Review: Champions of Magic at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre by Lara Wadey

Who doesn’t love a little magic and illusion?

I grew up loving David Copperfield, Paul Daniels and other much loved magicians and don’t think we ever grow out of asking that question “How did they do that?” – Last year I met Richard Young at a friend’s wedding where he blew me away with his lime and glass tricks, so when I heard he was part of Champions of Magic which after touring America was going to end up in Aylesbury, I couldn’t have been more excited – I was like a kid at Christmas and I certainly wasn’t disappointed.

The show began with double act Young & Strange (Richard & Sam), where right away I was like “Err, but how?”, and then continued with routines from other magicians who not only amazed us, but made us burst out laughing, a lot! The blend of comedy and magic worked perfectly together and I also loved the fact that the performers were laughing at themselves. Not sure if that was part of the act or not!

Alex McAleer was incredible as he read people’s minds with his cold-reading techniques. How can you read a stranger’s mind? And not only a stranger’s mind but the mind of a stranger of what they will be thinking in an hour’s time?!!? He blew my mind, as well as winning me over with his sharp whit, dapper suit and showmanship.

Someone else with a cracking personality was Kayla Drescher, a close-up magician from America, who even had a ‘magic dance’. She has the most amazing facial expressions that made you warm to her right away, and whilst she wasn’t all glitz and glam, she left you wanting more.

I liked the fact that a camera man allowed you to follow tricks from a large screen on the stage; which allowed the performers to get so much of the audience involved, allowing them to feel part of the show.

From card tricks to the breathtaking ‘jaws of death’ with Fernando in a straightjacket, close up magic, classic tricks, light shows, fire, snow confetti and so much more … there really is something for all the family.

This is one of those shows where although you know what you are watching can’t actually be happening, the kid in you still believes it is… it definitely leaves you questioning “How did they do that?” just as a magic show should.

Their awesome final illusion took me right back to my childhood, giving me that warm feeling and confirming the fact that – Yes, I still believe in magic!

Champions of Magic runs until 2nd May at the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre. Tickets are available from or call the Box Office on 0844 871 760.


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