The 11th Top Secret Magic Day
3rd June 2007
Reported by Alan Maskell
This year's ‘Top Secret Day’, the eleventh, saw a return to Bedford and the Corn Exchange complex, a venue providing a theatre for the lectures and gala show, and a large function room, with adjacent bar, where the dealers displayed their wares. Dealers present included Practical Magic, Stephen Tucker, Albion Magic, Zane, Merlin’s, Hocus Pocus, Cliff Lount, Paul Gordon and Made to Measure Magic.
Gary Young of The Magic Zone has a reputation for putting on a great day with plenty of variety and this year was no exception. The day started with Terry Seabrooke, who has been part of these days since the beginning, introducing Paul Stone who officially opened the day and then it was into the lectures. First on was Nick Einhorn with a mix of commercial effects and a great ‘oil & water’ production! Next came Aldo and Rachel Colombini with some very straightforward and effective ideas. Mandy Muden presented a mix of comedy and advice gained from experience. Paul Daniels apologised for ‘not firing on all cylinders’ due to his recent illness but his Q&A session proved to be a wealth of stories, experience and tips on ‘keeping it simple’.
These days are nicely paced with plenty of time to eat, chat and view the dealers as well as the lectures and, if you wanted more, Paul Gordon gave a card workshop and Aldo one on ring & rope.
The evening show was compered by Terry Seabrooke and opened with Zane who gave us what seemed like his full repertoire and some rather heavy handling of his doves. Aldo and Rachel lightened the mood with a comedy mind reading act, while Mandy Muden’s personality overcame the difficulties of putting an act together after her props had been stolen from her car during the afternoon. The first half finished on the up beat with the illusions and comedic style of Martyn James & Company. The second half was given over to a laid-back Paul Daniels, who managed to find a few non-magicians to assist with the chop cup, cards across and electric chairs and to borrow a tenner from Mark Shortland for the note in walnut/egg/lemon, while giving a master class in entertainment.
Next year’s Top Secret Day? “Watch this space” says Gary.
Photo: Gary Young and Terry Seabrooke
© Alan Maskell, June 2007