Number 254 - 7th May 2005


I went to see Derren Brown's Something Wicked This Way Comes on Friday night play to a sold-out audience of 1,200 at the Hexagon, Reading. Just as Cirque du Soleil reinvented the dying art of 'circus' in the 80's Derren Brown has reinvented the dying art of the 'mind reader' in the 2000's - the show was simply stunning. I don't want to give anything away other than to say that the whole production has been meticulously crafted from start to finish. You will take great delight in its inventiveness and originality... and the closing minutes will simply blow you away. Derren's performance is superb, his easy manner and charm bewitching the audience from the moment he walks on stage. Very theatrical, without ever being over the top, Derren manages to work on an almost one-to-one level with the audience throughout. Something Wicked will go down in magic history as a defining moment in the evolution of the genre. Do try and see this show; it boldly goes where no mortal "mind reading" show has dreamt of going before. About a dozen dates remain on the tour before it transfers to the West End for a limited run. For West End tickets (May 31st - June 18th) telephone: 0870 890 1102 or book online Click Here (then click 'Next' for June). For current tour dates see What's On. For last week's review by Amanda R. Hyatt Click Here. For information on Derren Brown visit "Derren Brown has his mind on the job" writes Alice Eaton, Click Here. 7.5.05


The line up for this year's British Ring Convention in Southport has just been announced, with more names being added all the time. In the opening show confirmed to date: Mark Shortland. For the Gala and Late Night Gala shows: Michael Close, Rafael, The Deans of Magic, Simon Lovell, Alexander Koplin, Jean Marie Le Royer, Kamyleon, Marcel Prince of Illusions, Nestor Hato, Safire, Brinum, Bubble Opera, and Duane Laflin. Lecturing: Tim Hannig, Scott Penrose, Rafael, Simon Lovell, Sean Carpenter, Joshua Jay, Michael Close, and Alan Shaxon (presenting The Jeffery Atkins Memorial Lecture). Terry Herbert will run a Children's Forum and Wayne Dobson a Questions and Answers session. Plus close-up magic from: Reed McClintock (photo), Sean Carpenter, Joshua Jay, Marc Oberon, Michael Close and Simon Lovell. Plus The Magic Circle Centenary Show starring Alan Shaxon, Peter Scarlett, Terry Herbert, Mike O'Brien and Scott Penrose. From Wednesday 27th September to Sunday 2nd October 2005. More information soon. For updates visit 7.5.05


Nielsen Magic have just released a new limited edition Channing Pollock poster. Produced on canvas as a signed limited edition the poster is offered in two sizes and features three photographs, including the now famous studio portrait, on a background of move poster images. Posters are sent in a triangular tube (if that makes sense) for added protection, so don't worry about ordering from overseas. For more information and to order visit: 7.5.05


Award-winning American mind reader Marc Salem returns to the UK at the end of August for a limited run (August 31st - September 17th). "After last year's sell-out season, Marc Salem's Mind Games makes a welcome return to the Tricycle. This highly entertaining demonstration of the potential of the mind will delight and amaze you. You have to see it to believe it. And even then, you'll want to see it again just to make sure!" For booking information Click Here. 7.5.05


Andrew Green can be seen across the country appearing at 'Vegas Supenova' events being staged by Selfridges stores (Las Vegas celebrates its 100th anniversary later this year). The events also feature Las Vegas showgirls and Vegas tribute acts. Pamela Anderson popped into the London store to mark the start of the UK celebrations. 7.5.05


Magic Singh performed at the Ffestiniog 50th Gala held in North Wales last weekend. Magic Singh has been performing close-up and stage magic since the age of 11 and has appeared at a number of high profile events including the Queens Golden Jubilee and the Lord Mayor's Dinner. Visit for more information. 7.5.05


Geoffrey Durham lectures at The Pentacle Club in Cambridge on Tuesday, May 10th. All magicians welcome - small charge for non members. This is a rare opportunity to see one of the country's very best magic lectures. For more information Click Here. 7.5.05


Stuart Watkins has just launched a souvenir live performance DVD featuring over 40 minutes of his work. "'Live and Unshuffled' follows the Welsh Wizard performing his unique style of close-up magic and mind illusions at different locations. As a bonus we have included footage of Stuart's 'Dimension of the Mind' stage show which takes the experience of mental psychology to another level." The disc is aimed at audiences who'd like to take home a souvenir. For more information visit: 7.5.05


Etienne Pradier has just returned from a very successful two week lecture tour in the States. Magic Clubs in Austin, Dallas, Houston, Mc Allen, Tulsa and New Orleans gave a warm welcome to Etienne's lecture thanks to the help of Scott Wells who organised the tour. Etienne has just released a DVD featuring his "Signed Card in Sealed Bottle" routine, which resulted in him being placed 3rd in the "Micro-Magic" section at FISM in Holland in 2003. 7.5.05


Quick Change - rapid costume changes for men has now been translated into English and is now at the printers. The planed publication date is May 31st but readers who pre-order will benefit from a 10% discount, the pre-publication price being 49.50 Euros plus shipping (From 22nd May 55.00 Euros plus shipping). "An important book filled with unique information on many costume effects. Quick Change is an essential textbook for every stage magician, and I highly recommend it." Jim Steinmeyer 7.5.05


Shropshire Magical Society held their annual Close-up Magic Competition on May 2nd. Marcus Taylor won the 'Junior Close-up Magic Shield' and Laurence Abel the 'George Shinton Close-up Trophy'. Both awards were presented by President Geoff Ray MIMC. 7.5.05


Close-up Magic Convention in Sussex - update. Mel Harvey (who is cruising) has been replaced by Andrew Murray, The Magic Circle's current Close-up Magician of The Year. 7.5.05


Many congratulations to Lauren Watkins (aged 9) on winning her first ever talent contest at her school in Pontypridd with her professionally coached magic act. She was the only magic performer in the contest that featured strong competition from both dancers and singers and was judged the clear winner. 7.5.05


Vizage are appearing in "Hooked on Laughter" at The Pier Theatre, Bournemouth, from May 10th to September 29th. For times and to book, Click Here. Box office: 0870 111 3000. 7.5.05


Leeds Magical Association are offering magicians who book in advance 4 tickets for their convention on Sunday May 15th a 10 voucher to use with any of the dealers on the day. For convention information visit: or see What's On or contact the registration officer Philip Creed on 0113 267 8488. 7.5.05


The York Society of Magicians Auction on Wednesday 11th May now has 15 Lots registered - with a total of over 600 individual items to be sold. For more information contact Michael Shepherd 01904 709500 or see What's On. 7.5.05


Trevor Duffy has been invited to lecture at the Scarborough & District Circle of Magicians on Monday 16th May at 8pm. The lecture will be held at the Anchorage Club, Lifeboat Steps, Eastborough, Scarborough (behind Festival of Fun and near Miracles Magic). Magicians from neighbouring societies are welcome. For further information contact Jason Marshall 07968715581 7.5.05


Safire can be seen throughout the summer on tour with the Chuckle Brothers - see What's On "With Strictly Dance Fever currently on air and variety the new black, the BBC has produced a pilot for another vehicle for Irish comic/presenter Graham Norton." Click Here "Under His Spell." Click Here Your UK magic news is always welcomed, see you next week, Duncan. 7.5.05