I’ve never written a blog before, but decided it was time to start. Especially since I’m building up to doing all of this on camera eventually! for now thought, I wanted to create better habits in myself and to start getting thoughts out of my head.
If you’re curious about the inner workings of a magician’s mind, or you want some tips that I think might be helpful for magicians and performers alike, then I may have something for you. If I don’t, please get in touch and let me know!
What is a Cabaret Magician, or cabaret magic for that matter?
Cabaret (noun)A form of theatrical entertainment featuring music, song, dance, recitation, or drama. It is mainly distinguished by the performance venue, which might be a pub, a casino, a hotel,[...]
How can you learn magic without being there in person?
With social distancing a regular part of our lives now, learning magic in person is not an option these days. In fact, most events are online these days, most of my performances are now [...]
The world today
Social distancing is a part of our world nowadays, and it is has put a bit of a halt on all our plans. Office parties seem like a distant memory, large gatherings are now illegal, and we all miss a bit of human contact. We can't take part in the events we[...]
If you’ve ever booked a magician, particularly in London, you may well have heard a term thrown around, “The Magic Circle”. So today I thought I would let you in on some not so secret information (you can go and learn it firsthand from their website which you can find [...]
If you’ve never heard of the card game 52 Pickup, then I am thrilled you heard about it here first.
For one, it isn’t a card game. It is a very dull practical joke. At least, I’ve always found it annoying as I am usually on the receiving end, and having respect for a deck of cards that[...]
I can hear what is probably going through your head right now, something along the lines of, “what does riding a horse have to do with performing magic?”
And you have a very valid point, but unfortunately, as you may have worked out by now, I enjoy sayings a little too much!
Whichever deck you prefer.
But that is an incredibly dull and unhelpful answer, isn’t it?
So let’s have a look at a few different types that I know of and enjoy using. Fair warning, if you recall yesterday, I mentioned the whole “Amazon Affiliates” thing? Yeah, today is the first[...]
Today's post may not be of much interest to many of you, but for my own sanity (and also certain legal reasons) I wanted to explain one of the new things that I'll be working on in the background. (In case you were curious, I'm really improving with my "card firing" technique, see yesterday's[...]
Was that a clickbaity enough title to grab your attention? It may not have been because you can still see this text in the preview box before you click through, but it was worth a shot.
However, as much as I would love to, I can't just teach you magic. At least not in this format, by which[...]
If there is one thing I have learnt as I teach my students magic, it’s that I don’t know nearly enough. Now I probably shouldn’t be bashing my own intelligence and abilities, but the one thing I’m learning about teaching is how hard it is to teach the subtleties of magic right out of the gate.[...]
Bare with me for a second, as hopefully, I can show you how this is a good thing. I do realise that this is quite the existential conundrum, given that if life is pointless, well what is the point of doing anything, ever?
Who is ready for a tonne of analogies as I try and turn out another[...]
If you’re joining along in this quest to be a part of the magic world, learning some tricks of the trade, how to be a magician and whatnot, then you have to remember not to be too harsh on yourself. In fact, this applies no matter what you do.
I’ve collected a few sayings and the like that[...]
I’ve talked before about some questions I think we as performers should ask ourselves if we haven’t already. So today I wanted to bring up the fact that there are some questions we should be asking ourselves regularly.
I mentioned then, and I’ll re-mention it now, but I think questions are[...]
Ooh, the mystery. What could a magician possibly be spending his hard-earned money on!? Is it exciting new magic effects? A new prop? A new outfit? What could it be!?
Well, sorry to disappoint you dreadfully, but I haven’t purchased some interesting new grimoire or long lost book of[...]
I realise that I a statement like this may not seem to have much to do with magic, but I obviously do, or I wouldn’t be writing it right now. There are so many benefits to exercise that it seems almost pointless to mention them here. But as magicians, it is our job to look after ourselves so[...]
We are so lucky to live in the world we do today, the information age. There is so much information out there, and it is truly staggering. It can quickly become incredibly overwhelming. However, magic is a strange one when it comes to this sort of thing since as we know, Magician’s never reveal[...]
I don’t remember when I first heard this expression, but it is one of my all-time favourites when it comes to all things magic. And I do mean all things magic. It has a way of applying itself to all kinds of areas; here are my three favourite places to do just[...]
As simple as this request of mine and it is a request, it is anything but easy. I think most of us go through life and are generally kind to the people around us, but I always found there to be more than just a grain of truth in the saying, “Everyone is an asshole in someone else’s[...]
Yesterday I talked about the four stages of learning, how failure is an integral part of education and its inevitability. I think this is such an important topic; I’m going to talk about it again today. Though, hopefully with a more positive spin on it this time.
Fail your way[...]
Failure is a part of life. A scary part, but is something we can't hide from or ignore. One way or another, we all learn that we must avoid failure and instead succeed at every avenue of our lives. We live in a world where our brain is flooded with information about how everyone we know is[...]
Since I am about to sing the praises for two idioms that contradict each other, it makes sense for me to talk about them separately first. So let’s do that.
Whatever is worth doing at all, is worth doing well.
This was written by Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl[...]
Putting on big events often involves juggling a lot of moving pieces; timing everything, coordinating guests and staff, ensuring food arrives promptly, and of course, the evening's entertainment.
When it comes to considering the kind of entertainment you want at your event, there are all[...]
I am a huge fan of questions. I was always the kid who would endlessly ask “why?” until someone snapped. This curiosity of mine continued into university where I studied Philosophy and Psychology, two of my favourite subjects to read about to this day. For whatever reason, I have always loved[...]
Since this website is about furthering the world of magic, I have had to prevent myself from getting carried away and talking about all of the varied benefits of travelling. There are many advantages, but we're going to focus instead on those that relate to my favourite art form.
For anyone who reads everything I write every day, you may have noticed I didn’t write anything for yesterday. This, of course, flies in the face of my commitment to writing one post a day. (So even though this post may say it was posted on 12/7/2020, it is an out and out internet lie.[...]
So you're interested in hiring a magician for your wedding? Well, I am of course very biased in favour of this decision for a whole host of reasons I'm sure I don't have to specify! What does matter is whether or not having a magician at your wedding is a good fit for you on your special[...]
Whoever you are, and whatever you do, learning a skill of any kind is one of the best ways to improve yourself as a human being. Taking the time to break something down to its component parts and learn how to do it well, can be arduous, complicated and frustrating. On the other side of all that[...]
I know I briefly touched on what the hell I am doing with my life to have thought that posting regular articles about my thoughts and tips as a magician was not only warranted but somehow actually provide value. So I thought I would go into a bit more depth as to what it is I'm trying to achieve[...]
Oh yeah, we’re on a real “self-cleaning” spurt at the moment. Yesterday was all about grooming those overgrown visibly hairy areas of yours, and today we are going to look at the areas that you need to be cleaning and looking after. Some of these are boring but very necessary, so be sure to find[...]
We all know hygiene is essential. It’s part of our everyday life. It’s also an area that I did not give enough attention for far too long, always doing the bare minimum. After gaining a bit of experience working with people in our industry, though, I’ve managed to pick up a couple of tips around[...]
Hopefully, my ramblings over the last few days will have helped you with your heckling woes. I thought I would finish off with some more thoughts on managing hecklers in regards to another recent topic I touched on, characterisation.
The character or persona that you have chosen as your[...]
So, picking right up where I left off yesterday and on with some possible ways of handling our least favourite audience members.
1) Attack them
I would only recommend even considering this if you are up to scratch with your improvisation skills. I am not suggesting[...]
When it comes to hecklers, there are two main kinds, active and passive hecklers. Active hecklers are the ones who first come to mind, the loud abusive and often belligerent drunk who feels the need to interject his pearls of wisdom into your performance. The second type is the less invasive,[...]
I cannot stand hecklers. They are usually drunken idiots who interrupt the performance, always at a crucial moment, or ruin the flow of the effect I’m performing, resulting in a joke or magical moment not landing the way it should. If I could get prevent hecklers entirely, I[...]
Every magician, or at least every great magician, has a persona, or a character that they adopt when they walk out in front of their audience. This is, in fact, true of all performers, bar those who never take the time to create a persona and those who make their on, and off stage, persona’s one[...]
I may still be ending my posts a little abruptly, so apologies for that. I certainly didn’t leave the impression that I would be doing another post on this topic so soon, to be honest, when I finished the post yesterday, I hadn’t[...]
Picking right up where I left off yesterday, I was now playing the role of the Gambler at the cabaret. There was already a costume, and with the assistance and guidance from both the Director and Choreographer doing the script, I was able to become “The[...]
Yesterday I talked about how the basics of how to create your character for when you are performing. Today I thought I would talk about my personal experiences with characterisation. After all, I do love talking about myself. Hopefully,[...]
This was terrifying for me. Aside from the fact that I am close up magician by trade! My mentors pushed me into it though, saying it would be a parlour or grand cabaret show rather than stage magic per se; it would make for proper[...]
Talk to yourself, listen to yourself and see what you have to say. After all, sometimes you need an expert’s opinion, and no-one knows you better than you do.
This is quite possibly one of the most terrifying things that we can do as human beings.
I’m always reminded of Jerry Seinfeld’s bit where he talks about how people[...]
Practice, more practice and even more practice.
I doubt that was really the answer you were looking for, though. As you are no doubt aware, magic[...]
Despite being suspended from the magic circle, I was able to still perform at any event that would have me. Before my membership returned, I resigned from my lofty position in the corporate office job to pursue magic full[...]
I’m not sure if that title is an ominous one, though it does imply I left the magic circle voluntarily. This is not the case. I screwed up massively, and the punishment would definitely fit the crime.
While approaching the ¾ mark of my time in a lovely, underpaid office job, not that I[...]
I swear I am trying to stick to the “pertinent” details of my life that got me to where I am, but apparently, I enjoy talking about myself a little too much. I cannot thank you enough for continuing to read this drivel.
On with the story though.
Having quit my corporate life, I[...]
I promise, I never thought I would be able to drag this story out so long, and as soon as I’m more or less up to the present day, I’ll get back to my ramblings on the whatever magical topics pop into my head!
We left off with our hero performing in a stimulating environment, with a great[...]
It seems there could be a few more parts to this still. Perhaps it is my fault for keeping each “part” to around the same size as the articles I’ve written so far. But if I didn’t do that, the whole thing would be one article that is just way too long. And I would have less content if I put it[...]
I really didn’t think this would take this many parts, but apparently, I thoroughly enjoy talking about myself, so thank you for continuing to read and listen to me ramble on!
So, I was lucky enough to have a few mentors, an incredible venue, and be performing regularly. Not much more a[...]
Where I left off, I had just started performing magic at Tharen’s Restaurant in Kings Cross, Sydney, having quit my job as a bartender. I performed two to three nights each week in the restaurant, performing to guests in between courses and occasionally doing a semi-double act with the drag[...]
Mostly, because a deck of fifty-two playing cards (fifty-four if you include both jokers) represents randomness in its purest form. A deck of cards has also become entirely synonymous with magic to the point where every single magic kit contains at least one deck of cards. They are also an item[...]
Strange and interesting but unproven facts about playing cards
Yesterday I talked about the history as we best know it to be in regards to how playing cards came to be what we know them as today. Though, as I mentioned, there are lots of interesting stories, to me anyway,[...]
Well, I hope you are ready for a bit of a history lesson, as the playing cards we are so familiar with took over ten centuries to reach the form that we know and love.
While the exact origins are hard to trace, most theories agree that playing cards would have most likely originated in[...]
When it comes to learning magic, there are a plethora of different ways to learn, all with various advantages and disadvantages. In the modern-day and age that we live in, though, I find a combination of all of the following gets me the best results.
Recently I wrote about doing magic with animals and how it is something I don’t do. So today, I had the bright idea to talk about magic with and for children.
I don’t do kids parties. That’s my rule. I will teach children magic if they are interested, but I won’t do performances for kids[...]
Today’s post is a bit different from what I usually do. I like to try and find a question that I have either asked other magicians or have been asked myself and answer it in a way that I hope is informative and interesting, without giving too much away.
I have spent today struggling with[...]
This is always an interesting topic for me. In my short time alive on this planet I have seen magicians do incredible things with animals, having grown up watching magicians such as Lance Burton produce an endless stream of doves from nowhere and always enjoyed the performances. Siegfried and[...]
I realise it is a bit strange to write a second piece about the most crucial part of a magic trick since surely there is only one answer. I covered that answer yesterday by the saying that there are three parts; practice, more practice and even more practice. There is another part to that, and[...]
Failure is a part of life. It sucks, but that is a fact of life. This is especially true when it comes to magic. I have no problem admitting to my students, and anyone who will listen, that when I was first learning magic, I spent a good portion of my time playing “52 pickup”. In fact, I still[...]
In essence, there is no difference between these three. However, what is different is the mentality behind each of these vague, all-encompassing terms and the magician who performs them.
All three of these terms can be interchangeable, for the most part. Though in my experience, any[...]
Yesterday I talked about the big three overarching types of magic in terms of the size of the performance. Magic is also broken into seven other kinds of categories which are based around what the magic effect’s presentation is and what the magician has done. In no particular order, they are as[...]
There are quite a few different ways to answer this question, but I’ll give you the main breakdown in this article, and I’ll have a second run at this tomorrow!
The first way of categorising magic is the scale/size of the performance and the audience who watch it. My preferred form of[...]
As with any art form, there is a saying for this, as there are three parts. Practice, more practice, and even more practice.
Resist the temptation to roll your eyes, believe me; I certainly did when I used to hear this. As unfortunately, no matter who you are, whether you’re a newcomer to[...]
One. Yes, you heard me, just one; at least to start with on your journey. The temptation is always to think you need to learn as many as possible so you can show an endless stream of magic effects one after the other for your friends. This will have the opposite effect to what you are hoping to[...]
Yes and no. As far as I am concerned, though, Magic is real. It just depends on how you define Magic.
The reason I think Magic is real is that I see it whenever I perform. I see it whenever I watch great Magic, even when I know the secret behind how it works. You can see it in a person’s[...]
This may differ from magician to magician, but personally, yes, I get nervous before every show. Well, almost every show. For the vast majority though, I am racked with nerves, whether it is a stage performance, close up, or even a small[...]
Like all art, magic is subjective. For me, the magic I like comes down to the performer more than anything else. I’ve seen great magic, done poorly, and dull magic done in a way that leaves me baffled, confused and more entertained than I[...]
Answering this question is not as simple as a quick yes or no. It depends on you as a person and how you learn best.
For most people, I would say that yes, it is worth investing in a cheap one, at least to start with, so you can dip your toe in the water as it were. The problem with buying[...]
“As a magician, I promise never to reveal the secret of any illusion to a non-magician, unless that one swears to uphold the Oath in turn. I promise never to perform any illusion for any non-magician without first practising the effect[...]
The short answer is no. A longer answer is that it can be, but learning any skill has certain hurdles you have to get over, magic just has those hurdles in some different places to other art forms.
There are many important factors to consider when looking to hire a magician for your event and I am going to cover the basics with a quick look into some of the more in-depth details to keep in mind.
Type of event
First, you need to know what the event is going to[...]