MMF 2022 Performer Spotlight: Tyler Sandiford

Tyler Sandiford – image supplied.

This week, I sat down with Tyler Sandiford, who is making his magical debut at The Melbourne Magic Festival in 2022! The Melbourne Magic Festival is known for making performers new to the festival feel welcome and supported so I hope you’ll read on to discover more about Tyler and his magical background.

I hear this is your Melbourne Magic Festival debut! Tell us a bit about yourself / your background
I’m a self-taught entertainer and magician who from a young age was always interested in the mystical and mysterious nature of magic. The duality of the art between those in the know and those on the outside. I’ve been practicing Magic for about ~20 years and I have performed for countless private parties and corporate events. In fact, it was a great source of income when I was studying. I was first introduced to magic by the clown that attended my 5th birthday and then like many it was the masked magician that grow the passion and taught me some basic concepts to sow the seed. I’ve been in the audience of countless MMF shows and I’ve always enjoyed the inclusive feeling that the various performers brought to the event. Last year my wife and I were able to attend ALL the shows because we lucked out and won the Golden Tickets, this gave us the opportunity to meet all of the wonderful performers and gave me the push to put my hat in the ring. 

Describe your show in 3 words: Games, Fresh, Mentalism

Without giving too much away, what can audiences expect from your show?
The idea of the show stems from the fact that my cheeky younger brother was always cheating at board games. Even now if we fire one up he’ll double-throw dice to get the number that he wants. Coupled with what was a growing strategic mind I found myself in a war of wits. Where I needed to use savory and unsavory skills to get the upper hand and match his similar tactics. 

Do you have a favourite tall tale?
Not sure about my favourite but the first one that comes to mind is a time when my brother offered a stack of PS2 games for a deep discount. Something like 12 games for $50, I had the money and was recently given a PS2 from a friend. Most of the games he had weren’t necessarily in my wheelhouse (FIFA and Madden) but a couple like Bully were certainly on my list of games to play. The thing is we lived in the same house. If I wanted to borrow the game it wouldn’t have been an issue; he just wanted an extra couple of dollars for something he had his eye on. Anyway after a little to and fro I agreed. Not thinking much of it I took the games into my room only to find the cases empty!? We laugh about the cheek to this day and the deception was quickly remedied but that moment when I went back to his room and he was able to say with a straight face “We never agreed that you got the discs?”. 

Tell us about a time where a tall tale helped you achieve a goal or got you out of a tricky situation.
While I’ve called the show “Tall Tales” most of the stories I tell are funny real-life situations where sometimes the thing that happens sounds like it shouldn’t have happened. That being said there is a story from my youth where I was choosing to fare evade and got into a conversation with an undercover ticket inspector. I’ve not been on public transport for a while so I don’t know if much has changed but they used to be reasonably easy to spot in a crowd. Anyway, because I struck up a conversation with him and spun a yarn about school stresses and extracurricular activities, while true they were exaggerated. When it came time to start asking everyone for a ticket he was seemingly extra agreeable with my plight and he wrote me a custom ticket for the rest of the day’s travel. 

From this interview and sneak peek, I can say that Tyler has many stories to tell so I’m sure his audiences will be in for a treat this year. Catch “Telling Tall Tales with Tyler” from July 5th – 9th (at 6:45pm each night) at The Close Up Gallery – Arrow Hub, 488 Swanston St, Melbourne. Tickets are available here.

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