MMF 2019 Review: Magicsports

Each year the Melbourne Magic Festival rolls into town, it brings with it a special show by the name of “Magicsports”. This show is on for one night only, and many people make it a festival tradition to attend the show each year. “Magicsports” is based on “Theatresports” where games are played which involve elements of improvisation – this is true for Magicsports (with the addition of magic too, of course)! Each year, the teams of magicians ‘playing’ the games changes – this year it was team ‘Banana’ (comprised of Tim Ellis, Josh Staley and Nick Kay) vs team ‘Sellouts’ (Dom Chambers, Simon Coronel and Reuben Moreland). Special guest judges were in attendance to give a score for each team after they had played each game round, with the winning team being the one who scored the most points. The evening was presided by MC Carisa Hendrix – a phenomenally talented magician from Canada – who kept the games / show moving and was on hand to provide ‘translations’ when required.

This was my very first time watching “Magicsports” however I’m told that the games played vary / change per year, with each year featuring some new games in the mix. In terms of the games themselves, they were largely self explanatory by their titles and ranged from ‘trade show’ , ‘the alphabet game’ , ‘3 secret tasks’ and ‘lines from a hat’. For other games, magicians were given ridiculous scenarios (like performing a birthday party on the sun). By far, my favourite games were ‘style rollercoaster’ which involved hilarious interpretive dance sequences, and ‘arms expert’ (where one magician wears a special jacket and the other magician’s arms are placed inside while one performer has to act out a sentence / concept to the other performer). The special jacket is used for a couple of games and I know to expect hilarity when that jacket comes out! A newer game that I enjoyed was called ‘Balloonatics’ where each magician had to create a specified item from one modelling balloon. Sounds simple, but the varying ballooning skill levels across the magicians made this segment very funny. “Magicsports” also includes different surprise guests each year to keep adueinces excited so who knows who you’ll get to meet! This is a magic show that does not take itself too seriously. I found it funnier than expected and was on the verge of wetting myself at the end of the show due to laughter – I don’t know if that is a good sign or not?!

VERDICT: ideal show for those looking for some variety, high levels of comedy and a different take on magic. This show is wildly popular each year for good reason so make sure you book ahead for next year! Some mature themes are included, so this show is best enjoyed by year’s 13+ to adult.

*Disclaimer: I attended this show as a guest of the festival.

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