I was away over the weekend. I attended a magic lecture by magician, Allen Okawa. Allen is a friend of my late-friend Roger Klause who was a major influence on many magicians worldwide through his ideas and tutelage. My friend, Sid introduced me to Roger in 1998 on my first trip to the USA as well as my first magic convention.
I enjoyed Allen’s variations on some of the classic plots in magic, mainly on cards, coins and novelty magic (for instance with cowry shells). He was entertaining, too, and that is as important in performance as in lecturing. The younger audience in attendance also left with a shift in their perception about magic. Magic is more than showing tricks to each other; it is about experiencing the human condition through each illusion. Art evokes emotions, deeper thought, and feelings.
What came across as important, too, was the naturalness in the way he handled an object or tool. Anything arousing suspicion destroys the illusion, and the art is in creating the illusion. A magical presentation is about theatre, and how the actor plays the part of the magician convincingly. David Copperfield, Lu Chien and David Blaine are actors on television and/or stage who display their art, as artists, through their playlets. Each act is a recreation and dramatisation of humankind’s ability to defy the laws of nature: produce, vanish, destroy and restore, and transport (across time and space) objects, livestock and people.
How much magic do you enjoy in your life?