Abracadabra: An interview with a magician about the skills and trends of performance magic
Have you ever found yourself in awe of magic tricks being performed right under your nose? Steve has been, which is why he invited Adelaide-based magician, Barry “Baz” Seeley onto the podcast to explore the discipline and the mindset of doing performance magic.
The SA Drink Of The Week with a Brockenchack Shiraz from Eden Valley, ably supported by our guest taster, Glenn Malycha.
And in the Musical Pilgrimage, we have a song from Mad Dog Malcolm that’s probably unlike any song you’ve ever heard.
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Running Sheet: Magic In Adelaide
Introduction to the show.
00:02:30 SA Drink Of The Week
This week’s SA Drink Of The Week is the 2019 Brockenchack Zipline Shiraz, ably supported by our guest taster, Glenn Malycha.
As you’ll hear (and see) in our tasting with Glenn Malycha from Wine Pro Australia, we learn that the winemaker behind this wine is Trevor Harch, who is a “former” Queenslander who’s fallen in love with our patch of turf!
00:17:35 Barry “Baz” Seeley
If I had three cups and a ball and performed a trick in which you lost track of where my ball was, I’d be performing one of the first magic tricks in history, dating back to about 3BCE. We would both know there was no “magic” going on. We’d both know I was using your senses to deceive you. But we’d all enjoy this moment of illusion. Over the history of The Adelaide Show podcast, we’ve chatted with illusionists, Michael Boyd and Laurence Leung, but in this episode we are sitting with an official magician of many years’ standing, Barry Baz Seeley.
And just like that, a new episode of The #Adelaide Show #Podcast has appeared, featuring Adelaide #magician, Barry "Baz" Seeley, discussing all things #mgaic and #illusion and #misdirection. https://t.co/P3bYxfV9de
— The Adelaide Show (@TheAdelaideShow) August 7, 2022
Links and references mentioned in the podcast:
We recorded in the underground home of SA’s magicians: Bombshelter Magic
Adelaide Magic Clubs:
1. Australian Society of Magicians (ASM)
Phil Ahrens 0438 055 188
2. International Brotherhood of Magicians (IBM)
Steve Burford 0402 462 881
Barry, before we get lost in the world of magic, magicians were long associated with the devil and the occult. I mention this because we’re recording this episode underground in a WWII Air Raid Warden’s “bomb shelter” in Adelaide and I’m worried about being made to disappear. Will there be some dark arts performed down here today?
Which clubs use these clubrooms and how did they come to use them. It seems like the clubs are taking the cloak of secrecy quite literally?
I was watching The Prestige with my daughters a few weeks ago and they demanded it be turned off after a scene in which the magician came off stage and had to empty the dead bird out of his magic trick equipment. We’d all thought he’d made a bird disappear. He had, but in a gruesome way in which the cage collapsed lightning fast, killing and squashing the bird out of sight. He later pulled a similar looking bird out of his pocket to release to the crowd. Do you think that was based on truth and, if so, how many birds do you go through?
There was a strong focus in The Prestige on the secret craft of developing an elaborate stage trick, most of which was all based on pure mechanics. How does that still of complex magic compare with the magic you do which I’ve experienced first hand, in which you are up close and personal and don’t have the benefit of distance to disguise what’s going on?
There is a murky area that lies between logic and wonder and I feel this is where your craft exists. It’s why I’ve been talking in terms of dismissing “magic” and focussing on the art of illusion. How do you react to that? In other words, what mindset do you embrace when performing or thinking about magic?
What mindset should audiences adopt to get the most out of a magic show. I’m particularly thinking of us older, jaded theatre goers. Is there something we can or should learn from children?
Do you make up your own tricks? And, if so, what’s the inspiration and the process?
Let’s talk about the discipline of being a magician. How long does it take to perfect a trick? And what are the obstacles you must overcome?
Does it get boring doing the same trick many times?
Is there any such thing as a new trick?
What happens if you forget what you’re doing when you’re in the middle of a trick on stage?
What happens if a card trick does not work, you’ve made a big thing with choosing a card and it turns out to be the wrong one
Can (and do) you apply magic craft in daily life?
We’re going to film a trick in a moment but can you teach us a trick just through audio?
And can you tell us what happens in this bunker during meetings?
01:22:19 Musical Pilgrimage
In the musical pilgrimage, we have Cha Ching, by Mad Dog Malcolm from the newly released album, The Adventures of Mad Dog Malcolm, The Street Fighting Cabaret Artiste.
Mad Dog Malcolm is known around comedy circuits as an undefeatable street fighter who has embraced a career as a cabaret singer to lift himself out of his rut of shady deals and living on the edge.
He is the alter ego of singer and comedian, Gerry Masi, who will be stealing Mad Dog’s work on Saturday, August 27, 2022, at the Laugh Lounge in Adelaide.
The song we’re about to play is not for the faint hearted. It is dark, black satire of the fact that whenever there are terrible catastrophes, some entertainment promoters cash in and make a fortune as people try to escape the bleakness of life.
So, you have been warned. Pause this now if you have kids listening or you’re at work, but if you’re still here, listen on and marvel at the affrontary of Mad Dog Malcolm.
Here’s this week’s preview video
SFX: Throughout the podcast we use free SFX from freesfx.co.uk for the harp, the visa stamp, the silent movie music, the stylus, the radio signal SFX, the wine pouring and cork pulling SFX, and the swooshes around Siri.