Local magicians to lift curtain at open night for prospective members

Smith & Burns (Fifth Dimension). (Photo © Laurence Winram)

A SOCIETY of magicians in the north east is holding a free event this April to allow prospective members a glimpse behind the curtain.

Aberdeen Magical Society will hold an open night at 8pm on Tuesday, April 23 – at The Sportsman’s Club on Queen’s Road – allowing those interested in joining the chance to meet the members and learn more about the society.

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Attendance is free and open to anyone aged 18+ with an interest in magic – from complete beginners to passionate amateurs to skilled professionals. Attendees can register here: https://www.wegottickets.com/event/613842

President Garry Seagraves said: “Magic is usually a very secretive pastime, so we’re excited to welcome potential members to our first ever open night.

“Some might feel they are too inexperienced to join, but there is a place for all magic fans within our society – it’s a great place to learn and develop your magic in a friendly environment. We all start our magic journey somewhere, whether that’s with a magic set at the age of 8 or a flash of inspiration at 58!

“When people hear the words ‘magic society’ they think we all wear hoods and carry out secret handshakes – but that couldn’t be further from the truth. We’re just a group of passionate magic enthusiasts that love to come together to celebrate magic in all its forms.”

During Aberdeen Magical Society’s open night, guests will have the chance to see magic performed live and chat with members in a relaxed and casual setting.

Visitors will also learn more about the society – including its twice monthly meetings, guest lectures by magic stars from around the world, and public performances.

Garry continued: “We have a really active and enthusiastic membership, but we always love meeting new magicians. Everyone is welcome from experienced performers to magic scholars and historians, TikTok stars to people who just want to show their friends a few tricks in the pub.

“Our members come from all walks of life – some are teachers, IT specialists, marketing consultants, solicitors… some are even professional magicians.

“And they travel from all over the north east to our meetings every month: Aberdeen, Fraserburgh, Newburgh, Newtonhill. Our honorary life president, Bill Seagraves, even Zooms in from New Zealand every fortnight!

“There’s a really fantastic magic community here in Aberdeen, and we can’t wait to welcome more people into it.”

Aberdeen Magical Society has been a presence in the north east of Scotland since it was founded in 1926, building on the region’s strong magic heritage. In years gone by, popular performers hailing from Aberdeen and the north east – John Henry Anderson and Walford Bodie – graced stages around the world.

Anderson, who was given the name The Great Wizard of the North by Sir Walter Scott, was a huge inspiration to Harry Houdini. When the famed escapologist appeared at Aberdeen’s Palace Theatre in 1909, he made a special visit to Anderson’s grave in St Nicholas Kirkyard – still a must-see for visiting magicians to this day.

More recently, TV magic duo Barry and Stuart met as teens at Aberdeen Magical Society. The duo went on to headline primetime magic shows for Channel 4, the BBC, ITV, and Watch – as well as staging numerous live shows and tours.

Barry Jones said of the society: “When I lived in Aberdeen I regularly attended Aberdeen Magical Society. As a shy teenager, I found it such a supportive and welcoming environment.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out; at the society, it’s about more than just sleight of hand. It’s about community, camaraderie, and the sheer thrill of the impossible.

“It’s the perfect place to hone your skills and take your magic to the next level.”

Aberdeen Magical Society was founded in 1926, and for almost a century has promoted the art of magic across the north east of Scotland. Membership is open to anyone aged 18+ with a genuine interest in performing or studying magic.

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