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Jono Blythe: Magician | Starting Out in Magic

Let me take you back to the early days of my magical journey. It was the vibrant era of the 1980s when I first discovered the mesmerising world of magic. At the tender age of four, I was enthralled by the legendary Paul Daniels as he performed his captivating tricks on television. Inspired by his magic, I embarked on my own magical adventures, armed with plastic magic kits and a burning desire to entertain.


Back then, it seemed like a fairly common path for young aspiring magicians like myself. Many of my peers and friends also found their starting point through the magic shows and performers that graced our screens. The Paul Daniels Magic Show, Wayne Dobson's 'A Kind of Magic,' The Magic Comedy Strip, and The Best of Magic were just a few of the enchanting shows that showcased magicians from around the world. These shows were a wellspring of inspiration, igniting our passion for the art of magic.


However, as I reflect upon my magical beginnings, I can't help but wonder if the landscape of magic has shifted for aspiring young magicians today. Television, in particular, has undergone significant changes, not all for the better in my opinion. Gone are the days of having multiple magic shows to watch and admire.


Nowadays, it seems that magicians only make appearances on panel voting shows, where their performances are reduced to brief moments in the spotlight.

I must confess that I don't watch these shows myself. The abundance of reality-based competitions doesn't align with the kind of entertainment I appreciate. In a previous blog post, I expressed my disappointment that we no longer have dedicated magic shows that celebrate the art form. It seems that the focus has shifted towards popularity contests rather than showcasing the true wonder and skill of magic.


Of course, I understand that young magicians today may find their starting point on popular talent shows like Britain's Got Talent or The X Factor. These platforms can provide exposure and opportunities for aspiring performers. However, if given the choice, would I want to start my magical journey in the same way? Absolutely not. I cherish the way I began, surrounded by a plethora of incredible magicians on television and spoiled with delightful magic kits.


I can't help but wonder if young magicians starting out today have the same experiences that I had. Do they get the chance to be enveloped by the sheer diversity and talent of magicians from around the world? Are they able to explore the joy of performing for their friends and family, fuelled by the magic they witnessed on their screens?


While the landscape of magic and the mediums through which we access it may have changed, I believe that the essence of starting out remains constant. It is about finding inspiration, embracing the sense of wonder, and nurturing a genuine love for the art form. It is about experiencing the joy of performing, regardless of the stage or platform.


Aspiring young magicians today may have different avenues to explore, such as online tutorials, magic communities, and virtual performances. They have the power to connect with fellow magicians from all corners of the globe, sharing knowledge and experiences in ways we couldn't have imagined in the past.


Although I may have fond nostalgia for the magic of my early years, I am optimistic that young magicians starting out today can carve their own unique paths. They can forge their own magical identities, drawing inspiration from both the past and the present, and create extraordinary performances that captivate audiences in ways we never dreamed possible.


So, to all the young magicians beginning their journey, embrace the magic that surrounds you, seek inspiration wherever you can find it, and revel in the joy of performing. Regardless of how you start, the wonder and enchantment of magic will always be there to guide you on your extraordinary path.


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