30 November 2019

Top 5 posts in November 2019

There were 30+ posts at Canada's Magic last month.  Here are the 5 most viewed posts in the past 30 days:

5. Montreal: Guy Camirand Day! - Love it when we make time to celebrate Canada's fabulous talent.  If anyone has photos to share from the event, please send them this way.
4. Calgary: The Amazing Johnathan documentary - Is the documentary as good as it sounds?
3. Chris Ramsay, green backed cards, and cardistry - What a great video.
2. 2019 "Holiday Magic" - Dick Joiner, Richard Forget, Nathaniel Rankin, and The Arestovs are over half way through their fundraising tour.  Great work everyone!

and the most viewed post this month  ...

1. The 2019 "Readers' Choice Inspirational Canadian Magician of the Year" award - Nominations are closed.  Thank you to everyone who nominated a wonderful field of magicians!

28 November 2019

Bill Abbott at the Magic Castle

From Bill Abbott's Instagram:
Honored and excited to be appearing once again at the @magiccastleofficial Dec. 9-15 in the Parlour of Prestidigitation 7:15pm, 8:15pm & 9:15pm every night that week! Join me. 

27 November 2019

Toronto: Mahdi Gilbert lecture

Updated November 28th:
  • This event has been cancelled.  Apologies for any inconvenience.

25 November 2019

Happy ninth blogiversary to me!

Nine years ago this blog was born!


Thanks to you wonderful people who have supported this project!

For free, we've published over 4,075 posts, and served well over 816,000 page loads.  Three hundred and thirty of you have given us your thumbs-up on Facebook, more than 1346 of you are following along on Twitter, 88 of you have found us on Instagram, and approximately 74 of you have subscribed to this site's RSS feed.  The bulk of you are Canadian, and we're delighted to see visitors from United States, the United Kingdom, India, France, and the list goes on.

There are so many of you doing such a fabulous job of making magic a priority in this great country!

A special thanks to:

My continued thanks to all of you!

24 November 2019

Chris Ramsay: Buying Strangers ANYTHING They Want at a Magic Shop!!

From the Twitter feed of Chris Ramsay:
Question for magicians: other than complaining about Youtube magic exposure, what have you done to help the community?

"Buying Strangers ANYTHING They Want at a Magic Shop!!" from Chris Ramsay's YouTube channel:
I worked at a magic shop for a day and paid for strangers!!

23 November 2019

Calgary: The Amazing Johnathan documentary

From The Vanishing Rabbit Magic Shop's Instagram:
November 27 - Dec 1 Globe cinema Calgary

A note to subscribers: the content of this post is embedded from another website and is not available to preview. To view the content of the post, please visit http://CanadasMagic.blogspot.com. Some of the embedded code may be visible in this notification.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Vanishing Rabbit Magic Shop (@vanishingrabbitmagicshop) on

22 November 2019

Montreal and Quebec: Loran

From Loran's Facebook post:
- Je suis heureux d’annoncer que j’ai été choisi par le chanteur Allan Rayman, prix Juno du meilleur nouvel artiste 2018, pour ouvrir son spectacle à L’ANTI Bar-Spectacle (27 nov.) à Québec, ainsi qu’au centre MTELUS (29 nov.) à Montréal. Une soirée qui sera feutré en musique et magie!

- I am very pleased to announce that I was selected by singer Allan Rayman (he received a Juno Award nomination for Breakthrough Artist of the Year at the Juno Awards of 2018) to open his show in Quebec at L'ANTI Bar-Spectacle (Nov 27) and at the MTELUS Center (Nov 29) in Montreal. An evening that will be felted with music and magic!

21 November 2019

Toronto: Steve Valentine with The Illusionists Magic of the Holidays

From TicketMaster:
Toronto: January 1-5
Celebrate the holidays with the entire family at The Illusionists - Magic of the Holidays, a mind-blowing showcase featuring jaw-dropping talents of the most incredible illusionists on earth. The Illusionists has shattered box office records across the globe and dazzles audiences of all ages with a powerful mix of the most outrageous and astonishing acts ever seen on stage. This non-stop show is packed with thrilling and sophisticated magic of unprecedented proportions.

Read more and buy tickets.

From Steve Valentine's Instagram:

20 November 2019

Montreal: Mat Franco

From the November 16th article "ORT Montreal Ted Wise Gala to feature Mat Franco and honour four community leaders" by Mike Cohen in The Surburban:
The 2019 ORT Montreal Ted Wise Gala for Jewish Education will take place on Sunday, December 8, 2019 at Place des Arts. There will be a cocktail dinatoire at 6 pm, followed by the show at 7:30 pm.

Honourees this year are community leaders Jonathan Goodman, Jeff Hart, Dean Mendel, and Gideon Pollack while the feature performer will be Mat Franco, the first and only magician ever to win NBC’s America’s Got Talent. He takes an innovative approach to magic-making that’s driven by pure joy and that wins over audiences!

Read more.

19 November 2019

London: Magic at the Marienbad (Dec 12)

From the Magic at the Marienbad Facebook page:
Back by popular demand, That Magic Guy Peter Mennie!  Featuring the magic of Al Grose.
A note to subscribers: the content of this post is embedded from another website and is not available to preview. To view the content of the post, please visit http://CanadasMagic.blogspot.com. Some of the embedded code may be visible in this notification.

18 November 2019

The 2019 "Readers' Choice Inspirational Canadian Magician of the Year" award

Reader's Choice logo 

Updated December 3rd to add: 
- Nominations are now closed.  Stay tuned for voting information!

Updated December 1st to add a nominee submitted on November 29th:
- Mike Norden has accepted his nomination by an anonymous reader who wrote:
It gives me great pleasure to nominate Mike Norden for Canadian Magician of the Year. Mike has worked tirelessly for the magic community over the last 15 years. He has organized and cohosted at least 8 local conventions, and several weekends of magic. He has held the positions of President, Vice President, Secretary and Sergeant at Arms in several local magic organizations, including the Vancouver Magic Circle, the Fraser Valley Magic Circle, & the Pacific Coast Association of Magicians. He was instrumental in creating the local KIDabra Chapter, as well as one of the newest rings in Canada, IBM Ring 387, aka FVMC. He spearheaded the creation of 3rd Monday Magic, a monthly magic show held in his hometown, and has performed in and produced countless of those shows. He hosted all lectures at his house for more than 8 years, and continues to host all local meetings of the FVMC. He has, and continues to donate untold hours to the art of magic, through the clubs he belongs to, the conventions he runs, the shows he produces, and the youth he mentors. Mike truly embodies all that is magic, and exemplifies what it is to be an ambassador of one's art.

Updated November 29th to add:
Gwyn Auger has accepted her nomination by Aaron who wrote:
I would like to nominate Gwyn Auger the Magic Assistant. Gwyn’s endless enthusiasm and passion for magic and the magic community is an inspiration, whether it is helping support young local magicians in Calgary, promoting the value of the assistant in the industry and her eagerness to help others at conventions or shows at the drop of a hat. Gwyn is one of the most professional, kindest, freelance magician assistants in the business who also recently branched out to perform her own act as part of the Celebrities of Magic in Bakersfield, CA. This year Gwyn was also the first assistant to perform at the new Magic Castle Cabaret in Santa Barbara, CA with Lance Burton.
Gwyn is truly an amazing ambassador for the business!

Updated November 28 to add:
- James Harrison has accepted his nomination by multiple readers who wrote:

James Harrison, for being such an amazing ambassador of magic pretty much every time I see, as well all the awesome youtube video he has been part of explaining and showing off his skill.

James Harrison, The Pickpocket magician , out of Barrie, On., is a favourite of mine. There are many videos on YouTube, and as a human being he is so warm and excellent with working an audience. He absolutely needs to be in the running, as his work is so impressive!

James Harrison is a thoroughly entertaining and incredibly talented magician!! His slight of hand is so fluid you'll never know what he might have walked off with lol

I would like to nominate Pickpocket James Harrison! He has an amazing array of skills, and he's a master of sleight of hand. He's been featured in programs throughout North America. Off stage, he's extremely friendly, creative, funny, and always seems to work hard at encouraging those around him. On stage, he's very much the same, but with an extra aire of mystery and amazement! You can absolutely tell that he's a man doing what he loves, and he does it extremely well. He wears his passion on his sleeve with such a drive that he does more than entertain - he inspires!

I would like to nominate James Harrison for his passion to entertain people with his amazing magical skills and showmanship. I’ve had the pleasure to see him preform numerous times and it’s always an enjoyable time. 

James Harrison , also known as Canada’s Pickpocket Magician is astounding - he has done many acts over the world and his art of picking pockets and close up magic as gained him notoriety - he is a true inspiration and fantastic performer.

James Harrison. He's the pickpocketing MASTER, he's got a YouTube video that is going viral like crazy right now with 2 million views and counting and he works like crazy, at home and internationally. So all of that is amazing, but here's why I think James REALLY deserves a nomination: He's the kindest, most giving magician I've met in years. When he's not on stage, he's off stage sharing his knowledge to apply what he's learned in the trenches to help others. So in short, I think James is inspirational because he covers both bases. He's one hell of a performer with incredible original creations and he's one hell of a good person to go with it.

Updated November 27 to add:
- Ryan Joyce has accepted his nomination by an anonymous reader who wrote:

Ryan Joyce for creating Canada's most unique magic festival. The OWOW Magic Festival brought more than a dozen of the top magicians to the most magical place in Canada - Fergus, ON to perform for the public this past Halloween. For magicians, Ryan has created a fun-space where they can gather and further their own careers - Wondertown - which includes Magcians Masterclass and the new podcast Magicians Talking Magic. We should all be so dedicated in furthering the art and the perception of our art.

Updated November 25 to add:
Ted & Marion Outerbridge have accepted their nomination by an anonymous reader who wrote:
I would like to nominate Ted & Marion Outerbridge as being truly inspirational entertainers in the world of magic. What you see on the stage is exactly what you get off the stage. They are soft spoken, humble and sincere - but extremely passionate and talented in everything they do. From costuming to scripting, choreography and illusion, they do it all!

Updated November 23 to add:
- Ken McCreedy has accepted his nomination by JM who wrote:
Ken McCreedy for his vast knowledge of Canadian magic as well as being a mentor to so many great acts.  
Updated November 21 to add:
- Anastasia Synn has accepted her nomination by KL who wrote:
She's a freakin cyborg pioneering a new brand of magic! It's been getting worldwide attention, she's been on international news with her crazy implants. 

Updated November 19th to add: 
 - The Sentimentalists, Mysterion and Steffi Kay, have accepted their nomination by Ross who wrote:

I always felt the Toronto fixtures known as "The Sentimentalists" would shine on a bigger international stage. Their numerous TV apperances this year solidified this. They are an inspiration as a fellow Toronto based Canadian performer. Especially Steffi being the first woman Mentalist to fool Penn and Teller.

The Canada's Magic 2019 "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 2019, in the comments below.  (Or you may email your nomination.)

Nominations will be accepted up until 11:59PM EST on Friday November the 29th.  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.

We look forward to seeing your nominations!

In the spirit of celebrating all Canadian magicians, last year's winners of the Readers' Choice award (Jeff Christensen) or the Editor's Choice award (Mike Segal) are not eligible for nomination in 2019.

17 November 2019

Chris Ramsay, green backed cards, and cardistry

A fabulous combination if I've ever heard one.  Don't believe me?  Have a look at this video he posted to Instagram last week:

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Chris Ramsay (@chrisramsay52) on

16 November 2019

Merry Fool Us and Masters of Illusion Christmas Magic

From the November 12th post "Penn & Teller: Merry Fool Us: CW Announces Holiday Episodes and Specials" by Regina Avalos in TV Series Finale:

It is about to look real holiday like on The CW. The network announced for all their upcoming holiday specials, and it looks like Penn & Teller: Merry Fool Us will help kick things off. A new holiday special featuring the pair will air on November 29.

also ...

The CW will broadcast the holiday special MASTERS OF ILLUSION: CHRISTMAS MAGIC 2019 Wednesday, December 18 (9:00-10:00pm ET). This special from Associated Television International and hosted by Dean Cain features some of today’s hottest magicians. An encore presentation of MASTERS OF ILLUSION: CHRISTMAS MAGIC 2019 will air Tuesday, December 24 (8:00-9:00pm ET).

Read more.

From Michael Close's Facebook post:

15 November 2019

Scott Hammell on "Shoulders of Giants"

From PodTail:
OELC/CASO: Shoulders of Giants focuses on the extraordinary achievements of OELC alumni. Nathan Adams interviews these “Giants” to discuss the impact their time at the Ontario Educational Leadership Centre had on their journey.

Episode 2 - Scott Hammell (magician, escape artist and leader):
In this episode Nathan interviews Scott Hammell.   Scott shares his unique perspective on leadership and facing fear as well as the impact OELC/CASO has had on his life.

Scott Hammell, the four-time Guinness World Record holder has hung upside down from a hot air balloon while locked in a straitjacket and chains at 7 200 feet (World’s Highest Suspension Straitjacket Escape), dangled by his ankles and juggled for over a minute and a half (Longest Inverted Juggling Duration), successfully completed a card trick while skydiving (World’s Fastest Moving Card Trick) and jumped from an airplane to skydive while blindfolded and handcuffed (Highest Blindfolded Skydive). 

14 November 2019

Seattle: "Bridging the Gap" with Billy Kidd

From Billy Kidd's Facebook post:
Hey all, I'm bringing the show I did in Pittsburgh " Bridging the Gap" to Seattle for limited run at Hales Ales Palladium Nov 8,9, 15, and 16th. Get your tickets ASAP if you want to hang out for a couple of hours:) Here is a review of the show from the summer

From the June 13th article "BWW Review: BILLY KIDD: BRIDGING THE GAP Fuses Magic, Comedy, Surrealism at Liberty Magic" by Greg Kerestan at Broadway World:
To avoid spoilers for the magic show, this review will be brief. Billy Kidd, the actor and magician, is almost certainly playing a character, the (fictionalized) magician Billy Kidd. "I have issues," she jokes at the beginning of the show, and the whole evening's loose plot revolves around this: our narrator has deep-seated, unresolved issues about growing up. A Peter Pan complex is not that unusual in a magician, but part of the charm of the Billy Kidd character is the way her neuroses not only fuel the banter and monologue sections, but at times begin to impact the tricks and stunts as well.

Read more.

12 November 2019

Toronto: Mark Strivings lecture

From the Northwest Ring of Fire:
November 20, 2019 - Toronto, ON
7:00 PM
Browser's Den of Magic
3220 Dufferin St.
Toronto, Ont. M6A 2T3

Read more.

11 November 2019

An Evening with Darcy Oake in the UK

From AXS:
  • SAT 21 MAR - Northumbria Institute, Newcastle    
  • SUN 22 MAR - The Caves, Edinburgh   
  • MON 23 MAR - St Luke's, Glasgow 
  • TUE 24 MAR - The Rescue Rooms, Nottingham    
  • WED 25 MAR - Arts Club, Liverpool  
  • THU 26 MAR - Brudenell Social Club, Leeds   
  • FRI 27 MAR - O2 Academy 3 Birmingham, Birmingham  
  • SAT 28 MAR - Manchester Academy 3, Manchester    
  • SUN 29 MAR - Thekla Bristol, Bristol    
  • MON 30 MAR - Komedia Brighton, The Lanes    
  • TUE 31 MAR -  Islington Assembly Hall, London    
Read more and buy tickets.

10 November 2019

Michael Close's November 2019 newsletter

Just finished reading the November newsletter from Michael Close.  You may be interested in:

  • A couple of Stephen Bargatze stories that are very entertaining, especially if you hear Michael's voice reading them to you!
  • Michael tips us to a film to begin shooting in Toronto and Buffalo next year.
  • Michael Close has a podcast for subscribers, titled "Conversations with Close."   This month's guests are Merrill and Bargatze. 
  • Michael wrote up a fabulous review of the recent Ontario Week of Wonder Magic Convention.
  • From the playing card patent files by Lee Asher.
  • The Magic of Science 
  • It's Not Magic... But
  • The Art of Conjuring by Mick Ayres.
  • A nice shout out to Jonah Babin's Discourse in Magic interview with Ryan Hayashi. 
  • A Ricky Jay tribute by Tom Zito.
  • Technically Speaking by by Bruce Kalver.
  • and many other newsworthy tidbits from the magic community!

Sign-up at MichaelClose.com to receive Michael's newsletters.