31 October 2020

Top 5 posts in October 2020

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

5. How to date a deck of (USPC) playing cards - Great information from Lee Asher!
4. Broken wand: James Randi - Gone but not forgotten.  What a tremendous legacy.
3. Kyle Leon lecture hosted by Ring 151 (Ottawa) - So many lectures! Thanks for the invite.
2. Toronto: Audition for Jamie Allan's "Magic Maze Live" - As near as we can tell, this is still a go.

and the most viewed post this month  ...

1. Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) - Hope your application went smoothly.

30 October 2020

Halloween Houdini Escape Attempt by Dean Gunnarson

From the October 29th Facebook post by Dean Gunnarson:

This Halloween I will get locked up in 8 sets of police handcuffs from different countries. The handcuffs will represent that Parent Alienation affects millions of children and parents around the world. I will then be locked inside a metal coffin that will be bound and locked with heavy chains and maximum-security locks. The coffin is symbolic because the effects of Parent Alienation slowly kills a loving and caring parent and keeps a child away from half a loving and caring family. This escape from the handcuffs and metal coffin is not life threatening but extremely challenging, painful, and enduring. Imagine your self locked and chained inside a metal coffin and what would you do ???

This escape has never been attempted before by anyone! 

The escape event will start at 1 pm and the escape will happen about 1:26 pm October 31, the same time Houdini died in 1926.  Because of Covid my location is Not being released to the general public as a public event. It will be for media only. Safe distancing and Covid rules will be asked to be upheld. The location is near downtown Winnipeg in a safe open historic area with free parking. Media can even record the event from their own vehicles. 

Read more.

Ryan Brown making a hearse appear at Haunted Hollows Scream Park

From the October 28th post "Internationally Celebrated Magician to Make Hearse appear LIVE on Halloween at Ontario Haunted Hollows Scream Park" at 21WFMJ:

And just how, exactly, will this be done?

Internationally renowned magician, Ryan Brown, isn’t telling - but he says you can see it all on his Youtube series, Reality Magic. Brown has had a lot more time than usual to put into the series - waiting out COVID-19 at home back in Canada after wowing audiences in Las Vegas in three successful tours of the American entertainment capital.

Brown, who has developed an impressive reputation on the global magic scene, is on a first name basis with some of the world’s biggest names in magic. In 2011, he attended the acclaimed McBride's Magic and Mystery school in Las Vegas. In 2017 he returned for some performances including this one at the prestigious Wonder Ground owned by Jeff McBride.

“On my third time going to Vegas, the dream of doing this became surreal,” says the celebrated young magician. “I was given tours of legendary show rooms, I met David Copperfield, I spent time learning from the masters and performed again on stage at Jeff McBride's Wonder Ground.”

Read more.

Chris Ramsay interviews Neil Patrick Harris (and vice versa)

On the heels of the Big Tricks Energy announcement, Chris Ramsay released his recent interview with Neil Patrick Harris.  They discuss magic, sexism in Hallowe'en costumes, puzzles, escape rooms, and Neil's new product BoxONE.

From the October 27th upload on Chris Ramsay's YouTube channel:

29 October 2020

Big Trick Energy with Alex Boyer, Chris Ramsay, Eric Leclerc, and Wes Barker

Congratulations Alex, Chris, Eric, and Wes!


From the October 27th article "TruTV Orders Comedic Illusionist Stunt Series ‘Big Trick Energy’ From DIGA Studios" by Denise Petski at Deadline:

Per the network, “from shock collar card tricks to mind bending one of their own cars in broad daylight, no stunt is off limits and no line is uncrossable to these self-proclaimed “Abracadipshits.” Viewers will also get a peek behind the curtain when they reveal how some of these unforgettable experiences were created.”

“They’re more magical Jackasses than self-proclaimed Abracadipshits, but it goes without saying that Chris, Eric, Wes and Alex are making magic cool again,” says Corie Henson, EVP, head of unscripted programming for TBS, TNT, and truTV. “They’re charming, dangerous and hilarious. You’ll definitely want to spend the night with them.”

Said Tony DiSanto, CEO of DIGA Studios: “These guys are the real deal, as hilarious as they are amazing, sharing a bond of friendship and camaraderie that is at the heart of the show’s creative DNA. As a lifelong magic fan (and a spectacularly unaccomplished amateur magician), I personally couldn’t be more excited to unleash Big Trick Energy onto the world.”

Read more.



From the October 27 Tweet from TruTV:



 From the October 27th Facebook post by Eric Leclerc:

A sneak peek from Eric's YouTube channel:



28 October 2020

Lucy Darling's Halloween Spooktacular Extravaganza

From the Lucy Darling's Halloween Spooktacular Extravaganza Facebook event:

31 Oct at 02:00 EDT – 1 Nov at 01:00 EDT 

Hosted by Lucy Darling - Award Winning Comedy Magician

The Halloween show is coming!!!!

The show is free to watch October 31st and will play twice, Once at midnight EST & once at at midnight PST!!!

This is our gift to you! Happy Halloween.


27 October 2020

Ryan Pilling interviewed on "The Best Magicians You've Never Heard Of"

From the September 29th Facebook post by Tips & Tricks for Magicians:

Catch 22: If I tell you I'm the guest on "The Best Magicians You've Never Heard Of" this week then I should NOT be the guest because in order to hear this from me you must have heard of me, thus making me ineligible to be on the show.

From the October 1st upload on the Sleightly Magic YouTube channel:

26 October 2020

PCAM 87th edition is going virtual!

From PCAM:

Sunday, November 22, 2020

We asked all our PCAM family to be patient and standby until we know that it is safe to proceed. Looks like it will be a long time before we can all gather safely so we are going virtual for 2020. On behalf of the 2020 PCAM Convention planning committee, we thank you for your understanding on this matter.

We are all set up now to host our first virtual convention and the date is set.

Read more and register.



25 October 2020

Scott Hammell and Ryan Joyce in Guelph Today and the OWOW Livestream

From the October 26th article "Escape artist performs stunt while dangling over Elora Gorge (10 photos)" by Keegan Kozolanka in Guelph Today:

While impressive on its own, it was done while dangling upside down over the Elora Gorge Thursday afternoon.

It’s not an usual task for Scott Hammell, a Hamilton-based magician and escape artist.

Hammell is a Guinness World Record holder for highest suspension straitjacket escape in a 2003 stunt 7,200 feet above ground from a hot air balloon.

Despite the Elora Gorge escape being significantly less high at 80 feet, Hammell said it comes with a different kind of fear.

“I wouldn’t say I’m afraid of heights but 7,200 feet up the ground isn’t really real at that point,” Hammell said.

“When you’re 80 feet above the ground and it’s rocky, you see it and it’s like ‘Oh that’s exactly where I’d land if something goes wrong.’”

Read more.

Watch Scott's escape and other performances on October 31st over at Magic Festival!









24 October 2020

Magic tricks to scare your friends (a live virtual magic show)

From the "Magic Tricks to Scare your Friends" post on Eventbrite:

October 31st

The Virtual Halloween event of the season, interactive and fun, from the comfort of your own home, good for the whole family.

We're bringing all of our favourite magicians, ghost, and creepy ghouls together for a night of TRICKS, TREATS, and a whole lot of spooky fun!

It's one night only, one show only, and we want YOU to be part of it.

You can expect to:

  • Have your mind blown from Ontario's Top Magicians
  • Get spooked, scared and frightened right inside your home
  • Learn a spooky trick that you'll be able to do forever
  • Participate in our virtual costume contest
  • Enjoy plenty more scary surprises we have in store for you!
  • This event is going to be silly, scary whacky and a whole lot of fun.

It's time for you to meet the cast of ghosts, ghouls and goblins you'll be spending halloween with this year:

  • The Sentimentalists
  • Nick Wallace
  • Aaron Matthews
  • Chris Mayhew

And finally your hosts:

  • Jonah Babins and Ben Train

Read more.

23 October 2020

Winnipeg: Sean Watson's Haunted Halloween Magic Show

From My Park Theatre:

SAT · OCTOBER 31, 2020

Haunted Halloween Magic Show is a social distance friendly high energy Vegas style show packed with pizzazz.

The show headlines internationally successful illusionist Sean Watson and features three other performers to round out the evening: Chanelle Munroe (singer, dancer, magician); Sean Fields (mentalist); and Mike Green (comedian emcee).

Read more and buy tickets.

21 October 2020

Broken wand: James Randi

It is with a heavy heart that I share the news Tweeted earlier today by the Randi Foundation.  James Randi passed away Tuesday October 20th, 2020.  Our condolences to his family and friends at this impossible time.

From the Randi Foundation Twitter feed:

Vancouver Magic Circle presents "Treat to be Tricked"

From the "Treat to be Tricked Magic Show" on Eventbrite:

October 24

Join the 2018 Children's Magician of the Year, Graham Kita, and five amazing magic competitors as they perform to win your vote for the 2020 title of Children’s Magician of the Year!

Since 1960, the Vancouver Magic Circle, now Canada's largest magic club, has held an annual show featuring some of the finest children's entertainers in western Canada. These magicians are vying for the honour of being titled Children's Magician of the Year, the winner being selected by popular vote of the audience. Due to the pandemic and our desire to keep everyone safe we're going virtual. That doesn't mean you won't be a part of the fun though. This show is all about entertaining families while we stay safe at home! What better day to do it than on election day in BC!

Past winners have included Shawn Farquhar (5 times), Mike Norden (3 times), and Graham Kita (3 times) who will be hosting this year's awesome show.

For the first time ever the show will be presented virtually so the magic will happen right in your own home!

Limited tickets are available now.

Read more and buy tickets.


20 October 2020

CAM to present their vision for the future of magic

From the Canadian Association of Magicians website:

On October 22, 2020 the Canadian Association of Magicians will be sharing our vision for the future of magic and magicians in Canada!  All magicians are welcome! Join us!​

Join us for a one-hour event as we present our vision for the future of magic. We are excited to share new tools and resources for magicians in Canada and around the world.

for free and join us for this 1 hr event.



19 October 2020

IBM JAM : Ryan Pilling hosts "Inside The Ring"

Tuesday night (October 20th), join Ryan Pilling as he hosts the first episode of "Inside the Ring" as part of the IBM JAM series.   A little bird has told us that there's a good chance the first episode will include an appearance by Linking Ring columnist (and Canadian) Andrew Woo.

Keep an eye on the IBM Facebook page [facebook.com/IBMMAGIC] for details!


18 October 2020

Kyle Leon lecture hosted by Ring 151 (Ottawa)

Ottawa Ring 151 has an online meeting on Monday, open to guests. Join Kyle Leon as he lectures about his original magic creations!

From My Magic Meeting:

Monday, October 19, 2020

Zoom Meeting ID: 84474200409

Zoom meeting password: magic

[With thanks to Ryan Pilling for letting us know!]

17 October 2020

Mike D'Urzo consulting for TallBoyz

From the October 3rd Facebook post by Mega Magic:

On set as the Magic Consultant for Season 2 of the hit show TallBoyz on CBC airing in 2021. Let's just say it's going to be awesome! Definitely an interesting experience shooting TV during these times!

15 October 2020

Thank you to our October 2020 Friends!

Thank you to John Harrison, Richard Lyn, Joan Caesar, Ian Crawford, Matt DiSero, Gwyn Auger, Doug Hunt, John Smithman, Richard Hough, Robin Dawes, Eric Bedard, Loran, and Peter Mennie for being Friends of Canada's Magic!

It's good to have friends like you.

You too can Be Our Friend for only $20 per year! 

Donations of any size are always welcome.


14 October 2020

50 Magic Tricks in 5 Minutes with Eric Leclerc

Something fun to start the weekend!

From Eric Leclerc's September 23rd posting to his YouTube channel:

ICYMI, have a look at look at his June 26th reaction video of Eric and Alex Boyer watching the now 10 year old video "40 Magic Tricks in 4 minutes!!! (10 years later)."

13 October 2020

A clear solution for face coverings?

Recently on social media, I’ve seen it suggested that clear plastic "mouth shields" are ideal cloth mask substitutes for performers because they allow the audience to see your facial expressions.

Before you throw away your cloth face masks, be sure to ask yourself (or the mouth shield manufacturer):

Is there scientific evidence to suggest their mouth shield is as good as cloth masks in preventing the spread of COVID-19?

If the manufacturer says that their mouth shields are just as effective as face shields in preventing the spread of COVID-19, consider that the health care community does not support the use of face shields alone as source control (not sharing your germs) or as protection (not getting other people's germs). [1],[2],[3],[4],[5],[6],[7],[8],[9],[10]


Cheryl Brown of CBC News, published the following on August 29, 2020 in the article "Can I use a mouth shield instead of a mask? Your COVID-19 questions answered" [emphasis mine]:

  • "The experts say no."
  • "'I don't think they're a really good alternative at all,' said Dr. Susy Hota, medical director for infection prevention and control at the University Health Network in Toronto, in a recent interview on The National." and
  • "Colin Furness, an infection control epidemiologist and assistant professor at the University of Toronto, also said he's 'not a fan' because mouth shields don't collect droplets like a mask would."


As you make your decision, please consider your health and the especially the health of those with whom you'll be spending your time.






[1] “Focus on: Face Shields for Source Control of COVID-19.” Public Health Ontario, 16 July 2020, www.publichealthontario.ca/-/media/documents/ncov/main/2020/07/covid-19-face-shields-source-control.pdf?la=en.
[2] Gray, Richard. “Why a Face Shield Alone May Not Protect You from Coronavirus.BBC News, BBC, 6 Aug. 2020, www.bbc.com/future/article/20200806-are-face-shields-effective-against-covid-19.
[3] Roberge, Raymond J. “Face Shields for Infection Control: A Review.Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, Taylor & Francis, 2016; 13(4): 235–242 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5015006/.
[4] Woods, Michael. “Face Shields vs. Face Masks: Which Is Better?CTV News, CTV, 14 July 2020, ottawa.ctvnews.ca/face-shields-vs-face-masks-which-is-better-1.5023909.
[5] Hensley, Laura. “Face Shields Are Easier to Talk in, but Are They Safer than Masks?Global News, Global News, 18 June 2020, globalnews.ca/news/7075262/face-shields-covid-19-coronavirus/.
[6] “Can a Face Shield Be Used as a Substitute or a Replacement for a Mask?” Ottawa Public Health, www.ottawapublichealth.ca/en/public-health-topics/masks.aspx.
[7] Duong, Diana. “Masks vs. Face Shields: Which One Is Safer?Healthing.ca, PostMedia, 27 July 2020, www.healthing.ca/diseases-and-conditions/coronavirus/face-shields-vs-masks-guess-which-one-is-safer.
[8] Schimelpfening, Nancy. “Why Plastic Face Shields Aren't a Safe Alternative to Cloth Masks.Healthline, Healthline Media, 1 Sept. 2020, www.healthline.com/health-news/why-plastic-face-shields-arent-a-safe-alternative-to-cloth-masks.
[9] “COVID-19: Considerations for Wearing Masks.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 7 Aug. 2020, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-guidance.html.
[10] “Face Shield or Face Mask to Stop the Spread of COVID-19?ScienceDaily, ScienceDaily, 1 Sept. 2020, www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200901112231.htm.

12 October 2020

Nova Scotia's Ben Proudfoot wins best director

You may remember that Ben won International Brotherhood of Magicians' Youth Close-Up Magic Contest in 2007.  Congratulations Ben!


From the September 28th article "Ben Proudfoot wins best director for short film at Raindance Film Festival" by Susan Bradley in CBC News:

The short films reveal the passion, deep roots and tenaciousness of the artists. "They're our history, our culture, who we are," the 24-year-old said in an interview Monday from Bath, England.

Raindance is one of the largest, most influential independent film festivals in the world, operating in major cities including London, Los Angeles, New York, Toronto and Berlin.

Proudfoot, who founded Breakwater Studios Ltd. in Los Angeles in 2012, is a graduate of Citadel High School and an accomplished sleight-of-hand magician, winning Canadian and International championships.

​He turned his talents to filmmaking and attended the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts in Los Angeles.

Read more.

11 October 2020

How to date a deck of (USPC) playing cards

ICYMI Lee Asher Tweeted: Oct 14th -17th @52PlusJokerClub will hold their annual playingcard collecting convention virtually- free to all. YOU ARE INVITED! 


From Lee Asher's blog:

How Old Is Your Deck?

The following material, designed to assist collectors in dating their U.S. decks, is produced here courtesy of the 52 Plus Joker Organization. It appeared originally in an article by Margery Griffith, then curator of the United States Playing Card Co. Museum in Cincinnati, in their quarterly bulletin 'CLEAR THE DECKS' in April 1991.

Find Your Ace of Spades

Like knowing the grade of your cards, a dating aid can be very useful. For decks manufactured by United States Playing Card Co., a dating code was placed on the Ace of Spades at time of manufacture. The code first came into use in 1904 and it applies only to Aces of Spades that bear a letter plus a four digit number. Combinations with fewer numbers have no meaning for collectors.

Right from the beginning in 1904, the same codes were used by National Playing Card Co. and New York Consolidated Card Co., subsidiaries by then of USPC. Andrew Dougherty and Russell Playing Card Co. also used these codes, as they became part of USPC in 1907 and 1929 respectively.

Read more.

10 October 2020

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB)

From the Government of Canada website:

The Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) benefits. The CRB is administered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

If you are eligible for the CRB, you can receive $1,000 ($900 after taxes withheld) for a 2-week period.

If your situation continues past 2 weeks, you will need to apply again. You may apply up to a total of 13 eligibility periods (26 weeks) between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.

CRB application is not yet open

Details about how you can apply will be available on October 12, 2020.

Read more.

[with thanks to Peter Mennie]

09 October 2020

Carisa Hendrix in the Globe and Mail, 12th Night, and a Neil Gaiman shout out

From the October 6th article "How Canadian magic star Lucy Darling pivoted online – and found new fans (like Neil Gaiman)" by J. Kelly Nestruck in The Globe and Mail:

While Lucy Darling has a quick wit, her hands are even quicker: her legerdemain surprised and startled me time and time again. Table magic doesn’t have quite the same impact over livestream that it does in person (I kept wondering what was happening outside the visual frame), but a card trick she performed at the end wowed me and is still enjoyably tying my brain up in knots.

On the whole, An Exceptional Night In was one of the most polished and professional Zoom performances that I’ve tuned into to date – which is not a huge surprise, given that it is directed by Jim Millan, the former Crow’s Theatre artistic director who works with comedy and magic supergroups The Kids in the Hall and The Illusionists.

An Exceptional Night In is “at” The Citadel until October 17 – and information for all of Lucy Darling’s upcoming performances can be found on her website.

Read more.

[With thanks to Keith Tomasek for letting us know!]

From the October 5th article "An Exceptional Night In With Lucy Darling: get Zoomed on magic and mixology" by Liz Nicholls in 12th Night:

Henrix is also, incidentally, the Guinness record-holder for how long she can hold a lit torch in her mouth (witness the documentary Girl On Fire). Which would seem to have only a peripheral connection with her expertise in card tricks or cup-and-ball games. And none at all with Lucy’s uncanny ability, having asked an audience member for the name of their favourite book, to produce that very volume. Right then and there.

It’s a startling array of skills, to say the least, that Hendrix brings to the table (hers, as it happens in these COVIDian times). And one of them, you’ll discover, in a live Zoom “meeting” that brings 36 of us together, along with Lucy’s assistants, is an uncanny knack for making magic “real,” which is to say convincing, online.

Read more.

ICYMI, Neil Gaiman agrees:

08 October 2020

Thank you to our October 2020 sponsors!

This is a reminder that our sponsors also have bills to pay and mouths to feed.  If you have the means, please support them by making a purchase. 
If you would like to show your support for our sponsors, but have no immediate need for their products, consider purchasing a gift certificate which you can put to use (or not) at a later time.

Thank you to our sponsors for their generous support.

This site would not be possible without their backing.

We're grateful to have the support of:

The next time you see them, let them know you saw their sponsorship here!

For more information about purchasing Sponsored Posts or about our Platinum, Gold, or Silver level sponsorships, please visit our Sponsorship page.

Or you can Be Our Friend for only $20 per year! 

Donations of any size are always welcome.

07 October 2020

Our Compliments with The Sentimentalists (Virtual show FREE)

From Chris Mysterion's October 2nd Facebook post:

OK Who is in? Free online show Thursday at 2:30 with Steffi Kay The Sentimentalists. DM me (Mysterion) for the Zoom access code.


06 October 2020

Toronto: Audition for Jamie Allan's "Magic Maze Live"

From Jamie Allan's October 2nd Facebook post:

Tommy Bond and I have been working on this for well over a year and really excited in these challenging times to have the chance to provide opportunities for magicians and actors in Toronto.

Please see below and get in touch!






05 October 2020

Michel Huot on "Trick or Treat"

From Michel Huot's October 2nd Facebook post:

Mike Maione from New-York is hosting a very good show. Come check it out this monday

From the Parlor of Mystery mailing list:

Monday, October 5 - 11AM EDT
Michel Huot
Trick or Treat
Quebec’s favorite corporate magician is my guest this week. Michel Huot is a funny, innovative, and inventive magician who has produced some of the most popular effects used by magicians worldwide.

Monday’s show will be packed with lots of goodies. You’ll see funny stuff from Monty and Walker, a visit from the dead mentalist Alexander, some Brain Candy from Scott Franz and Geoff Williams, a bit of magic from me, and what promises to be a great chat with Michel.

Trick or Treat streams, Monday, at 11AM on the Parlor of Mystery Facebook page. Join us on Facebook and be part of the fun or watch it later on the Parlor of Mystery Facebook page or the Mike Maione channel on YouTube.


04 October 2020

Congratulations to Murray Sawchuck and best wishes to Dani Elizabeth

Congratulations and best wishes to you both!


From Murray Sawchuck's September 29th Instagram post:

Me and @danishowgirl did a thing today! She said YES!





03 October 2020

Congratulations to Sawyer Bullock

Congratulations and best wishes to you both!  


From Sawyer Bullock's September 27th Instagram post:

Asked my best friend to hang around a bit longer 💍💃🏼🕺🏼

01 October 2020

Broken wand: Robert (Bob) Lang

We were saddened to learn of the passing of Robert Lang on September 30th.  Our thoughts go out to his family, and friends at this impossible time. 

People are sharing their remembrances about Robert over at the Edmonton Magic Club Public Facebook page.



From the September 29th obituary published in the Edmonton Journal:

LANG, Robert (Bob) Alonzo
September 26, 1930 - September 26, 2020

It is with deep sadness that the family of Robert Lang of Edmonton announce his passing on his 90th birthday. Bob is survived by his beloved children: Neil, Ken (Sonya) and Shauna (Rob) Byar, eight well-loved grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Robert was predeceased by his loving wife Jean, parents Robert and Mabel, brother Stuart and daughter-in-law Gay. Robert was a master locksmith and the founder/owner of Lang Locksmiths Ltd. Throughout his life he was also a magician, entertainer, ski instructor, Rotarian and occasionally sang O' Canada at football and hockey games. Scouting had a huge impact on his life, career and in the upbringing of his family.

Read more.