Magic is an age old fascination and a universal language. It is human nature to be curious about and captivated by the unexplained which is what makes the visual trickery of magicians so popular and enduring. There are grand illusionists, close up magicians, witch doctors and hypnotists all over the globe. They are part of a network whose roots can be traced to ancient civilisations that ended up crossing centuries, borders and cultural divides to result in magic-makers of some description appearing in every culture throughout history; even today the UK is no exception to this rule.
On 20th November 2013 Oliver B, the best close up magician London has ever produced let the world know who he considers a champion of magic when he tweeted:
No doubt about it @davidblaine is by far the best street-style magician of all time…puts other street magicians in the corner #newseries
David Blaine is a New York street illusionist who has confused and captivated the world for over a decade. Blaine’s examples of escapist, illusionist and shock magic have made him an international celebrity and helped direct the limelight to other magical talents.
In 2012 David Blaine released a 2 disc special on DVD. It was titled Decade of Magic and documented three of his best TV specials and some of the greatest stunts he’d performed since 2002. The DVD starts with his Vertigo special and is followed by his Drowned Alive and What Is Magic? specials as well as a selection of other tricks and special features.
Since his 2012 DVD release Blaine has worked on several other projects including the popular US show Real or Magic. The show aired stateside in November 2013 and has been picked up by Channel 4 who will air the special in the near future. Real or Magic is full of big names including the likes of Katy Perry, Will Smith, Woody Allen, Robert DeNiro, Kanye West, Jamie Foxx and even former President of the United States, George Bush; the celebrities are all targeted by Blaine who surprises them with tricks and illusions that leave them stunned.
The special shows how Blaine alarms Britain’s favourite comedian Ricky Gervais who is horrified when he witnesses Blaine put a giant needle through his arm without any blood or apparent pain (http://www.express.co.uk/news/showbiz/444280/David-Blaine-renders-celebrity-pals-speechless-with-horrifying-ice-pick-trick). During the Katy Perry segment of the show Blaine eats a drinking glass in front of Perry who stands and watches him – a little in awe, a little in horror – as he bites into and chews the glass with nonchalance. The singer then inspects Blaine’s face to check for any damage and upon seeing what may or may not be blood (and thus proof Blaine is in fact a mere mortal) she says what the world is thinking – “yeah that might be blood but I don’t actually know if you bleed like the rest of us”. Blaine then proceeds to pull a baby alligator out of Perry’s very small, very flat and very empty clutch bag (http://www.cambio.com/2013/11/17/youll-never-believe-what-david-blaine-found-in-katy-perrys-pur/) (http://www.magicweek.co.uk/).
As well as gathering an avid international following from showcasing his skill, David Blaine also demonstrates his immense popularity amongst celebrity admirers with shows like Real or Magic but Blaine is not the only magician with an army of high profile fans; Oliver B has his own famous following which includes One Direction, Jon Bon Jovi, JLS and Andy Murray to name but a few. Oliver B’s unique technique of blending the art and mystery of street magic with charisma, personal interaction and close up demonstrations make sure that he too impresses and intrigues society’s biggest names with his tricks. So next time you need to find a little magic in life, keep an eye out for the star illusionist that is Oliver B.