Mark Elsdon Lecture
Ipswich Magical Society, September 2004
Reviewed by Simon Shaw

Fortunately for the Ipswich Magical Society one of our lectures this year was cancelled, and we were lucky enough to persuade Mark Elsdon to fill in.

Mark has been a working professional magician for over 15 years. He honed his magic skills as a Magic Bartender in Hong Kong.

Although Mark is equally at home doing close up and mentalist magic, he now specialises chiefly in mentalism, but the lecture was a mixture of the two genres.

Mark is also known as an innovator of magic effects. To name but a few there are “The one with the trivial pursuit cards”, “Zenner Tech”, “The Mind Spy Pad”, and watch out for “Google Whacked” an amazing new book test. In saying this though his lecture was far from being just a dealer dem’ for his products, in fact the only one from the list above that he demonstrated was “Google Whacked”, and only then because it was requested by so many members.

Marks lecture wasn’t just a series of quick fire effects. It was also filled with humorous anecdotes, some great sleights and of course many nuances and subtleties. If any other society get the chance to see him lecture I thoroughly recommend it.

He started with his current close up opener, called “Balance”, where he manages to take a deck of cards and balance them on the tips of a selected hand, and then he moved on to a wonderful mentalism effect that he uses as an opener when performing his mentalist set. The crux of this effect involved memorising a deck of cards in 23 seconds. And was very impressive.

Many of the effects he demonstrated were really very strong, and will be going straight into my performing repertoire, but it wasn’t just the effects that made the lecture so interesting. Mark is a very charismatic man, who has a lot of magic knowledge that I am glad he was willing to pass on.

His final effect was his own “Google Whacked” book test that hasn’t yet been released commercially, but when it does I predict that it is going to make some very big waves in the Magic Community. It really was a terrific routine.

© Simon Shaw, October 2004