The Northern Magic Circle
Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th April
Spa Complex, Scarborough
Reviewed by Donald Monk
First and foremost, the impression that the punter
comes first was strong. Being much smaller than some conventions (no more than
200 attendees) meant that the line that is usually banded about i.e. “A place to
meet up with old friends” is much more relevant, as I was tripping over people I
knew. Usually I have to hunt them out.
Not only did I meet up with people that I knew, but by the end of the convention I had doubled that list as everyone was so friendly and approachable. The organisers, the punters and the performers alike.
The ‘close-up and lecture sessions’ were amazing. Not only with the content (which was top class), but with the presentation.
I’d forgotten how visible close-up/lectures could be at such an event. Heck, you could even talk to the presenters if you liked. It was practically like having one-on-one sessions with them.
The lectures were presented almost informally by Will Houston, Luke Jermay, Jay Scott-Berry, Marc Oberon, Ian Keable and Tom Stone. A veritable feast of magical masters from around the world.
Because the dealers were limited, you were able to negotiate them freely without having to shuffle sideways, or fight your way to the front.
The Children’s Show was equal to any that I’ve seen at any other convention and the Gala Show included all the top class acts that had lectured plus a very entertaining juggler Matt Ricardo, Thom Peterson as the MC and our very own Ben Proos who started the show off in grand style (He gets better every time I see him).
There was also a show put on by the Northern Magic Circle Juniors (where Ben cut his teeth) that convinced everyone that the future of magic is secure.
Now I don’t know how they did this one,- but the convention organisers even managed to get the sun to shine in Scarborough for the weekend !
My verdict? Well, this is a tough one . . . . .
This convention was superb because it was well organised and it wasn’t big (in attendees that is). So, I figure it would be self-defeating if I recommended it to others and the Northern Magic Circle got more punters to register next year.
Oh, what the heck - there is no contest!
Next time that the Northern Magic Circle Convention comes around, you really must make it a top priority to go . . . I’ll see you there.
© Donald Monk - President of ‘The Modern Mystic League’, April 2011.