Chris North


37 years in magic and my mum still wonders when I am going to get a proper job! So where did it all begin - when I was 17 years old I worked as a photographer at Pontins and had the pleasure of meeting and watching a magic and illusion act from Wales called Al & Dorothy Roberts and I thought I would like to do that (not realising at the time how long it would take to actually achieve anything!). So off I went into the big wide world with a Sub Trunk under one arm and a Totem Pole under the other and worked the clubs from South Wales to Scotland.

Many people were influential and extremely supportive in my early years including Jack Hughes, Bernard Hughes, Derek Lever and in recent years my good friend Wayne Dobson. My TV career kicked off in 1977 with New Faces and over the next few years there followed many TV appearances and winning the Club Act of the Year Award, in fact if you are an avid viewer of satellite channels I still turn up periodically with a shock of embarrassingly blonde hair and equally embarrassing sequined cat suits!!

My introduction to cruising was sad in a way, as Robert Harbin was appearing on a World Cruise and was taken ill and flown home and I was flown out to replace him and there began almost 17 years of constant cruising on various liners around the world which is great experience for expanding your repertoire, I once did 10 different shows on a long cruise and only repeated one effect!

Along with my partner Belinda we still present illusion shows for corporate events and functions but our main source of work is with our Mind Show which was originally developed while cruising and has now been designed to satisfy the demands of today's audiences.

Top Trick?
"Probably the Zig Zag Lady and its various clones - Robert Harbin created a masterpiece of simplicity with a new principal that has stood the test of time and baffled audiences for many years. It is only in the last few years with the advent of 'reveal' shows that this type of illusion has lost some of its cred."

Top Book?
"For me it has to be the Harbin Book - in the days when it was hard to find any illusion plans along came the plans and presentations of one of magic's greatest innovators."

Top Magician?
"I think I am going to have to be greedy and name THREE firstly Richiardi Jnr whose style and presentation made a huge impact and impression on my early career, next comes David Nixon, a real gentleman with a television charisma that led you to believe that he was speaking to you personally (I am lucky enough to have the Dizzy Limit used to vanish Anita Harris on his TV Show and entrusted into my care by John Palfreyman) and lastly Jeff McBride whose unique and spectacular style of presentation is second to none and his audience participation skills a joy to behold."

Top Magic Quote?
"Something that was once written about me 'Chris North doesn't do magic, he presents tricks' this was probably meant as a derogatory statement but how true it was as the success of any act is in the presentation in other words it's not what you do, it's how you do it."

Top Magic Moment?
"Seeing Richiardi Jnr in Greenwich Village, New York and actually meeting my hero and witnessing the performance of his infamous Buzz Saw by then banned in many countries throughout the world."


MagicWeek 2003