Science of Magic

5 min readAug 11, 2019


This past month has been a productive one of magic and science. Mr Quinn made his debut at The London Improv Theatre at the Magicians Showcase. I had previously attended the venue for a magic lecture event organised by Big Blind Media, with excellent guest lecturers Liam Montier and Jack Thighe.

The host also invited anyone who wanted to give an impromptu performance, so I jumped at the chance and was duly invited back for the showcase. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, sharing the stage with a group of talented mentalists and magicians. Having filmed my act, this proved very useful in ones self critique and receiving feedback from my mentor Rob Zabrecky. I had also been filming all my rehearsals, tweaking the script and blocking. A great learning curve, reminding me to show more attention to the props when needed and being still.

The Mysterious Mr Quinn

As an alumni of the Reading Junior Days, I was thrilled to hear the Magic Circle had an event to celebrate the work of the beloved Keith Churcher. The Reading Junior Day was a great experience for young like minded magicians to meet together and also compete on stage. Many young performers over the years have blossomed into pro magicians, and it was great to catch up with old friends and former attendees at the event. There were some wonderful performances and interviews too from fellow alumni.

Reading Junior Day — A Tribute Show

And here comes the science part. I recently attended a talk with Dr Matt Tompkins, author of The Spectacle of Illusion. This is a fantastically illustrated and thoroughly researched book on the subject of ‘magic, the paranormal and the complicity of the mind’. Matt is a experimental psychologist and magician, and shared an entertaining and thought provoking discussion on the connection of cognition and conjuring.

Dr Matt Tompkins and Mr Quinn

I’m also looking forward to the Science of Magic Associations Summer Seminar at the end of this month where SoMA delegates will be discussing their research and findings. Another science and magic related publication to seek out is SoMA’s Gustav Kuhns ‘Experience the Impossible’- The Science of Magic.

SoMa logo. ‘Experience the Impossible’- The Science of Magic by Gustav Kuhn.

As always, there has been a continued influx of great looking playing cards to add to ones collection. Cherry Casinos have graced us with another colour change, this time the Desert Inn Purple Cherries. Nick Earls Got Magic have recently released the minimalist design deck, Striped playing cards and I also picked up some Views . I love the Pure Imagination Projects inspired design from George Méliès, ‘A Trip to The Moon’, in their Les Méliès Conquest Blues.

Got Magic ‘View’ and ‘Striped’ decks. Pure Imagination Projects ‘Les Méliès Blue Conquests.’

I’m still contemplating designing a deck or two and Papercuts have published a great design booklet, ‘the first sketchbook specifically designed for creating playing cards.’

Cherry Casino Desert Inn Purple. Papercuts design booklet. Jerry’s Nuggets!

Jerrys Nuggets have also been reborn in a modern and vintage feel deck, due for release this November after a successful Kickstarter campaign. Kickstarter continues to support numerous card design start ups, and Ondřej Pšeničkas promo for his latest Butterfly deck is a thing of beauty.

Eric Chien has brought his A-game to the table in his latest routine for Americas Got Talent. Erics FISM and Asias Got Talent winning act is simply mind blowing! Check out his latest AGT routine!

Eric Chien on AGT

The superbly talented Kevin Li made a return performance on Penn & Teller. Looking forward to seeing what he has planned for Vegas this September and make sure to follow Kevin on Instagram.

Kevin Li on P&T

Magic Live this year looked to be another resounding success, with plenty of pictures and inside footage shared via social media. Thank you again to David Penn with his tour on the dealers hall. Tobias Dostal once again astounded everyone with his creative genius, since his outstanding Silhouette act from last year. And it was great to see Christian Grace demo Level One and his latest creation to David Copperfield! Instagram and Facebook continue to prove an excellent means of sharing ones experience on the convention, virtually making you an attendee, so I’m making plans for a trip to Magic Live next year to experience at first hand!

And finally, as a thank you to our good friend Rob Zabrecky for his continued support, generous time and feedback, a reminder to check out his latest memoir

Strange Cures

Strange Cures is full of Zeal Adventure Bravery Redemption Enthralling Conjuring Killer Years of a memoir! The A to Z of Musician to Magician!

Also check out Zabrecky’s brilliantly entertaining YouTube channel, ‘Other Side with Zabrecky’, for a trip to the unknown.