The Academy of Magical Arts is hosting its yearly bash to honor the best of the business in the magic world this weekend. The 50th annual AMA Awards Show is happening on Sunday, April 22 at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles. There will be an after-party at, where else, the Magic Castle following the ceremony. Although the event is open to the public, those tickets have already disappeared like a palmed coin. AMA members can still contact the Magic Castle for their tickets.
Larry Wilmore, who is a magician in addition to an actor, comedian, writer, and producer, will host the ceremony at the Orpheum. David Copperfield will be honored as Magician of the Decade in addition to receiving the AMA Masters Fellowship. David Williamson has been selected as Magician of the Year. Other awards for the best close-up magician, parlour magician, stage magician, and lecturer of the year will be announced at the event, and the nominees are quite the who’s who of contemporary performers:
Close-Up Magician of the Year Nominees:
Parlour Magician of the Year Nominees:
Johnny Ace Palmer
Stage Magician of the Year Nominees:
Lecturer of the Year Nominees:
Magicians often say that engineers are the hardest people to fool because they’re the ones always trying to figure out how the heck all the tricks are supposed to work. In this video recorded back in December 2015, Colin Cloud and David Williamson stop by the Google offices in London to perform some magic and from their Illusionists tour and, hopefully, blow a few minds as well. After their routines, they even sit down for 20 minutes to chat about their inspiration for their own work and their tour. Spend your lazy Sunday watching two of magic’s best try to fool some of the brightest minds in tech.
And if you’re looking for more, check out David Williamson’s talk at Magic Live last year, or watch Colin Cloud predict tweets on America’s Got Talent.
David Williamson is the latest guest on the Discourse in Magic podcast. He chats about his natural stage style, developing a full performance, and the challenges of advising young magicians. And in case you were curious, he’s not a fan of the double-undercut.
If this episode doesn’t fully scratch your itch for Williamson’s unique brand of comedy magic, you can also catch him yakking it up with the Dragon Squad on the Piff Pod. Or learn about how he changed his mind about cruise magic during an interview from Magic Live 2017. His current gig is as the ringmaster for Circus 1903 in Las Vegas.
Piff the Magic Dragon is still finding room in his busy schedule to keep up a weekly podcast. The latest episode of The Piff Pod brings David Williamson into the guest’s seat. Williamson is a magician and comedian who currently is the Ringmaster of the Vegas show Circus 1903. As Piff and crew will explain, Circus 1903 it is a blissfully clown-free take on the spectacle of golden age circus shows, and Williamson is essentially its MC. They have a rollicking conversation about escape rooms, happily divorced couples, and of course, magic. Listen to it all on the show’s website or via iTunes.
Piff begins his holiday-themed show in Las Vegas next week. “Piffmas at Piffany’s” runs from December 4 til December 30.
When performers think of cruise liners, one thought often crosses their mind: career suicide. David Williamson thought much the same thing—that is, until the economy tanked and forced his hand into accepting a gig on a Disney cruise ship. In an interview at Magic Live 2017 (viewable in its entirety at the Magic Live website), the manic comedian/magician talked about how taking that job catapulted him into headlining at shows like the Illusionists and a leading role in Circus 1903 in Vegas.
“I did corporate for 20 years, and then the economy went away,” he says in the interview. “There was an agent who had been calling me for seven years, ‘I want to put you on Disney Cruise Line, you’d be perfect.’ I said no way, I don’t want to do cruise ships. That’s where acts go to die. I did one years ago, hated it. You dance with old ladies, call bingo, sleeping near the engine. Then out of necessity that year, I said ‘yes, I’ll try it’ and I loved it.”
The cruise gig actually allowed him to stretch his legs out a lot more than he had been able to on during his tenure as a corporate magician, and he was able to evolve and tune his act to hone in on the unique cross-section of kids and adults you’d find on a Disney Cruise. This evolution gave him the confidence to perform on stage for the Illusionists, which then led to his starring role as the Ringmaster in Circus 1903.
For the rest of the interview, including a wild story involving Mike Caveney, David Williamson, and a live chicken, watch the full video here.