Harry Zimmerman

A Cheap Victory

Judge Steffi Kay

Judge Steffi Kay

Last night was Cheap Tricks 2, the nightmarish magic contest envisioned by Mysterion, Canada’s most awesomely coiffed, sartorially resplendent mentalist and half of the mindreading duo The Sentimentalists. Each contestant receives a series of constraints and has to create their act in just a few hours before performing on stage at Revival.

I appeared alongside John Roldan, Jim Byrnes, Beyond Mental Borders, Jonah Babins, Harry Zimmerman, Jacqueline Swann and Shamus MacGregor. The contest was judged by Steffi Kay of the Sentimentalists, Ben Train, Rayn, and the previous champion Chris Westfall. (I was a judge on the first contest in 2017, but agreed to give up my spot to Chris.)

My set of constrains was that i had 3 hours to build an act using a budget of $5 with only material procured at a the nearby A&W. I also had to present in the theme of a XXX-rated Adult Film…. magic for grownups indeed. I’m so glad I forgot to invite my mother to watch. I’m more glad that magic elder statesman Mark Lewis was in the audience to witness me debasing the art of magic.

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But a contest is a contest and I played to win (much to Mysterion’s regret.) You can watch the full performance below — cheaply filmed and edited by the Cheap Tricks elves. Although there’s not necessarily any reason you would want to. And certainly don’t do it with your children around:

The tl/dw is that I won…. proud of it, but not proud of what I had to do to get it. Thank you to the judges and to everyone who attended the contest.

James Alan & Mysterion the Mindreader

James Alan & Mysterion the Mindreader

L to R: Shamus Macgregor, Beyond Mental Borders, Harry Zimmerman, Jacqueline Swann, James Alan, Jonah Babins, Jim Byrns, John Roldan

L to R: Shamus Macgregor, Beyond Mental Borders, Harry Zimmerman, Jacqueline Swann, James Alan, Jonah Babins, Jim Byrns, John Roldan

I can’t wait to get back to doing normal magic!

Cheap Tricks (2)

It is the worst possible scenario for a variety performer. You arrive in another city to perform, but your props and equipment do not. (Thank you Airlines.) It’s a situation no one would want to be in, but we’re inflicting it on ourselves in Cheap Tricks. We tried this earlier in 2017 and are at it again, putting performers in awkward and unpleasant situations for your entertainment pleasure.

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All participants are given a small budget, location to buy what they can find, and have to come with 10 mins of amazing material on the fly for the audience.

Featuring John Roldan, Poppa, Jimbo, Beyond Mental Borders, Jonah Babins, The Wanderer, Jacque Swan, James Harrison, Shamus MacGregor and some guy named James Alan. Judged by Ben Train, Steffi Kay & Chris Westfall (the returning champion from the first Cheap Tricks in 2017.) With a performance by The Sentimentalists.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019
8:30 PM
Revival
783 College Street, Toronto

We hope you can join us for what is sure to be a very unusual night.

 

The Newest Trick in the Book

This week, I’ll be appearing on The Newest Trick In The Book, a weekly show put on by the Toronto Magic Company. I’ll be appearing along with Jeff Hinchliffe, Sean Rooney, Harry Zimmerman and TMC Founder Ben Train.

Tickets are free to reserve . This is a pay-what-you-feel show. The only rule is it must be brand new material, never performed before. So there is the possibility that everything will go horribly wrong and nothing in the show will work. What fun!

When: Tuesday, January 29, 2019 - 8:30 PM

Where: See-Scape, 347 Keel Street, Toronto

 

Photos from The Newest Trick in the Book

Toronto’s lighthearted, warm fun and friendly magic open-mic night returned form its summer break last night at the newly moved and renovated See-Scape. You can see the new, expanded stage in some of the lovely photos from David Fulde.

I was invited to appear on the first show of the season with Chris Mayhew, Harry Zimmerman, Graeme “Graemazing” Reed and the lovely and charming host Jonah Babins.

The show continues weekly through to December and is a wonderful (free) opportunity to see magicians experiment, take risks and walk outside their comfort zones.

The Newest Trick In The Book

Tuesday night, I’ll be appearing on The Newest Trick In The Book, a free show put on by the aptly named “Toronto Magic Company”. I’ll be appearing alongside Chris Mayhew, Harry Zimmerman and James Harrison. The show is hosted by the adorable and inventive Jonah Babins, who is inventing his own special version of English so quickly, it’s astonishing.

The show is free to attend but with limited seating. You can reserve tickets at the link below to be guaranteed a spot.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018 at 8:30 PM
SeeScape (374 Keele Street, Toronto)

See Scape is a fabulous nerd bar which has just finished renovating their brand new location. In addition to the show, you can stay to enjoy food, drinks video- and board-games.

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