October 18, 2012
Magic Month Guest Blog: Gareth shares his favourite Awkward Magic Moments
We’ve had the pleasure of inviting some of the UK's best magicians and mind readersinto our offices over the course of Magic Month – not a bad way to kill time between emails. Most recent to drop by was close-up magic maestro and all-round nice guy Gareth Kalyan, who was not only kind enough to blow our tiny minds with a few tricks, but also agreed to share a few thoughts on life as a magician, and more specifically some of the awkward spots a magician may find him/herself in over the course of an event.
Practice Makes Perfect
People often ask “How did you get into Magic?” or “Did you teach yourself?”
Once you’ve been bamboozled and beguiled by a self-proclaimed mind-bender, it’s natural to want to know where this person learned these mystical powers. Were they born with them? Were they sent here inside a meteor from a distant star? Or are they just not very good at doing anything else and have way too much time on their hands?
It is quite a lonely profession, you arrive at a gig alone, perform for the evening, travel home alone, and review your own work. So, what does a magician do all day? The answer is practise. A professional magician has to be strict with their time, It’s not all, wandering the streets at night, waking up at mid-day, watching Jeremy Kyle then having a Pub Lunch, we have to ensure that we keep to the very top our game whether that’s rehearsing whole stage routines, or down to the minutiae of perfecting a single card move.
So, rehearsed and practised you pop along to a lovely venue, armed and ready to wow everyone, 10 people at a time. But no matter how well drilled you think you are, tthere are some situations that no amount of practice can prepare you for. You can’t control everything can you?
Here are a few of my favourite awkward moments..
On this occasion, I was “off-duty” and had had a few pints in my local, with friends. I was asked to do a few tricks to some friends of friends who had come from Germany, I agreed and entertained them for about 10 minutes, all the while slightly inebriated, but it was going well regardless; until I turned my attention to a girl.
ME: “Here, you shuffle the cards”
Girl: “No, I’m ok”
ME: “It’s fine, it doesn’t have to be fancy, just mix them up”
Girl: *smiling* “No, I can’t”
ME: “Don’t be embarrassed, just do what you can”
Girl: “No. I CANT, I only have one hand.
How I missed it, I don’t know, at least she enjoyed watching me squirm for the next 10 minutes.
I was performing at Wembley Stadium before an England game, and part way through entertaining a group of well-behaved lads, a guy sat with his son caught my attention and beckoned me over. As I finished up with the group, I walked over and introduced myself to the pair. “Is this your son?” I asked. “No” he said, “It’s my wife” Oh dear. How do you recover from that? Well, I simply apologised and commented on how young she looked, suffice to say, they were thoroughly entertained! To top it off, she was a police officer!
But my favourite awkward moment has to be this gem…
“Is this your…BLAAAARGHPFTFF”
I do a trick where a person’s signed card is lost back in to the deck and after three failed attempts at finding it; I cough up their signed card and spit it out of my mouth. This is both disgusting and amazing. I have been performing this trick for about 12 years and have it down to a fine art, I keep the card in my mouth in such a way that it is impossible to notice even as I talk with it in there, and at the moment when I come to reveal it, I push it gently towards the back of my mouth, which invokes a small gag, this obviously adds to the drama of what is unfolding, but on this occasion, I pushed it a little too far back, gagged rather too much and swallowed the card. Suffice to say, I didn’t find it, and they are still waiting. As am I.
So, there you have a little insight into the world of a magician and how adaptable we have to be when meeting various people, nobody was hurt during the events and everybody was thoroughly entertained. When you next try to catch your entertainer off guard, remember this. We have probably heard it before, and if we can recover from incidences like this, then we should be tip-top and dandy with everything else!
For more information on booking Gareth for upcoming corporate events, head over to our contact page and get in touch.Gareth will be performing as part of our Magic Showcase on the 30th of October, click here for more info.