It’s not every day that you get asked to appear in a film where you’ll cut yourself in half.  So I was thrilled to be invited by the Italian luxury menswear brand Canali 1934 to consult on and perform in their 2016 holiday short film where I would end up doing exactly that. It’s been a trend with luxury brands to produce high-end cinematic ‘featurettes’ lately.  This is the latest one by Canali at the bottom of this post. The production team decided to make a short film about their beautiful products. The premise was to be that a magician called The Incredible Mr. C, (who I played) would conjure up elegant Canali gifts as part of his magical repertoire.[…]

What do Lady Gaga, a string of Broadway musicals and Harry Potter all have in common? The answer is magic consultant Paul Kieve. He’s accumulated an impressive list of projects he’s consulted for, adding magic to shows that tell stories. I did a degree in theatre and I’ve always been interested in storytelling. So what Paul does using magic to help tell stories I’ve always thought is some of the most magical magic out there. I sat down with Paul a few months ago over coffee to chat about these things and have finally managed to get it in writing. Here I am with Paul talking about how magicians can better connect with their audiences, the ‘problem’ of the magician’s ego,[…]

My alarm went off and my eyes shot open looking toward the ceiling. It was the morning of Day Two of my most recent clown training workshop and I felt muscles used from the day before that I never knew I even had. My brain was fried as well – maybe just from being repeatedly catapulted out of my comfort zone for a continuous five hours the day before (sometimes to land with a splat!) Clowning can be many things but if you’ve never thought much about it, it’s probably not what you think it is. And I definitely had no idea what I was in for… BANANA PEEL IN POSITION: ENTER THE CLOWN STAGE RIGHT One sweltering summer’s day[…]

It’s almost like a cruel joke: your mouth is bone dry and the rest of your body has sprung leaks in places where you didn’t know sweat glands even existed! All this while your stomach feels like it’s either left your body or turned into an anvil. I know this from my experiences as a stage magician but it’s a wicked twist of fate that’s an all too-common feature in most people’s lives. Yes, that’s what I’m saying: you’re not alone. Karen Dwyer and Marlina Davidson are researchers at the University of Nebraska-Omaha who in 2012 carried out a survey of eight hundred and fifteen college students. The survey asked students to select from a list of the most common[…]

In great films there must be a reason why we get sucked in to caring for something even as implausible as, for example, a boy called Elliott who befriends an alien. It’s probably the same reason why we can’t stop watching a TV series about a charismatic and ruthless couple hell-bent on becoming the U.S. president and first lady, crushing anyone who stands in their way. I’d think it’s also the reason why one woman can convincingly swing between playing Margaret Thatcher in one film, a contemporary New Yorker lost in the musings of Victoria Woolf in another, and yet transform herself into Julia Child in the next. Why all this has been on my mind is another story though… You[…]