Magician in Reading

It felt like Groundhog Day driving down the same round for the fourth time this week yesterday. This time was more fun though as I spent the day in Reading with another professional magician discussing card magic.

In order to withstand the minor loneliness of spending all day answering phone calls and emails, followed by dozens of hours a week in the car, I try to meet up with likeminded magicians as much as possible. This magician in particular performs a similar style of close-up magic to me so it’s always great to meet up and discuss our latest ideas, experiments and new tricks. To me, that’s far more interesting than learning magic from a book or DVD.

Reading is a great place and I enjoyed spending the day there. Due to some shows near London later this week, I’ll be making that trip down the M4 a few more times!

DVD shoot for magicians

I spent the last two days in a studio in Newbury filming my first DVD for close-up magicians. If you’re not a magician, that may sound like a very strange thing so let me explain! If you are a magician, you can jump to the photographs below!

A very small number of close-up magicians (like me) create their own magic and therefore many magicians from all over the world learn that magic from DVDs. I have previously published about ten books on close-up magic but this is the first time I’ve ever stepped into the studio to record my magic on video.

The DVD focuses on a very specific sleight of hand technique. If you’ve ever seen me perform card magic, I would have definitely been secretly using this technique. It has taken me twelve years to develop it but now that I’m completely happy with it, I’m happy to teach it to other magicians.

Here are a few photographs that we snapped during the shoot:

Sleight of hand magician

Newbury magician

Card magic

DVD for magicians

Hire a sleight of hand magician

Andi Gladwin

Cyprus Update

My trip to Cyprus has come to an end; I arrived safely back in the UK late last night, thanks to the British Airways employees that decided not to strike!

The trip was a lot of fun and I got to perform and talk about magic non stop! I performed for the Cyprus equivalent of The Magic Circle, which was a great experience. For such a small island, Cyprus has some fantastic close-up magicians.

There’s no time to rest though. In a few hours, I’m filming some tricks for a new magic website and am preparing for an extremely busy month of close-up magic performances.

Cyprus Bound

This post serves two purposes:

1. To let you know what I’m up to.
2. To kill some time while waiting for my flight.

After a few hours sleep caused by a late night working, followed by a 3am start to drive to Heathrow airport, I’m now just about to board a flight to Larnaca.

I’m spending the week in Cyprus with a close friend and top US close-up magician Joshua Jay. Josh is just gearing up for a month or so of television appearances to coincide with his new book launch so we’re taking a week to relax, tour Cyprus (with a few performance engagements added in) and to discuss and create some new magic tricks.

It’s set to be a fun adventure (especially since I’m flying back with British Airways during the strike) and I’m looking forward to getting there! If you need a magician whilst I am away, feel free to get in touch and I’ll recommend some great magicians for you!

Manchester Magician

I took last night off to see Peter Kay’s Tour That Doesn’t Tour Tour in Manchester. My fiancée and I stayed in the Deansgate Hilton which is a hotel that I’ve performed at a few times (the last time was for a large Mothercare event, which was particularly fun). It was a novel treat being able to just relax in the hotel instead of have to work! Our suite was on one of the top floors of this massive hotel which was a little scary, but a great experience nonetheless as it looked over Manchester from a great height!

Peter Kay was incredibly funny, as always, and finished with the best ending over any comedy show I’ve seen (with Rob Brydon coming in at a much more toned down, but close second). After the show we ended up being part of Rick Astley’s next music video (don’t ask!) and then went on to visit the Illusion’s Magic Bar; a cocktail bar owned by a friend and fellow magician.

The magic bar is a great opportunity to see live magicians perform in Manchester. We arrived about an hour before closing time but got to enjoy a cocktail and a performance by a close-up magician. The cocktails were all named after famous magicians so my fiancée had a Derren Brown and I had a Juan Tamariz, who is my favourite close-up magician!

All-in-all we had a fantastic couple of days. I’m back home now and am gearing up for a busy weekend of work!

Busy Teaching Magic

This week I’ve been busy preparing for three interesting projects that all involve teaching magic:

1. A tour of Cyprus
British Airways strike permitting, I’ll be flying over to Cyprus for a week to tour with a friend. He will be presenting his magic to a couple of magic clubs and I’ll be on hand to help out and teach a trick or two of mine. These kind of events are like a busman’s holiday, but are always a lot of fun. My friend is from New York so we rarely get to spend a week together unless we’re touring together.

2. A magic DVD
The week after I return from Cyprus I’ll be in the studio for a few days filming my first ever DVD for magicians. It’ll be available for magicians (and only magicians as they contain a lot of my sleight of hand techniques!) to buy all over the world later in the year. I’m a little old school so normally only teach my magic in books aimed specifically at close-up magicians so am excited to see how it translates to DVD.

3. Magic downloads
I’m filming three downloads. Two for professional magicians and one for non-magicians (I hate to leave you out). These are a great way for magicians to learn my magic without waiting for the postman to arrive.

I’ll keep you posted on all three projects on this blog!

My birthday!

Question: how does a close-up magician spend his birthday?
Answer: with other magicians!

I celebrated my 27th birthday on Monday and by way of celebration, I decided to arrange a day out for my magician friends. We started in Weston-Super-Mare with a nice breakfast, followed by a game of crazy golf (I came third!). We then moved onto Bath to visit another friend there (all ten of us gatecrashed his house for tea and cake!), before going on to a nice Greek tapas restaurant in Bath.

We finished up the day by going on my friend Noel Britton’s Bizarre Bath Walk. If you’re ever visiting Bath, this is the most fun that you can ever have whilst walking around the streets. It’s one of my favourite magic/comedy shows and I was glad of the opportunity to introduce my friends to it.

I had my trusty iPhone out to snap a few photos of the day so here goes:

Magicians playing crazy golf!

Food time

Magician Noel Britton

Magician in Bath

A Morning of Deception

Tonight is An Evening of Deception; my first show at the Everyman Theatre in Cheltenham. Three magicians will be performing for a sold-out house.

We are set to arrive at the theatre at about 2pm, where we’ll get everything set up, arrange lighting and sound cues and then go through a technical rehearsal. As a close-up magician, I’m used to just rocking up with a pocket full of miracles and immediately starting my performance, so this is all a little alien to me. The cast of Nick Jr’s Peppa Pig show will also be milling around, so I hope to share a dressing room with Ms Peppa and her clan (I’ll be honest; I had to Google who that was, but it sounds cool nonetheless).

Anyway, I’m looking forward to the show and will report back tomorrow to let you know how it went, along with some photos and maybe even a little video.

The 9 Faces of Britain’s Got Talent

My favourite TV show, Britain’s Got Talent is back. Over the years, I’ve noticed that whether you’re watching America’s Got Talent, Sweden’s Got Talent or Uzbekistan’s Got Talent, the same personality types seem to apply on each show:

1. The Nutcase
Words can’t describe this type of act. Perhaps they’re doing animal impressions whilst standing on their head or making a musical instrument out of a teapot, but whatever they do they’re nuts … and they’ll never get through.

2. The Child Star
They can only ever sing or dance (luckily nobody has taught them to recite poetry yet) but they’re normally very good. The downside though is that they’re always ridiculously smug and they always cry at the end.

3. The Pet Act
All pet acts go wrong. The ones that don’t go wrong at the audition will eventually suffer in one of the latter shows.

4. The High School Musical Star
Muscly guy does something that he’s slightly embarrassed about (such as dancing). Normally starts with a sob story and always ends with three yeses and a comment that he’ll never get bullied again.

5. The singer
Why don’t they just enter X Factor or America’s Got Talent?!

6. The SuBo
This one’s the rarity. Every now and then you see someone who is going to be so successful that they’ll end up in therapy within a couple of weeks after the audition, sat next to SuBo talking about what it was like to come second.

7. The Family Members
There has never been a good family group and there never will be. They always make me cringe and there’s always a dad, granddad or kid that lets the team down.

8. The Irony-monger
This act is so bad it’s good. Unfortunately, they can’t ever seen the irony and therefore think that they’re a million times better than they actually are; especially when they get a standing ovation.

And most importantly …

9. The magician
These kind of talent shows are tough for magicians for many reasons. The good magicians are the ones that understand why the format doesn’t suit magic and therefore won’t enter. This unfortunately means that most magicians on such shows are terrible. Please don’t judge us all based on them, however.

I can’t wait to watch the rest of the series! I wonder whether we’ll see any close-up magicians on there?

Britain's Got Talent

Magic Circle Trip

If you are a regular reader of this blog (hello to both of you), you’ll know that I was recently featured on the cover of The Magic Circle’s journal and that I try to visit the headquarters in London as often as I can.

After attending a magicians’ conference in Southampton on Sunday (where I performed some magic from the books that I wrote for magicians), I decided to make the trip to The Magic Circle in London. A friend of mine (a professional close-up magician from Florida) who has been staying with me was performing at The Magic Circle’s headquarters so I traveled down with him for the day yesterday.

The day started by meeting a friend at a magic television production company (creators of Derren Brown’s show and many other great television shows) and getting a preview of some upcoming magic television shows. It’s always fun to be let inside the magical world of television!

We then traveled over to The Magic Circle to meet up with some close-up magicians where I performed some of the new tricks that I’ve been working on recently. The photograph on the below is a quick snap (typical blurry iPhone pic) of me on stage at The Magic Circle.

Today I met up with the team members and magicians for An Evening of Deception. Now, I can finally relax for a few days before a busy couple of weeks of shows across the country.

Magic Circle Magician