Adults Only Magic Show
The Forum Theatre
Presented by Showmen Productions
Performed by Sam Hume and Justin Williams
Reviewed by Ron Lee, CSP
The great perception of magicians is that they give us permission to revert to a child-like state and observe with innocence and fascination. In these times of disappointment, disillusionment and cynicism, it’s refreshing to be allowed the opportunity to go into wonder.
Enter Sam Hume and Justin Williams who are young and experienced practitioners of the prestidigitatorial arts. Even though most of their routines are traditional, they aren’t “magiciany”. You won’t hear, “I wave the magic wand”, “I sprinkle the magic dust”, “I snap my fingers”, “I blow on my hand” or any of the other clichés. There are no top hats, bow ties or waistcoats.
One of the ever-popular family favourite routines is the standing Straight Jacket Escape. It’s probably impractical in most venues to replicate Houdini’s upside-down, suspended escape. Sam and Justin make up for it by adding a potentially embarrassing consequence that adds humour and urgency.
Another is the Celebrity Prediction in which the magician reveals the audience member’s thought-of celebrity.
There is the mandatory card trick, but with a difference. Three random audience members participate, with one nominating the suit colour, another the suit and the third, the denomination. The reveal is done in an imaginative way.
They involved me in The Book Test where I chose one of three books, randomly nominated a page in that book and memorised the first word on the page. They then lit the highly flammable paper on the front of a frame on the stage, and my word was miraculously revealed. They did this version of The Book Test effortlessly, and it’s not as if I was being forced to select that book, or forced to choose that page or forced to select that word.
Justin’s Ideal Date is a multi-phase routine that’s on-going throughout the show, providing a running gag. The reveal comes in a receptacle that’s in sight for the entire show.
The most impressive effect occurs when a chosen celebrity is in the form of a black and white cartoon drawing. While the magicians are misdirecting themselves, a spectator on stage uses five different coloured markers to colour the five items of clothing. In a most impactful way, the colour of each item is revealed.
The Adults Only Magic Show, devised and performed by Sam Hume and Justin Williams, gives us an entertaining evening of vulnerable comedy and cheeky humour. “Adults only”? Take the kids along and give them an education.