Well last week was quite eventful. I somehow bagged 2 trophies at the prestigious Hull Magicians Circle annual dinner so I am now officially a multi award winning magician. I picked up trophies for accumulating the most points over 6 competitions this year (The Simpsons Shield) as well as tying for first place with Rob Walls for the best close up act at the society’s close up magic competition (Shirley Watts Close Up Trophy) which took place on Tuesday in Beverley. Originally from Sheffield, I was introduced to magic at the age of 3 with a Fisher Price magic set after seeing the late Paul Daniels Magic Show on TV. I remember watching it & just being in complete awe of what I was seeing & I knew I had to get in on that action. I used to put on really bad magic shows as a kid whenever family was around but it wasn’t until years later when I figured out that people would buy you free drinks if you showed them something amazing that I started taking it seriously.
These days with visual effects & CGI being so good that feeling of wonder can be lost on viewers so when people see magic live, right under their noses it really does make a big impact & it’s live performances which I enjoy the most. Nothing beats the reactions I can create from close up magic, laughing, applauding, screaming & even crying. That hasn’t stopped me from trying my hand at tv magic however & now I’m a multi award winning magician I have plans to have my own programme Smart Magic broadcast on local tv. Finally combining magic with my background in tv, film & photography having studied in Sheffield & Grimsby before moving to London to work on feature films, tv shows, music videos & ads. I have a passion for creating films so when the opportunity to shoot some magic in Sheffield came along it made sense to call on some contacts & get some good footage out of it. With the help of a good friend of mine Colin Blakeston we’ve spent some of our spare time editing it into something which could potentially be shown on local tv channels up & down the country. It’s still in post production but it’s almost finished. Without magic I wouldn’t have the opportunity to do that so it can certainly get you into some interesting situations. I remember shooting in a forest for Paramount Pictures once & with it being England it was pouring down with rain so the whole crew were huddled under a couple of pop up gazebos waiting for it to stop. So I went up to Jude Law & the director Charles Shyer, screwed up a £10 note & started making it float right in front of them. It got me noticed on set & I spent the next couple of weeks showing the crew & actors magic between takes. I got to hang out with Jude a bit (turns out he’s a massive Alan Partridge fan like me) so he brought his kids one day & got me to show them some. He ended up having to buy them a magic set after getting them hooked.
Magic shows have changed over the years going in & out of fashion but with a resurgence from the likes of Penn & Teller, Troy & Dynamo the tv schedules are once again airing well crafted magic. I hope our show will stir up more interest locally & spur people on to join the Circle. I’d never been a member of a magic society, they always seemed a bit intimidating. I only joined Hull Magicians Circle 18 months ago after 30 years of being into magic but I love it. The members are so knowledgable, talented & friendly. Rob Walls who I tied with at the close up magic competition is amazing, I’ve never seen him in a bad mood. The experience at the Circle is second to none, there are people there who have forgotten more than I will ever know but they’re always on hand to guide the younger members or share a story or two. If anyone is interested in magic they should definitely look into joining.
Award Winning Magician
The annual dinner which has been held at Hull University for the last 50 years was science themed to celebrate the long relationship between the University & president of Hull Magicians Circle Eddie Dawes. Eddie being a professor of biochemistry was presented with a specially created gift for the occasion by the university depicting a top hat with molecules appearing from it made out of blown glass. Other awards presented included The Bob Moore Comedy Award won by Malcolm Bromwich, The Award for Originality which went to Brian Wilson & The Stage Magic Award won by Alex The Ace Magician from Vietnam who is a student at the university. The awards were presented by the president of The Magic Circle in London Scott Penrose.
Hull Magicians Circle
For details about joining the Hull Magicians Circle go to hullmc.org.uk