A few of the photographs I took during the Sheffield Street Magic Festival on 1-2 November 2014.

I’m pleased to say that we’ve now had payment for this and are able to pay participants. Shop regulars should have received their pittance fee; if you’ve not had yours, call in or give me a ring. This should be a complete list. If your name isn’t on, contact me immediately.

Peter Antoniou, Russ Appleby, John Archer, Ian Baker, Adam Bell, Steve Brownley, Ashton Carter, Chris Clarke, Nathan Clarke, Connor, Roger Curzon, Darren Dudley, David, Steve Faulkner, Craig Frith, Julie Gascoyne, Ian Hallworth, Peter Hammond, Ian Henshaw, Toby Hudson, Tom Hudson, Ryan Jackson, Ben Jones, Dominic Lawrenson, Nathan Lindley, Looch, Tom Magick, Jared Manley, John Martin, Jordan Maycock, Callum Morris, Gareth Neale, Vincent O’Brien, Gordon Pemberton, June Savory, Ben Smithies, Jake Smithies, Tim Smithies, Wiz Spencer, Andy Taylor, Peter Wall, Tony Wilkinson.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to everyone who performed or helped in any way. I hope you enjoyed your involvement and feel that the Festival helped raise the profile of magic in Sheffield.

The 2014 event was much bigger than 2013, spread over two days and with two evening shows and two ‘junior magician workshops’ (despite the organisation  fee being the same!). I’d love to get your feedback and hear your ideas for improvement if we go for a 2016 Festival. Don’t hesitate to comment below, or email me. Thanks.

Bus Stop Poster_smPosters are now available for the Sunday Night of Magic at Sheffield’s Library Theatre on 2 November. As with the general Street Magic Festival posters they are available in two sizes: A3 (397 x 420 mm, approximately 11.7 x 16.5 inches) and A4 (210 x 297 mm, approximately 8.27 x 11.7 inches).

Again, if you have a printer I can email a copy to you as a pdf (tell me which size you require) or you can pick one (or more!) up from Magick during opening hours (11:00 to 5:30 any day except Thursday or Sunday). Message me, email me, text me or ring 0114 276 0482.

The genial Steve Faulkner is hosting the show and we have a truly outstanding bill for you: John Archer, Peter Antoniou, Looch, Jared Manley, and Tim Smithies. (And I’ll be behind the scenes stage-managing for this lot; should be fun…!)

In fact it’s such a great bill that for a moment there I was tempted to use the adjective ‘awesome’. Phew.

Please tell all your friends, family, lovers, co-workers, fellow Facebookers, gym members, Twitterers, acquaintances, enemies and that guy in the pub you nod to on Thursdays, tickets can be obtained now from Magick, 82 Broad Street, Sheffield, S2 5TG. Or by ringing us on 0114 276 0482 during opening hours (11:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day except Thursdays and Sundays). You can pay by cash, Paypal or any major debit or credit card.

Don’t miss the bus… it’ll be magic!

Tim Smithies brings The World's Most Dangerous Card Trick to a (reasonably; that's real blood) successful conclusion during last year's Sheffield Street Magic Festival.

Tim Smithies brings The World’s Most Dangerous Card Trick to a (reasonably; that’s real blood) successful conclusion during last year’s Sheffield Street Magic Festival.

The story so far:

I was approached a couple of weeks ago and asked if I would apply for the tender to organise the 2014 Sheffield Street Magic Festival. Well, it’s on and happening on Saturday and Sunday 1 and 2 November. Not a lot of time! But here’s what’s planned so far:

Saturday 1 November: Magic in the streets, 12:30 – 4:00. We have three 6 x 3 m gazebos (twice the size of last year). The area in front of the Town Hall will be the  main focus for the street magic with Barkers Pool and Fargate as secondary sites. Bad weather provisions are being organised.

Two ‘junior magician workshops’ are being held on the Saturday afternoon in the Town Hall. Times to be arranged.

On Saturday evening there will be a ‘haunted magic’ event in an atmospheric panelled room in the Town Hall. Start time probably 6:30…

Sunday 2 November: Magic in the streets, 12:30 – 4:00

Sunday at 7:30: Full evening show in the Library Theatre.

There’s a press call/photo shoot to promote the event (part of ‘Out Of This World’ this year, but if all goes well, next year…) in the Winter Garden this Wednesday.

Please help make this event one to remember. Last year’s was a great success, and I’m hoping we’ll get the same enthusiasm and feedback as we did then. It’s a great boost for magic in Sheffield.

We need performers, of course, for all the events, plus people to help behind the scenes (including front-of-house staff for the evening events) and helpers/teachers for the junior magician workshops. The usual stalwarts have offered their services, and I’m hoping that we’ll get the same enthusiastic response that we did last year.

There is, of course, not a lot of cash involved but we’ll make sure that everyone taking part will get a share of what is available, as well as the satisfaction of taking part in what should be a fabulous weekend of magic.

'Woof' screeshot: The ClownThe world big-screen premiere of the horror short Woof will take place tomorrow during Sheffield’s acclaimed Horror Film Festival ‘Celluloid Screams’. I’ll be there on the red carpet with director Tim Smithies and my co-stars…

That’s Saturday 26 October at 1.15 p.m., accompanying the screening and director Q&A session of Lee Hardcastle’s ‘Claymania’ films. See http://www.celluloidscreams.co.uk for more details.

Incidentally, ‘Woof’ is in competition so be sure to give us your vote if you’re attending the festival. (If nothing else, it’s got to be the world’s first balloon-modelling based horror film…)

'Woof' screenshot: Final Scene

"Any Goes" at the LoungeRegular readers will probably know that Lounger Tim Smithies, in addition to his skills with axes, fiery brands, paving slabs and nasal nails, plucks a mean string or several. His band, The Anything Goes Orchestra, is fast making a name for itself in pubs, clubs and festivals far and indubitably wide.

We’re delighted to say that those who have so far failed to discover the exact nature of that name now have a chance to do so at the first TAGO Cheese & Wine Party here at Sheffield’s famed Magick Lounge on Thursday 26 August from 8.30 p.m.

Please note that this is a ticket-only event. Your precious pass to a world of eclectic musical entertainment and a variety of enticing cheesy comestibles is available online only for a mere £4 from this link (click here).

So, all you Sheffield sophisticates and uke-loving hep-cats, just leave your worries on the doorstep on the sunny side of Broad Street. It’ll be magic.

Well, it’s been a while since I posted here. There are times when blogs, and business, have to take second place to more important matters.

In company with a group of like-minded Loungers I did take a little time off at the beginning of February to spend An Evening of Metaphysical Magic with Dr Todd. Described as an ‘evening of brain-boggling investigations into the universe, reality and the inner workings of the mind’, this was a delightful mix of mentalism, bizarre and story-telling magic presented in the Milton Theatre at Huddersfield University. If Dr Todd comes your way, don’t miss him!

Can’t tell you too much about this year’s Blackpool Convention as I missed most of it. I drove over on the Thursday afternoon and set up. On Thursday evening I went to see La Clique (‘a heady cocktail of cabaret, new burlesque, circus sideshow and contemporary variety’) in the evocative environs of Blackpool’s Tower Circus. Great show.

This, incidentally, was part of the Showzam festival. Showzam was a highlight for me last year and with the billed vintage sideshow illusions, Carnesky’s Ghost Train, ‘Heat the Streets’, etc., it looked set to repeat its success. Among the new events were the Magic Show exhibition at the Grundy Art Gallery, a Hayward touring show I caught in Derby a couple of months ago (see below); and Ukulelescope, a collaboration between the magnificent Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain and the British Film Institute. Tim Smithies, street-magician, axe-juggler and renowned uke-dude had swung us tickets for this. I hear ’twas a plucking good night.

Sadly I was called away on urgent family matters shortly after opening on Friday afternoon, leaving the stand in the dextrous hands of the inimitable Roger Curzon (his new DVD VideoBook Pentalism was a hit). Many thanks to Roger and several other Loungers at the Convention for giving up some of their time to help with manning the stand and packing and returning things to Sheffield. Indeed thanks to all our friends and customers for the many kind comments and offers of help at a difficult time.