16 November 2020

The 2020 "Readers' Choice Inspirational Canadian Magician of the Year" award

Reader's Choice logo 

Updated November 25th to add:
- Alex Zander has accepted his nomination by Shawn F. who wrote:
"I would like to nominate Alex Zander, who during this year has united magicians, not only in Canada but around the world by using the IBM JAM online to bring magic into the homes of all of us at no cost. For the first thirty days of the lock down we had a lecture every single day and now, eight months later the IBM JAM continues on a weekly basis to offer all magicians a way to connect. He gained nothing personally from doing this task and it taxed his free time greatly. It's inspiring to see the selfless acts of another in support of the greater good."

Updated November 24th to add:
- Carisa Hendrix, Miranda Allen, and Richard Lee have accepted their nomination by a reader who wishes to be anonymous, who wrote:

"They took the lockdown by storm. In their isolation they created a unique virtual performance that was simultaneously witty, creative and magical with a wicked blend of technology and Lucy Darling sass. Surely that counts as inspiration."

- Phil Pivnick has accepted his nomination by Ian C. who wrote:
Phil is already Toronto’s best family and children’s entertainer (A1 media) and has a 5 star rating on Google and YELP.  But apart from that he is truly a really nice guy. He’s recently started creating magic for sale to the magic community demonstrating his creativity.  He’s really helpful to anyone who asks.  Sitting down for a session with Phil is a roller coaster of ideas.  What if we do this, how about this or that move.  I’ve always been impressed with his business sense and it shows in his marketing and shows."

- Julie Eng has accepted the nomination for Magicana by Ben T. who wrote:
"My nomination this year is Magicana. Not only did they start the year off by helping curate the Art of Illusion exhibit at the AGO - which created all sorts of new magic fans - but they also mobilized quickly to set up the "Allan Slaight Magicians Relief Fund" to help magicians across Canada deal with the pandemic."
"Because of all that they've done for the community this year, I nominate Magicana!"

Updated November 23rd to add:
- Graeme Reed has accepted his nomination by Doug H. who wrote:
He has not let Covid 19 interfere with his ability to present his magic. He has and continues to perform his excellent Magic in awesome creative ways - online. He is not only the most entertaining guy I know, he's Graemazing!"

- Graeme Reed and Ryan Joyce have accepted their nomination by Ryan P. who wrote:
"They have been producing a ton of stuff, podcasts, tv shows, pizza parties and more all giving an opportunity for other Canadian magicians to perform and connect. The high quality standards of their production are certainly inspiring to me!"

- Brooklyn Westfall's dad has accepted her nomination from Gwyn A. who wrote:
"I would like to nominate Brooklyn Westfall - she's bringing a fresh young perspective to magic, and showing magicians and people everywhere that magic has no limits. She's inspiring, and breaking down barriers of age, gender and language. She's been an absolute delight to watch which is such a fun treat during these crazy times. Way to go Brooklyn."
We've opened up a "preschool category."  No voting. Details here:

Updated November 19th to add:
- Gwyn Auger has accepted her nomination from Jonathan I. who wrote:
"The bigger the magic, the more important all of the team players are, and when it comes to a magic community, the same definitely applies. For me, personally, when I returned to magic about 10 years ago, Gwyn kindly befriended me (not knowing who I was) and it’s been an important part of my ongoing journey through the art of magic. She’s been quite an ambassador for the art and is one of those glues that holds a community together—which is especially important during a time like this. So, I humbly nominate Gwyn for this recognition."

The fifth annual Canada's Magic "Readers' Choice Inspirational Canadian Magician of the Year" award nominations are now open.

You may nominate living Canadian Magician(s) of your choosing by leaving their name along with a short note about how they inspired you in 2020, in the comments below.  (Or you may email your nomination.)

Nominations will be accepted up until 11:59PM EST on Friday November the 27th.  We will contact the nominees via email and give them one week to accept or decline their nomination.  The full list of nominations will be published and voting will commence in December.  (Canada's Magic is not eligible for the award, nor will it be participating in the nomination or voting process.) 

This is a "bragging rights" only contest.  There is no cash value for this award.

Individuals and groups can be nominated.

There is no shortage of Canadian magical inspiration in 2020. 

Some ideas to get you started:
  • Magicana (David Ben and Julie Eng) for organizing the "Illusions: The Art of Magic" exhibit at the Art Gallery of Ontario AND for administrating the "Allan Slaight Relief Fund."
  • Greg Frewin for pivoting on a dime and producing his many excellent virtual "International Stars of Magic" fundraising shows for the Niagara SPCA.
  • Shawn Farquhar for conceiving and mounting his magical speakeasy "Hidden Wonders." 
  • Carisa Hendrix, Miranda Allen, and Richard Lee for raising the bar in virtual entertainment.
  • The current board of the Canadian Association of Magicians (Renée-Claude Auclair, Greg Frewin, Ryan Joyce, Luc Langevin, Mark Pallin, Paul Romhany, Mike Segal, Jason Verners, and Kent Wong) for their efforts in CAM's recent relaunch.
  • Team Big Trick Energy (Chris Ramsay, Eric Leclerc, Alex Boyer, and Wes Barker) for parlaying their tremendous YouTube engagement skills into a television series.
  • The list goes on ...

(these are not official nominations,
but they can be if you submit their name(s) for nomination!)

We look forward to seeing your nominations!

In the spirit of celebrating all Canadian magicians, last year's winners of the Readers' Choice award (Mike Norden) or the Editor's Choice award (The Outerbridges) are not eligible for nomination in 2020.  The list of previous winners can be found here.

15 November 2020

Broken wand: Isreal Manchild

Our sincere condolences to Isreal's family and friends.


From the November 13th Facebook post by John Kaplan:

It is with deep shock and sadness that I report the sudden, unexpected passing of one of my dearest friends.  A week ago, on Friday Nov 6th, Isreal Manchild slipped on his basement steps. The resulting fall caused a severe head injury, bleeding of the brain, and he spent much of the past week in hospital in a coma.  A four-hour operation to reduce the swelling yesterday was, unfortunately, not enough for him to survive and he passed away at around 3:00 this morning.











14 November 2020

Jason Palter interviewed on Wes Iseli’s Magiclife Podcast

From the November 4th Facebook post by Wes Iseli’s Magiclife:

Check out this week’s episode of Wes Iseli’s Magiclife Podcast #16 with Jason Palter 

13 November 2020

Eldritch Theatre presents The Deadly Doom of the Dungeons of Duodenum

Premiering ONLINE November 25th to December 5th, 2020 at 7:30 PM (EST) 

Tickets $50 for Adventurers
Tickets $10 for Spectators


From the Eldritch Theatre:

The Deadly Doom of the Dungeons of Duodenum is the newest ghoulish creation by Eric Woolfe (Space Opera Zero, The Harrowing of Brimstone McReedy) in which ticket buyers can choose to take part in the story using Dungeons and Dragons based role-playing, or merely witness the horrific adventure that will change each night! Adventurers will be given keys to The Forbidden Library, the entire Eldritch Theatre repertoire, as the online experience will take players on a quest through twenty years of Eldritch Theatre creations, meeting sword and sorcery versions of characters from past productions. The monsters and minions they meet will be performed by live actors, puppets, pre-recorded video segments and interactive maps.

Read more and buy tickets.

Winner of a Skype session with Michael Close

Roman numeral 10


The contest to win a 1 hour Skype session with Michael Close closed last night at midnight.  



There were some terrific answers to the request to:

Tell us your favourite move, effect, technique, or magic product attributed to a Canadian magician.  
  • Bammo Monte Monster (by Bob Farmer) 
  • Fiber Optics (by Richard Sanders)
  • Farquhar's deck switch 
  • Miraskill (by Stewart James)
  • Juggling to doves (by Greg Frewin)
  • Flushtration Count (by Norm Houghton)
  • Chico the Mind Reader (Bill Abbott)


And to the person who entered the contest and willfully ignored the intent of the qualifying question, while at the same time answering it with 100% accuracy, I applaud you.   Their answer:

  • The move of the Browser's Den from the previous location to the current location, a move attributed to Jeff Pinsky.

Wand and Ring 10

Be sure to take advantage of 10% (ten percent) off any Michael Close downloadable ebook products (up to a maximum of $200 per person).  Use "CANADASMAGIC" (without the quotes) at checkout over at MichaelClose.com


Random draw results from Rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations Doug H.! We'll be in touch to let you know how to claim your prize.

Thanks to everyone for playing and a special thanks to Michael Close for making the prize available to you!