Stage, Theatre & TV10th November 2013

The Visual Pleasure of Deaf Magic

Deaf Magicians brighten the lives in Deaf Clubs around the world

by Sarah Lawrence

Sitting in the services at Gordano last Friday, I was sharing a coffee with a gentleman guest who showed me a simple but very effective card trick. I love magic and after I stopped giggling with delight, I was pleased to talk about The Society of World Deaf Magicians. Despite loving magic and being active within the Deaf community all of my life, I had never heard of the Society and I did not know much about deaf magic.

​Apparently there are about twenty part-time deaf magicians in the United Kingdom and three who are fully professional. That means they do stage shows, functions, private parties and a whole host of other engagements. Highly visual, magic is one of those rare entertainments that requires very little speech or sound, so in some ways it is a surprise that we don't see more of it.

The Society of World Deaf Magicians was founded in Leipzig, East Germany in 1986, by Horst Bormann. Four years later, a full Committee was formed and a bi-annual Festival has been held ever since. The aim of the Society is to bring deaf magicians together from all over the world, to enjoy friendship, take part in competition and exchange ideas for the future well-being of deaf magic.

At the festival, deaf magicians compete for a number of different awards under the categories of:

  • Stage Magic
  • Comedy Magic
  • Micro-Magic
  • Children's Magic
  • Women in Magic &
  • Merlin Magic

The festivals are also used to help young magicians develop their skills, along with a series of advice about such things as where to buy equipment and marketing. There are currently 300 members of the Society drawn from 19 different countries, and the bi-annual event is very popular.

The next Festival is being held in Chicago between 26th October and 2nd November and the UK based organisers are keen to attract interest from other deaf magicians who wish to attend and compete at the festival. The festival is open to anyone who wishes to attend to enjoy the shows.

If anyone needs further information about the Society of World Deaf Magicians or the future world festivals for deaf magicians, contact Dr. Simon J. Carmel, Secretary-General; Society of World Deaf Magicians; 9339 Bridgeport Drive, West Palm Beach, Florida 33411 USA (E-mail:

As for my gentleman guest, you will learn who that was and much more about him in the coming weeks.

Article by Sarah Lawrence

posted in Entertainment / Stage, Theatre & TV

10th November 2013