and I guess it would be my favourite effect. For something individual I suppose I would choose the earthworm routine that I do, based around a Mac King gag. In close-up I love performing ‘invisible card’ routines especially Steve Bedwell’s "Shake/Shuffle." For something more tangible, that the audience can really manhandle, it has to be a cut and restored rope. I perform one loosely based on a Fay Presto routine. I am not a great illusion fan but I do enjoy really good levitations. For a great box illusion I do not think that you can beat Shahid Malik and assistant with a cardboard box and a bundle of snooker cues."

Top Book?
"I started out in magic, in my early thirties, with the Boy’s Book of Magic so I must owe a lot to that book. I then soon found Peter Eldin’s Kingfisher book and Royal Road to Card Magic. So for my rather late formative years in magic, these books were my main source of inspiration."

Top Magician?

"Inspirations for me come from many different sources. Richard McDougall for acting the magic. Terry Herbert, Mike O’ Brian and Graham P Jolley for comedy in magic. Paul Daniels for performance to a live audience. Geoffrey Durham for his wonderful manner. Paul Zenon for his fun. Salvano for his techniques. There have been many many more influences on my magic, as I enjoy going to lectures and especially working with other magicians."

Top Magic Quote?
"A magician needs two key attributes. The first is to always leave the audience wanting more."

Top Magic Moment?

"Surely this is not that sort of site! Perhaps I can substitute my top moments in magic. I consider myself very fortunate that, in the circles in which my magic has become popular, I get to meet and entertain many of the people in the worlds of show-business, Society, commerce and even politics that I respect and admire most. To entertain them is an honour as it is to be able to entertain any 'man in the street'... and then they go and pay me for doing it! Wow!


© MagicWeek 2001