image001

Archives for December2015

Christmas is here

Christmas Eve has arrived and I’ve finished a successful programme of Christmas shows. These included the usual children’s parties for schools, pre-school groups etc, close up performances at dinners and several cabaret style performances for the residents of various care homes, including several repeat bookings.

I’ll spend time with the family over Christmas and then look forward to performing some close up magic at The Grand Harbour Hotel in Southampton on New Year’s Eve.

Magic for Insomniacs

I performed a cabaret show at a day centre for the elderly today in The New Forest. It went very well. I was however surprised that as I was leaving a lovely lady called me over and said how nice it was to have me there and that she hoped I would come again. I cheerfully replied that it was up to them of course. She then said that she had trouble sleeping and that the sleeping pills the doctor gave her were no good. However she had managed to sleep throughout my show and was sorry that she had missed it!!! So a new opportunity opens up to me, performing for insomniacs.

Magic of Christmas

Magic of Christmas is a term we hear and read a lot at this time of year. Over the years I have written several letters to the Daily Telegraph on a range of subjects but have never had one published, UNTIL NOW. It is shown below and to my mind the short story portrays the Magic of Christmas.

Sir

I am a magician and children’s entertainer. Some time ago I received an inquiry from Southampton. “We are having a Christmas party in our Hindu temple and would like you to entertain the children,” the man said.

I agreed and then remarked “I hope you don’t mind me saying this, but you are having a Christmas party in your Hindu temple?”

“Yes, we all live together in this country and should get on together.”

An example to us all.

Wedding Entertainment, Magicians and Children’s Entertainers

Wedding Entertainment – Magicians and Children’s Entertainers

For wedding entertainment, magicians and children’s entertainers are an increasingly popular choice. After choosing the venue, the type of reception, the photographer, the cake etc., many couples require some form of wedding entertainment for the guests.There is a wide variety from which to choose.

Before making a booking it is important to consider at which point in the proceedings the wedding entertainment is required and in the case of magic, the type of magic preferred.

The most popular choice is to book a table magician who will go around the tables between courses at the wedding breakfast, performing amazing close up magic right under the noses of the guests. Many table magicians will also perform a special effect for the bride and groom. This can be done either at their table or if preferred, a larger scale effect that can be seen by all the guests in which the bride and groom can rightfully be made the stars of the show but without any embarrassment whatsoever.

Most table magicians can get around between 10 and 20 tables during the time it takes to have a three or four course meal. Dependent on the table configuration this would normally allow for up to 200 guests. For larger weddings a second magician would probably be needed but of course every wedding is different. The precise arrangements would need to be discussed with the prospective magician before making the booking.

The magician can also usefully entertain guests over drinks in the bar or outside in the garden, weather permitting. In this situation magic can be a great ice breaker, particularly at larger weddings where perhaps many of the guests may not know each other. By their nature magicians are not shy of introducing themselves or other people to one another.

At larger weddings magic can also be used to entertain the guests while the photographs are being taken. Very often this can take a long time during which many guests are left standing around.

In choosing a magician it is important to consider whether any children at the wedding will need to be entertained separately, perhaps with, say, a 45 minute magic show during the speeches. This is popular where there are a reasonable number of younger children present who perhaps would get restless during the speeches. Magic shows are generally suitable for children aged 3 and above. Younger children would of course be welcome to watch the show but should be supervised by a parent or other responsible adult. In any event, it is usual to have a minimum of two adults present in the room. Remember, the magician is there to entertain the children, not to act as a baby sitter.

There are many magicians who specialize in close up magic only, which obviously would make them unsuitable for entertaining younger children. Children aged about eight and above enjoy the close up magic for adults but for younger ones special children’s effects are needed. A possibility would be to book a specialist children’s entertainer to entertain the younger ones and a table magician for the adults. It is usually cheaper however to book a magician who entertains both adults and children.Many will give a significant discount if booked for both a close up performance and a children’s show. If a separate children’s show is not required but where there will be some young children at the reception it would be sensible to book a table magician who also entertains children and ask him or her to bring a few children’s effects along.

Another important factor to consider in the choice of magician is the style of the wedding. If it is a formal wedding and the reception is held in a high class venue the choice of a young magician who might turn up in jeans and a tee shirt might not be appropriate however good the magic might be. Conversely, such a magician might be the ideal choice for an informal wedding where the majority of the guests are younger. Decide what you want and ask the magician to dress accordingly.

For those weddings where the reception is held in the afternoon and followed by an evening event to which very often additional guests are invited, a magician can also provide suitable entertainment. This can be in the form of close up magic prior to a disco or perhaps a cabaret act as a main item of entertainment. It is important to remember that close up magic should be finished before the start of any musical entertainment.

Finally, to ensure you are making the right choice, make sure that the magician is suitably experienced, look at the website for photographs taken at weddings to see the reaction of the audience (not clever photos posed in a studio.) Ask for references if in any doubt; this is your special day and everything needs to be right.

Whatever you choose, I hope this article is helpful in illustrating how booking a magician can make your special day really magical.

Christmas Parties, add a touch of magic

Christmas parties and related events keep us magicians very busy at this time of year. Magic is an ideal form of entertainment whether for children or adults. I have a good number of bookings ranging from Christmas parties for preschool groups to shows in care homes at the other end of the age range and close up magic performances at more formal Christmas dinners.

It’s always nice to have repeat bookings and among those I have this year are a preschool group and a formal Christmas dinner at a public school in Croydon, both of which have booked me since 2007.

On Friday night I entertained children and their parents queuing to see Father Christmas at the late night Christmas shopping evening in my local town of Romsey. In contrast, away from the Christmas theme, last night I performed close up magic and a children’s show for a French couple in Basingstoke at the lady’s 40th birthday party which was a very enjoyable evening.

I still have a few dates available for Christmas parties so if you would like to make your Christmas party really magical do give me a call on 01794 324345 or complete the enquiry form or email me at magician@ianmarriott.co.uk.

I’m also looking forward to performing close up magic at the Grand Harbour Hotel in Southampton on New Year’s Eve.

Happy Christmas to all my readers.

Ian