Sunday, June 28, 2009

In Praise of a World Record

This evening, at 9.40pm, Singaporean illusionists J C Sum and ‘Magic Babe’ Ning established a new world. The dynamic duo performed 15 illusions in 5 minutes, in open-air conditions, without missing a beat. Despite the nagging humidity, a large audience of hundreds of tourists, locals and shoppers were enthralled by this highly ambitious challenge.

Emcee, Cyril whipped the audience into enthusiastic response, beforehand. Prior to the attempt, videotaped footage of a previous stunt (upside-down, blindfolded, straitjacket escape), set by Ning a week before was shown on two giant-screens.

I met Mr Ong Eng Huat, President of the Singapore Book of Records. He was present with his colleagues to act as adjudicators for a new national record. According to him, Singapore has positioned itself well with a significant number of world records. He presented the illusionists with an official certificate for their national record. President of the local chapter of the International Brotherhood of Magicians (IBM), John Teo presented JC and Ning with a plaque as recognition of their special achievement.

I also met Sin Yong, NUS medical student and a national record holder for the longest card throw of 29.8 metres (set in April 2008). He is focused on attempting the world record in a few years’ time.

Broadcast journalists from the region lined up for one-on-one interviews with the beaming illusionists. MagicSeen UK, a publication for magicians, sent Graham Hey from London to cover the event. Reporters from the Singapore-based website Red Dot Magic, were also present to cover the event.

As a point of interest, Olympian wheelchair athlete Dr William Tan completed 7 marathons across 7 continents in 26 days, 17 hours, 43 minutes and 52 seconds in 2008. Another Singaporean, Dr Kua Harn Wei was the first Singaporean (and world-ranked) to complete a Deca-Ironman in 2006; that is 10 Ironman triathlons over 10 days for a total of 2260 kilometres!

Let us know when you are attempting a world record. We are always on the lookout for leaders in their field of physical and mental prowess.

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