Down an alley in Melbourne, hidden in a room that used to be an old bank vault is The Vault Melbourne – an intimate theatre seating only 20 people. This charming theatre – decked out with vintage curtains and plush furniture – is a fitting room for Jo Clyne’s magic show “Miniature Museum of Magic” which is a show that takes the audience back in time to the ‘golden age of magic’. Jo’s show is heavy on storytelling and charm as much as magic, but each aspect of the show fits together beautifully.
Jo sets the scene well with a simple table and chair onstage and wears a beautiful outfit, which echoes some of the time periods she speaks of. Jo commenced the show by explaining the setting of the show fits parlour magic – in a time where the richer members of society would have a magician perform privately for their selected friends in the parlour of a mansion. Indeed, I did feel lucky to be in an intimate gathering of audience members to witness the ‘Miniature Museum of Magic’.
Harking back to the title of the show, Jo did almost seem like a museum guide or curator at times as she told stories involving magicians from the past or special places like Coney Island. Following each story would be a piece of magic tied to that story or theme. Each piece of magic was well chosen and fit each story perfectly. The pieces of magic in the show were largely pieces of classic magic – as you’d expect with the theme being historical – however there were some clever twists too. During some moments of the show, audience members leaned in with anticipation and gasped with delight at other times. There were moments of disbelief for us all as Jo weaved her magic. Audience participation was included in the show (as it is with most magic shows) however instead of this being a daunting prospect for some people, Jo was so disarming and gentle that she never had an issue with people not wanting to help. Each volunteer enjoyed the magic (that often unfolded in their own hands) and left the stage with a smile.
This show was so enjoyable that the hour just flashed by and in no time I was thrust back onto the bustling streets and lanes of modern day Melbourne.
VERDICT: A show perfectly suited to those who love history, stories and magic. The ‘Miniature Museum of Magic’ is full to the brim with mystery, magic and marvels. Allow Jo Clyne to enchant you with her stories and magic, and take you back to the ‘golden age of magic’.
Tickets and more information: This show is held in The Vault Melbourne theatre, which is part of Speakeasy HQ.
Ticketing link: https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=408811&
*disclaimer: I attended this show as a guest of the performer