Welcome to the Fylde Mystics!
promoting the performance of Magic
Tuesday 19th November - STAR LECTURE with Jon Armstrong. - Review by Paul Joyce
Alan Welcomed a good turnout from visitors and regulars alike to our special lecture. Right from the off, we were treated to some fantastic, workable magic. Jon is Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Academy of Magical Arts and told us about his experiences there and the way the Castle operates has changed over the years. Jon is very easy to listen to and has lots of sage advice about performing. He started off by teaching us all rubber band through neck routine which is a 'throw-away' gag type effect but one that can be used to break the ice. I am sure we will all be working on later!
Jon had two people up at his table throughout his lecture so that he was able to firstly perform the tricks in real time and then break them down and explain how he performs the effects and more importantly the reasons for why he does them the way he does. There were lots of side discussions and Jon is clearly passionate about performance magic. Like a lot of lecturers these days, making the connection between the performance and the strength of the effect is often more valuable than learning how to do the effect itself.
Each effect was honed to get the most entertainment out of them but also to squeeze ever last bit of magic from them too. Jon has a firm belief in going back in history and seeing how effects were first developed before they get dissected, before going on to work on them, often bringing them up to date. We were treated to many of Jon's 'signature' effects and in particular his recent release 'Little Plunger' which has gained a huge following amongst performers.
It was such a good lecture time ran on and before we knew it, it was to 11pm and we all had to go home to our beds, but not before we spent a little money on some great value lecture notes and props!
If you get the chance, don't miss out on the lecture. Photos HERE
12th November - Trick Session.
Stuart Bowie kicked things off with a great chop cup routine. Steve Eastham leapt up next with a nice routine by Al Smith Cards On Demand from 1959, I don't think he bought it new! Ryan Robertson did a lovely card routine by Jay Sankey followed by Ian Birket who performed Danny Archers Eye Exam, great routine. He was followed by Colin Wilson showing us a great colour change. Tim Knight leapt into the fray next with an ace transposition trick (a la,Dr Daley). Jonathan Joyce was back with us and showed a great Cliff Lount/Ali Bongo Classic, Die through Mirror. Harry Moulding showed us a lovely sponge ball routine he had been working on. Allan Clarke came next with wonderful card routine "Impossible" by Larry Jennings. George Jennings was anxious to share a card cutting trick, a lovely routine by David Solomon. Paul Joyce enlightened us with Paul Gordons OMG routine and Alan Mylecraine finished the first half with Wayne Dobsons 'Second Chance'. The second half got underway with Alan M rushing back on stage with a really funny date prediction by Marc Paul. Paul Joyce showed us a Rob Bromley effect, George followed on with a lovely Dragons Den patter signature effect Ali Cooks 'Dream Catcher'. He was quickly followed by Allan with another 'Impossible' trick this time by Mike Austin, Jonathan couldn't contain his excitement and treated the group to a performance of his 'World Cup' Prediction, lets hope he is right! Next Harry came back on stage to perform a great card prediction based on a Brian Berry routine involving some 3D glasses. Tim was next with a 'Do as I Do' routine where they chose each others card or nearly! Ian was next with his pyjama cord and a ring routine which was very smooth and well rehearsed. Our new member Ryan stepped to the fore next, performing a fantastic mind reading routine from Robert Smith called 'Psypher'. Steve was next, performing from Peter Duffie effortless Card Magic, great effect. Stuart came next with an Acrobatic Knot routine, chosen by the members! He quickly followed this with a clever card prediction usaing a very sneaky method, fantastic effect. Steve jumped back up eager to show another miracle from Peter Duffie's Effortless Card Magic. Ryan was next up with a city prediction called 'Destination Unknown', we weren't sure about Alans choice of city though! Alan was next with Ultimate Brainwave by Card Shark which was very deceiving. Harry finished the night with a bank note routine which had us all in stiches. Based on Scott Penrose's note in pocket watch.
A great night with a great group of magicians. We are all looking forward to seeing Jon Armstrong on the 19th November for an 'Extra Session'. Why not join us?
9th October - Wayne Houchin Lecture -
Review by Paul Joyce
Wayne started with a signature piece, 'thread through the eye', which certainly got our attention! He then talked us through a couple of methods of doing it. One way I will certainly be giving a miss but purely because of me being too soft! Then shared a second method for those of us who are a little less daring. Two really effective methods. He then moved onto Houdini's last card trick, taking us through how this effect has been developed down the years and how it first started its life with Wayne and how he uses photographs of Harry Houdini's last deck of cards. This is a very clever routine worth exploring.
He then moved on to his version of Paul Harris "Unshuffled Rebecca", a really well thought out routine with a great method and a super kicker at the end with blackjack. He followed this with his fantastic card prediction on arm "Stigmata" that I am sure everyone who tries it will end up doing on a regular basis. It's certainly an effect that will leave an impression on audiences. He opened the second half with coin into can of sprite, really effective trick. The thinking behind the method is wonderful and shows how much thought goes into his routining and effects. Great torn and restored business card routine that anyone who uses business cards could certainly use to great effect.
Another quality lecture from a fantastic performer who also has a wonderful personality and happy in sharing and explaining his magic to us all. We have had some wonderful lectures and we can certainly say that Wayne's joined the list of great nights here at The Fylde Mystics. Photos HERE
3rd September - Mentalism Night
6th August - The Trick Clinic
2nd July - Mini AGM and Trick Session - Meeting Review by
At the close of our 5th year since
re-forming, it's only right to reflect on another great
year and set plans for the next. There was a good
turnout for our mini AGM with some great suggestions and
a few extra ideas for getting out there performing as a
society. (Keep checking back for details of our
Paul Joyce kicked off the trick session with ‘Mixed Up Prediction’ from Magictrix, Paul asked for some feedback on the cards to which he get lots of good tips, Steve Eastham followed on with Al Smiths “Stop Right There”, a lovely routine with a surprising revelation. Ian Birket couldn’t hide his enthusiasm in jumping up next and giving us ‘Gemini Twins’. Tim Knight next did a super routine where at the reveal he flicked off the number of pips needed to match the chosen card. Leslie Melville was next with a nicely routined ring and rope routine. Allan Clarke leapt up next with his version of Aldo Colombinis “Jumbo”. Harry Moulding was next showing us his latest trick, a great card routine with all cards showing ‘Wrong’ on the back at the end but the chosen card showing ‘Right’! George Jennings was next showing us Dr Daleys last trick and then Alan Mylecraine did a fantastic version of a card trick using Simon Aronsons “Undo Principle”. Steve Eastham started the second half showing us his version of Cliff Lounts “Post Card” – really clever card trick. Ian Birket entertained us with his ‘ring and string’ wedding ring routine performed his recent wedding. Allan Clarke came next with a ‘twisted sister’ kind of effect from J C Wagner, George Jennings performed ‘Loopy Loops’ and was offered a couple of extra pieces to the effect and Alan Mylecraine finished the night with Chad Longs “Scratch”.
As usual there were some great routines and ideas shared, yet another wonderful night at The Fylde Mystics – why don’t you come and see what all the excitement is about? Photos HERE
Tuesday 18th June - FISM Card Champion Jan Logemann - Meeting Review by Allan ClarkeHaving enjoyed lectures from an unprecedented FOUR FISM champions in the last 18 months the Fylde Mystics were again in the news for hosting the latest World Card Magic Champion, Jan Logemann from Germany. Jan competed in the FISM Championships last year and added the Card Magic trophy to an already impressive array of awards. His style is very different and his relaxed presentation belies the sheer inventiveness and tremendous planning that goes into his work. He is an undisputed card mechanic with plenty of skills on display, or rather not on display if you get my meaning. Impossible climaxes build from very small and almost 'throw away' beginnings to astound the audience or rather 'guests' as he likes to refer to them. There is nothing 'standard' about his effects, certainly in the sense that you will see lots of other magicians performing them. This said, he has taken a number of 'classics' and pushed them in an entirely new direction and in some cases they become barely recognisable. 'Ring vanish to impossible location' or 'Bill switch' do not adequately describe the effects that his audience will see although their genesis does lie here. The first thing the strikes you is the pace of the delivery, slow, almost haphazard but imperceptibly building on a mastery of misdirection to the point that the re-telling of what the audience saw can only be described in ever growing terms of impossibility. The next difference is the lengths he will go to in achieving the desired effects. The lecture described an incredible amount of fine detail in the planning and preparation and he has developed some brilliant devices, some physical, some temporal, to allow the 'dirty work' to be achieved. Lastly is the 'layering' that underpins his presentation, nothing is left to chance, almost! For those that have seen him, you will know what I mean. You have to admire his tenacity in not sacrificing the strength of an effect just to make it easier to perform. He's also very funny, self deprecating with an easy manner when handling the audience. But if anything, this lecture was an object lesson in artistic fervour. Indeed, Jan openly credits his 'Artistic Director' as fundamental to his success and I think it says a lot about the majority of magicians do not see the relevance of seeking the advice of an impartial critic who understands the theatrical aspects of presentation. Some observers might say his approach is 'ballsy' or 'gutsy' but I think they are overlooking the level of effort and risk mitigation employed in producing an absolute stunner of an effect. Yes, the methods can seem to be 'ballsy' but he relies on misdirection and clever verbalisation to guide the audience away from the methods or to reinforce the impossibility and at the end of it, the effort he puts into the planning and the finely scripted presentation are a small price to pay for the unbelievable strength of the effects as they play out. Even in a room full of magicians there were more than a few gasps of surprise. It would be easy to list out the effects we saw on the night but I think it is better to let those who have yet to see him, enjoy the full power of the experience. If you haven't seen him, go and seek him out, you will learn a lot more than 'tricks'. Another feather in the Fylde Mystics cap. Photos HERE.
4th June - DIY Magic
7th May - Annual Close-up Competition
1st Place - Paul Joyce
2nd Place - Allan Clarke
3rd place - Harry Moulding
A separate award, sponsored by Steve Eastham, for the 'Best Card Trick of the Night' went to Allan Clarke.
Another great night of Magic. Photos, as always, can be found HERE
Tuesday 9th April - Star Lecture with Gregory Wilson: Meeting Review by Allan Clarke
This was always going to be a great lecture. With over a dozen visitors supplementing our usual suspects, the room was buzzing waiting to see what Greg would bring to our particular party. We weren't disappointed. He seemed to fill the whole two hours with a vast array of effects that involved few or no props at all. It was something of a revelation to see so much done with so little. Not that they didn't have impact. Every effect made their mark with unnerving accuracy, fooling many seasoned semi-pro's and keen amateurs alike. His signature effect left a number of people with something of a 'chip' on their shoulder, (quite literally in some cases) but the entertainment value was beyond measure. Given he had only just recovered from food poisoning, his energy and sense of fun were at bursting point, infecting everyone in the audience. Comedy played a huge part in the presentation and much fun was had during a 'smoking' session, a pen and the inevitable, but still surprising watch steal (twice in fact). He did venture into some very neat card effects and demonstrated he was very adept at controls, spin-outs and forces, many of which caught quite a few people out. The most enjoyable segment for me was down to his rubiks cube solution which was supremely entertaining and quite skillful despite his self deprecating approach to it. He even canvassed opinion on which of two methods of solution played better proving that even an acknowledged master can still learn from his audience. Cutlery abounded towards the end of the lecture although to be honest you could never really tell which utensil would be displayed at the climax. He had some great ideas on the 'pocket toppit' and 'muscle pass' which at first sight looked impossible to achieve but clearly could with some guidance. Some further ideas on improptu magic using readily available props were discussed and as if the evening wasn't already crammed with information, he went through some of his bill switch and utility gimmicks which on their own could have filled a separate session had time been available. All in all, a top class talk from a very clever thinker, performer and all round nice guy. Photos HERE.
Tuesday 6th March - STAR LECTURE with MARK LEVERIDGE
Tuesday was another
of The Fylde Mystics famous lecture
nights and this time, we brought to the
Fylde Coast – Mark Leveridge. Most
people will know Mark as a dealer,
performer and also for Magicseen, and it
was evident with the number of visitors
that people were keen to see his lecture
and they weren’t disappointed. It was
tiltled “walkaround” magic, through
which Mark took us through the do’s and
don’ts, what to look out for, the
different kinds of people and situations
you will find yourself in, even how he
has had his suit specifically made for
Some of the effects
that were performed and explained were a
Colour change deck routine “Colour
Confusion” a coin routine “Coin
Collectors Purse”, a business card
routine “Business Exchange”, and
an ambitious card routine among others.
Everyone of the routines Mark performed
was a real workers routine, at no point
did you think – will this work?, you
immediately saw that it was a routine
that has been obviously honed and would
work out in the field. It’s hard to say
what were my own favourites as they were
all so good, but I am working on the
coin routine, business card transfer and
I thought Marks version of the Ambitious
Card routine was superb for a volunteer
and will be working on that too! He also
showed a great holdout which I won’t
divulge – see his lecture. At the end
Mark did a small dealer dem where he
went through some of the items he could
offer. All in all, a wonderful lecture
and one that when you left, you were
armed with lots of practical ideas and
effects that you know you will use. If
you can, get along to see his lecture.
Tuesday 5th February - Two Tricks from a borrowed DVDWith numerous players out with injuries or enjoying warm weather in foreign climes or even out earning a crust, it was down to a few stalwarts to hold the fort. With an enthusiasm far greater than the numbers would suggest 'Two Tricks from a borrowed DVD' launched with Allan Clarke performing Harry Anderson's 'Gang of Four' from the DVD 'Corporate Close-up Vol. 2' put out by RSVP magic. It's a great plot, engages quite a few people and is ideal for close-up at tables. Next was Steve Eastham who took some great ideas from Paul Gordon's 'Card Startlers' DVD. 'Peter's Foursome' is another engaging plot with some surprises along the way. George Jennings made a welcome return and looking trim after a few weeks dieting. George had a nice routine using Alan Wong's 'Dream Lock' which raised some discussion. Next from The Corporate Close-up DVD was Iain Morans 'Ideal opener' which combines a few standards into an attention grabbing set. More Paul Gordon followed with Steve's rendition of 'The Royal Marriages'. George was short of volunteers for his final effect but proceeded to get a few laughs and some good ideas as the evening expanded to accommodate detailed explanations and thoughts on improvements.
8th January - STAGE MAGIC
members rushed to collect a DVD for next months trick
from a DVD night. Yet another fantastic night.
12th December - Close-up show at the Garstang Masonic
Following a successful visit last year, out team were invited back to the Wyrebank Banqueting Suite to give members a Christmas Treat. Allan Clarke, Joe Gilmour, Paul Joyce, Harry Moulding and Brian Berry entertained at tables for over an hour and a half, giving the assembled crowd some Christmas cheer and the Fylde Mystics some welcome funds.
Tuesday 4th December - Trick Clinic
With a number of members succumbing to illness, being away or performing at other gigs, the meeting was low on numbers but high on enthusiasm. Quite a few tricks were on parade and the select group discussed a number of effects and variations. Steve Eastham had a couple of Wayne Dobson effects to demonstrate with others joining in and making the evening worthwhile.
Tuesday 6th November - Star Lecture with Woody Aragon - Meeting Review by Paul JoyceWow! I have held back a little on writing the review to this lecture as it completely blew me away! Just to put it in context, I am 43 years old (just look older) and saw my first magic lecture when I was 15 – Woody’s lecture was the greatest lecture I have EVER seen, both in mind blowing magic and also entertainment. Others had obviously already heard just how good Woody was as it was a record turnout for the Fylde Mystics with people standing at the back. Woody started with a great routine involving an imaginary ring on everybody’s finger which drew huge laughs and got everybody relaxed from the start. And from there he proceeded to blow everybody away with routine after routine, I have never seen so many magicians as mystified as we were at this lecture! Once we had all recovered from the amazement we had seen Woody then broke it down and talked through how he does things and more importantly, why he does it. Some great stack decked routines, sleights when needed and some wonderful subtlety. He ended by performing a poker routine in which some people lost their valuables, at one stage they could even see cards in advance and decide if they wanted them – they still lost! Woody started his explanations by saying he looks for three things in his act:
1. Being a gentleman magician – kind, the sort of person people would want to spend time with.
2. Impossible magic
3. Bring emotion to his act.
He certainly brought those 3 points together perfectly, we have seen some great lectures at The Fylde Mystics but at Woody’s lecture I have witnessed someone raising the bar to new levels.
Get to see his lecture if you can, I’m saving up for his DVD’s!! PHOTOS HERE
Tuesday 2nd October - Table Hopping:
Organised on the lines of our previous Trick Drive, members competed for no prizes of note in a table hopping session. It was a great chance for everyone to work through some new routines for their close up set. Members taking part were Alan Mylecraine, Paul Joyce, Jonathan Joyce, Harry Moulding, Steve Eastham, Stuart Bowie, Colin Williams, Ian Birket, Adrian Catch, Leslie Melville and David Towers. The quality on show was superb as usual and it was also good to see members trying out new things to put in their close up set. Great night for all and all members are looking forward to Woody Aragon in November. A warm welcome to new junior member David Towers and best wishes for a speedy recovery to George Jennings following his visit to hospital.
Tuesday 4th September - Money Magic:
After a warm welcome to prospective junior member David Towers and to advise members of the new management of the clubhouse, Alan M invited Ron Wilson to open up the money magic session. Ron opened with a nice coin to nest of (home made) box routine with an effective coin transposition. Leslie Melville treated us once again to his signature 'Jap Box' routine which gets better with each viewing. Adrian Catch gave an entertaining rendition of a coins across routine roping in a couple of members to act as children and was followed by George Jennings with the first of two Coin transpo's utilising some clever props. Allan Clarke next hedged his bets with a game of chance, offering a chance to win a number of prizes ranging from a £50 note down to a 2p coin. Alan Mylecraine gave the second demonstration of the coin transpo, cleverly removing a coin from a sealed bag. Tim Knight followed with another Okito Box routine and was replaced on stage by Joe Gilmour who obviously hadn't read the theme for the night when he launched into a turnover card routine. It was a good one though! Stuart Bowie gave an audio visual treat with coins through silk and was followed by Steve Eastham with a Paul Gordon trick using five pound notes as locators. Harry Moulding displayed some mature handling with a coin in bottle routine and the first session was completed with newcomer David Towers showing some card location skills. After the break Ron Wilson showed us a neat coin and match effect which had a 'bar trick' type theme. Leslie Melville, asked David to use his imagination in selecting a coin which turned out to be in his hand all the time. George Jennings demonstrated an intriguing 'scratch card' type effect, changing a £10 not into a £20 with a few scrapes of a coin. Allan Clarke correctly predicted the outcome of a 3 coin selection after which Alan Mylecraine Bet a few £20's on the outcome of a few selected cards. Needless to say, he kept his money! Tim Knight gave a presentation of a signed coin to nest of boxes before making way for Joe Gilmour with a sponge ball and bag routine which held a few laughs. Stuart Bowie ran through an interesting Lottery ticket to Bill switch while Steve Eastham followed with a four of a kind card location. Harry Moulding demonstrated he had been hard at work on a coin matrix which was simple but very effective. To close the evening, David Towers completed his audition with another couple of effects including a 4 Ace production and a coin puzzle.
Tuesday 7th August - Mini AGM and Trick Session:
start of our 5th great year we were
particularly pleased to welcome back
two members who we have been missing
of late, Ken Ashburn and Ron Wilson.
Alan Mylecraine opened the Mini AGM
and handed over to Steve Eastham who
presented the year end accounts. A
brief discussion took place on the
forthcoming programme and ideas
presented to encourage better use of
the library. Paul Joyce has agreed
to bring the library contents along
to each meeting for members to
browse. Having decided the society
was in good shape, we went straight
into or regular trick session when
Steve Eastham opened up with a Dan
Parker effect called Riffle Chance.
Stuart Bowie followed up with a nice
'Do as I do effect' correctly
duplicating Ian's free choice card.
George Jennings delivered some
interesting advertising sub messages
and correctly predicted which word
Alan M would choose. Ian Birket
showed his skill with sponge balls,
much to the amazement of Jonathan
who ably assisted. Allan Clarke
performed Aldo Colombini's 'Contact
Colours', a nice multi kicker card
effect. Jonathan Joyce played a safe
bet by demonstrating Paul Gordon's
Poker deal. Ken Ashburn made a very
welcome return to the hot-seat and
proceeded to fool everyone with a
'memorised deck' routine. Harry
Moulding took to the floor with a
well delivered 'poppet bead' routine
possibly not realising that the
undisputed master of this effect was
sat in the room with him! Alan
Mylecraine risked a Boo and a Hiss
whilst looking for a Clap and a
Cheer with the Andy Nyman routine.
Another welcome return for Ron
Wilson who brought on a 'pet' to
help Harry M with a nice card
prediction. After a short break,
Steve Eastham came back with another
Paul Gordon effect, while Stuart
Bowie regaled us with some fine ring
and rope moves. Paul Joyce got a
little dotty but not before he
showed us a dice melt through silk.
Ken Ashburn delivered another
knockout punch before retiring,
extending his memorised deck routine
by announcing the order of a
shuffled deck, simply astounding.
George Jennings folded and crimped
his way through an entertaining
'Origami' based effect and Ian
Birket closed the session by pouring
a little oil on water with a Roy
Walton style routine. Another great
night full of laughs. Photos HERE
Tuesday 10th July - STAR LECTURE from Pit Hartling:
Mystics have had some great lectures
since reforming and have developed a
reputation for quality working
magicians – guess what – they did it
again! They were very lucky to get
the chance of a “closed lecture” to
Fylde Mystics members only by Pit
Hartling of Germany and it was
fantastic. Pit ran through some
fabulous tricks mainly taken from
his book Card Fictions with any
questions being answered and
explained by Pit who was a fantastic
teacher and really gave his time to
all members who were there. There
were to many highlights to mention,
but reading the colour of the cards
through a table being one, finger
flicking which is something I really
want to work into my set. Triple
countdown blew me away, the wealth
of material and thinking behind his
magic was immense and we were all
lucky to have been given such a
quality lecture by a superb working
professional. On another note, Pit’s
English was fantastic and I just
wonder how many of us could go to
Germany and be so fluent in their
language! If you get the chance to
see his work – you must go and see
him, I’m certainly pleased that I
did, thanks Pit. Photos HERE
Tuesday 12th June
2012 - Swap a Trick night:
our annual “swap a trick” session
where members bring along a couple
of tricks, have 20 minutes or so to
teach them to another member who
then goes on and performs them to
the group. With a strong turnout of
members it proved to be yet another
success with members being taken out
of their comfort zones and trying
out something that they may not
normally use with sometimes comical
reactions! It really highlights the
rehearsal that is needed even with a
simple effect when you see it
performed by someone who had only
learnt it 20 minutes before and it
reminded us all that all the
practice we put in at home on our
effects is worth it as it really
does show. If your club have never
had one of these nights I really
recommend them! Photos HERE
Tuesday 3rd May
2012 - Annual Close-up Competition
A large crowd gathered for the annual Close Up Competition, an event that always seems to attract the people in. This year we were proud to be able to welcome The Northern Magic Circle President and his good lady Steve Bellerby & Louise. Once again it was organised by Steve Eastham who also compered the event to his usual high standard. The man with the hardest job of going first was Tim Knight who soon had the audience under his spell performing some great magic and introducing us to his witches cat! Great cards across routine, and even made a crystal ball out of water! An excellent start to the night. Next on the list was past winner Alan Mylecraine who showed us part of his table hopping routine, well honed routines followed which had the audience in stitches and a great foil in Doctor Harry Pindred. Next up was one of our juniors Harry Moulding who charmed the audience with his magic and entertainment, he did a very good version of the torn & restored card, unequal ropes and finished with a great take on a Dynamo routine. Following on from Harry was last year’s winner Paul Joyce who had fun with a volunteer with a poker effect, his version of Mark Leveridge’s Credit card scare and a chosen card and rat trap! He even treated his assistant to a shot of whisky! Next up was another junior and our youngest member Jonathan Joyce who started by saying you have seen the “old Joyce, now watch the improved version”! He made time stop for NMC president Stevie Bellerby, predicted somebody’s chosen card and finished strongly with a breathtaking production of the four aces, culminating in a colour changing deck. Next up was Allan Clarke who delved into everybody’s minds with some neat predictions and then turned into 'Gypsy' Clarke as he performed a fantastic card prediction using an inherited crystal ball. The final spot went to Colin Williams who had the audience in tears with some superb comedy and a great card routine – Colin really has a natural timing. All in all it was a wonderful night of entertainment and all can be proud of how they represented The Fylde Mystics. Special mention must be made of Harry Moulding & Jonathan Joyce who both performed to an adult standard and it is heartening to see the future of magic in these two. The judges, Tom Brown, Richard Blackie and Stevie B then retired to vote and the final result was:
2. Alan Mylecraine
3. Paul Joyce
Best Card Trick: Colin Williams
Tyro Trophies: Jonathan Joyce & Harry Moulding
3rd April 2012 - Members Workshop
We may have
been few in number due to the Easter
holidays but that didn't reduce the
amount of entertainment on offer.
Members were invited to bring along
a new effect for trial, with a view
to gathering comments and help on
performance aspects. Everyone took
to this in the spirit it was
intended. Allan Clarke was first out
with a rendition of Josh Jay's 'Big
Deal'. This is a gambling based
effect which whilst stunning in it's
two stage climax had failed to get
the appropriate responses. After the
performance and an overview of its
workings, members offered a number
of good pieces of advice to better
'sell' the effect. Tim Knight was
out next with an idea for a series
of shows he has coming up. This
involved a number of 10 minute
'acts' all of which could be done
out of a small box. Tim ran through
a few ideas, pulling props and gags
galore out of a small box and
gathering ideas as he went along.
Leslie Melville came out with a nice
invisible coin trick he had been
working on but hadn't yet had the
opportunity to try on the public. It
played well and even though it was
based on an old principle would no
doubt have a strong impact on a lay
audience. George Jennings brought
along some Tamariz colour changing
pen knives complaining that he had
yet to master the moves involved.
This was soon dispelled as the moves
were 'perfect' and only George
thought it wasn't up to scratch.
This display was followed by a
discussion on a suitable premise for
the routine which gave George some
ideas to work with while Harry had a
go with the knives to learn the
handling. Alan Mylecraine took to
the stage with a new routine with a
number of phases. Alan was looking
for performance tips and some ideas
about this 'Ambitious' Card to
Wallet routine. It was a good
routine which should find it's way
into his act very soon. Harry
Moulding had brought along an effect
he had purchased recently,
'Houdini's Beads'. Based on the
'Magic Washing line' principle,
Harry needed some handling tips and
an idea of how to get the climax to
work well. After a couple of tries,
it did come together to allow Harry
to take the props home and work on
it further. Allan Clarke had another
effect that needed some suitable
premise for presentation. This 'Mind
Reading' type effect (complete with
Crystal Ball!)was discussed and some
presentational ideas suggested.
Allan went away with some very
sensible suggestions and potential
story-lines. Lastly Tim Knight
came out with an old Supreme Prop
called 'Funny Photos', first of all
trying to devise how the effect
should run, then to discuss how he
might make best use of it. Another
very interesting evening with lots
of ideas and suggestions to help the
performance of Magic. Photos can be
Tuesday 6th March 2012 - In house Auction and Trick Session
meeting started with our in-house
auction, plenty of deals were had
and much merriment & laughter
ensued with people’s sales patter
and everbody else’s deep pockets!
After the sales pitch finished, the trick session started with Steve Eastham keen to be first out of the blocks – he got things underway with a great version of Al Smiths “Further on”, Ian Birkett was quick to respond with a super “blizzard” card routine. Harry Moulding came up next and did his routine for “Crazymans Handcuffs”, he had obviously spent time learning the routine and it showed – well done Harry. Joe Gilmour leaped into the arena next and showed us his routine for Mark Leveridge’s “Jumbo Cards Across” that he bought at a recent auction. Joe’s routine really breathed life into the effect and his chamfered card holders were a delight to see!! Paul Joyce explaining how he found the impromptu version of “Out of This World” that he performed in a Roy Johnson book he bought at auction. Jonathan Joyce followed and as usual out performed his Dad with a lovely Rabbit card trick from Brian Berry. Tim Knight came on and had worked out a lovely routine for “Twisted Sisters” and had taken it from a close up trick and turned it into a cabaret or stage effect. Fantastic thinking. George Jennings then sprinted to the front and performed his version of a haunted matchbox routine, there can’t be many magicians who are as original in their effects as George, you will always get a novel approach from him. Alan Mylecraine brought up the rear with his version of Brian Caswell’s ”The Fifth Card”, as always an excellent performance.
Time for a
break and recharge of the glasses
and then on with the second half,
Steve Eastham again got us underway
with Nick Trosts “Nine Card” version
1, Ian Birkett was next up with a
lovely dice routine, Harry Moulding
hot on his heels with a rising card
routine. Joe Gilmour was next up
performing his version of Wayne
Dobson’s “Second Chance”, Paul Joyce
followed on with Brian Caswells
“Triology”, Jonathan Joyce was next
with his “do as I do routine”, Tim
Knight came next with “Attaboy” and
GeorgeJennings was last up with a
lovely routine for getting your
business cards into play. Time had
run out, and another great night
at The Fylde Mystics was over.
7th February 2012 - Pocket Trick
meeting was our first “Michael
Alford’s Pocket Trick Drive” organised by
Stuart Bowie. You don’t know what
one is? Neither did we till the
meeting, but what a great meeting it
turned out to be. Stuart explained
how the night would work and how
without the late Michael Alfords
work on the system it would never
work. Hence it is rightly named
after Michael Alford.
Basically, we all sat at tables of three people, performed a trick each, awarded each other points and then moved on to the next table. The effects that were performed at my tables were: Paul Joyce doing a version of Eddie Burkes “Weird & Occult”, Jonathan Joyce doing a confident version of “Mother of all Card Tricks”, Steve Eastham with Wayne Dobson’s “Starling”, Allan Clarke did Joshua Jay’s “Big Deal”, George Jennings with Michael Close’s “Tamariz Rabbits”, Colin Williams with a very clever card trick of his own, Joe Gilmour with Mark Mason’s “Stuck Up Monte”, Tim Knight did his version of “This, that & the other”, while Alan Mylecraine did his improved version of Bill Thompsons “Wink Diary”. After that, it was time for the break before cracking on with the second half: Paul Joyce with a version of Paul Gordon’s “Poker Trick”, Jonathan Joyce with “Do as I do”, Steve Eastham did Peter Duffie’s “Found Out”, Allan Clarke started finger flinging, George Jennings did a John Guastaferro’s “Truth In Advertising” card trick, Joe Gilmour did his version of “This, That & the other”, Colin Williams doing one handed card productions whilst the deck is behind his back, Tim Knight with a version of “Cards Across”, where he misdirected me perfectly and Alan Mylecraine with Brian Caswell’s “Triology”.
They were the
effects that I saw performed, but,
that asides there were plenty of
conversations abound, with people
discussing their effects and reasons
for doing them and general good
natured banter. Thanks to Stuart
Bowie for introducing us to the
idea, I just hope he realises he has
made himself an annual job now! The
winner with the most points for the
first half was Joe
with the winner for the second half
and the person with the most points
overall was Steve
Roll on the next “Michael Alford
Pocket Trick Drive”
January 2012 - Trick Clinic
On the first meeting of the new year, what we lacked in numbers, we made up for in enthusiasm and quality. Allan Clarke deputised for Alan Mylecraine who was attending to some important fatherhood duties and had sent apologies. We all wished Alan Mylecraine and Joanne well on the arrival of their son Thomas.
The meeting was
designed as a forum for exploring
new effects, getting help with
existing effects or simply advice on
presentation. Allan Clarke
opened the session with a throwaway
'Uri Gellar' type effect using a
flexible straw which seemed to catch
the attention, before seeking
presentation advice on a memory
effect. Allan had created a
'Celebrity Phonebook' and for any
given celeb, could recite the phone
number and location of the given
star. This prompted some debate as
to the presentation due to the use
of a Pad, and suggestions were
offered to eliminate any clues as to
the method. Allan followed this up
with another effect using the same
principle by correctly divining
serial numbers from a selected
banknote. George Jennings stepped
out next looking for inspiration for
the use of a prop he had purchased
at a considerable discount some
years ago. The prop was called
'Overboard' from Paul Stone. The
prop created some interesting ideas
for it's use although it was felt to
be more of a puzzle than a magical
effect, some useful suggestions did
come out though and no doubt George
will be back later with another dry
humoured routine. Colin Williams
rested while Joe Gilmour, on his
welcome return, brought out a Paul
Gordon effect called Red Herring,
which he was struggling to get his
head around. After a some quick
inspection of the props, Allan did
all the moves while Joe read out the
directions. After a little bit of
re-work it did come together. The
idea was good but the routine
descriptions weren't the clearest,
but with a bit of trial and error,
he got there in the end. Stuart
Bowie saw the doctor next, with what
appeared to be a very nice
collectors item called 'Two Clever
Tubes'. The main idea was a silk
transpo but it wasn't without some
handling issues. Stuart ran through
how he thought the drum head tubes
might work and gained some useful
advice on how to hide the load. None
the less it was a very nice prop
with some great potential. Ian
Birket had brought a couple of
different versions of 'Sucker Silks'
to learn. Steve always had this item
in his repertoire and gave Ian some
tips on handling. The first version
was the standard Davenports issue
but Ian did not have the correct
silks to do this version. He instead
used a Duane Laflin 'Palmo' to try
the routine which came out very well
in the end. Steve Eastham 'fried'
Joe's head with 'Knock 'Em Dead from
Peter Nardi. This is a wonderful
'multiple out' effect in which a
spectators free choice is correctly
predicted. After a short break and
some news about Ken Ashburn who
continues to suffer with his health,
Allan Clarke ran through his version
of Supreme's 'Tricky Drinks' effect,
brought up to date with a choice of
drinks rather than a force. This
seemed to play well and some
suggestions as to a workable premise
were discussed. George Jennings came
out again with a test of
psychological forcing. George's
premise was that with a little
forethought a spectators free choice
of a female film star could be
predicted about one in six times. If
used correctly, this could on
occasion prove to be a real stunner.
Stuart Bowie brought out a classic
for discussion. The Gypsy Thread has
been a mainstay for a number of
years, but he wondered if a
different presentation could be
devised. A couple of ideas came out,
but the 'traditional' 'thread of
life' seemed so strong that it was
unlikely to be bettered. Steve
Eastham closed a very stimulating
session with A Million Dollar
Prediction from our own Ken Ashburn.
Based on the Gemini principle, this
is a strong effect with a great
kicker finish. Photos can be found HERE.
December - Book Tests and
Another great night at The Fylde Mystics, Alan Mylecraine couldn’t make it tonight so Paul Joyce started off by suggesting that since it was “prediction” night maybe it should start with everybody suggesting the arrival date of the new Mylecraine addition! Paul then kicked things off by predicting Allan Clarke’s thought of number by showing it written down in a sealed envelope….. maybe needs to improve his handwriting though! Harry Moulding followed on with his nice routine for Twisted Sisters. Jonathan Joyce came up next with his version of Mother of all Predictions. Colin Williams quickly followed with a very good version of Shuffleboard/Simon Aronson effect, always a great trick. George Jennings came next with his version of “Sweet & Sour” as always with George it was very well routined. Allan Clarke came next with the first book test of the night, great routine and Allan as always had obviously spent a lot of time researching different versions. Tim Knight came along next with another book test – excellent routine but don’t ask him to spell Albatross! Stuart Bowie was on next with his version of John Bannon’s Detour De-force – great routine and really sold it well. Steve Eastham completed the first half with Stephen Tucker’s variation on the B-wave trick – lovely routine.
got the second half underway with a
spelling card trick, coped well and
didn’t panic when things weren’t
right – well done Harry. Jonathan
came next with his version of Mind
Reading Bear – good routine and
managed to read Allan Clarke’s mind
was next with a book test routine, a
lot of work had taken place here to
get this routine up and running,
great routine and I’m sure everyone
will be stealing his “you won’t put
the book down” line! Allan
followed on with a three way
prediction with a card routine using
the Gilbraith principle who was
quickly followed by Tim
with his version of Mental Epic. Paul
came next with his version of
Twisted Sisters and then also did a
book test. Stuart
followed on with Thom Petersons 'ESP
your pants' – a good routine and
loved his story about a previous
showing of it. Steve
finished the night with a strong
version of Pat Page’s Diary Trick,
in my opinion, one of the strongest
versions about. Photos as always can
be found HERE.
Mystics will be meeting up for their
Xmas dinner on 13th December where
I’m sure there will be plenty of
1st November - Star Lecture with
Came second in the FISM Parlour
category, winning himself a place at
the World Championships of magic
July 2012 in Blackpool where he will
be representing the UK. He won the
IBM Close-up category at the
Southport Convention in September
and last night scored a hat-trick by
winning the hearts and minds of all
those who battled through motorway
madness to be at the Fylde Mystics.
Matt is a 'Lancashire Lad' and is
well known to many both in the UK
and abroad. Matt opened a Magic Bar
called the 'House of Illusion' in
Malta, performing twice a night for
over three years and is currently
looking forward to a winter in
Benidorm. Matt's new lecture, 'The
Unusual Suspect' is still in
development but we were fortunate to
get an exclusive preview but none
the less, it proved to be a
fantastic evenings entertainment
with some real world tips and hints
for the aspiring performer. The
first thing you notice, is his very
much larger than life performing
character, which he himself said was
something of an autistic 'Dr Who'.
At the Fylde Mystics we are
developing a reputation for only
having lectures from “real workers”,
people who perform out there in the
trenches in whatever field of magic
they have chosen. At the November
meeting, it was the same again as we
were all thoroughly entertained and
more importantly taught the secrets
of the award winning Matthew Wright.
His first couple of effects were
'Attack of the Card', a kind of
ambitious card routine and a
brilliant 'Coins across' routine.
The beauty of Matthews thinking
really shone through in both the
explanations here, as well as the
obvious skill level it’s the
thinking behind why he does things
the way he does to make them work.
For example, he is always concerned
that with an ambitious card routine
you can come away looking like a
“smart alec”, but with his routine
all that heat is taken away and it
has resulted in a very entertaining
effect. As for the coins across,
what a wonderful routine and if you
haven’t seen it yourself, the slow
motion bit at the end is
breathtaking. He gave us a hands on
session teaching us how to know
which card somebody chose and outs
to cover it as well, we were all
very quickly picking up the
technique due to his teaching. He
totally baffled me with a card
routine and some mint strips.
Fantastic routining and one of the
few occasions where as a magician
you still get the Wow factor.
For the second half, Matthew was keen to say he didn’t agree with dealer talk in how you can do a trick 5 minutes after taking it out of the packet. He then [roceeded to show us three different versions of the same effect to demonstrate how things can be routined to provide a different 'feel'. The effect was his now famous Poker Face routine and also for those who have seen in his Pendle Witches routine. All in all it was an excellent night, you can see why Matthew has won so many awards, you can also see how much time and effort he puts in and more importantly the amount of hours he has spent honing his craft in front of real people. We had quite a few visitors on the night who had fought their way through traffic jams who were all pleased they made the effort. We all learned a lot and came away inspired to aim for more. Whilst I am sure we will all take plenty away from his lecture it was wonderful to see our two youngest members being enthralled by what is possible with talent, hardwork and most importantly personality.
If you get the
chance to see Matthew’s lecture I
strongly suggest you see it –
4th October - 'Desert Island
October’s meeting started well with The Fylde Mystics welcoming not one, but TWO new members in Colin Williams & Adrian Catch. The night was themed as 'Desert Island Tricks', and the first Robinson Crusoe was Alan Mylecraine who started the night off with his excellent routine in which he had a volunteer pick a card but in finding the card he was a spade short but Alan produced the missing spade! Alan suggested the spade could be used to dig holes in the sand. Tim Knight followed with a bit of balloon modelling to make himself some female company and continued with a funny prediction effect. Young Harry Moulding was next up with a nice version of a coin matrix, well done Harry. Allan Clarke was next up, Allan suggested he would take a book to learn from, in this case Paul Clive’s book, 'Card Tricks without Skill' which despite it's title actually had some great tricks in it. To demonstrate, he performed a key card placement routine that was very effective. Paul Joyce took a Fez with him that also doubled as an egg bag – that way he would have plenty of eggs! George Jennings took along the Roy Johnson Experience book and performed 'The Bargain', based on an Al Baker routine and as always with George, it was very entertaining. Leslie Melville followed on with a card routine taught by Pat Page and was followed by son Adrian Catch who did a great routine with the mind reading bear that had some great touches & lines in it. After the interval Alan Mylecraine got us moving again with Simon Aronson’s 'Prior Commitment', Tim Knight followed on with a snow cone and had Paul Joyce very worried with a Russian roulette with three cups, one full of water! Colin Williams was next with a nice card in aces routine, Harry Moulding followed on his version of the cards and rubber band trick as taught by Baggy to the juniors. Allan Clarke was next with Peter Duffie's 'Disorientated Sevens'. Jonathan Joyce took the meeting in a different direction and talked about what book he would take to the island. Paul Joyce lost the plot talking about books and tried to recite the Deck Of Cards till he was dragged away! George Jennings performed 'The Duplicate Button' from Roy Johnson’s 'Second Time Around'. Leslie Melville rounded the night off with Fogels 'Triple Prediction'.
As always it was a fantastic night, seeing great magic and also picking up information on some great books to read. Don’t forget, our next meeting is an open evening with a lecture by Matt Wright…. Come and see what the Mystics are all about. Photos HERE
Tuesday 6th September - 'Why Magic' with an all star cast (of members)
It is often said 'Great things are afoot', but in our case they were 297 x 210 mm. For the metrically challenged, this is the size of an A4 book and it was in this small(ish) package that the story of the re-formed Fylde Mystics unfolded in full colour glory. Dedicated to Mel Wilson who passed away in 2010, this potted history of the first three years of the Fylde Mystics charts the progress made and contains not only members biographies and contact details but includes effects from many of the great lecturers we have seen over this time. It's a great read and Alan Mylecraine was pleased to be able to hand out copies to all those members who came to the meeting. Others will get copies in due course. Thanks should go to all our contributors for making the book such an interesting read. Down to the meeting and after a brief introduction from Alan, we welcomed two prosepctive new members in the form of Adrian Catch, Leslie's son, and Colin Williams who was pointed in our direction by Ken Ashburn. Steve Eastham opened the proceedings by regaling us with stories of his early exploits in magic, picking up the bug from his father who had enrolled him into the Boys Magic Club of Prestatyn, as it transpired, just like a number of other members. Steve went on to perform a card trick based on numerology eventually finding two 'four of a kind' and a flush. George Jennings had already spent time at an earlier meetings, finding his way into magic via the ubiquitous magic set encouraged by a neighbour of Tommy Cooper no less. George told many stories of his exploits in finding some of magic's better hidden shops and dealers before performing the classic three paper balls to pocket routine. Tim Knight was relatively new to magic having arrived there from his days as a DJ, childrens entertainer and baloon modeller having been shown some tricks by a friend in the curiously titled 'Roller Coaster Club'. Tim went on to show an effect using a calculator and more challengingly, three assorted iPhones form the audience. All I can say is that if it had worked, it would have been a great trick! The effect relies on spectators knowing how to use a calculator, so it was a bit fraught with danger. From here, Allan Clarke told everyone how he got into magic through having to help Jack, his son, who was being tutored by Steve Eastham. Allan went on to show the first trick he performed 'publicly' at the same time demonstrating why he stopped doing it, when it went wrong! Allan redeemed himself by running through an old Roy Walton 'oil & water' effect adapted from the well known 'Birds & Bees' routine. Guest Colin Williams took to the floor next and blew everyone away with a great 'Triumph' type effect. If he has more like that, we all hope he joins soon! Leslie Melville has clearly been in magic a long time and had a fund of stories outlining a great career. Having spent time as a redcoat, entertainment manager of the Metropole Hotel, developed a 'Mind Reading chicken' act he has more recently fulfilled an ambition of 'demming' on a market stall suporting his son Adrian. Leslies set piece was a wonderfully scripted story around the 'panama' rope trick. To close an interesting and sometimes very nostalgic session, Alan Mylecraine told of his deliight at receiving a Paul Daniels Magic Set one christmas and subsequently finding himself on stage in his slippers assisting Paul Daniels in a season show in Blackpool. He also showed us a newspaper clipping of his winning a competition and spending time backstage with the stars of the Gala Show at a Blackpool Convention. Alan finished his story with a Garrett Thomas effect arriving at Steve's selected card, despite a number of free choice eliminations. With a few minutes left, Steve Eastham showed a clever linking card effect while George Jennings closed the evening with his rendition of 'The Wide boy' based on 'Sam the Bellhop' and 'The Spiv'. A great evenings entertainment, photos HERE as always.
Tuesday 2nd August - Shaun McCree
Shaun is a magician whose work I have admired for many years after seeing him at a trade event for a Renault launch day. Being able to see him perform at that time for real people and watching the reaction he was getting set him apart from the rest. My wife who could take or leave magic was impressed – that was proof enough as to his ability.
Having seen Shaun lecture before I was expecting good things and was not disappointed. He performed his close up routine for us and from there he talked us through the mechanics of the routines and what has brought him to do things the way he does. I have seen Shaun perform many times and also lecture and he just gets better and better, you can always tell when you are seeing a real worker in action and in my mind he is one of the best. Every routine is commercial and with the experiences he shares with you, it can only help with your own magic.
There was too much good stuff to pick “best bits” as it was all fantastic, but if you get the chance to see him look out for his steal in a coins across routine, superb steal and even when you know how he does it, it still fools you! I really must try to perfect it!
We all learnt plenty from the lecture and it was great to see the reaction from our two youngest members – Jonathan & Harry, they were flabbergasted at the skill and entertainment shown by Shaun. If they are going to learn from anyone they can’t go wrong with Shaun.
After the lecture Shaun did brisk trade with his lecture notes, routines & DVD’s, proving how well the night went. This was a superb lecture and if you get the chance to go and see him I strongly recommend that you do. Paul Joyce. Photo's HERE
Tuesday 5th July - Mini AGM & Cabaret Evening
Mylecraine opened the evening
by welcoming new member Leslie
Melville and with some great
news that member Ken Ashburn
was much better after his recent spell
in hospital. More good news followed
as Alan announced his transition into
fatherhood later this year. Everone
present wished him well. Steve
Eastham passed around copies
of the accounts which showed the club
was on a sound financial footing. Alan
and the meeting thanked Steve for his
sterling work. Alan then outlined the
forthcoming programme of events and
plans for our 4th great year, starting
next month with Shaun McCree.
Alan also passed on our best wishes
for member Ben Proos
who will be competing in the Young
Magician of the Year competiton. After
a short discussion we got back to
doing what we enjoy best as Steve
Eastham put the balance sheet
away and fooled Jonathan with a
prediction where 'the eye's have it'.
Birket was in game form with
a great envelope routine where he
managed to keep hold of his £20 bet. Leslie
Melville took to the floor
with his legendary Jap Box routine and
had everone laughing along as he
pulled fivers out of an empty box. Tim
Knight intorduced some
'toilet' humour as he had Allan
wearing a toilet seat as part of his
thought transmitter prediciton. George
Jennings had brought some
invisible friends and correctly
predicted which friend Tim would
choose. Allan Clarke had a
stage set of playing cards and managed
to foretell which card Ian B would
choose. Harry Moulding
tackled the professors nightmare
routine with his own football flavour
while Jonathan Joyce Pateo'd
his way through a nice 'Golf' themed
effect. Paul Joyce Had 'Red
Fred' freely chosen from a jumbo deck
while Alan Mylecraine kept
Paul on stage while he followed with a
funny guillotine routine. In the
second round, Alan Mylecraine
kept the humour flowing with his
vanishing beaker routine. Paul
Joyce followed with a game
involving half the audience where he
correctly predicted the outcome of a
seies of party games. Jonathan
Joyce and Harry
Moulding both gave renditions
of the domino spot effect each with
differing patter lines. Allan
Clarke then ran a great
competiton where Harry won a candlelit
dinner for two albeit not what he had
anticpated. George Jennings,
not to be outdone, left only one
spectator in the audience with a great
Doug Diamant card mixing prediction. Tim
Knight, also not being
outdone had Alan M nervously facing
not one but three guillotines of his
choice. Leslie Melville
played fast and loose with a piece of
red cord, fooling Ian B out of a lot
of credibility. Steve Eastham
brought Harry back out to help with a
silk off band routine while Ian
Birket closed the evenings
proceedings with a very clever 'though
of' cards across routine. A great
finish to three great years,
succesfully demonstrating that
performance magic is still alive and
well at the Mystics. Photos HERE.
Tuesday 14th June - Packet / Trick Session
Another great night began albeit a week late, with news of an upcoming gig at the British Legion Club and some discussion on the content of the new programme for 2011/2012. Alan Mylecraine also welcomed guest Leslie Melville of storyteller fame who enjoyed himself so much on his last visit, he asked to come along again. Alan reminded everyone to send a short biography to Allan Clarke who is compiling a new members booklet for the start of our 4th great season. With these parish notices out of the way, Paul Joyce, freshly tanned and excited to be back treated everyone to a great book test originally devised by Al do Colombini. Paul was followed by son Jonathan Joyce who demonstrated his mastery of a flipped out card from a banded deck, shown to him by member 'Baggy' Bagot. Harry Moulding showed us a convincing 'Lie Speller' routine variation based on Steinmeyers Nine Card problem. Alan Mylecraine was back to the floor with a card effect where the named card was the only 'printed' card in an otherwise blank deck. George Jennings tickled everyone's funny bone with his take on Nemo 1500, extolling the virtues of mind control. Tim Knight came out to show everyone his new watch, which he then proceeded to show that the watch was set to a freely selected time. Jack Clarke made a welcome return after exam leave to demonstrate his card seeking paper-clip which after being thrown into the deck, correctly located a freely selected card. Allan Clarke then wove a story about a strange prediction where three freely selected numbers were used to determine a year in history. The prediction outlined famous events from that same year. Guest Leslie Melville, not wanting to be left out, gave a very funny rendition of his 'Dingle Dangle' sticks. Ian Birkit showed everyone he had mastered a very adept coins across routine, while Steve Eastham showed a clever card to box effect from Paul Gordon. Stuart Bowie gave a nicely routined card to wallet effect involving a £20 note and an IOU. After a short break, Round two began in reverse order with Stuart Bowie demonstrating his escaping card. Steve Eastham gave another Paul Gordon variation called 'Doorstop Aces' while Ian Birkit ran through a nice colour separation routine. Leslie Melville once again rhymed his way through a Slydini linking pin routine followed by Allan Clarke who demonstrated Jay Sankeys 'Dollars and Sense'. Jack Clarke brought out an intriguing perspex sandwich which he used to correctly determine a freely chosen ESP card. Tim Knight donned a blindfold for a great card location routine from Paul Gordon. George Jennings had everyone giggling with a patter line for a Spirit Slate effect while Alan Mylecraine went to town on a stage version of a rising card effect. Harry Moulding was once again showing his skill with a set up on the fly spelling routine using a key card, he was followed by Jonathan Joyce used a little stearate for a slide out card location. To close the performances, Paul Joyce had a few scary moments with Tim using a large mousetrap to find a selected card based on an effect from Mark Shortland. Another great Night with loads of laughs. Photos HERE.
Tuesday 3rd May - 'Swap a Trick' Night
Tuesday was as entertaining as a club meeting gets. 'Swap a trick' was so funny last year that we decided to give it another go. Members paired up with each other and swapped tricks. Each member had to teach their partner how to perform one of their tricks. That was the easy bit! After a brief discussion on the donation of effects from Murphy's Magic, Alan Mylecraine opened the meeting explaining how the 'swap a trick' would work. Each member found a partner who would show them trick then the partner would reciprocate, showing one of their tricks. After a suitable practice period, all the effects would be performed. Alan Mylecraine took the two juniors, Jonathan and Harry and with the help of Steve Eastham, showed them the 'Dotty Dots' routine encouraging them to come up with their own patter. Everyone else paired up and started to learn a new effect. The moment of truth arrived and first out was Paul Joyce who had been tutored by George Jennings on the ring & rope routine from his close-up act. Paul started out well but soon faltered trying to remember the somewhat complicated routine, half way through, with everybody in stitches, Paul decided to call it a day. Next out was Harry Moulding with the first rendition of Dotty Dots. Harry's character made the most of an entertaining trick. Allan Clarke had been shown a variation of the six card repeat by Tim Knight. This version used £5 notes which gave an interesting twist on an old standard. Tim Knight had been shown an effect using the Olram subltety where a selected card was the only odd one chosen from the packet. The kicker was a prediction contained in an envelope which confirmed the choice. Stuart Bowie had been partnered with Joe Gilmour who had shown him a book test routine based on a stacked deck and very well presented it was too. Joe Gilmour then demonstrated a 2 card prediction correctly pairing up cards chosen by the specatator. George Jennings had us chuckling through a clever 'Bill Switch' routine from Paul making most of the fact that he was using bills with Paul Joyce's name on them! Jonathan Joyce closed a hugely enjoyable set with his own version of the Dots routine showing how quickly these youngsters pick up and deliver new effects. Another fun night with a lot of laughs. Photos HERE as usual.
Tuesday 5th April - Annual Close-up Competition
Tuesday saw the Fylde Mystics hosting their annual Close-Up Competition with a capacity crowd. It was a strong field with 7 competitors taking part. First up was relative new comer to the society Tim Knight, Tim opened with a Card named Fred routine where the selected card matched the prediction in the envelope which a spectator was holding, followed nicely with Lennart Greens version of Gemini Twins, the BLP20 prediction book and finishing on a nice business card and flash paper routine. George Jennings followed with his usual wit and humour where he stood in front of the audience and clarified his name was George Jennings and he was a magician, very funny. George proceeded to present a very accomplished ring and rope routine which moved nicely into a well presented cut and restored rope effect, and finished on a two deck card prediction which matched perfectly with the spectators selection, a very funny routine. Third up saw one of our junior members Harry Moulding (Harini Mouldini on the night), Harry opened with a confidence much befitting someone much older than his 10 years. He presented a nice card revelation which culminated in cutting to the four aces, followed by a one a head type principle where named cards match those previously discarded and finished on a nice presentation of Paul Gordon’s Poker Deal. Stuart ‘Baggy’ Bagot took to the floor next to present a number of card routines, all culminating in Stuarts fantastic presentation of a story deck featuring Mo and Joe, this really must be seen to be appreciated. Our other junior member Jonathan Joyce followed Stuart with a nice confident presentation of the sponge rabbits, followed by a nice blank card routine where the cards actually printed to speck the word MAGIC. Jonathan presented a nice out-to-lunch effect which continued the rabbit theme throughout his act and finished with Paul Gordons Poker Deal, yet again another confident performance from one of our juniors. The penultimate act was Allan Clarke. Allan presented a nice Chinese purse routine where a coin linked onto a rope, this was followed by a nice ESP effect where the selection matched that cut through by a spectator. A nice lottery prediction then followed with two decks of cards and then into a diary prediction trick. Allan finished on a ESP prediction with a theory similar to that seen in Cataclysm. The final act of the night was Paul Joyce. Paul opened with a nice presentation of Pat Page Paper to Money then proceeded to present a fantastic and original name change routine where the spectators name written on paper changed places with a paper with Paul’s name on. Paul then presented a one-a-ahead principle with the use of a prediction pad which was yet again well presented. Paul culminated with Jay Sankeys In A Flash followed by a nice drink production. The whole evening was expertly compered by Steve Eastham. The final results were as follows: PHOTOS HERE
1st Place Paul Joyce
2nd Place Harry Moulding
3rd Place Allan Clarke
Best Card Trick Allan Clarke
Tyro Trophy Jonathan Joyce & Harry Moulding
We were delighted that Donald Monk, President of our friends at the Modern Mystic League, was on hand to present the Trophies. What a nice man! Thanks also to our judges, David Moss, also of the Modern Mystic League, Stuart Bowie from the Carlisle Society and Craig Docherty, our lay judge for their valuable contribution.
Tuesday 1st March - A Night Without Cards!
Taking most members out of their comfort zone, the night proved to be funny as well as instructive. Alan opened by confirming the Close-up show planned for Monday 11th April at the Wellington Park Hotel, Leyland. Volunteers one pace forward! Steve Eastham then asked who would be competing at the Close-up competition in April. A maximum of eight would be allowed. This was to be an open meeting so family and friends should be encouraged to join us on the night. Joe Gilmour then started the night with a book test routine using a calculator which as it turned out would be a recurring prop used all through the night. Steve Eastham started with a jsut chance rope effect leading onto the Panama Rope Trick, scissors appeared more than once on the night too! Jack Clarke had everyone guessing with a prediction called How Odd from Cliff Lount. Ian Birket then ran through a very nice ring and string routine which he had clearly given some thought to. Tim Knight when through the first of two 'Figures of Foo' effects quickly arriving at an answer before the one with the calculator had pressed all the buttons. Baggy, who freestyled having left his case at home, proceeded with an origami style multi-phase routine. George Jennings started with a twist on the Professors Nightmare which with some of Georges trademark self effacement went into a ring and rope segment. New member Stuart Bowie turned see through with a very nice coins through handkerchief routine. Young Harry Moulding (Mouldini) turned into a hypnotic showman with the first of a couple of 'Magic Square' themed routines. Joanthan Joyce then acted up with a mulitplying sponge rabbit effect while Allan Clarke followed with a second 'Figures of Foo' effect albeit with a 'mental' approach. Alan Mylecraine then raced off through John Archer's version of the Magic Square - there's always more with Alan! Paul Joyce closed the first half with a colour changing rope routine assisted by Harry. The second round saw Joe perform a nice sharpie routine from Wayne Dobson. Steve ran through 'Block Off' ribbon which utilised a nice prop originating fromMurray. Ian Birket had been busy as he followed with the Syldini Pins. Tim cajoled Baggy into a 'Russian Roullete' game using eggs - and lived to tell the tale! This was followed by Baggy and a clever disppearing cigarette effect. George raised a few more laughs with '101 things to do with two rubber bands'. While Jonathan proceded to bake a cake with the aid of a few gags and Alan M. Allan Clarke then performed his own version of 'Tricky Drinks' while Alan M had an appointment with a coin 'Matrix'. Another great night with a load of laughs. Photos HERE
Monday 21st February - An Audience with Paul Gordon
Despite having spent 3 days on his stand at the Blackpool Convention, Paul was on top form for his lecture. Back at the Community Centre in Cleveleys, it was nice to catch up with Ron Wilson who hasn't been with us for a bit. With a good number of guests and members eager to see some of the Paul Gordon 'magic', we were taken on a roller coaster ride of effects at lightning speed. Paul was keen that we see as much as possible in the time we had and he certainly delivered a huge amount of real world effects, all clearly honed through years of hard work. The thing that struck me the most was how much laughing we all did. He's a funny guy and had us in stitches with some tales of his performing experiences. Pulling everyone closer to the table we were treated to a number of Pauls 'signature' effects but with so many spread across numerous editions of his huge range of books it was difficult to keep track. This was soon remedied though, with the purchase of his 'blockbuster' and 'card startlers' DVD's (at a bargain price too!). We only have a couple of lectures each year but this was a great night with a great guy. If there's another 'card capers' day soon, it wil be difficult to find reasons not to go! Photos HERE.
Tuesday 8th Febuary 2011 - Tales of the half expected
Another meeting, another new recruit! February's meeting saw a dapper Stuart Bowie descend from the depths of Carlisle to audition for the part of a new member, and what an audition it was! Opening with a classic Cut & Restored rope with a very entertaining premise and a couple of twists on the usual theme, through a nice diversion with a burnt and restored match, closing with a fine rendition of crazy man's handcuffs. A very pleasing set and a warm welcome to a new member. Alan Mylecraine reminded everyone about the forthcoming Paul Gordon Lecture which will now take place at the Frank Townend Community Centre, also about the close-up show we will be performing at the Wellington Park Hotel in Leyland on the 11th April. In the first of what may become many such interludes, we had a 'pitch and sell' session where assorted effects, props and other magical paraphinalia were described and thrust into a lucky punters hands. An assortment of effects flew by aimed at parting the unsuspecting from thier money. Next, we moved onto the evening proper as Steve Eastham related a very funny story about his engagment to work on the Orient Express, where the only stipulation was that he was to 'do that trick where the card appears on the outside of a window'. Needless to say this was dropped due to a small technicality! Steve went on to relate a tale of the confiscation of props by Customs when Kevin James came to the Blackpool Convention. It could only happen to Steve! Alan Mylecraine then talked us through a tale of his exploits while crewing on stage for an inebriated Knife thrower. Ben Proos didn't have any reminiscences to share but instead demonstrated a nice handling with a four Kings and four Ace production routine. Next up was junior member Harry Moulding who presented a very nice four Ace assembly. To his credit, he reset and started over when a slip with the cards put him out. Well done Harry. Jonathan Joyce was on next with a danger segment and an appearing and disappearing blister. Good job his dad had the first aid kit! Paul Joyce chatted about his time as a youngster, having cycled 7 or 8 miles to catch Paul Daniels, who took time out on the car park to advise to Paul on the books he should read if he wanted to improve. Tim Knight then kept Paul on his feet to help with a dating service effect which gave us all a laugh. Allan Clarke then talked about the Sessions Convention and about being introduced to David Berglas as well as witnessing the 'Berglas Effect' live on stage. He went on to perform a Colombini prediction effect called 'perpetual calendar'. Next up was Jack Clarke who then tried another touch of mentalism with a 'Word Association' game, correctly predicting an item picked by Alan M. Baggy told everyone about meeting Penn & Teller after being invited on stage during thier Las Vegas show. He went on to demostrate a 'cutting the Queens' efect he picked up while he was there. George Jennings continued with a story about his contact with Ali Bongo over his 'Magic Welding' effect as well as relating a tale about performer who insult their audiences sometimes with unexpected consequences. Stuart Bowie closed the evening with a story of how he passed up the opportunity to book a young up and coming mentalist after deciding he wasn't up to it. Shame it was Derren Brown.... Another great night of magic. Photos HERE as usual.
Tuesday 11th January 2011 - Mini Lecture Night
The first meeting of the new year was both interesting and varied. Alan Mylecraine opened up by introducing a new junior member, Harry Moulding. Harry who is only 10, proceeded to perform an audition by going straight into a couple of well rehearsed effects, starting with the Professors Nightmare. Harry put his own spin on this popular effect by turning the premise into one of a footballer theme explaining how three different footballers tried to improve their game. It was proficiently handled and well presented. Harry then went on to show everyone a nice ‘House of Cards’ effect based on the apparent mixing of cards and a surprise outcome. This was an adaptation of an effect found in Royal Road to Card Magic. Alan welcomed Harry to the society.
The evening was to be given
over to ‘mini lectures’ from
three members. First up was Allan
Clarke who guided a
receptive audience through the
wonderful world of the Si
Stebbins card system. After some
brief historical notes Allan
then demonstrated a routine he
had developed to take advantage
of some of the principles at
play in the system. Having
‘memorised’ the deck, two
spectators were invited to test
the technique by randomly
selecting cards to test if Allan
could correctly locate the
position of the cards in the
deck. Unseen cards were then
determined by checking a small
number of cards from the deck.
In the third phase two cards
randomly cut to in the deck were
shown to be markers for the
location of the required card.
Finally, after some thorough
mixing, cards were divided into
piles and having called upon
Gaia to bring order out of
chaos, a random pile was shown
to have each card Ace through
King in the packet. Allan went
on to explain the principles of
the Stebbins system and how they
could be used in various
effects. To conclude, he then
compared a number of well known
stacks outlining the differences
and advantages for each.
Next up to lecture was Paul Joyce who gave us a bookworms eye view of the way in which his interest in Magic developed. This started with the ubiquitous Paul Daniels book of magic through Ali Bongo and Jack Delvin publications and on to a variety of books by performers who had influenced his magical career. Along the way we heard how Paul progressed into Children’s magic and a couple of publications related to the topic. We also heard from Corinda (13 steps), Eugene Berger, with ‘Spirit Theatre’ a particular favourite of Paul, Michael Ammar, Tommy Wonder and his ‘Books of Wonder’ and Jim Sisti. At each stage Paul explained how the books had changed his thinking on how his magic should be presented, illustrated by stories of how some of the books were obtained. It was an interesting view of the way that Paul had used the books to improve his magic illustrated by some great books and stories of some great magical characters.
After a short break George
took to the floor to explain
his own unique style of
presentation and how he
creates his routines. Georges
often dry sense of humour
always flows through his
routines and in his view, the
presentation of any effect
should be unique to the
performer. George quoted a
number of sources and in
particular one from the
legendary Ken Brooke who
produced a manuscript called
‘It’s got to be more than the
magic’ which placed strong
emphasis on the presentation
and premise for performing.
George explained how he is
always on the look out for a
good premise and often has a
comedy angle for a routine,
even though he may not have an
effect to go with it. Citing
‘Grumpy Old Men’ as a source
of inspiration he went on to
encourage the members to look
at ‘Crazy Man’s Handcuffs’ and
devise a premise for its
presentation. It was a thought
provoking lecture, amply
illustrated with funny
examples and some great ideas
for finding something he could
make his own. Photos HERE
Tuesday 7th December - Impromptu Magic
Illness and the weather tried to disrupt play with a number of members either down with 'Man Flu' or snowed in! None the less a good night was enjoyed by the magnificent seven with an almost totally impromptu (OK, perhaps a little set-up!) night of magic. Alan Mylecraine thanks all those who helped out at the Tinkerbelle Ball supporting Brian House to the tune of £3500! Alan also asked if members would mind moving the January and February meetings to the second Tuesday in order that certain members could get full use of of their season tickets....
Alan started the trick session with a collection of sugar bags and a paper coffee cup building on an old idea that allowed him to predict the outcome of a shaken and stirred choice. Paul Joyce tried to sneak in his Pom-Pom prayer sticks alleging that he always carried them around up his jumper, but then went on with a funny burning card routine. Jonathan Joyce produced money from thin air, or at least an empty playing card, before Tim Knight, our newest member, ducked and dealt his way through a list of movie stars to arrive at a prediction. Allan Clarke Borrowed a deck and let the spectator be the magician correctly identifying a freely chosen card. Jack Clarke followed with an impromtu coin matrix with all the coins gathering under the last card. George Jennings borrowed some business cards and gathered signatures before tearing them in half and re-assembling them Larry Becker style. After a short break, we had a number of effects, from Card under, on and in glass from Alan, a set up on the fly four of a kind from the other Allan, a spun out selection from Jack, four robbers from Jonathan, cards across from George, a dodgy bet from Tim and a Bill fold routine culminating in a real note from cheque book from Paul. To conclude the evening, George regaled us with stories from the IBM convention in Eastbourne which was so enjoyable we felt there was merit in having an evening dedicated to such stories. Another good night with quite a few laughs. Photos HERE.
Tuesday 2nd November - Quiz Night.
Brian Taylors Quiz Night has always been a tricky but light hearted affair but there were some eager competitiors in the audience all eyeing up the 'Star' prizes on offer. Brian had compiled an all new devilishly tricky multiple section quiz, sure to test the most knowledgable members. Sixty questions in all were projected in a tense ninety minutes of brow furrowing and head scratching. The first section was spot the artist. Ten famous faces staring out at the audience causing no end of consternation. Famous they may have been but putting a name to those faces proved a lot more difficult than it would seem. Next up was the Magical Dealers Section. More well known faces or logos where contestants had to name the dealer, his wife, the cat and the street where they lived. Not really but it sometimes seemed like that! The third section was on props and effects where we had to variously name the originator, the name of the prop or some diverse piece of history about it. The final section was on Illusionists. Out of context images sought to throw the unwary viewer and there seemed to be an awful lot of members who recognised the artists but the name was just beyond the tip of our tongues. The results round up was a welcome relief nodding or kicking ourselves for not seeing the blindingly obvious. After a few minutes totting up the scores, Brian announced the winner as Alan Mylecraine. Running a close second came George Jennings and a special booby prize was awarded to Ian Birkett for trailing the pack with a valiant but ultimately losing streak.
After a short break Alan introduced prospective new members Ben Proos and Tim Knight. Performing is part of our mission statement so Brian took to the floor with a clever number prediction using a planetary theme. Paul Joyce was up next with a funny 'do as I do' routine from Wayne Dobson. Alan Mylecraine brought Ian Birkett up to deal his way to a missing selection before finding it in a box. Jack Clarke showcased another Wayne Dobson routine called Magic Spell while Allan Clarke toook some random cards and correctly forcast the unseen selection. Ben Proos gave a skillful audition, first multiplying a selected card before transforming them into the four Kings. He then gave demonstration of a Jack 'Sandwich' routine before closing with a very adept, card to box effect. A promising performance from this keen 15 year old. Hot on Ben's heels came Steve Eastham running through some nice variations of 'Court Card surprise'. George Jennings brought out his trademark paper bag containing his very funny Pet based act successfuly predicting the freely chosen pet with some dry observations along the way. To close, Ian Birkett showed everybody a very convincing wand through Bill effect bringing a great evening to a close. Photos HERE.
Tuesday 5th October - Tricks from a Book.
The theme for the latest Fylde Mystics meeting was Tricks from Books and it proved to be a popular evening of entertainment. Steve Eastham got the night going with his performance of Coach House Creation from Paul Gordons The Unplanned Card Book. Ian Birkett was up next who performed Fractal jacks from John Bannons MegaWave. There appeared to be a theme flowing as Paul Joyce proceeded to perform Beyond The Pale/ Outer which is from the excellent John Bannon book, Smoke and Mirrors. Jonathan Joyce presented his spooky version of the haunted straw and Jack Clarke performed a variation of a matching card effect from Harry Lorraine’s favourite tricks. Caius DeGuyerin was back with us and performed a nice effect which featured the restoration of a torn card. Ken Ashburn never fails to amaze and performed Chicago Opener which was well received. George Jennings followed with a nice version of Gemini Twins featuring Paul and Alan as a married couple as featured in Experience the magic of Jon Allen by John Lovick. It was nice to welcome Fylde Mystics supporter Brian Berry who performed Spreadwave which was thoroughly enjoyable and Alan Mylecraine brought the first round to a close with the performance of the Ladder Prediction from Steve Beams Semi-Automatic Card Tricks.
The second round saw everyone performing another effect, with particular highlights going to Pauls Sole Survivor by Eugene Burger, Jonathans version of Do As I Do, Jacks Dice prediction effect from Martin Gardner. Ian with a very nice Mark Wilson/Pat Page Paddle, Steve performed The Four Ace Puzzler also from The Unplanned Card Book, George performed a nice Pirates Routine which was from "Start to finish Mainly For Kids by Arthur Russell and Ken with Kick Back Straight by Ryan Swigert. Pictures HERE
Tuesday 3rd September - The Trick Sessions.
Alan Mylecraine opened the meeting by welcoming back Ken Ashburn after his recent illness. He also wished Joe Gilmour well after his operation. Alan informed everyone about an addition to the programme for next February when we will be hosting a lecture from Paul Gordon. Eager to get into the evenings Trick session, Alan opened with a deck production from a display card set and proceded through a nice prediction routine. Ken Ashburn took the table and ran through a stunning Card At Any Number routine which he quite rightly labelled the 'Ultimate'. Paul Joyce then brought a case of junk acquired form a local jumble sale on stage before relating a challenge to make some magic from it. He duly did this with a Genie in a bottle' effect using a rope and a brass vase from the case. George Jennings brought his usual dry humour to an 'invisible ribbon' effect before Jack Clarke romped throught a clever prediction effect called 'Million Dollar Cards'. It was worth noting that this effect had been originated by none other than Ken Ashburn who gracefully accepted the acknowledgement. Allan Clarke followed this with a 'just chance' routine from Jay Sankey. Ian Birket continued the theme with a nice version of 'Twisting the Aces'. Joe Gilmour introduced another batch of humour with his take on 'Red Hot Momma' which had Alan Mylcraine blowing 'kisses' long after he needed to! Steve Eastham closed the first round with a routine from Giobbi culminating in the production of the four Aces and closing with a card count prediction.
Prior to the break, Jack Clarke gave a special presentation of Supremes 'Dagger Chest' however all he produced was a special Birthday cake for Steve Eastham and the only knife used was to cut the cake, which gave everyone a useful sugar boost!
Round two saw Alan M present a version of a Thom Peterson routine. Ken then brought out his second stunner, this time Mark Elsdon's 'Devastation' which had a lot of people fooled due to the handling. Paul took up writing for a 'Out to Lunch' variation with a pen of many colours. George used his droll persona to good effect with a nice Cecil Tebbit effect arriving at a prediction with a kicker ending. Jack demonstrated some spirit intervention when a selected card spookily announced itself by twisting out of a shuffled deck. Allan then performed a two deck effect from Dan Paulus called 'Pure Skill' by showing a selected card had been switched between decks. Ian followed with another variation of 'Twisting' using Queens and some Olram subleties. Joe had eveyone in giggles with his Jumbo Six card repeat while Steve completed the round with a homage to Al Smith by performing 'Perdup' a nice matching card display effect. Still anxious to make the most of the evening, the session continued with Alan M having a laugh with some Gaff Ha-Ha-Ha cards. Ken scored a hat trick of effects with another 'Ultimate', this time a Brainwave deck from Bob Solari which had a very clever premise. Paul had some funny business with some business cards while Allan used some jumbo half cards for a Colombini routine matching up the pairs of 'halves'. Ian had a very intriguing pair of animated matchboxes which caused something of a shock when they were handed out at the end. Joe completed his trio with a sharpie routine from Wayne Dobson after which Steve closed the bumper session with a matching card routine using a rainbow deck. This was a fun packed night littered with great effects. Photos as usual HERE.
Tuesday 3rd August - An evening with Al Smith.
Alan Mylecraine notified everyone regarding Mel Wilsons very sad passing and thanked all those who were able to attend the funeral and send messages of condolence to Irene and his family. Alan went on to wish all the members a happy anniversary as we started our third year as the Fylde Mystics. After a couple of parish notices, Alan asked Steve Eastham to introduce our speaker. Steve has known Al for many years and regaled us with some stories about Al and his take on Life, the Universe and Cards. (One and the same according to Al). Well, we may have been low in numbers, but we were high on enthusiasm when Card Legend Al Smith journeyed from the Ridings of Yorkshire to have us sample the delights of a very special kind of card magic. Many of us who have been fans of Al for some time, were delighted to find he was every bit as funny in person as he appears to be in his writings. He inists he is not an avid performer but his insight into the workings and presentation of card effects is indeed legendary. The lecture was euphemistically entitled S.O.S which had various connotations depending on your point of view. Al was very keen to ensure that everyone understood all the subltleties of the card techniques but what made it all the more interesting was the fact that the whole evening was littered with stories, opinions and insights into what is clearly a very clever mind. If may sound strange but Al spent most of the evening presenting just one effect. However, his diversions, tangents and wanderings both verbal and visual were all intended to explain the minutae of the effect and in doing so made clear the premise and the need to appreciate magic from the spectators standpoint. SOS was an object lesson in thinking about the presentation of an effect. What appeared to be minor handling points or the use of certain phrasing were all the gold nuggets of a lifetime spent honing card skills. Along the way we were treated to the delights of the Abacut, a Fylde Mystics spelling bee with a surprise ending and a masterful vanishing ace effect that finished as clean as it started. As if the evening hadn't been entertaining enough, Al then very kindly gave everyone present a compete set of SOS lecture notes with a special Fylde Mystic supplement. A great end to a great night. Photos HERE as always.
Tuesday 6th July - Mentalism evening
Alan Mylecraine opened by informing everyone that Mel Wilson has been taken into hospital. A card was circulated for members to send thier good wishes. This was also extended to Joe Gilmour who had a second knee operation on Monday. Our good wishes go out to both of them and thier families. Alan went on to thank all those members who helped put on a great show at the British Legion Club in St Annes (review below). It was a good night enjoyed by all.
As we had come to the end of our second year as a society, Steve Eastham highlighted our finances and produced a balance sheet for the year. This was found to be in order and passed with thanks to Steve for his diligence in keeping the society solvent. There followed a lengthy discussion regarding subscriptions and ideas for future events. The meeting then got underway proper with Jonathan Joyce who mentally divined a coloured chip from the 'box of mystery' and went on to successfuly predict four freely chosen cards. Paul Joyce was up next with some poetic licence in divining a word chosen from a book of poems. Alan Mylecraine brought out the next book test artistically drawing his mental interpretation of a randomly chosen phrase. Next up was Brian Taylor with an very nice Astor prop where three freely chosen cards were correctly predicted. Jack Clarke used his powers of telepathy to reveal four cards chosen from a card matrix. George Jennings chose the unkindest cut by having a spectator chop through a list of everyday objects only to find that he had predicted the outcome. Allan Clarke demonstrated some real mental agility by correctly determining which spectator held a random selection of cards despite only having a short glimpse of the packs. Stuart Bagot then predicted that despite multiple cuts of a new order deck, the the dealt piles would each be 4 of a kind. To complete the first half, Steve Eastham succesfully determined the location of three unseen banknotes chosen at random by a spectator. After a refreshment break, Paul Joyce hopped through a series of gag cards only to identify a freely thought of card. Alan Mylecraine took out his pad once more with a trio of predictions which seemed to fail although proved to be correct when reviewed. Brian Taylor brought out another Astor prop based on ESP cards but with a clever twist on the usual effect. Jack Clarke once more set out a number of cards in a stand correctly forseeing the freely chosen card. George Jennings used another member of the audience to relay the value and suit of a freely chosen card arrived at from a five way cut of a pack. Despite appearing to get this wrong, it proved to be deadly accurate. Allan Clarke had a spectator secretly choose thier favourite film only to go on and correctly identify it. Stuart Bagot once again got out his cards and with a bit of 'fishing', successfully arrived at the cut to card. Steve Eastham closed the evening with a Peter Duffie Diary trick involving some crossword clues to arrive at a predicted card. A lot of laughs and some great magic closed our second successful year. Photos HERE.
Friday 2nd July - Magic with the Mystics.
An expectant crowd had gathered as we set up for our show at the Royal British Legion Club in St Annes. Members Steve Eastham, Alan Mylecraine, Allan Clarke, Jack Clarke, Mel Wilson, Paul Joyce, George Jennings and guest Brian Berry opened the first half entertainment performing Close-up at tables. Being a club setup meant that performing conditions were not ideal but the audience were generally receptive as a number of stock effects were rolled out by the team. As we settled into the first session, members swapped tables and jokes for a good hour or so before the buffet opened and we broke for refreshments. The second half of the show was to be our cabaret spot. Compere Steve Eastham introduced the first act in the form of Paul Joyce who playfully engaged the crowd with spotted handkerchiefs, a named card effect and a divined card using his grandmothers teeth!. Another compere item from Steve preceded Mel Wilson's first foray onto the stage. Mel sauntered through a multi segment cut & restored rope routine before closing with a clean torn & restored newspaper item. George Jennings took to the floor next with some droll observations and a prediction concerning MP's expenses this was followed with a 'high risk' divination of the contents of an unlabelled can of food. Allan Clarke went mental. Opening with 'X' marks the spot where a freely chosen card is the only one with a cross on the back. This moved onto a Deja Vu effect correctly predicting a chosen card. Allan Closed his set with a take on the lottery prediction. Following a £10 note on a rope effect, Steve introduced Jack Clarke who opened with a Dribeck Die following with a cut & restored rope routine. From here we were treated to a Sidewalk Shuffle and Jack closed a well rehearsed set with the classic Chinese Linking Rings. To close the show, Alan Mylecraine burst onto the stage with some rapid fire one-liners and a host of sight gags. A 'stiff rope' item had the audience in stitches and the comedy continued with a 'domino' eye test. Alan closed his set with a card prediction and the appearance of the 'missing spade'. It was a great night well received by the audience and something we intend to promote further.
Sunday 13th June - Modern Mystic League visit
This extra meeting was set up to allow the Fylde Mystics to provide an afternoon's entertainment at the Modern Mystic League. Last year the MML team came over and gave us a great evenings entertainment and it was our turn to reciprocate. Brian Lead the MMl Concert Secretary gave this review:
"By tradition, June sees Chairman’s Day at the MML., and this year was the 10th such event presided over by Roger Woods assisted by his good lady Joan on refreshments We welcomed our seaside neighbours, the Fylde Mystics, paying a reciprocal visit. Allan Clarke opened with a touch of mentalism, incorporating mathematical and ‘deja vu’ effects. Compere Steve Eastham then introduced Paul Joyce for the close-up part of his performance, which included a topical World Cup theme, a detective sequence in which a murder was solved and the appearance (or non-appearance) of Sean the invisible leprechaun. Alan Mylecraine followed with a lovely line in throw-away gags accompanying a card prediction, severed finger and Chinese coins. Joe Gilmour rounded off part one with a diary effect, a chase the ace/find the lady routine and a prediction scroll in an ancient box with some nice original touches. The gang took to the stage in the second half of the afternoon, with Joe presenting a hilarious ‘rat trap’ effect before George Jennings entertained us with his droll observational humour while predicting a tin of pineapples. Paul and Alan also made a return to the boards, the latter with a beaker vanish accompanied by more sight gags. A jolly time was had by all, and the capacity crowd of family and friends had got their money’s worth – or they would have done if they had paid!"
It was a fun afternoon and League members and visitors seemed to appreciate our show. We look forward to providing similar entertainment in the future. Photos HERE
Tuesday 2nd June 2010 - Trick Clinic Plus
This month saw the Fylde Mystics hosting a ‘trick clinic’, although it turned into so much more. Steve Eastham spent the first hour demonstrating a whole host of varying card sleights to the assembled members who each practiced them as we went from member to member. Steve then proceeded to teach a number of effects which could be achieved with the recently acquired card sleights. Each member left with at least three new card sleights and two new effects as a result of this invaluable workshop. Joe Gilmour then brought what could only be described as medieval torture equipment; well it was actually a form of Russian Roulette which he had made with the use of rat traps!!! It was a very impressive prop and we all offered tips and advice on how would be best to present it. George Jennings had a number of queries with regards handling spectators and we all gave our thoughts and opinions on how best to handle certain situations. The meeting finished with Steve performing the infamous Multiplying Bottles by which time the evening had flown by with thte conclusion that it had been another thoroughly enjoyable night of magic. Paul Joyce who is performing in the Children’s Show at the Northern Magic Circle Convention performed a short item in order that members could give feedback on the effect. Paul was undecided about its use but several good ideas were discussed and Paul was encouraged to include it. Alan Mylecraine then introduced Brian Sefton, well known to many of us in the society and as well as being one of the
Tuesday 3rd May 2010 - Cards, Cuts, Shuffles and Moves with Brian Glover
Thursday 29th April 2010 - Charity Show at Blackpools BPL Bar.
Tuesday 6th April 2010 - Annual Close-up Competition
1st Place - Alan Mylecraine
2nd Place - Allan Clarke
3rd Place - Paul Joyce
Award for the best card trick went to - George Jennings
Tuesday 2nd March 2010 - Brian Sefton - 'unplugged'.
Tuesday 2nd February 2010 - The Trick Sessions
Tuesday 12th January 2010 - DIY Magic
Tuesday 1st December 2009 - Teach a trick night.
Tuesday 3rd November 2009 - The 'Trick Sessions'.
Tuesday 6th October 2009 - Entertaining Children with Guy de Paul
Tuesday 1st September 2009 - A Night WITHOUT Cards ....
With 13 members in attendance, Alan Mylecraine opened with a few notices and a discussion on an opportunity to move meetings to another venue. The members agreed that the suggestion was worth pursuing and Steve Eastham was to make further enquiries. To get the evenings magic underway, Alan introduced new member Stuart Bagot (Baggy to his friends!) who ran through a number of impromptu card tricks with a shuffled deck. Baggy started with a Four Ace production and proceeded through a number of clever tricks with predictions and matching pairs being found along the way. There was a feeling that he could have continued all evening, but keen to let everyone else have a turn, Alan M called his audition to a close and opened the meeting to the rest of the members. This was to be A NIGHT WITHOUT CARDS! and it was not without significance that Ken Ashburn stepped up to the plate and delivered a stunning opener with a cap in bottle effect. Paul Davis slid onto the stage with an excerpt from one of his kids routines centred around a rabbit in a hat and a sweeties to silk effect. Alan M showed a clever Tenyo item called the Crystal Pyramid where a coin was transported into the pyramid under cover of a handkerchief. Paul Joyce showed a nice disappearing tumbler effect with a sucker finish and was followed by his son Jonathan Joyce who demonstrated a nice multi- coin penetration. Ron Wilson was again full of DIY magic showing us a nice paddle item and a variation on ‘Block Off’ he had constructed. Jack Clarke then went mental with a correctly divined prediction with three coins. Allan Clarke ran through another ‘mental’ item centred on reality and perception where the colour of a freely chosen pen was correctly determined. Mel Wilson then demonstrated his grasp of the Chinese Sticks with a nice change in patter which he then followed with a deft T&R newspaper effect. Steve Eastham performed a Wayne Dobson effect called ‘No Chance’ where two spectators freely choose an envelope each leaving the Magi with the only one containing real money. George Jennings was practicing a kids routine using a block that would stop on a rope at any pre determined position. Next up was Kelly Ann Chester who for her first meeting performed another multi coin penetration effect. Alan Chester, Kelly’s dad took to the stage and showed another Tenyo item where a heart and oval shaped cases containing coloured balls magically transposed. Baggy came back to the front and ran through a nice paper cutting effect with a kicker finish. Ken Ashburn presented his second effect which was another clever idea from Collectors Workshop using a pocket watch which was magically restored from a jumble of bits initially shown. Paul Davis then previewed a Square Circle routine from a Christmas Kids show while Alan M gave us a nice ‘Uncanny Silks’ routine. Paul Joyce made some coloured ropes magically join together while Jonathan made a ball in an egg cup disappear. Ron then showed us an Xmas version of the Chinese sticks, again made by his own fair hand. Jack Clarke followed this with a funny C&R rope routine while dad Allan performed a ‘Houdini’s Grandmother’ effect from an Abra magazine. Steve Eastham demonstrated another Wayne Dobson effect using some Chinese coins and American quarters which magically change places in the spectators hands. George Jennings closed another great evenings entertainment with a quiz routine heavily weighted in favour of a home made change bag. With so many members wanting to perform we are going to have to extend the 2 hour session to cope, maybe our new venue will give us more scope. Keep watching this space for details. Pictures HERE.
hard to imagine that the thriving
club that is the Fylde Mystics have
come so far in just 12 months. Last
Tuesdaynight was the first
anniversary of the reformation of
the society andwas celebrated in
style with a special ‘birthday’ cake
provided by Alan Mylecraine. Whilst
we have no formal committee, we
thought it prudent to have a ‘mini
AGM’ to receive the accounts from
Steve Eastham who has kept our
finances on track for the last year.
All was found to be in order and the
accounts wereadopted. Next was an
audition from the society’s newest
(and youngest) member, Jonathan
Joyce. This very confident ten year
old had clearly put in a lot of
practice in a perfect delivery of
the ‘cups and balls’ routine, varied
on the way by a neat production of
the balls needed from a drawer box.
Jonathans entry marks the 18th
member to join the society thus far.
Tuesday 7th July - Blackburn's Modern Mystic League Entertain.
A veritable 'coach party' had arrived to sample the delights of a huge 'Jacob's Join' buffet and some first class entertainment. Five intrepid members of the MML had volunteered to join us in Cleveleys and provide the entertainment for what turned out to be a riot of magic and humour. After a couple of 'parish' notices from Alan Mylecraine, the show got underway. Brian Lead, the Leagues concert secretary and strolling Compere, got the audience warmed up with the help of Baskerville the hound. It transpired that Baskervile could speak and not only that, speak in foreign tongue. After a host of corny gags, Brian introduced the first act, Roger Woods, chairman of the League who mesmerised everyone with a special deck of cards all of which had differing back designs. With an uncanny choice, Roger guided a spectator into discovering the only two cards that were identical. Roger then demonstrated an escape trick based on his hero, 'Houdini' who once again managed to free himself of the handuffs, even thought they were only finger sized. From here, Roger armed himself with a regular deck and had the specator discover a chosen card using a 'lie detector' routine. From here the deck was used in a clever diary trick where the spectator managed to find the very card selected from a special day in the diary. Roger closed a very tight set with his trademark Chop Cup routine with a very fruity ending. Brian Lead returned with more laughter as he demonstrated the centuries old 'Indian Rope Trick' and tried his hand at mentalism courtesy of a predicted word and an animal which need to 'look round'. Next act was Past President Ron Baron who was introduced as for better or 'verse' due to the rhyming patter that accompanied his act. Ron opened with a cautionary tale of his schooldays illustrated with a ring and rope to great effect. Next he told a tale of cowboy builders and a chimney that needed a 'Block Off'. Pulling out a piece of rope and a spectator, Ron bewildered the audience with a linking scissor routine culminating in the spectator becoming a real 'star'. At the break, the audience were treated to a sumptuous buffet assembled in a blink by the members of the Fylde Mystics. Opening the second half, Brian Lead checked that the magic was present before bringing on Paul Guy who at first wasn't sure which society he was supposed to be entertaining. All was put right with the help of a few alphabet cards correctly assembled unseen by a spectator. Paul then had the audience in fits with a variety of sight gags from 'Spot On', a sponge ball and silk routine which produced presents from an otherwise empty bag and a very funny rope segment where the spectators eventually managed to 'repair' a cut rope. Brian reappeared, this time with a monkey who had everyone in stitches with his antics. The final act was introduced as 'Donald the Average'. The irrepressible Donald Monk who decided he would show the audience how one of his tricks worked. A piece of tissue paper was torn and restored to demonstrate the trick. Afterwards Donald ran through the trick again, only to bamboozle the audience by restoring the final torn pieces again. Donald moved on to a very funny faulty follower' routine, completely fooling his assistant, even when all the moves were made by him. Next Donald introduced a couple of slates and with the aid of one of the audience, managed to demonstrate how freely drawn symbols could be magically transferred between the slates. Don finished by introducing a new book he had written, 'Slim with Donald'. This funny limerick brought a great evenings entertainment to a humerous close and no doubt had eveyrone laughing all the way home. The MML had set a very high standard and our challenge was to equal this on a reciprocal visit to Blackburn next year. It's not going to be easy! Pictures can be found HERE.
Tuesday 2nd June - The Trick Sessions
Tuesday 5th May - Shawn Farquhar - Three times World Champion of Magic.
Tuesday 6th April - Close-up Competition
The Fylde Mystics got competitive last night when 8 members threw down the gauntlet to find out who would reign supreme in the first ever re-formed Mystics Close-Up competition. A large crowd had gathered to witness the event, some old friends and some new faces who’s curiosity about the Mystics may have got the better of them. Steve Eastham acted as host for the evening and got the proceedings underway by outlining the running order and how the judging would work. We were pleased to have three magical judges on hand, Paul Guy and Donald Monk from the Modern Mystic League and Richard Blackie who is the current editor of the club magazine for the Order of the Magi in Manchester. Ron Baron was also on hand to present the awards.
drew first out
and had the
of warming up
with ‘Jam Jar
Paul’s ‘13’. Paul
only turned 14
Trio’, a close
a nice version
of a Cut &
closed with a
hit the ground
running with a
load of gags
and a ‘Cell
onto a diary
through to a
card, an ESP
using a couple
and closed his
set with a
opened with a
card to money
going on to a
card trick set
along with his
with a ‘Phil’
Joyce set the
scene for a
and a very
Paul closed by
his set. Ron
the last spot
showed us a
had made some
years ago, it
showed of his
went on to
with hand made
effect and a
That and the
After some no doubt difficult judging and collating of marks, Steve Eastham announced the award winners as Ron Baron congratulated everyone on a good nights entertainment and handed out the trophies. It was another magic packed evening which everyone seemed to enjoy. Pictures are HERE.
2nd Place - Alan Mylecraine
3rd Place Ken Ashburn
Tuesday 3rd March - Grand Auction.
Tuesday 3rd February - Workshops Galore!
one but two
Wilson who had
popped in to
see us last
who had been
magic is still
the members. Alan
for April will
be limited in
After a couple
handed over to
the first of
Ring and Rope
alike so Allan
the routine he
year and went
on to explain
some of the
moves and the
onto a number
of on and off
a variety of
took to the
floor and in
had packets of
and glue for
have a go at
and then went
on to explain
in detail not
only how to
make the props
but also the
Great fun was
had by all as
reams of paper
and glue flew
Restore by all
on camera. The
card in a
display of a
his pocket. A
and string. Jack
up with a
card was found
to be one of a
cards on his
into a nice
cards and an
Ankh mirror to
chosen card. Paul
cards that are
shown to match
with a very
selection of a
match a card
the diary. In
a night of
not one but
choose a card
the three on
the table. George
through a nice
bit of patter
with a card
with a very
building to a
Tuesday 6th January 2009 - A Quiz too far...
The January meeting proved to be a puzzling time for the Fylde Mystics. Not the usual, ‘why are we here’ or ‘what’s it all about’? More along the lines of ‘who is credited with inventing ‘Mental Epic’’? or who’s real name was David Wighton? The new year quiz, developed my Brian Taylor was a real brain teaser. After the usual parish notices from Alan Mylecraine and a short video of Jared Stoker performing Cliff Lount's "This is the Queen", the quiz began. Sixty questions ranging from sublime to ridiculous split into several categories. There was a section on Magic Posters another section focussed on negative images of well known magicians while another featured Magic Book authors. There was a great deal of ‘Oh I know this one… now what was his name’? After the answers were revealed, the winners received grand prizes, generously donated by Alan Mylecraine and Brian Taylor. Top of the list was George Jennings with 35, closely followed by Steve Eastham with 34 and in 3rd place (with a bit of help from his dad), was Jack Clarke. Booby prize went to Joe Haslem, our new Junior for his valiant attempt. The rest of the meeting was spent performing magic. We welcomed a prospective new member Ron Wilson who offered up a nice version of ‘Dots Impossible’. Steve Eastham spent a few minutes with a dual prediction effect called Nomen Omen. Alan M followed this with a short routine based on Bill Thompsons diary trick, which started out by changing the colour of the deck then having had a diary date selected, proceeded to find the predicted card at a freely named number. Joe Haslem then showed everyone his latest effect, the classic ‘Cards Across’. Allan Clarke then demonstrated a prediction effect using a set of dominoes to determine the final two digits identified in a prediction. Paul Davis then ran through a nice routine with a packet of sweets and a few silks. The sweets vanished from a tube and were replaced by a chosen silk. The sweets were then found in the silk bag. A nice routine that should play well. George Jennings had us in stitches again with a ‘blind date’ routine, successfully identifying the name of Brian T’s blind date. Jack Clarke demonstrated a nice ‘Egyptian’ effect using 3 mummies and a wooden sarcophagus. The freely chosen mummy was correctly identified by Jack. Brian Taylor closed the evening’s performance with another Alan Warner item, a transposition effect called Pharoe's Curse. Well, 2009 had opened with another good nights entertainment flashing by in no time at all. Workshops next month by Allan Clarke and Brian Taylor. Pictures as ever HERE.
Tuesday 2nd December - Mentalism for Dummies...
Tuesday 4th November - Classics of Magic
Tuesday 7th October - Steve Eastham Presents:
Tuesday 2nd September - Members Workshop.
Tuesday 5th August - Re-Founding Night.
Following this, each of the members performed a couple of effects to establish the missions of the Society.
For a photo of the members present that evening click HERE.
Tuesday 8th January - Stage Magic. - Meeting Review by Paul Joyce
Tuesday 12th March - Star Lecture with Mark Leveridge: Meeting Review by Paul Joyce