The North West Magical Close-up Championships
15th April 2002
Reported by Derek Lever
The first North West Magical Close-up Championship was held on Monday 15th April at the Masonic Hall, The Crescent, Salford. Eight top close-up magicians battled for the prestigeous title in front of a capacity audience. Up for grabs was a huge trophy, the title of North West Magical Close-Up Champion and automatic entry into the British Magcial Close-Up Championships held in Blackpool every February. In a hard fought contest, thoroughly enjoyed by the audience, Harry Robson from Haslingden, proved to be the winner with Matthew McGurk from St. Helens, taking second place and Philip Partridge from Manchester a close third place.
Harry Robson is a professional magician specialising in Corporate Function work and featured comedy magic with rope and cards in his very entertaining act. The other strong competitors were Phil Tilston from Ollerton, Cheshire, David Smith from Hoylake, Peter Roberts from Todmorden, Alan Firth from Bolton and Neill Drennan from Macclesfield. Carl Royle presented a very entertaining and clever guest spot whilst well known judges Steve Eastham, Brian Sefton and John Hotowka deliberated.
Derek Lever compered and kept the show running at a fast pace throughout. Stage managers were Carl Royle and Peter Woolley. This highly prestigeous event will now be held annually by the Manchester Circle of Magicians with magicians from all over the North West being invited to perform.
© Derek Lever 2002
(Photo L to R Matthew McGurk, Harry Robson and Philip Partridge)