Sunday 19 February 2012

International Gala Show - European

1. Jean Garin
Magic screen test
Nice projection screen act, very well timed and some nice ideas, but not convinced its magic.
Stu: 6 Geoff: 6 Matt: 5 Max: 4 Gordie: 6

2. Aaron Crow
Kung Fu stunter
I guess Aaron gets paid by the minute, he performed the archer routine he performed on the Magicians show a few weeks back. I think he may have argued with the stage manager as I think he tried to shoot him.
Stu: 4 Geoff: 4 Matt: 4 Max: 5 Gordie: 6

3. Compagnie Poc
Great act, balls & hats, really superb. Clever ending.
Stu: 8 Geoff: 8 Matt: 7 Max: 8 Gordie: 8

4. Sebastian Nicolas
A timely act
Enjoyable time based manipulation act.
Stu: 7 Geoff: 7 Matt: 8 Max: 8 Gordie: 8

5. Amethyst
Eaten alive & spikes
mirror, walking knot, spikes & flamed impailment and a tiger! A dangerous escape to close.
Stu: 9 Geoff: 9 Matt: 8 Max: 8 Gordie: 8

Second half

Children's competition winners
3. David Ginn
2. Craig Petty
1. Andy Clockwise

The Murray Award
Gerritt Brengman
Russ Stevens (he proposed!)

Ken Dodd comedy award
Wayne Dobson

6. Derek Lever
Funny guy, hates kids
Stu: 8 Geoff: 8 Matt: 8 Max: 8 Gordie: 8
Ken Dodd & Mark Raffles
Between them they awarded each other the Neville King Award, not sure each knew who it went to. Ken then went on to entertain.

7. Aaron Crow
More from the Kung Fu kid
Nice bullet catch routine with a paintball, just wish he wouldn't rush through everything.
Stu: 7 Geoff: 1 Matt: 7 Max: 7 Gordie: 5

8. Les Chapeaux
Black & White magic
Good changing faces act, not my type of thing, but technically very clever.
Stu: 6 Geoff: 8 Matt: 8 Max: 7 Gordie: 7

9. Jerome
Nice shadow puppet act with projections.
Stu: 7 Geoff: 6 Matt: 4 Max: 5 Gordie: 4

10. Marc Metral
A vent from the Moulin Rouge
Started off funny but surreal, then moved to down right odd with the crocodile, next into the instant stooge vent with 4 volunteers. Next a napkin rabbit. Odd!
Stu: 4 Geoff: 7 Matt: 6 Max: 4 Gordie: 8

11. Christian Farla
The Scorpion
Amazing and fast illusion act featuring a very impressive water escape.
Stu: 9.5 Geoff: 9 Matt: 9 Max: 9 Gordie: 9

Finale featuring Lumina
Violins & Dancers
Stu: 7 Geoff: 6 Matt: 6 Max: 7 Gordie: 6

Tonight's compere was John Martin, very funny guy, loads of super gags.
Many thanks to all the backstage guys especially Juan, Tony, Graham & Mark. Always very slick.
In summary good but long, if Aaron hadn't of walked the auditorium TWICE we'd have been out by 10:30.

-- Stu

Ponta The Smith Lecture

Ponta is a technical genius, amazing effects, rather difficult to understand the explanations due to the language barrier and a translator who wasn't quite understanding the effects. None the less very impressive.


Greg Wilson Lecture

Greg started of the lecture with a multi phase coin on shoulder routine. Really quick and high impact. Brilliant!

The second trick he performed was a trick called "Pointless", were the point of a pen transports from one end to the other. Visually great.

Next was a really cool prediction trick which was, someone named a number and Greg pulled out some coins from his pocket and the total value of the coins matched the names number.

Greg then performed a visual multi colour changing bill which could be handed out.

Some impromptu coin stuff was next, including a falling coin production and a great pitch vanish. He stole the guys watch 3 times, never seen it done so quickly!

Greg then borrowed a ring and stretched it using an interesting gimmick.

After that he did a crazy man's handcuffs with a broken tooth pick and restored it in the end.

Onto some card magic with some spin out revelations including catching it in his mouth.

Greg then showed us a cool alternative way of doing the muscle pass.

After that Greg did a nice quick silverware routine. Where forks, spoons and knifes swithed places.

End of review and score to follow.

- Max Curd (Magicians in Surrey)

Axel Hacklau

Axel began with his superb newspaper tear which is simply stunning, the quickest method I've seen. He then explained to to fold a teeshirt in a way to convey how he feels about seeing magic. Next was his knife thru spoon, this use a spoon to fork gimmick, but this is the Rolls Royce of these style of device. A bottle cap in bottle routine was next, lovely and simple, a real stunning miracle which you can leave the audience with a souvenir of the bottle with the cap still in. Axel then explained a nice rope tie escape, which he is offering a free paper explanation on his stand, go get it! Lastly was his chop cup routine which again was great and simple. All real workers, I'm very tempted with the spoon and bottle cap routines.

UPDATE: I'm very excited, I now have an Axel moustache lollipop! :) Just met and chatted with him at the stand, a genuinely nice guy.

-- Stu

Sunday 19th February 2012 schedule

Better late than never:

British Magical Championship

Steve Faulkner: Steve started with a few card transpositions using the 6 of harts lots of passes and top changes all over the place.
The cups and balls was next, unfortunately, there was noting new here. A classic routine. With a fruity finish. 6/10.

Sam Fitton: Sam brought 2 spectators on stage and started by producing some cards in a flash. 2 cards were then selected, and were transported from hand to hand. Sam went straight into the ambitious card routine, an omni deck made an appearance. Then Sam had a multi phase card to wallet routine, which went into a torn a restored cornered card, where the corner was on the watch that was handed out at the beginning to keep track of time. 7/10.

Jason Rea: Jason Rea, looked very smart! Always a bonus! A chop cup started his routine. Nothing new, again with a fruity finish! Jason then started a multi phase ace routine which led into a sandwiched card. Jason then had another card routine with a card to wallet then omni deck. 6/10.

Will Gray: started with torn and restored string but with a helium ballon (A nice touch). Will started with his goldfish glass production from the jacket sleeve. Will then went onto a signed card (3H) sandwich effect which went into a red 3 pool ball to wallet. Will ended with the 3H reversed in a sealed card box. 7.5/10

Chris Stevenson: Chris started with a coin purse. Chris produced and vanished coins. Then produced a piece of rope. A ring and rope routine was next, various classic rope effects then followed. Chris then performed a card trick which started with a classic force repeated numerous times, it was a multiple selection card trick, including a pool ball. A funny routine with some good lines and sleight of hand. 8/10

Shaun McCree: Shaun started with a signed card trick. The Shaun brought out 8 decks of cards, 3 glasses, and a painting. The 2 spectators picked one deck from the 8 decks. The painting prediction matched all that was selected and performed with the cards. 7/10

Stephen Ablett: Stephen started with a coin production and vanishes. Stephen then performed some metal bending, technically well performed. Up next was a story routine using Detective Jack Spade. Next was a heart shaped ring and silk routine. 5/10

On the whole a disappointing competition noting really new in any of the acts! None of these acts would place a few years ago!

And the winners are:
1st: Chris Stevenson
2nd: Will Gray
3rd: Shaun McCree