16 December 2011

A Few Lectures In 2012

Hi folks

I thought I'd let you know about a few lectures that I will be presenting in the coming few months.

The first will be at Paisley Magic Circle on Thursday 19th January 2012 at their regular meeting place - St Ninian's Church Hall, 81-83 Blackstoun Road, Paisley, PA3 1NR (map).  The lecture is due to start at 7:30pm and non-member magicians can get full details from the Hon. Secretary, Peter Mullan, by e-mailing pgmullan@hotmail.com.  I am calling this particular lecture "A Work In Progress" as it will be a brand new lecture mostly containing material from my new lecture notes, which I will be releasing that night.  I'll give you more details on the new notes soon.

In March, I am presenting a couple of lectures in England.  First, on Monday 5th March, I will be at Leicester Magic Circle at their regular meeting place - Braunstone Civic Centre, Kingsway, Leicester, LE3 2PP (map).    This lecture is scheduled to start at 7:30pm and you can get more details from the club directly by e-mailing info@leicestermagiccircle.co.uk.

Then, on Tuesday 6th March, I will be visiting the Mid Essex Magical Society who meet at The Cricketers Public House, Penny Royal Road, Danbury, CM3 4ED (map).  The lecture is due to start at 8pm and you can get full details by e-mailing Michael Alderman on mike@michaeljalderman.myzen.co.uk.

If you are the Secretary of a Magical Society looking for a lecturer for the end of the week that I am south of the border (the week of Monday 5th to Friday 9th March) then please get in touch at peter@thecardman.co.uk.  You can get full details of my lecture on "The Lecture" page.

If you are able to make it along, please come up and say hi.  I am looking forward to visiting the different clubs.  Maybe I'll see you somewhere along the road?

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

06 December 2011

Back Twist by Mathieu Bich

Hi folks

I first met Mathieu Bich some 10 years ago at the IBM British Ring Convention in Scarborough.  Since then, I have had the pleasure of meeting him on a number of occasions and have watched in wonder countless times as he has performed effects that his brilliantly creative mind has created.  He is one of the performers who fooled Penn and Teller on their ITV series earlier in the year but I'd like to tell you a wee story about one of the first things he ever showed me.

One night, in the hotel bar, Mathieu was performing a few things for some folk.  I managed to catch the last piece that he performed.  He crouched down so everyone could look down on what he was doing and showed 4 blue backed cards.  It looked like he was performing a version of Lee Asher's "Asher Twist" as, one at a time, each of these blue backed cards turned red backed.  We all thought "that's an interesting idea".  We all thought we knew what he was doing and what he was using to accomplish the effect.  But little did we know that he was leading us down the garden path and about to turn the hose on us as once each of those blue backed cards had turned red, he turned them over to show 4 aces!  Where had the blue backs gone?  Seriously, where the smeg were they???  Mathieu was not for tipping the method that night.

Have a wee look at the trailer for it above...

Now, some 10 years later, we can finally discover the ingenious method to this wonderful effect as Mathieu has finally released it under the title "Back Twist" (when you click on the link you will also be able to see a video of the effect itself).  I am tempted to ask you not to buy it as I want to be the only one to have it but I don't think Mathieu would appreciate it.  It is a phenomenal piece.  I am not one for buying "tricks" as such but I will certainly be buying this one!  I think you should do too.

Go on and treat yourself - it's nearly Christmas!

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

Mathieu e-mailed me a couple of days ago letting me know that he has posted a video with the handling that I saw him perform all that time ago.  So, have a wee watch at this and allow your brain to hurt - lots!

14 November 2011

Let the contest begin!

Saturday 19th November at 10am sees the 28th International Magic Close Up Competition for The Kevin Reay Trophy.  The international field competing is:-

Ludovic Julliot - France
James Piper - Wales
Benoit Dulche - France
PIPO - Spain
Claes Danell - Sweden
Andost - USA
Javi Sánchez - Spain
Paul Sommersguter - Austria
Hayashi - Germany
Trabuk - Italy
Alexander Popov - Russia
Hector Mancha - Spain
Hide - Japan
Woody Aragón - Spain
René Jensen - Denmark
Lord Lucan aka Magic Paul - UK

I think it's safe to say that I'm looking forward to this year's convention.  Hopefully I'll see you there.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

Magic Fever

Today sees the start of a week of magic in London with the launch of the LONDON FESTIVAL OF MAGIC at the intimate Bridewell Theatre, followed by a weekend of action packed magic commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the International Magic Convention at the fabulous Mermaid Theatre (the theatres are within 5 minutes walk of each other).

The Convention weekend kicks off at 7:30pm on the Friday 17th November with the first ever European appearance of Harry Anderson when he not only performs his one man show, "Tipping The Hat" but then dissects the whole show with trick explanations and analysis in the lecture that follows it.

The whole weekend contains many such firsts and surprises with two previously unannounced acts in the Gala Show, the awarding of The David Berglas International Magic Award to it's mystery recipient, and a 'never-to-be-repeated' moment with David Williamson - you won't want to miss it! For more information and schedule details check our site on www.internationalmagic.com

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

26 October 2011

Truly International

In just over 3 weeks, on Saturday 19th November, 17 competitors from 12 countries (including Japan, Canada, USA, France, Spain, Sweden, Russia, Denmark and Italy) will compete for the Kevin Reay Trophy along with a £1000 cash prize in the International Close Up Competition at The Mermaid Theatre in London.  This event forms just part of the packed weekend International Magic Convention which includes lectures, close up shows, a full evening Gala Show and the presentation of The David Berglas International Magic Award.  Celebrating it’s 40th anniversary this year, the Convention is at the end of a week when the MacMillan family also produce their very first Festival of Magic at the Bridewell Theatre.

For full details of all the seminars, shows and events in both these talent-packed fixtures please visit the International Magic website.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

John Carey at the Scottish Conjurers' Association

Hi folks

It's only a short time ago since John Carey decided to pop his head up from the magical underground and start sharing his material with the wider magical world, instead of just a number of close confidants.  In the last couple of years, John has been lecturing around the UK and, on Wednesday 9th November, he finally makes a trip north of the border to lecture, presenting this year's Tommy Frederick Memorial Lecture at the Scottish Conjurers' Association in Glasgow.

John has a knack for creating strong, direct card miracles using simple and devious methods.  If you want powerful, practical material, John’s approach to creating will delight you.  You can check out some of John’s material in the video clip below.

Of John, and his material, Peter Duffie said “John Carey’s card and close-up magic is a pleasure to watch. It’s also a pleasure to learn.  With no extraneous moves or overt flourishes, his tightly constructed routines are to be admired.  If you seek solid commercial magic that packs a punch, then you cannot go wrong with Carey.”

This should be a great lecture with something for everyone, from beginner to advanced.

OK, now you know what's happening, here are the details.  John's lecture for the Scottish Conjurers' Association will take place at The Scottish Mask and Puppet Centre, 8-10 Balcarres Ave, Glasgow, G12 0QF (click here for a map) on Wednesday 9th November starting at 7.30pm and admission is £10.

Maybe I'll see you there?

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

22 October 2011

Whoa and wow!

Hi folks

More news and information has arrived from the gang at International Magic about this year's convention, which is only 4 short weeks away.

Unfortunately Paul Stockman has had to withdraw from the Mentalism Day of the Festival of Magic being held in central London on November 16th, but we are thrilled to announce that Chris Cox - star of 5 Edinburgh Fringe Shows, 3 UK Tours and "one of the most exciting entertainers in Britain" (The Guardian) - has stepped in and will be making his very first ever lecture/appearance at a magic event.  He will be joining Andy Nyman, Luke Jermay and Mark Elsdon for a full day of talks, explanations and discussion all revolving around the most rapidly expanding genre of magic today.  Tickets and details are available for not only this day but all the other full day seminars in the week can be found on the International Magic website.

And following the sell out of Max Maven’s One Man Show, the performance of our Magic & Variety Gala on Saturday 19th November has now sold out too, however there are currently still tickets for the same show on Sunday 20th November and also tickets available for all other events in the Convention weekend.

And finally, the convention rate hotel rooms have now sold out at the Crowne Plaza Blackfriars but as an alternative, we have arranged a very good rate for the convention weekend with Thistle Barbican (1.4miles away from the convention site). Contact them directly with booking code INTE181111 on admin.citybarbican@thistle.co.uk

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

15 October 2011

Tickets are going... going... (very nearly) gone!

Hi folks

There is just over a month to go before the International Magic Convention (18-20 November) and the London Festival of Magic (14-20 November) and now is the time to register as some of the events are close to being full (the Sunday Night performance of the Gala Show) while some have only just a handful of tickets left (the Saturday Night performance of the Gala Show).  Do not be as disappointed as those who left it too late and missed out on the Max Maven Show (which is now completely sold out although you can join the waiting list).

The Convention has something for everyone, whilst the individual day seminars during the week concentrating separately on Advanced Card Technique, Mentalism, Creativity, Marketing and Making Magic Memorable allow you to focus on your special area of interest and spend even more time with the stars of the Convention.

I've said this a number of times over the last wee while, but the International Magic weekend is one of the highlights of my year and something I always really look forward to.  You will not be disappointed!

Full details, as well as information on how to get tickets, are available on the International Magic website.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

12 October 2011

Michael Neto lecturing at Paisley Magic Circle

Hi folks

You might not have heard the name Michael Neto before but in Scotland, he is regarded as one of the best Close Up magicians to emerge in recent years.  In the last year or 2, he has really come into his own winning awards at several prestigious magic competitions around the UK:-
Why am I telling you this?  Well, on Thursday 3rd November, starting at 7:30pm, Michael will be presenting his lecture entitled "Structuring A Close Up Competition Act" for Paisley Magic Circle at their headquarters at St. Ninian’s Church of Scotland, 81-83 Blackstoun Road, Paisley, PA3 1NR.  The lecture is a direct result of Michael's work and success in magic competitions.  He will also teach his handlings of a few coin magic classics.  Admission to non-members is £10, payable on the door on the night.

For more details, you can download the PDF lecture flyer here.

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

08 October 2011

An additional name added to The London Festival of Magic

Hi folks

Today, I have a little bit more information about this year's London Festival Of Magic, taking place next month (yay!) in London.  I'm going to hand you over to Noel Britten, the Talent Co-Ordinator of both The London Festival Of Magic and The International Magic Convention who will give you all the details.

“In the world of magic the word ‘genius’ is bandied around rather too freely in my mind.  For those of you who would like to experience the presence of someone who truly deserves the title should make sure that they are in London on November 18th.

Lubor Fiedler will be making his first appearance in over 10 years, and joining the Creativity Seminar which forms part of the London’s Festival Of Magic (which is taking place all that week in the lead up to The International Magic Convention).  Creator of some of the most stunning visual and original effects in magic, Lubor’s methods are often as entertaining as the initial effect, and many which remain as baffling to you even when you perform them!  Often uncredited it was Lubor who invented, amongst many hundreds of other of effects, the Coin Thru Rubber, 4-D, Invisible Zone and Gozinta Boxes (you can check them out on You Tube!).

Lubor will be joining Tom Stone and Mark Setteducati for a whole day of performance, explanations, lectures and discussion and this will be an unmissable day to witness and experience three of magic’s most creative minds.  I expect it to be a really fascinating day, and in these days of people thinking that using red-backed cards instead of blue as some huge creative leap, I urge people to come and be inspired into thinking in a more creative way in terms of both what they do and how they do it.  The evening sees the start of the Convention with Harry Anderson’s first UK appearance and lecture, so even if you are working at the weekend, this one day alone would be worth attending.”

Remember that registration details can be found at The International Magic website but act quickly as I understand that tickets for all events are going very quickly.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

24 September 2011

International Magic's London Festival of Magic - Bad News and Good News...

Hi folks

Today's blog post brings us more information about International Magic's Festival of Magic, which will be taking place from Monday 14th to Thursday 17th November in the Bridewell Theatre in London, immediately prior to the 40th International Magic Convention - 18th to 20th November at the Mermaid Theatre.  I'll pass you onto the gang from International Magic...

Max Maven – Thinking In Person”, which forms part of the Festival of Magic at the Bridewell Theatre, has now sold out.  To compensate for all those Maven devotees that are unable to join him that night, Max has agreed to an intimate evening of interview, including questions from the audience, on the preceding Thursday night, 17th November, at the same location.  The evening will be one of the 5 evenings at the venue that comprise the public show element of the Festival.

Monday 14th November sees a rare re-incarnation of John Lenahan’s Monday Night Magic with guests including John Archer and Danny Buckler, Tuesday 15th November comprises of a double bill with a gambling based show comprising of individual sets from Guy Hollingworth, Jason England and Paul Wilson  followed by Pete Wardell’s one man show “Hustle”. Wednesday night, 16th November, is another double bill of both Todd Landman and Quentin Reynold’s individual mentalism-based one man shows.

Booking details for all these evening shows and events can be found at the London Festival of Magic pages on the International Magic website which, with the sliding price scale based on the number of evenings you attend, gives unbeatable value for money, starting at under £7 per event.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

23 September 2011

Alan Rorrison's "A Little Bit Mental"

Hi folks

A prediction made days or weeks in advance matches the serial number of a spectator’s borrowed bank note. 

A spectator names a card and is found to be the only card in an examinable blank deck. 

These are a couple of the effects that Alan Rorrison has just released in his latest download “A Little Bit Mental”. A few weeks ago, Alan got in front of the camera and recorded these and a couple of other mental magic effects. In the weeks since that recording, Alan has received some news that means he is going to have to take a break from performing for a wee while. Because of this enforced break, he has decided to release these effects in a new video download, entitled “A Little Bit Mental”. On it, you will find:-

Serial Thriller 
Predict the serial number on a spectators bank note!

A direct Bank Night style routine using coins.

A freely named card is THE ONLY card with a face in a fully examinable blank deck.

This is Alan's crib system that you can carry on you at all times.

A customizable gaffed deck that you can make at home to create some amazing magic. Alan has also included simple and direct method for the Pocket Change effect.

The download lasts more than one hour and is in MP4 format, which you can play with the VLC Player (which is free!).

You can buy “A Little Bit Mental” directly from Alan at www.alanrorrison.com/alittlebitmental.html for only £10 (that’s about US$15 at the current exchange rates).

Those of you who have bought Alan’s material before will know how clever the wee guy is. Those of you who have not, go on and take the plunge. You never know, you might enjoy it!

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

21 September 2011

R.E.M. - It's The End Of The Band As We Know It...

Hi folks

Well, chances are that you will have heard about R.E.M.'s decision to break up.  If you hadn't before, I'm sorry to be the one to break the news.

Before I really get started, let me just say that this post may be a bit rambling.  I'm sorry for that, but I wanted to get my thoughts down before they left me.

I have been a fan of REM since I was in college.  I heard a wee song called "It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" when I was in the Students' Union Bar one night.  A raucous song that went at 90 miles an hour for most of the song.  A wee while later, I heard a little known song called "Losing My Religion" which had just been released as a single.  It blew me away.  For me, the rest, as they say, is history.

It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)

Albums were bought.  Back catalogue sought.  First was "Out Of Time" which contained the afore mentioned "Losing My Religion", then "The Best Of REM", the compilation album that was permanently in the jukebox in the Students' Union Bar that encompassed their early days with the IRS record label.  "Automatic For The People" was bought on the day of release and all subsequent albums were bought as close to their release date as my pay days and finances would allow.

And then, finally, I got to see them live.  The Monster Tour in 1995.  OK, I had to wait 5 extra months as I had a ticket for the SECC concert that never happened (Bill Berry's on-stage brain haemorrhage saw to that).  I got to swap my ticket for their appearance at Murrayfield Stadium in Edinburgh and got to see them live for the first time.  Sadly, for me, I was at the other end of the stadium from the stage and there were no big screens in use for this tour so the band looked like a few dots on a stage 300 feet away.  From then on, I was determined to make sure I was close to the front as I could for any subsequent concerts.  In the end, I got to see R.E.M. live 6 times - Edinburgh, Stirling, T In The Park, Glasgow Green, Loch Lomond and London - and I was not too far from the front for each of the last 5.  My 2 favourites out of that list were Glasgow Green and London.

R.E.M. play a cover of Wichita Lineman
(this is from their Rough Cut documentary, hence the interview footage part way through)

But now, the members of R.E.M. have decided to go their separate ways.  Bill Berry had already left his place at the drum kit in 1997 but Peter Buck, Mike Mills and Michael Stipe continued on for another 14 years and 5 albums before today's news.  Being used to not hearing much for a while before a new album, I was more than a little stunned by the news.  Even now, several hours later, part of me wishes that it is part of some great hoax or prank but I know that it isn't.  Fortunately, we still have the albums, the DVDs and the memories that will keep R.E.M. around forever and a day.

One of my all-time favourites, Pretty Persuasion.

To R.E.M. and all who sailed with them, thank you so much for creating and playing so much amazing music and good luck with whatever you do next.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-(

19 September 2011

Pete Wardell - 52 Ideas

Hi folks

I first met Pete Wardell at an International Magic Convention a number of years ago.  This was the year he entered the competition and won it with his brilliant performance of his street act.  Sure, it was the Cups and Balls, but what a performance!  Since then, Pete's gone onto bigger and better things, including being the only performer to have won both Stage Magician of the Year and Close Up Magician of the Year at the Magic Circle - and he did that in successive years!

A number of months ago, Pete decided that he would challenge himself to writing one blog post every week for a year - 52 posts.  And so 52 Ideas was born.  52 Ideas is a series of blog posts all about becoming a successful performer.  He uses playing cards to identify each post and the card's suit provides the framework for that particular post:-

Clubs - Sustainability
Diamonds - Profitability
Hearts - Meaning
Spades - Credibility

So, why am I telling you this.  Well that's easy - it's an excellent, thought-provoking blog that I feel all performers, whether they be magicians or not, should read and I wanted to bring it to the attention of as many people as I can.  Actually, his whole magicstateofmind.com site is excellent but I wanted to bring your attention to his 52 Ideas.  Read his posts, digest them for a wee bit and then put them into action.  You won't regret it, and your clients will benefit.

So you can see who I'm talking about, have a wee look at this clip of his award-winning performance in the 2009 Magic Circle Close Up Competition.  Enjoy.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

07 September 2011

Shawn Farquhar Scottish Lecture Tour

Hi folks

Shawn Farquhar is not only one of the magicians who fooled Penn & Teller but is the reigning World Champion of Close Up Magic.  At the end of this month, Shawn will be doing a short Scottish lecture tour.  He will be visiting 3 clubs in 4 night nights.  The details are as follows:-

Monday 26th September
Dundee Society of Magicians - Contact Harry Moodie on 07950 603 409

Tuesday 27th September
Aberdeen Magic Circle - Contact Dave Goulding on 07774 641 230

Thursday 29th September
Paisley Magic Circle - Contact Graham Whyte on 01505 325 998

"I've been doing magic all my life.  My Mom says when I was born the Doctor slapped me and I said 'Pick a card'!"
Shawn Farquhar

I have seen Shawn present this lecture a couple of times in the past and blogged about the one-hour version he presented in Blackpool a few years ago.  Here's what I said back then...

“I've seen Farquhar perform at the last 2 World Championships and he has always impressed me. He performs with enough energy to power a small town and is not scared to perform some impressive material - both in terms of technique and effect. His lecture was full of very easy material (he likes easy!) and the same energy that he gives when I've seen him perform in the past.”

You can get more details about Shawn’s lecture at www.magiclecture.com

I hope you get a chance to see Shawn lecture as I know you'll have a great time.  Just before I go, here's Shawn fooling Penn & Teller on television.

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

27 August 2011

International Magic Close Up Competition

Hi folks

Always a high spot of The International Magic Convention, the Close Up Competition has now reached it's allocated number of entrants. If you wish to be added to the waiting list, for a spot in the event of drop outs, please contact georgia@internationalmagic.com.

The winning performer, picked by the international panel of judges which includes many foreign Convention organisers, wins the Kevin Reay Trophy, an invitation to the FFFF Convention in America and £1000 cash. In the year leading up to each FISM Convention the Competition has traditionally had a very high standard and MacMillan family hope that you'll be able to join them this year for another exciting event.

If you do not believe me about how strong the competition can be, get in touch with the gang at International and buy yourself the DVDs of the 2005 International Close Up Competition. The calibre that year was the best I had seen in any competition outwith FISM.

As always, registration details for the whole Convention and other extra magical events in the same week can be found on the International Magic website.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

17 August 2011

International Magic Gala Show

Hi folks

The Gala Show (19 & 20 November) at this years International Magic Convention - known affectionately known as “Ron’s” - once again promises to be a wonderful evening’s entertainment of magic and variety including three completely new-to-the-UK acts. These include a phenomenal Korean manipulator, a German act packed with unbelievable magic and surprises and an act based on one of the oldest principles in magic but brought bang up to date with a contemporary twist. We’d tell you their names but in this day of You Tube we’d much prefer you to experience their magic for the first time live and in person in the comfort of The Mermaid Theatre rather than alone on a computer screen!

Alongside these acts premièring in Great Britain, are some old favourites from previous Gala Shows including David Williamson, Simmons and Simmons, and London’s first stage appearance of Sweden’s Tom Stone. A great evening of magic, laughter and speciality acts that you can be proud to bring your friend and families to.

Tickets are available for Saturday and Sunday night – but remember if you’re planning to attend the one-off Saturday Night performance of Max Maven’s one man show Thinking in Person: An Evening of Knowing and Not Knowing at The Bridewell Theatre you will definitely need to book Gala Show tickets for the Sunday. Tickets for all shows, the Convention and specialist seminars in London’s Festival of Magic are available on the International Magic website.

If you have been reading my blog over the last wee while, you will know how much I enjoy the International Magic Convention. The Gala Show is always one of the many highlights and this year looks no different. Book your tickets before it's too late!

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

16 August 2011

2011 Edinburgh Fringe

Hi folks

Last weekend, I had a couple of days at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe where I managed to catch 6 shows - 3 each day. I thought you might be interested in my thoughts on them. I am going to try not to quote gags or tell you which tricks are performed during these "reviews". I have also given a "star" rating which is out of 5.

If you've seen the "Police Academy" movies, you've seen Michael Winslow. If you've seen "Spaceballs", you've seen Michael Winslow. If you've seen "Gremlins" and some episodes of "Family Guy", you've heard Michael Winslow. This is the guy that can make all sorts of vocal noises, from a machine gun to, with the help of some reverb in his microphone, Jimi Hendrix's guitar. He provided us with those and a whole lot more in his hour on stage. I'll be honest, I was wondering what he would do to fill an hour but from the moment he walked on stage, those thoughts were out of my head as he owned The Underbelly stage from the moment he walked on stage until he walked off after his wonderful Louis Armstrong finale. Normal, mundane, everyday tasks took on a whole new life with Winslow acting them out on stage while providing his own self-produced sound effects. If you can get a ticket, get one. It is a great hour.
Rating - *****

It looks like Ali has been busy in the last year learning a host of new magic for this year's show with everything from intricate sleight of hand with coins to some big stage illusions being displayed. He also displays his ever-growing skill as a stand up comic with some funny, and sometimes dark, pieces. As a magician, it was the magic that I was there to see and he made excellent use of a large screen at the back of the stage, not only to allow the whole audience to enjoy some of the smaller pieces that he performed but to illustrate things that he was talking about in the build up to a routine. He also fooled me with a number of his magical in the show - I am almost embarrassed to admit that his card routine caught me completely - and it all made for a very enjoyable hour. If you like magic, you'll like Ali.
Rating - ****

For me, listening to comedy in a darkened room is not a new thing. My best mate introduced me to the concept many years ago when he was introducing me to the work of a certain Bill Hicks. What was new to me was listening to comedy being performed live, right in front of me, in an auditorium in the company of over 100 other people. It makes for an interesting experience. Of the 3 performers that were on the night I went, Mark Olver and Patrick Monahan were both enjoyable but it was Terry Alderton who made full use of the darkness by performing a number of excellent impressions of other comedians and then sneaking Tim Vine and Milton Jones onto and off of the stage during his set. An enjoyable late night show.
Rating - ***

I went to this show for 2 reasons. First, on the memory of seeing James Kirk performing the night after he won last year's So You Think You're Funny competition. Second, because it was part of PBH's Free Fringe. The show was compered by Gus Lymburn who did an excellent job of getting the crowd warmed up before introducing the first performer, Matt Winning, who performed an OK set. There were a few bits that missed the mark, but it wasn't too bad. James Kirk was introduced next and was excellent with a good amount of new material complimenting the one piece that he performed that I could remember from his set last year. The last act was Richard Gadd who, I have to admit, I did not find terribly funny. His style of comedy had me, and a number of others in the audience, sitting in silence. There were a few good gags in his set but I found his material too weird too much of the time. The trio returned afterwards with a very funny musical piece which had everyone leaving with a smile on their face and a catchy song in their heads.
Rating - ***

Young And Strange recently appeared on ITV's Penn & Teller: Fool Us performing a fairly large scale illusion. This show sees them performing a number of smaller pieces in a nightclub that is being used as a venue on the PBH Free Fringe. The performance I saw was their first of the Fringe and, as is usual at such events, there were some teething problems (had I seen a later performance I may have awarded an extra star but I can only go on what I saw). However, most of these were not apparent until Rich and Sam told me afterwards. I think that alone tells you how hard they have worked to put this show together. It is an enjoyable hour with some excellent magic in it - as was apparent by the reactions from the full house that had turned up to see the show. I think you will enjoy it too.

Edit - Rich and Sam have added extra shows for next week. You can catch their illusion show from 21st to 26th August at Princes Mall (space L8) at 14:15. I'm sure you'll enjoy it.
Rating - ***

I have been to see Jarlath over the last few years at the Fringe and have found his laid back, friendly style to be a bit of a welcome break from the in-your-face style of comedy that seems to be so prevalent these days. Sure, there are a number of f-bombs and a c-bomb in the show but he does them with such style that you don't really mind. Your mum might, but you don't. This year's show concentrates upon his time in Irish children's television. Not only what he was doing and stories about what went on, but the reasons why he was doing it. He also has a wonderful piece about watching the Eurovision Song Contest which I will not spoil. This is, by far, Regan's most personal show but do not allow that to put you off. Personal? Yes. Moving? Very! Funny? Extremely! Do yourself a favour - go get a ticket and enjoy a brilliant stand up comedian in this intimate setting before he starts having to perform in huge arenas which, if there was any justice in this world, he will be in the not too distant future!
Rating - *****

So there you go. Six shows in a couple of days. The only down side to my visit through to Edinburgh was the weather. It rained constantly from Saturday afternoon until I left on Sunday afternoon. Still, I enjoyed what I saw. If you get a chance, I hope you find shows that you enjoy.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

03 August 2011

The 40th International Magic Convention and The London Festival of Magic

Hi folks

The gang at International Magic have been really busy over the last few weeks, not only putting the 40th edition of the International Magic Convention (18th to 20th November) but also organising the first London Festival of Magic which will take place the week leading up to the Convention itself.

The Festival will feature Workshops and Seminars during the day and performances at night, all taking place at the Bridewell Theatre, Bride Lane, Fleet Street, London. The daytime events are 10:30am for an 11am start and the evening events are 7pm for a 7:30pm start. Here is the schedule of what has been organised:-

Monday 14th November
Daytime: Marketing For Magicians with Bob Yelland
Evening: Monday Night Magic - a varied bill of top class magical and comedy performers.

Tuesday 15th November
Daytime: Advanced Card Techniques with Guy Hollingworth, Jason England, Ben Earl and Paul Wilson
Evening: Hustle! - Double bill of performances. Combined show of Guy Hollingworth, Jason England and Paul Wilson followed by Pete Wardell's One Man Show

Wednesday 16th November
Daytime: Mentalism with Andy Nyman, Paul Stockman, Mark Elsdon and Luke Jermay
Evening: Mentalism with Quentin Reynolds and Todd Landman

Thursday 17th November
Daytime: Making Magic Meaningful with Eugene Burger and Larry Hass
Evening: An Audience With David Berglas - A chance to spend an evening with the International Man of Mystery in an intimate setting as he answers questions and looks back at his incredible career.

Friday 18th November
Daytime: Creativity with Tom Stone, Mark Setteducati, Angelo Carbone

Saturday 19th November
Evening: Max Maven Thinking in Person: An Evening of Knowing and Not Knowing

The schedule for the Convention itself has also been announced. As it has the last couple of years, the convention is taking place at the Mermaid Theatre, Puddle Dock, London - in my opinion, a brilliant venue. Here is what has been organised:-

Friday 18th November
Evening (doors open 6:30pm for 7pm start):
Harry Anderson Show

Saturday 19th November
Daytime (doors open 9:30am, first event 10am):
Dealers - open all day
28th International Close Up Competition and Kevin Reay Trophy
Eugene Burger Lecture
David Williamson Event
Jason England Lecture

Evening (doors open 6pm for 7:30pm start):
International Magic and Variety Show (first performance)

Saturday 19th November
Daytime (doors open 10am, first event 10:30am):
Dealers - open all day
Larry Hass Lecture
Close Up Gala with Eugene Burger Lecture, Larry Hass, David Williamson, Tom Stone, Jason England
Max Maven Lecture
Tom Stone Lecture
David Berglas Award to ????

Evening (doors open 6pm for 7:30pm start):
International Magic and Variety Show (second performance)

So there you have it folks. Now we know what's happening when and I, for one, cannot wait. Just remember, it's only 3½ months away!

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

22 July 2011

Opus Magazine

"A state of mind, an independent voice". That's how Opus Magazine introduced itself on every... however often it appeared. Now, the Opus Editorial Team™ of Chris Power and JJ have decided to revamp their website, add an online shop where you can buy the PDF downloads of the first couple of volumes (with, we are promised, more to follow in due course) and even start a forum for like-minded magicians to discuss whatever they want to discuss.

The magazine was an attempt to create the sort that Chris and JJ, along with original editor Ian Keeble and advisor David Britland, would want to read themselves. Interviews, reports, reviews, gossip and even a trick or 2 per issue. As it turned out, a lot of people wanted to read this sort of magazine too. The reports and reviews were never anything short of honest and if they didn't like something, they would tell you - and tell you why! Opus were not afraid to voice their opinion and ruffle more than a few feathers of the magical establishment, if they felt those feathers needed ruffled.

Even though Chris and JJ haven't been away anywhere - they've been busy with something called "life" - it's great to see them, and Opus, back with an online presence. You should go visit them at www.opusmagazine.co.uk. I think you'll enjoy your time with them.

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

14 July 2011

Surprise, Surprise!

Hi folks

This time, instead of me typing the words, here's a wee message from the MacMillan Family themselves about this year's International Magic Convention.

“For the last few years the ultimate event of the Sunday daytime of The International Magic Convention (18th to 20th November) has been the presentation of the David Berglas International Magic Award. Always a closely guarded secret the recipients over the last few years include Uri Geller, David Copperfield and Juan Tamariz, all of whom have been happy to answer questions from the assembled audience at The Mermaid Theatre in London following the presentation. The surprise element of who the recipient is going to be has always created an incredible buzz in the theatre leading up to the proceedings and some of our most cherished memories of the Convention. Once again David Berglas has another amazing event planned for this year, and once again we’d like you to join him and us not only for that but also many other fantastic lectures and shows to celebrate our 40th Anniversary”.

Signed - The MacMillan Family

From a personal standpoint, I think Sunday at 5pm at the International Magic Convention is not only a highlight of the convention, but a highlight of the year as a whole. From Uri Geller being willing to face any question (whether he answered them is another matter!) to David Copperfield spending an hour with us via Skype from his base in Las Vegas to David Berglas and Juan Tamariz conspiring to fool every person in the theatre by making us think that the Skype link had failed and then the Maestro walking on stage moments later, I cannot wait for Mr Berglas to make this year's presentation.

Speak soon

The Cardman :-)

04 July 2011

A scoop at the International Magic Convention

Hi folks

International Magic are proud to announce that Harry Anderson will be making his first ever European Magic Convention appearance at this year's International Magic Convention. With multiple appearances on USA’s Saturday Night Live and The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, as well as being a regular guest artist in Cheers, a star of his 2 very own highly successful sitcoms spanning 12 years and as one of the USA’s most revered comedy magicians, it seems inconceivable that he has never before appeared at a European Magic Convention, but that will all change later this year when Harry Anderson not only performs his one man show, but then reveals and dissects everything in it in a follow up lecture at The International Magic Convention in London (November 18-20). If you need any more convincing that this will be a truly unmissable event, check out any review of Mike Caveney’s number one best seller “Wise Guy”.

Harry will open the Convention on the Friday Night and is just one of very many special events planned, not only during the Convention but also in London’s Festival of Magic in the week leading up to it. If you’re a magic fan there will be no better time to visit London – watch magicweek over the next month to read of just some of the spectacular seminar and one-off events that we’ve planned to celebrate this, the 40th year of London’s only annual Convention.

I'll be posting more details in the coming weeks leading up to the convention, so stay tuned!

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

24 June 2011

Williamson Alert!

Hi folks

Well, more information has been handed to me from the gang at International Magic about this year's convention. They are very happy to announce that David Williamson, magic’s greatest comedic force of nature, will be one of the many artists appearing at their 40th Anniversary Convention, taking place in London from November 18th to 20th.

David will be performing in both the Close Up and Stage Gala Shows, and also no doubt popping up in the most of unexpected of places. It marks one of a repeat number of appearances at the Convention (known affectionately as “Ron’s” after Ron MacMillan who started the Convention back in 1970) since 1984 when David made his debut UK convention appearance at this very gathering. Once again this year we plan to introduce similar artistes who, although may be unknown to you now, are in our minds destined to become the next big names in magic.

Registration details can be found in the Convention pages of the International Magic website.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

20 June 2011

"Max Maven Thinking In Person" in London

Hi folks

First of all, my apologies for not posting over the weekend. Family stuff and whatnot. Also, the gang at International Magic have asked me to hold off on mentioning the name that I hinted at in my last blog post. I am respecting that request and hope that you do too. Thanks.

Max Maven will be lecturing all new material to the UK, at the International Magic Convention being held later this year (18-20 November) at The Mermaid Theatre. This will herald Max’s first appearance in London for 10 years, and we are thrilled to announce that in addition to his lecture at the Convention, he will also be presenting his full evening one man show “Max Maven Thinking in Person: An Evening of Knowing and Not Knowing” at the Bridewell Theatre on the Saturday evening. This show, that the New York Times observed as “a category defying mind-reading show that veers into conceptual art”, has never been performed before in the UK, and proves why Entertainment Tonight crowned him at “the master mind reader” in this show which has been described as “a rare and precious piece of magical theatre”. Max’s show will be one of the extra events being organized throughout the week, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of London’s only annual magic Convention.

Tickets for this two hour show are available individually at £25, but may also be taken instead of a Convention Gala Show ticket if you are booking a registration for the convention.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

13 June 2011

2011 International Magic Convention

Hi folks

Five months from now sees one of my favourite times of the year - the International Magic Convention in London (aka Ron's Day or, simply, Ron's). It was established by Ron MacMillan, who started the International Magic shop in London (hence the convention nicknames). Not only is 2011 the 50th anniversary of the shop itself (you can read a great article about the shop on the Spitalfields Life website), it is also their 40th annual Convention and so they are pulling out all the stops, putting them back in and pulling them all back out again to make this year's really special.

The celebrations start on Monday 14th November with the very first London Festival of Magic and while full information has still to be announced, 4 days of workshops and evening performances are promised featuring a Bizarre Night, a Mentalism Night, a Burlesque Night and a Comedy Night.

Friday 18th November to Sunday 20th November sees the 40th International Magic Convention itself taking place at The Mermaid Theatre located on the banks of the River Thames. Please remember that this year's convention is a week earlier than it usually is! The star line up, organised by Noel Britten, looks fantastic and includes...
  • Eugene Burger
  • Max Maven
  • David Williamson
  • Jerome Helfenstein
  • An Ha Lim
  • Larry Hass
  • Simmons & Simmons
  • and more to be announced!
Another big name is being announced on Saturday and I will post who that is this weekend. Don't ask me to tell you before hand because I can't. No, seriously I can't tell you! Please, stop asking! You'll find out this weekend, OK?! OK.

And don't forget the 28th International Close Up Magic Competition, now regarded as one of the most prestigious competitions in magic with a list of winners that reads like a who's who in close up. If you wish to add your name to the list, get in touch with the gang at International as soon as you can and they will give you details on how to enter.

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)

12 June 2011

Magic at the 2011 Edinburgh Fringe

Hi folks

Blimey! Have I not posted since January??? Erm, sorry (hangs head in shame). Things have been a bit busy and I'll post a wee blog about the America trip in the coming few days. I've also got some information about my favourite UK magic Convention which I am not yet allowed to divulge but will do as soon as I am allowed to.

No, don't ask. I'm not allowed! Pain of death and all that.

Anyway, onto this particular blog. As regular readers (greetings) will no doubt remember, I am a great fan of the Edinburgh Fringe. I try to get through at least once in August to see as much as I can. As a magician, I like to find out who is all performing and this year is a bumper one! There are, at current count, 41 magic and magic-related shows on as part of this year's Fringe. Here's this year's list.


Bespoke Magic – On the Fringe of Reality
Bruce Glen – The Gentleman Magician
Bruce Glen, the Gentleman Magician, presents a unique combination of storytelling and extraordinary magic – amid the mysterious surrounds of the atmospheric Roman Eagle Lodge.
C aquila • Roman Eagle Lodge , EH1 2PW
Box Office 0845 260 1234
Aug 4-5,15,22-23: 18:10 (1h) £7.50 (£6.50)
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,26-29: 18:10 (1h) £9.50 (£8.50)
Aug 10-11,17-18,24-25: 18:10 (1h) £8.50 (£7.50)

Chris Cross is Escaping from Reality
Chris Cross Entertainments/PBH's Free Fringe
Chris Cross is a contortionist and escapologist who travels worldwide with his one-man, critically acclaimed show. He is cheeky, funny, energetic and positively different to anything else you will see at the Fringe. www.chris-cross.co.uk
The Voodoo Rooms • West Register Street, EH2 2AA
Box Office 0131 226 0000
Aug 6-27: 21:35 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)

Peter Antoniou
Award-winning comedy mind reader Peter Antoniou guides you through his world of psychic weirdness. A blend of documentary and jaw-dropping mind reading demonstrations wrapped up with trademark humour, this will leave you asking, is your mind safe? ‘Brilliant’ (BBC).
Sweet Grassmarket • Apex City Hotel, 61 Grassmarket, EH1 2JF
Box Office 0131 243 3596
Aug 4-5: 14:05 (55m) £5.00
Aug 6-15,17-21: 14:05 (55m) £7.00 (£5.50)
Aug 22-28: 13:30 (55m) £7.00 (£5.00)

Doug Segal: I Know What You're Thinking – Free
Doug Segal/Laughing Horse Free Festival
BBC mind reader teaches audiences to detect lies, read minds and implant suggestions, with laughs and rakish charm. Hard science abused for tawdry entertainment. ‘Imagine a funny Derren Brown’ (Evening Standard). www.iknowwhatyouarethinking.co.uk
Laughing Horse @ The Three Sisters • 139 Cowgate, EH1 1JS
Box Office 0131 622 6801
Aug 4-13: 20:45 (1h) (Free Ticketed)

Fate and Two Sugars
Jack Barton
Having spent years acquiring a bizarre collection of skills, Jack is live in Edinburgh to demonstrate them. Be dazzled, confused or amused as he fashions psychological mysteries that must either be scientific breakthroughs or elaborate trickery.
Hill Street Theatre • 19 Hill Street, EH2 3JP
Box Office 0131 226 6522
Aug 22-23,25-29: 22:45 (1h15m) £10.00 (£8.00)

The Grumpy Magicians
Paul Temple and John Hearn/PBH’s Free Fringe
Ryan's Bar2-4 Hope Street, EH2 4DB
Aug 6-28: 19:40 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)

James Galea – I Hate Rabbits
James Galea Entertainment
Critically acclaimed high energy magic concert from Australia's No. 1 magician. Galea’s unique, cutting-edge style seamlessly fuses his wicked humour with award-winning magic. 'James Galea has reinvented the art of trickery' (Daily Telegraph).
The Playhouse at Hawke and Hunter Green Room • 12 Picardy Place, EH1 3JT
Box Office 0844 871 3014
Aug 5-7,11-14,18-21,25-28: 19:30 (1h) £12.50 (£11.50)
Aug 8-10,15-17,22-24,29: 19:30 (1h) £11.50 (£10.50)

Oliver Meech: Live Brain Surgery – Free
Oliver Meech/Laughing Horse Free Festival
Journey inside some extraordinary minds with magic boffin Oliver Meech. Experience gruesome surgery, bizarre neurological phenomena and freaky tricks in this mind-expanding, mind-blowing magic show. 2010 show: 'fascinated' (Fest), **** (LoveFringe). www.magicmeech.com
Laughing Horse @ The Three Sisters • 139 Cowgate, EH1 1JS
Box Office 0131 622 6801
Aug 4: 18:30 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)
Aug 5-15,17-28: 18:30 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)

Freddie Rutz
The multi-talented Swiss entertainer Freddie Rutz fascinates any audience with his charm and makes people laugh and think! The former professional dancer and magician in his solo variety show that toured in Asia and all over Europe! www.freddierutz.com
Spotlites @ The Merchants' Hall • 22 Hanover Street, EH2 2EP
Box Office 0131 220 5911
Aug 5-13: 21:05 (50m) £9.00 (£8.00)

Wet Paint: A Magic Show – Free
Ben Hart and Neil Kelso/PBH’s Free Fringe
Ben Hart and Neil Kelso, the award-winning brains behind illusions and special effects seen on stage, television and movies, unveil new and astounding magical illusions from the darkest corners of their unusual imaginations.
The Voodoo Rooms • West Register Street, EH2 2AA
Box Office 0131 226 0000
Aug 5-29: 12:30 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)

The Amazing Bubble Show
The Amazing Bubble Man (USA)
Breathtaking bubbles, people inside bubbles, square bubbles, amazing bubble colours, sculptural bubbles, special effect bubbles. A show for kids of all ages to thrill, laugh, love and learn about the world of Bubble-ology. Book early.
C too • St Columba's by the Castle, EH1 2PW
Box Office 0845 260 1234
Aug 4-5,16,22-23: 12:05 (45m) £7.50 (£6.50) (£5.50 C)
Aug 6-9,13-14,20-21,27-29: 12:05 (45m) £9.50 (£8.50) (£7.50 C)
Aug 10-12,17-19,24-26: 12:05 (45m) £8.50 (£7.50) (£6.50 C)
Aug 4-5,16,22-23: 13:05 (45m) £7.50 (£6.50) (£5.50 C)
Aug 6-9,13-14,20-21,27-29: 13:05 (45m) £9.50 (£8.50) (£7.50 C)
Aug 10-12,17-19,24-26: 13:05 (45m) £8.50 (£7.50) (£6.50 C)

The I Hate Children Children's Show!
Bad Magician
Sick of kids shows making you want to vom in your sippy cup but need to keep little monsters entertained? This is for you. Stunning magic, irreverent humour, fun for all. 'Wonderfulness' ***** (ThreeWeeks).
Zoo Southside • 117 Nicolson Street, EH8 9ER
Box Office 0131 662 6892
Aug 6-29: 12:30 (45m) £7.50

Kreestan Sennakie's Magical Story Emporium
Quids In Theatre Company
Welcome to our Story Emporium! Kreestan brings wonderful tales to life through a mixture of magical storytelling, illusion and audience participation. Family fun is always guaranteed when the doors open to the Magical Emporium!
theSpaces on North Bridge • Carlton Hotel, North Bridge, EH1 2HE
Box Office 0845 557 6308
Aug 5-6: 11:10 (45m) £4.00 (£2.50)
Aug 8-13: 11:10 (45m) £5.00 (£3.00)

Billy Kirkwood, Sian Bevan, Steven Dick/Stand Comedy Club
Comedians Billy Kirkwood, Sian Bevan and Steven Dick take you on a hilarious bouncy castle of laughter in this awesome new interactive kids comedy show, featuring stand-up, games, magic and much more – come and play in the Toybox!
The Stand Comedy Club • 5 York Place, EH1 3EB
Box Office 0131 558 7272
Aug 5-16,19-21,26-28: 12:45 (1h) £6.00

Ali Cook – Principles and Deceptions
Bound and Gagged Comedy by arrangement with International Artistes
Star of ITV's Penn & Teller: Fool Us, Dirty Tricks (Channel 4) and Monkey Magic (Five), Ali Cook returns with more awe-inspiring magic. 'Stunning tricks. Truly awesome' (Chortle.co.uk), 'Immensely funny' (Telegraph). www.alicook.com
Gilded Balloon Teviot • Teviot Row House, EH8 9AJ
Box Office 0131 622 6552
Aug 3-5: 21:30 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-7,12-14,19-21,26-28: 21:30 (1h) £13.00 (£12.00)
Aug 8-9,11,15-16,18,22-25,29: 21:30 (1h) £12.00 (£11.00)

Barry and Stuart – Show and Tell: The Show
Corrie McGuire for Objective Talent
Join ‘genuinely remarkable’ (Sunday Telegraph) Scottish Bafta nominated magicians Barry and Stuart (stars of The Magicians, BBC1) for a mindblowing hour of ‘pure magic’ (List). ‘Watch and marvel’ (Scotland on Sunday).
Udderbelly's Pasture • Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0844 545 8252
Aug 3-5: 22:15 (1h) £7.00
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,26-28: 22:15 (1h) £14.00 (£13.00)
Aug 10-11,15-18,22-25: 22:15 (1h) £12.00 (£11.00)

Barry and Stuart – Show and Tell: The Tell
Corrie McGuire for Objective Talent
How’s it done? Here’s your chance to find out! In the Fringe’s most intimate venue, Barry and Stuart will reveal the secrets behind the magic from The Show. Limited tickets available.
Udderbelly's Pasture • Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0844 545 8252
Aug 3-5: 00:00 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,26-28: 00:00 (1h) £12.00 (£11.00)
Aug 10-11,15-18,22-25: 00:00 (1h) £10.00 (£9.00)

The Boy With Tape On His Face
Lee Martin for Gag Reflex Management
The Boy returns with his award-winning show. It’s still good. ‘Utterly spectacular!’ ***** (Time Out), ‘A truly magical experience’ ***** (Chortle.co.uk). As seen on ITV1’s Comedy Rocks with Jason Manford. 100% sell-out 2010.
Pleasance Courtyard • 60 Pleasance, EH8 9TJ
Box Office 0131 556 6550
Aug 15-18,22-25: 21:10 (1h) £10.50 (£9.50)
Aug 19-21,26-28: 21:10 (1h) £12.50 (£11.50)

Chris Cox: Fatal Distraction
Phil McIntyre Entertainments
Fifth show from multi award winning mind reader who can’t read minds. He’s been on TV, toured the world and is somehow still getting away with it. 'One of the most exciting entertainers in Britain' (Guardian). www.magiccox.com
Pleasance Dome • Potterow, 1 Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0131 556 6550
Aug 3-5: 19:10 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-7,12-14,19-21,26-28: 19:10 (1h) £14.00 (£12.50)
Aug 8-11,15,17-18,22-25,29: 19:10 (1h) £12.00 (£10.50)

Devious Minds
Maudsley and Shoesmith
Deviously funny and fiendishly clever mindtricks from professional members of the Magic Circle! Shoesmith amuses with wit and sleightof- hand, Maudsley tells you it’s a con from the start but by the end you’ll believe he reads minds! www.deviousminds.co.uk
Spotlites @ The Merchants' Hall • 22 Hanover Street, EH2 2EP
Box Office 0131 220 5911
Aug 14-22: 19:10 (1h10m) £9.00 (£8.00)

Disco in a Dungeon
Just the Tonic
Edinburgh's biggest club night! Voted one of the top 100 venues in the world! Lying in the cavernous depths of the hollow arches under South Bridge. Big name DJ's, fire-eaters, magicians, 70s to 90s and now!
Just The Tonic at the Caves • Enter from The Rowantree Bar (under South Bridge), 253 Cowgate, EH1 1LG
Box Office 0131 556 5375
Aug 5-6: 00:00 (3h) £5.00
Aug 7,11-14,18-21,25-28: 00:00 (4h30m) £8.00

Hypnotist, Titan Knight
Titan Knight.com
Witness phenomenal feats of pure mind magic as Canada’s premier hypnotist invites you on an insane unpredictable journey through the subconscious. Astonished audience members are left asking what’s real and what’s not? See it for yourself! www.titanknight.com
City Edinburgh • 1a Market Street, EH1 1DE
Box Office 0131 226 0000
Aug 7: 23:00 (1h30m) £6.00
Aug 8-9,14-18,21: 23:00 (1h30m) £13.00
Aug 22-25,28: 23:30 (1h30m) £13.00

Ian D Montfort – Spirit Comedium
Cheerful Earful Productions
Tom Binns returns with an incredible new show for Ian D Montfort, a spookily skilful, wonderfully observed and hysterically funny spirit medium who contacts the dead with faintly inexplicable clairvoyant revelations, leaving the audience gasping.
Pleasance Courtyard • 60 Pleasance, EH8 9TJ
Box Office 0131 556 6550
Aug 3-5: 18:15 (1h) £10.00 (£8.00)
Aug 6-7,12-14,19-21,26-28: 18:15 (1h) £14.00 (£12.00)
Aug 8-11,15-18,22-25: 18:15 (1h) £12.00 (£10.00)

Kevin Cruise
Teatime cruise ship capers with legendary high seas host. Comedy, magic, game shows, sing-a-long classics and bingo. Pack your bags and party on down. ‘Sheer entertainment – I love Kevin Cruise’ (Amanda Holden), ‘Absolutely no comment’ (Simon Cowell).
Assembly George Square • George Square, EH8 9LH
Box Office 0131 623 3030
Aug 3-5: 15:50 (50m) £5.00
Aug 6-7,12-14,19-21,26-28: 15:50 (50m) £12.00 (£10.00)
Aug 8-11,16-18,22-25,29: 15:50 (50m) £10.00 (£8.00)

Mind Reading for Breakfast
'Psychic' Psychologist – Rob Bailey
Reiki, homeopathy and ESP: mumbo-jumbo or truth? Decide over free coffee and croissants as Fringe veteran Psychic Psychologist recreates parascientific illusions during this funny, informative show. 'Ditches paranormal waffle without compromising mystique' **** (Big Issue). www.psychicpsychologist.co.uk
Sweet Grassmarket • Apex City Hotel, 61 Grassmarket, EH1 2JF
Box Office 0131 243 3596
Aug 4-5: 11:30 (1h) £5.00
Aug 6-29: 11:30 (1h) £9.00 (£8.00)

Hiatus Theatre in association with The Scat Pack
A mail order magic kit. A magician and his glamourous assistants with only an instructional cassette to follow. Hilarious farce meets breathtaking magic. 'Astonishing performance' **** (Chortle.co.uk). 'Hysterical. The audience is literally speechless with laughter' (Hairline.org.uk). www.hiatustheatre.co.uk
C soco • Chambers Street and Cowgate, EH1 1HR
Box Office 0845 260 1234
Aug 3-5,15,22-23: 17:10 (55m) £7.50 (£6.50) (£4.50 C)
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,26-29: 17:10 (55m) £9.50 (£8.50) (£6.50 C)
Aug 10-11,17-18,24-25: 17:10 (55m) £8.50 (£7.50) (£5.50 C)

Morgan & West: Crime Solving Magicians
Morgan & West
Time-travelling magicians Morgan & West return with an all new show and their toughest challenge – solving their own murder. Featuring magic, mystery and mild peril aplenty. Sell-out show 2009, 2010. **** (Scotsman).
Gilded Balloon Teviot • Teviot Row House, EH8 9AJ
Box Office 0131 622 6552
Aug 3-5: 15:30 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-11,15-16,18, 22-25,29: 15:30 (1h) £9.50 (£8.50)
Aug 12-14,19-21,26-28: 15:30 (1h) £10.50 (£9.50)

Nathan Penlington: Uri and Me
Show + Tell
Fusing psychic magic and an obsessive deconstruction of the spoon-bending icon/oddball that we all know and love. Featuring telepathy, clairvoyance, oil dowsing and a death-defying motorbike stunt. ‘An absolute sensation’ (Guardian). **** (ThreeWeeks). www.showandtelluk.com
Udderbelly's Pasture • Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0844 545 8252
Aug 3-5: 16:10 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-7,10-11,16-18,22-25,29: 16:10 (1h) £9.50 (£8.50)
Aug 8-9,12-14,19-21,26-28: 16:10 (1h) £10.50 (£9.50)

Obsession – A Life With Magic
Ian Kendall
What happens when you show an Asperger's kid something cool? Fringe veteran Ian Kendall explains his lifelong obsession with sleight of hand. ‘Impressive magician's skill’ **** (Scotsman). ‘Slick, stylish sleight of hand’ ****(BroadwayBaby.com). www.iankendall.com
Zoo • 140 The Pleasance, EH8 9RR
Box Office 0131 662 6892
Aug 13,20: 22:30 (1h) £10.00

Paul Daniels: Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
Norwell Lapley Productions Ltd
The most successful magician of the 20th century and international sex symbol comes to town with the lovely Debbie McGee with a show full of comedy, magic and amazement. He promises not to dance.
Assembly George Square • George Square, EH8 9LH
Box Office 0131 623 3030
Aug 3-5: 17:00 (1h) £8.00
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,25-28: 17:00 (1h) £15.00 (£14.00)
Aug 10-11,15-18,22-24: 17:00 (1h) £14.00 (£13.00)

Pete Firman: Jiggery Pokery
Phil McIntyre Entertainments by arrangement with Objective Talent Management
After sell out shows in 2007/08/09/10, the UK’s top comedic conjuror returns with 'The best magic tricks in the Universe' (Independent). 'Funnier than most comedians and more magical than Dumbledore on a good day' (Time Out).
Pleasance Dome • Potterow, 1 Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0131 556 6550
Aug 3-5: 20:30 (1h) £6.00
Aug 6-7,12-14,19-21,26-28: 20:30 (1h) £14.00 (£12.50)
Aug 8-11,15-18,22-25: 20:30 (1h) £12.00 (£10.50)

Piff the Magic Dragon: Last of the Magic Dragons
John van der Put/Cat's Cradle Comedy
They're back! To save the species! 'Top Three Picks of the Fringe' (The One Show). 'Unbelievable' (BBC1). 'Cute, inspired and very funny' (Time Out). 'Gloriously grumpy!' (Chortle.co.uk). 'Genuinely side-splittingly funny' (ArtsHub.co.uk).
Just the Tonic at The Store (formerly GRV) • 37 Guthrie Street, EH1 1JG
Box Office 0131 556 5375
Aug 4-5: 18:40 (1h) £5.00
Aug 6,11-13,18-20,25-27: 18:40 (1h) £10.00 (£9.00)
Aug 7-10,14-15,17,21-24,28: 18:40 (1h) £9.00 (£8.00)

Rockstar of the Mind
Hank Stone Productions/Laughing Horse Free Festival
Four world tours at 27, must be doing something right. Featuring a tribute to Kenny Craig, Derren Brown and that other guy. And remember, don't look into his eyes, his eyes or around his eyes!
Laughing Horse @ The Beehive Inn • 18 Grassmarket, EH1 2JU
Box Office 0131 225 7171
Aug 14-15: 23:55 (55m) (Free Non-ticketed)

Roughhausers Comedy Sideshow
Witness cheeky burlesque, bizarre magic, hilarious comedy and improvisation in this surreal, old-timey variety act inspired by historical sideshows. www.roughhausers.com
Leith on the Fringe @ Out of the Blue Drill Hall • 30-36 Dalmeny Street, EH6 8RG
Box Office 0131 226 0000
Aug 26-27: 20:00 (1h) £10.00 (£9.00)

The Ultimate Quiz Show featuring Silly Milly
Shetland Fiddlers
Ever wondered what'd happen if Bargain Hunt got jiggy with Just a Minute? Wonder no more. Join the Shetland Fiddlers with their game show love child! Also, special adults kids party every Friday!
Laughing Horse @ The Beehive Inn • 18 Grassmarket, EH1 2JU
Box Office 0131 225 7171
Aug 4-14,17-28: 21:40 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)

Young & Strange
Richard Young and Sam Strange
As seen on ITV's Penn & Teller; Fool Us, Young & Strange make their Edinburgh debut with an hour of magic, comedy and illusion.
Sin Club and Lounge, 207 Cowgate, Edinburgh, EH1 1JQ
Aug 6-20: 15:00 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)
The Southsider, 3 - 7 West Richmond Street, EH8 9EF
Aug 21-26: 20:15 (1h) (Free Non-ticketed)


Babbling Comedy 2
Perfordian Factory (Korea)
Amazing babbling babies from Korea return with a brand new show. Physical theatre, comedy, mime, magic, juggling and beat-box. Truly unique. Fun for the whole family. ***** (BroadwayBaby.com). **** (FringeReview.co.uk). www.perfordian.com
C • Chambers Street, EH1 1HR
Box Office 0845 260 1234
Aug 3-5,15,22-23: 15:15 (55m) £9.50 (£7.50) (£5.50 C)
Aug 6-9,13-14,20-21,27-28: 15:15 (55m) £11.50 (£9.50) (£7.50 C)
Aug 10-12,17-19,24-26: 15:15 (55m) £10.50 (£8.50) (£6.50 C)

Coal Head, Toadstool Mouth and Other Stories
SUDS Theatre Company
Enter a realm of magic, mime and marionettes with this enchanting collection of wry tales. SUDS return with more 'powerful storytelling' and 'engaging eccentricity' (List, 2009) to celebrate the unique jumble of life.
theSpace @ Symposium Hall • RCOS, Hill Square, EH8 9DR
Box Office 0845 508 8515
Aug 8-10: 20:30 (1h30m) £2.00
Aug 11-13,15-20,22-27: 20:30 (1h30m) £7.00 (£5.00)

Devil in the Deck
Unusual Productions
Jack Swindle is a gambler cursed by fate. Cheating at cards and cheating death, Jack searches for a cure to the curse in this innovative amalgam of theatre, magic and music. 'Beautifully executed magic...' (SF Chronicle).
Zoo Roxy • 2 Roxburgh Place, EH8 9SU
Box Office 0131 662 6892
Aug 5-29: 21:05 (1h10m) £10.00

Jus' Like That!
Assembly by Agreement With Mark Goucher Ltd
Bringing Tommy Cooper back to life with all the familiar trademarks: the fez, the laugh and the magic. Clive Mantle (Casualty, Vicar of Dibley), stars as the legendary comedian. ‘Laughed to the bottom of my soul’ (Mirror).
Assembly Hall • Mound Place, EH1 2LU
Box Office 0131 623 3030
Aug 4-5: 17:30 (1h25m) £10.00
Aug 6-9,12-14,19-21,25-28: 17:30 (1h25m) £15.00 (£14.00)
Aug 10-11,15-18,22-24,29: 17:30 (1h25m) £14.00 (£13.00)

Magicians Do Exist
White Room Theatre
Comedy lies in the comedian's ability to reveal the comic dimensions of others. Chris Cresswell's latest show explores the comedy of Jacques Tati and the art of the clown in an interactive theatrical experience.
Pleasance Dome • Potterow, 1 Bristo Square, EH8 9AL
Box Office 0131 556 6550
Aug 3-5: 12:10 (50m) £5.00
Aug 6-15,17-22,24-28: 12:10 (50m) £9.00 (£7.00)

Manipulators is a 50 minute show showcasing world-class magic by two Australian performers. Both performers weave compelling short stories amongst skilful illusions.
theSpaces @ Surgeons Hall • Nicolson Street, EH8 9DW
Box Office 0845 508 8515
Aug 5-6: 20:35 (50m) £5.00
Aug 10-14,17-21,24-27: 20:35 (50m) £12.00 (£10.00)

Phew! Well, there you go. If you've made it through that list, congratulations! I hope you all found a few things to go and see. To book tickets, head on over to www.edfringe.com to do so.

See you in Edinburgh in August!

Speak soon.

The Cardman :-)