Underbelly Bristo Square
A few years back, half-way through his PhD in Physics, Kevin McMahon had a life-changing moment. He starred on the Channel 4 show ‘Faking it’, where he undertook a 4 week training to become a magician, even training with magic duo Penn and Teller in Las Vegas. He quit the PhD, and, hey presto! went on to become Quantum, and as he jokingly proclaimed to the audience, ‘the most famous magician-scientist hybrid in the world’. After sell out runs at the Fringe over the past few years, there’s a buzz around the premiere of his new show, Vanishing Point, in Edinburgh this year.
‘Vanishing Point’ is a magic show with a difference, precisely because of Kevin’s solid scientific background. The wow factor starts with an impressive life-size harmonic pendulum that he made himself. Kevin has a kind, friendly and comedic presence which means the selected audience members are more than comfortable to get up on stage and join in with his dazzling array of tricks. With what seems to be a very strong theme in this year’s Fringe, the show is about the power of invisible forces. It’s also a wry and urgent comment on our attention spans, distraction techniques and what influences us to give up our power and time to the internet giants. Apt then, that he uses a well-read book about the Bermuda triangle for some of his mind-bending illusions.
I don’t want to give too much away and spoil the fun. My fourteen year old and I greatly enjoyed the hour, and we are still trying to figure out how he might have managed to dupe us with his clever variety of magic. It’s a fun, family-friendly show that feels like a special night out, in a comfortable hall with great acoustics. Expect some good old fashioned tricks with a twist and breathtakingly curious illusions, leading to a spectacularly nail-biting finale, which wowed the crowd. Go along and be prepared to be dazzled; the 2018 winner of Best Magic Show at the Adelaide Fringe might well