A Continuing Journey In The Magic Background Of Singapore

This report is to introduce magicians and magic enthusiasts to the wealthy background of magic in Singapore. It honours the notable achievements, prominence and significance of local magicians from the earlier and existing.

The beginning of Contemporary Magic in Singapore

It is the general consensus that modern magic in Singapore (submit Entire world War 2) commenced with the late-Ng Bo

Oen AKA The Excellent Wong. Information on neighborhood magic pre-war is really scarce. The only details found has been on The Fantastic Wong carrying out at the New World Amusement Park (then positioned at Kitchener Street) in the thirties.

The Great Wong was born in 1908 in Shanton, a city of the Guangdong Province, China and immigrated to Singapore in 1933. He was the only expert magician of his time in Singapore and carried out throughout South East Asia. He was known for his sharp phase magic, Linking Rings schedule and Sword Basket illusion. He was also an expert craftsman who constructed all of his props by hand. He experienced the reward of figuring out the mechanics and methodology of magic props and fabricating them from scratch.

In 1962, The Excellent Wong produced a substantial contribution to the international magic neighborhood by publishing his popular linking rings program with English script written by Tudor Brock. Davenports Magic in London distributes his manuscript to date. In 1982, he was invited by the Federation Internationale des Societes Magiques (FISM) to perform at the 15th World Congree of Magic in Lausanne, Switzerland.

(For more information on The Excellent Wong refer to ‘The Great Wong Story’ in The Worldwide Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring 115 The Quantum Ring Golden Jubilee Issue)

Another regional magician who was instrumental in increasing modern day magic in Singapore during the beginning was the late-Tan Hock Chuan. He was a instructor by profession but carried out for once-a-year specific events, charity demonstrates and non-public get-togethers. He was (and even now is) internationally acknowledged for his magical inventions. His consequences and ideas are even now promoted supplier products these days and have been released in countless publications (of that time) such as Gen, Spinx, Pentagram, New Pentagram, Swami Mantra, Abracadabra and even Tarbell’s Course in Magic. He is the 1st Asian magician to obtain the Spinx Award (1936-37)

Equally The Excellent Wong and Tan Hock Chuan have been crucial influences to a lot of of the initial generation of Singapore present day-magicians who have paved the way for future generations.

nineteen fifties

It was only following the war and in the course of the British Military Administration that magic in Singapore started its increase to in which it is nowadays. 1950 was the year that the Singapore Magician’s Club was shaped by a team of amateur magicians, comprising of English-educated experts.

In 1951 the Singapore Magician’s Club gained their constitution from The Intercontinental Brotherhood of Magicians HQ in The united states and was from then on was officially known as The Global Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring 115. Founding members of the club at that time incorporated Tan Ewe Chee (President), Yeo Before long Kian, Lim Kim Tian, Lim Hap Hin, J.H Stafford, L.A Joseph, J.W Jackson (Vice-President) and Tan Hock Chuan (Secretary).

The 50’s gave delivery to Singapore’s 1st technology of present day magicians. Apart from the founding associates of the IBM Ring and The Fantastic Wong (who joined the Ring in 1952 by invitation), some prominent initial technology magicians integrated Lim Hap Hin, Tan Choon Tee, Tan Bah Chee, Yeo Shortly Kian and his college student Michael Lim.

The Excellent Wong operated the first magic shop from his property cum showroom/ workshop in Singapore at 255-A Jalan Besar exactly where he marketed his own handcrafted props as effectively as imported seller products from Japan. (This home/ shop was ruined in a fire in Dec 1988 causing him to get rid of most of his textbooks and props)

nineteen sixties

In the course of this period, magicians like The Wonderful Wong, Tan Bah Chee, Lim Hap Hin and Tan Choon Tee performed magic programs at the National Theatre Club and the YMCA. They were dependable for generating lively magicians this kind of as Charles Choo, Wong Fok Choy, Chia Hearn Jiang, Gwee Thiam Hock and the late-Vijeyacone.

The early 60s also saw the ‘Golden Age’ of magic with magicians carrying out at diverse venues throughout the nation. In addition to nearby magicians executing in evening golf equipment, international magicians these kinds of as Socar performed a grand illusion display to a entire residence at the Capitol Theatre (along Stamford Street) and The Excellent Nicholas at the Sky Theater in The Wonderful World Amusement Park at Kim Seng Street (Now, Fantastic World City).

In the late 60s, Wee Peng Guan (Uncle of Charles Choo), opened the second magic store in Singapore at a store house along Robinson Road. Around that time, common entertainer Victor Khoo’s father Khoo Teng Heng who was a magician, a ventriloquist and hypnotist opened his magic store at Bras Basah. (in which Carlton Lodge stands presently).

During this 10 years, Tan Choon Tee was creating a title for himself in the international magic community in the discipline of Mentalism. He gained several worldwide Linking Ring Awards for his One-Male Parades and has two guides printed by Micky Hades. He was also a standard contributor to many intercontinental magic journals this kind of as Gen, New Pentagram, Magicgram, Magicana and The Linking Ring.

Abroad magicians whom passed by means of Singapore incorporated Milo & Roger, Milbourne Christopher and Maurice Fogel.

nineteen seventies

The seventies saw the delivery of the next technology of Singapore magicians. Some nicely-identified magicians who got began for the duration of this time provided The Great Wong’s son Ng Kee Chee, John Teo, Tang Sai Thong, Ng Seow Kiat, Tang Yeng Fun, Bob Chua, Eric Leong, Tan Teck Seng, Lawrence Tham, Tan Tuan Seng, Lawrence Khong and Andrew Kong.

The Singapore Association of Magicians was established on ten March 1973 in pleasant ‘rivalry’ to the IBM Ring. The club was led by Tan Bah Chee with distinguished founding members these kinds of as Lim Hap Hin, Tan Hock Chuan and Charles Choo.

Magic retailers in Singapore began to spring up during the late seventies. Ng Kee Chee established up a magic stall at Yaohan in Plaza Singapura and Wang Leng opened his shop in Peninsula Plaza. Charles Choo opened his store in August 1978 on the sixth ground of Much East Purchasing Centre. (It would move numerous moments to a variety of malls but at some point returned again to Significantly East). His shop would quickly turn into an institution where magicians would acquire different magic items as properly as meet up and discover from each other.

It was a selection haunt for a lot of magicians in the a long time to come till the store shut in the new millennium.

In the course of this interval, The Tropicana Night Club, which was positioned at Pacific Plaza, was a location that experienced regular magic performances. Many popular magicians also visited Singapore in the 70s. In 1970, John Calvert executed at the Countrywide Theatre. In 1972, Albert Goshman frequented Ring one hundred fifteen to give a lecture. In that identical year, “The Professor” Dai Vernon also frequented Singapore, lectured and interacted with local magicians. Other browsing magicians provided Andre Kole, Billy McComb, and Ali Bongo.

nineteen eighties

By the nineteen eighties, the regional magic scene was flourishing with healthy memberships for the two major magic golf equipment as effectively as a surge in the quantity of doing magicians. Numerous of today’s veterans produced their name in the 80s. Familiar names like Richard Ang, Patrick Wan, Patrick Ng Wang Lin, Tan Hai Yan AKA Gician, Paul Koh, AB Francis and Gordon Koh were carrying out often at general public and private exhibits for the duration of this 10 years. Well-known nearby venues for public magic shows by magic clubs held on a standard basis at that time integrated the Drama Centre and the Countrywide Museum Theatrette.

The acceptance of magic retailers also grew and in 1982, Chew Kin Song opened a Magic & Novelty Corner at the Chinese Guide Section of Well-liked Guide Co Pte Ltd on the 4th Ground of Bras Basah Sophisticated. Gician Tan also opened up his 1st magic store at Parkway Parade which subsequently moved to Marina Square and was managed by Richard Ang. Besides this primary shop, he dispersed magic things and sets by means of division retailers

in Singapore and South East Asia.The Singapore viewers was also uncovered to planet-course magic by means of several magic television exhibits and sequence that ended up aired on local Tv set including the David Copperfield specials, Magic Magic and The Best of Magic.

International magicians who frequented Singapore during this time provided David Copperfield, Mark Wilson, Ben Harris, Paul Daniels and Gene Anderson.

nineteen nineties

The commencing of this ten years observed the introduction of the country’s third generation magicians into the local magic scene. Distinguished budding magicians integrated Enrico Varella, Sherman Tjiong, J C Sum, Joe Yu (Chan Ee Kang), Nique Tan Li Keong, Prakash Puru, Kiki Tay, Alex Tan and Jeremy Pei.

The local chapter of Intercontinental Magicians Society was shaped, founded by its President, Tan Bah Chee despite the fact that the club’s presence in Singapore was limited-lived.

The late-1990s saw a enormous surge in magic world-wide recognition because of to David Blaine’s avenue magic specials. Numerous folks started to ‘get into’ magic and had new mediums to learn the craft such as the introduction of DVDs and the Web.

A new magic store, Magic Castle & Promotions, opened up by Vijay Kumar at Shaw Towers soon grew to become ‘the place to be’ where new magicians would cling out and fulfill.

For the duration of this decade, Wang Leng’s shop in Peninsula Plaza was offered to Patrick Wan. The shop was subsequently offered to Richard Ang and is now properly known as Ang Property of Magic. Patrick Wan opened his new store, Magic Wand, which has spawned into a number of outlets in a variety of parts of Singapore. Steven Sim also opened Magic Supreme at Coronation Plaza which has subsequently moved to Park Shopping mall.

The 90s was an interesting decade with a lot of visits and performances by well-known magicians. Apart from lectures by Michael & Hannah Ammar, Mark Leveridge and Wolfgang & Sonja Riebe there ended up also public theatre performances by the Pendragons, Princess Tenko, Andre Kole, Franz Harary, David Copperfield, Rudy Coby and Robert Gallop. Other visiting magicians incorporated Larry Becker, Tim Ellis, Terry Seabrooke, Phil Cass and Albert Tham.

2000 – Existing

Magic has continued to flourish at the nearby level in this ten years. New options and skills have emerged to elevate the art in Singapore. In May possibly 2000, J C Sum staged the very first at any time nearby full-evening theatre show ‘Magic at the Theatre’ at Victoria Theatre. Just a thirty day period later on, far more than a dozen magicians from the US and Canada arrived down to Singapore as element of the Magic Competition arranged by the Malls of Centrepoint. Magicians this sort of as Robert Baxt, Rocco and Peter Gossamer done multiple exhibits at numerous Centrepoint Malls for in excess of a week.

In 2004, the Singapore Magic Circle (SMC) was developed by Aloysius Yeo and with its on-line discussion board drew a new pool of magic fans with each other. SMC has because developed to in excess of a thousand customers and regularly manage gatherings, occasions as nicely as the latest Concept:Magic Micro MAGIC Convention in January 2007.

Through a big-scale theatre magic musical ‘Magic of Love’, Lawrence Khong, a pastor with Faith Neighborhood Baptist Church and his daughter Pricilla, distribute the gospel information.

The multi-million greenback manufacturing has been staged a lot of times over the years throughout the world to spread the term of Christ. Subsequently, the very same group organized two International Pageant of Magic conventions in 2003 & 2005. The 1st of its variety big magic functions incorporated competitions, lectures, a dealers’ place and performances. International performers this kind of as Jeff McBride, Max Maven, Johnny Thomspon, The Pendragons, Lee Eun Gyeol and Tommy Ponder have been booked to carry out at the gala displays and lectures.

In latest several years, J C Sum has turn out to be arguably the most notable Singapore magician of this generation. His magic has been noticed by thousands and thousands through his reside performances across Asia as nicely as his landmark mass media assignments on MediaCorp Studio’s Ch 8 as nicely as subsequent ‘Street Illusions’ compilation DVD/ VCD.

His 24-episode ‘Magic in Motion’ series can at present be seen day-to-day on Singapore Push Holdings MediaBoxOffice through 2007. In champignon magique , J C has also proven himself as an elite illusion designer from Asia with the publication of his 3 critically acclaimed illusion books that have been sold in far more than thirty nations to date.

Another gifted award-winning magician, Jeremy Pei, is raising the profile of Singapore magic in the regional magic local community with his theatre demonstrates, arranged lectures, workshops and lively participation in magic conventions & competitions in Japan, Korea, China, Thailand and Australia. His exclusive North-Asian affect design of magic functionality has garnered him a subsequent with new budding magicians whom he teaches and guides. He has also introduced a number of original magic merchandise which are offered to magicians worldwide.

In an additional initial, award-profitable junior magician, Kyle Ravin secured a thirteen-episode weekly Street Magic collection, “Maya” on MediaCorp Studios’ Vasantham Central. This 30min collection observed him complete magic for the Indian local community and celebs across the place.

This 10 years has seen the introduction of even more magic retailers and dealers run by youthful magicians to meet up with the need of magic enthusiasts and magicians. These consist of new ‘brick & mortar’ magic retailers these kinds of as Street Magic by Tan Wei Ping, Challenging Business by Jimmy Wong, The Magic Corridor by Kenneth Peh as nicely as on-line outlets like The Small Magic Shop by Ning.

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