Magician David Blaine
Street magic has been around for a long time but in 1996 it took on a whole new meaning to magicians and the ordinary folks on the street. In 1996 David Blaine’s Street Magic aired and shook magic up a whole heap. Prior to street magic airing magicians around the world referred to street magic as the performance of open air magic designed to draw a crowd and at the end of performance the magician would encourage the audience to put their hands in their pockets as the “hat” was passed around.
Traditional street magic is a completely different style of magic to David Blaine style close-up magic. Traditional style street magic has far more in common with parlour or stage magic as the crowds tend to be far larger than that of close up magic; of course the idea is to make big money!
If you see Noel at a magic booking and you have an interest in learning magic be sure to tell Noel and he will advise the best route to learning some basic magic and then eventually progressing. You never know, maybe someday some of the people Noel performs for will become members of the Magic Circle. Over the years Noel has been performing he has received 3 or 4 emails from people who have seen him perform and have taken a serious interest in magic, started learning and are loving it.
Traditional style street magic is still alive and well and flourishing where ever there are large throngs of people such as Covent Garden in London and the Southbank, London.
David Blaine’s style of magic is still referred to as street magic but he has become more famous these days as a performer of large stunts like buried alive, drowned alive and the box thing in London.
Magicians around the world have a divided opinion on David Blaine. He certainly was responsible for bringing close-up sleight of hand magic to whole new generation of magicians. David Blaine was the first magician to conquer the internet. It has also provided lots of David Blaine clones and that’s bad kids, don’t do it.
It's pretty safe to say that most close up magicians wouldn't be doing this job if it wasn’t for David Blaine, in fact I'd say that 90% of the close up magicians in the UK wouldn't be performing regularly if it wasn't for David Blaine because David Blaine has helped to educate the genral public into what close up magic is. The magicians fall into one of three categories -
- Watching David Blaine for the first time got them interested in magic for the first time.
- Watching David Blaine reawakened their early interest in magic.
- They hated Blaine but the public’s interest in magic following the first special meant they were getting booked more often.
Let’s take a little trip back in the Delorian back to the winter of 1996. Most folks in the UK hadn't seen magic since P.Diddy aka Paul Daniels started concentrating more on flood prevention than magic. David Blaine did a great job of reinventing the public perception of close up magic. For the first time ever magic had an ambassador of astonishment, head honcho of hocus-pocus. The commissioner of conjuring, the lieutenant of legerdemain, the emicary of enchantment, the concierge of conjuring. He wasn't all feather boas and showbiz gittishness, he said very little and let the magic speak for itself.
Many magicians around the world didn't get it at first, they watched his first special Street magic and figured they could do the same tricks mostly so they felt that Blaine was lucky to get the big break….but they were wrong! It's not about the magic; it’s about the framing and the performer. Blaine had a mystical almost otherworldly quality to him that captured the publics imagination because he acted as Svengali, like a mystical man with special powers.
I can't remember much about the second special but I think he went to a rainforest. I think the general consensus was that it was a bit crap compared to the first one. I would elaborate a bit more but I cant remember much about it.