The Manchester Circle of Magicians
British Magical Awards Convention
Sunday 31st August, 2004, Lancashire
Reviewed by Jason Duckworth

At 9.30 a.m. the doors opened and 14 magic dealers were kept very busy as 350 registrants flooded into the two dealer rooms.

The North West King of Kids Magic Competition began at 10.30a.m. Mr.Trix, David Charles, Paul Joyce and Bob Romanoff presented highly professional and entertaining routines.

The Eddie Burke Lecture followed in which some very clever effects were demonstrated and explained in a very entertaining manner.

At 3.00p.m. The North West Close-up Championships began with a packed audience filling the tiered seating, which enabled everyone to have a good view of some incredible close-up magic. Space does not permit a description of the stunning effects performed by Chris Stevenson, Phil Tilston, Neil Drennan, Darren Douglas, Alan Kylecraine and Matthew Wright but suffice to say that the Judges: Peter Roberts, Norman Greenbalgh and Jim OToole commented that it was one of the highest standard close-up competitions they had seen for a long time. President Carl Royle was an efficient and entertaining Compere.

Derek Lever next presented a fascinating Lecture on tricks manufactured in Japan with a sensational Jumbo Zig Zag Card causing much comment.

At 7.15 p.m. it was time for the presentation of Awards by Derek Lever and Carl Royle. The winner of the North West King of Kids Magic Competition was Mr. Trix (John Dixon). The North West Close-up Championships winners were: 1st place Matthew Wright, 2nd Alan Mylecraine, 3rd Chris Stevenson. They all received magnificent trophies which they retain for life. Then it was on to the main awards. Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented to: Mark Raffles, Geoff Ray & Pat, Chris North & Belinda, Terry Seabrooke, Brian Sefton and Philip Hitchcock. The British Magical Award for Comedy to Alec Powell, The Ladies Award to Michelle, The Juggling Award to Zyllan and The Innovation Award to Shane.

The Gala show followed immediately starring everyone who had received an award and it was very apparent that the awards were truly very well deserved as each performer received a long and loud ovation with Compere Terry Seabrooke at his sparkling best. The stage crew of David Plant, Alan Mylecraine, Paul Joyce and Jeremy Guest were magnificent. The Manchester Circle of Magicians can be very proud indeed of this hugely successful event and for innovating the British Magical Awards. Judging by the gloving comments at the end of the night the audience very definitely want this to be an annual event.


Jason Duckworth, September 2003