Paul crowned Magician of Mann

Mike Priest and Paul Martin

Mike Priest and Paul Martin

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A truly magical evening took place at the Palace Hotel and Casino on Friday when the Rotary Club of Douglas staged a family magic show in conjunction with the Magicians of Mann.

The performers were all competing for the title ‘Magician of Mann’ and the Arthur Culpin Challenge Cup, given to the club in 1959.

The winner at the end of the evening was Paul Martin from Douglas, and the award was presented to Paul by Mike Priest, president of the Rotary Club of Douglas.

Paul’s act included coins magically vanishing, only to appear one at a time in a small shot-glass covered by a pint glass.

When the final coin appeared visibly from nowhere and dropped into the glass, the audience collectively gasped.

Compere for the sell-out show was Bev Michelson, who was also one of the eight competitors.

The other performers were Keith Greenland, Mike Clague, Chris Burns, Lexi Watterson, Michael Daniels and John Cain.

First on was Ramsey’s Keith Greenland, who entertained with colour-changing CDs and restoring a newspaper.

He was followed by Mike Clague, with an act that included a thought-of playing card appearing inside a small envelope that was in plain sight all along.

Three young helpers managed to win prizes in a magical quiz, and a piece of paper transformed into a £20 note.

Chris Burns, who is well known locally as ‘Cookie the Clown’, left the greasepaint in his shop on Peel promenade and unicyled down the aisle in ‘Aussie’ outfit.

Lexi Watterson followed with her themed act which won her a place in The Magic Circle’s ‘Young Magician of the Year’ competition a few years ago.

Lexi taught the audience of 200 how to tear up a napkin and restore it, but then mystified everyone by restoring the duplicate pieces.

The final act in the first half of the show was Michael Daniels, whose act was linked to the history of magic. His ‘Cups and Balls’ routine was brilliant, according to Mike Clague, the secretary of Musicians of Mann, as was his performance of the ‘Chinese Linking Rings’.

Michael borrowed a spectator’s phone and ‘Googled’ something.

When the spectator had a free choice and named a famous person (Abraham Lincoln), then picked up his phone and found that Michael had searched and left photos of Lincoln in the search engine window minutes before, he was left speechless after exclaiming ‘No way!’

After an interval, Bev Michelson performed a mentalism trick with a telephone directory, and Keith Greenland and Chris Burns returned with more mysteries.

Peel resident John Cain performed an act to music, with a routine with a length of rope and a cloth-covered wooden table that floated in the air, even when the cloth was held only his young assistant from the audience.

Paul Martin, chairman of the Magicians of Mann, ended the show with what was to be the prize-winning performance. The three judges were Mike Priest, Rob Teare and Lez Diamond.

The Magicians of Mann meet on the third Tuesday of each month at the Catholic Columba Club in Douglas.

New members are welcome and anyone interested can contact secretary Mike Clague on 878328 or for information.

Mike can also provide details of the Young Magicians of Mann, a separate magic club for 11- to 18-year-olds who meet at the Youth Arts Centre in Douglas on Wednesday evenings.

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