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A Continuing Journey In The Magic History Of Singapore

This article is to introduce magicians and magic fanatics to the rich history of magic in Singapore. It honours the extremely good achievements, prominence and significance of nearby magicians from the past and present.

The beginning of Modern Magic in Singapore

It is the overall consensus that modern-day magic in Singapore (publish World War 2) began with the overdue-Ng Bo

Oen AKA The Great Wong. Information on nearby magic pre-warfare could be very scarce. The handiest information discovered has been on The Great Wong performing at the New World Amusement Park (then located at Kitchener Road) inside the 1930s.

The Great Wong became born in 1908 in Shanton, a metropolis of the Guangdong Province, China and immigrated to Singapore in 1933. He became the simplest professional magician of his time in Singapore and achieved throughout South East Asia. He was regarded for his sharp degree magic, Linking Rings recurring and Sword Basket phantasm. He become additionally an expert craftsman who constructed all of his props with the aid of hand. He had the present of figuring out the mechanics and method of magic props and fabricating them from scratch.

In 1962, The Great Wong made a full-size contribution to the global magic network via publishing his famous linking earrings ordinary with English script written by way of Tudor Brock. Davenports Magic in London distributes his manuscript to this point. In 1982, he became invited by using the Federation Internationale des Societes Magiques (FISM) to perform at the 15th World Congree of Magic in Lausanne, Switzerland.

(For more information on The Great Wong; seek advice from ‘The Great Wong Story’ in The International Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring one hundred fifteen The Quantum Ring Golden Jubilee Issue)

Another local magician who was instrumental in developing contemporary magic in Singapore in the course of the start turned into the late-Tan Hock Chuan. He turned into a instructor by using profession but performed for annual special activities, charity indicates and private parties. He was (and nevertheless is) the world over recognized for his magical inventions. His results and thoughts are nonetheless advertised supplier objects nowadays and have been posted in endless guides (of that point) which includes Gen, Spinx, Pentagram, New Pentagram, Swami Mantra, Abracadabra or even Tarbell’s Course in Magic. He is the primary Asian magician to acquire the Spinx Award (1936-37)

Both The Great Wong and Tan Hock Chuan have been essential influences to the various first technology of Singapore modern-day-magicians who’ve paved the way for destiny generations.


It became most effective after the battle and during the British Military Administration that magic in Singapore started out its upward push to in which it is nowadays. 1950 turned into the yr that the Singapore Magician’s Club changed into fashioned via a set of beginner magicians, comprising of English-educated experts.

In 1951 the Singapore Magician’s Club obtained their charter from The International Brotherhood of Magicians HQ in America and turned into from then on became officially called The International Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring a hundred and fifteen. Founding contributors of the club at that time protected Tan Ewe Chee (President), Yeo Soon Kian, Lim Kim Tian, Lim Hap Hin, J.H Stafford, L.A Joseph, J.W Jackson (Vice-President) and Tan Hock Chuan (Secretary).

The 50’s gave birth to Singapore’s first era of modern-day magicians. Besides the founding participants of the IBM Ring and The Great Wong (who joined the Ring in 1952 by means of invitation), a few prominent first era magicians protected Lim Hap Hin, Tan Choon Tee, Tan Bah Chee, Yeo Soon Kian and his pupil Michael Lim.

The Great Wong operated the first magic save from his domestic cum showroom/ workshop in Singapore at 255-A Jalan Besar wherein he sold his own handcrafted props in addition to imported provider items from Japan. (This home/ keep turned into destroyed in a fire in Dec 1988 causing him to lose maximum of his books and props)

Nineteen Sixties

During this era, magicians like The Great Wong, Tan Bah Chee, Lim Hap Hin and Tan Choon Tee performed magic publications on the National Theatre Club and the YMCA. They had been answerable for generating lively magicians together with Charles Choo, Wong Fok Choy, Chia Hearn Jiang, Gwee Thiam Hock and the late-Vijeyacone.

The early 60s additionally noticed the ‘Golden Age’ of magic with magicians performing at different venues across the united states of america. Besides neighborhood magicians appearing in night time clubs, overseas magicians inclusive of Socar performed a grand phantasm display to a full house at the Capitol Theatre (along Stamford Road) and The Great Nicholas at the Sky Theater in The Great World Amusement Park at Kim Seng Road (Now, Great World City).

In the past due 60s, Wee Peng Guan (Uncle of Charles Choo), opened the second magic shop in Singapore at a shop residence alongside Robinson Road. Around that time, famous entertainer Victor Khoo’s father Khoo Teng Heng who changed into a magician, a ventriloquist and hypnotist opened his magic save at Bras Basah. (where Carlton Hotel stands currently).

During this decade, Tan Choon Tee changed into creating a name for himself in the worldwide magic community inside the area of Mentalism. He received numerous global Linking Ring Awards for his One-Man Parades and has books posted with the aid of Micky Hades. He became also a normal contributor to numerous worldwide magic magazines such as Gen, New Pentagram, Magicgram, Magicana and The Linking Ring.

Overseas magicians whom handed via Singapore protected Milo & Roger, Milbourne Christopher and Maurice Fogel.


The Nineteen Seventies noticed the start of the second one technology of Singapore magicians. Some famous magicians who got commenced throughout this time protected; The Great Wong’s son Ng Kee Chee, John Teo, Tang Sai Thong, Ng Seow Kiat, Tang Yeng Fun, Bob Chua, Eric Leong, Tan Teck Seng, Lawrence Tham, Tan Tuan Seng, Lawrence Khong and Andrew Kong.

The Singapore Association of Magicians changed into founded on 10 March 1973 in pleasant ‘contention’ to the IBM Ring. The membership became led through Tan Bah Chee with distinguished founding participants consisting of Lim Hap Hin, Tan Hock Chuan and Charles Choo.

Magic shops in Singapore began to spring up at some stage in the overdue seventies. Ng Kee Chee installation a magic stall at Yaohan in Plaza Singapura and Wang Leng opened his keep in Peninsula Plaza. Charles Choo opened his store in August 1978 on the 6th floor of Far East Shopping Centre. (It might move several instances to numerous shops however in the end again lower back to Far East). His shop would quickly become an group wherein magicians might buy diverse magic merchandise as well as join up and learn from every different.

It become an expansion haunt for plenty magicians within the years yet to come till the store closed inside the new millennium.

During this period, The Tropicana Night Club, which become situated at Pacific Plaza, become a venue that had normal magic performances. Several well-known magicians additionally visited Singapore within the 70s. In 1970, John Calvert done at the National Theatre. In 1972, Albert Goshman visited Ring a hundred and fifteen to present a lecture. In that identical year, “The Professor” Dai Vernon also visited Singapore, lectured and interacted with neighborhood magicians. Other traveling magicians included Andre Kole, Billy McComb, and Ali Bongo.

Nineteen Eighties

By the Nineteen Eighties, the local magic scene was flourishing with healthful memberships for the two major magic golf equipment in addition to a surge in the number of acting magicians. Many of brand new veterans made their name within the 80s. Familiar names like Richard Ang, Patrick Wan, Patrick Ng Wang Lin, Tan Hai Yan AKA Gician, Paul Koh, AB Francis and Gordon Koh had been appearing frequently at public and private suggests throughout this decade. Popular neighborhood venues for public magic suggests by using magic clubs hung on a everyday foundation at that point protected the Drama Centre and the National Museum Theatrette.

The recognition of magic stores also grew and in 1982, Chew Kin Song opened a Magic & Novelty Corner at the Chinese Book Section of Popular Book Co Pte Ltd on the 4th Floor of Bras Basah Complex. Gician Tan also unfolded his first magic shop at Parkway Parade which ultimately moved to Marina Square and become managed by using Richard Ang. Besides this essential store, he dispensed magic gadgets and units thru department stores

in Singapore and South East Asia.The Singapore target market was additionally exposed to international-elegance magic through numerous magic television suggests and collection that have been aired on local TV which include the David Copperfield specials, Magic Magic and The Best of Magic.

Foreign magicians who visited Singapore throughout this time blanketed David Copperfield, Mark Wilson, Ben Harris, Paul Daniels and Gene Anderson.


The starting of this decade noticed the advent of the u . S . A .’s third technology magicians into the neighborhood magic scene. Prominent budding magicians included Enrico Varella, Sherman Tjiong, J C Sum, Joe Yu (Chan Ee Kang), Nique Tan Li Keong, Prakash Puru, Kiki Tay, Alex Tan and Jeremy Pei.

The nearby bankruptcy of International Magicians Society was fashioned, based via its President, Tan Bah Chee; although the membership’s presence in Singapore become quick-lived.

The past due-Nineties saw a huge surge in magic global reputation because of David Blaine’s avenue magic specials. Many people started to ‘get into’ magic and had new mediums to study the craft such as the introduction of DVDs and the Internet.

A new magic save, Magic Castle & Promotions, unfolded by means of Vijay Kumar at Shaw Towers quickly have become ‘the region to be’ where new magicians could hang out and meet.

During this decade, Wang Leng’s keep in Peninsula Plaza became sold to Patrick Wan. The store become finally bought to Richard Ang and is now well known as Ang House of Magic. Patrick Wan opened his new save, Magic Wand, which has spawned into several outlets in diverse elements of Singapore. Steven Sim also opened Magic Supreme at Coronation Plaza which has eventually moved to Park Mall.

The 90s was an thrilling decade with many visits and performances via famous magicians. Apart from lectures with the aid of Michael & Hannah Ammar, Mark Leveridge and Wolfgang & Sonja Riebe there have been additionally public theatre performances by using the Pendragons, Princess Tenko, Andre Kole, Franz Harary, David Copperfield, Rudy Coby and Robert Gallop. Other visiting magicians included Larry Becker, Tim Ellis, Terry Seabrooke, Phil Cass and Albert Tham.

2000 – Spells to return back a lover

Magic has persevered to flourish on the local degree in this decade. New possibilities and capabilities have emerged to raise the artwork in Singapore. In May 2000, J C Sum staged the first ever local full-nighttime theatre display ‘Magic on the Theatre’ at Victoria Theatre. Just a month later, extra than a dozen magicians from the USA and Canada got here down to Singapore as part of the Magic Festival prepared through the Malls of Centrepoint. Magicians consisting of Robert Baxt, Rocco and Peter Gossamer finished multiple suggests at various Centrepoint Malls for over every week.

In 2004, the Singapore Magic Circle (SMC) changed into created through Aloysius Yeo and with its on-line forum drew a brand new pool of magic fans together. SMC has considering grown to over 1000 members and regularly arrange gatherings, activities as well as the recent Concept:Magic Micro MAGIC Convention in January 2007.

Through a huge-scale theatre magic musical ‘Magic of Love’, Lawrence Khong, a pastor with Faith Community Baptist Church and his daughter Pricilla, spread the gospel message.

The multi-million dollar manufacturing has been staged normally over time across the world to spread the word of Christ. Subsequently, the equal group organized two International Festival of Magic conventions in 2003 & 2005. The first of its type massive magic occasions protected competitions, lectures, a dealers’ room and performances. International performers inclusive of Jeff McBride, Max Maven, Johnny Thomspon, The Pendragons, Lee Eun Gyeol and Tommy Wonder had been booked to carry out at the gala shows and lectures.

In current years, J C Sum has emerge as arguably the most outstanding Singapore magician of this technology. His magic has been visible by using tens of millions thru his stay performances throughout Asia as well as his landmark mass media projects on MediaCorp Studio’s Ch eight in addition to next ‘Street Illusions’ compilation DVD/ VCD.

His 24-episode ‘Magic in Motion’ collection can currently be seen every day on Singapore Press Holdings MediaBoxOffice via 2007. In the global magic network, J C has additionally mounted himself as an elite phantasm fashion designer from Asia with the guide of his three critically acclaimed illusion books that have been offered in more than 30 countries up to now.

Another gifted award-prevailing magician, Jeremy Pei, is elevating the profile of Singapore magic within the local magic network with his theatre shows, organized lectures, workshops and active participation in magic conventions & competitions in Japan, Korea, China, Thailand and Australia. His extraordinary North-Asian have an effect on fashion of magic performance has garnered him a following with new budding magicians whom he teaches and publications. He has additionally released more than one authentic magic merchandise which are available to magicians global.

In some other first, award-prevailing junior magician, Kyle Ravin secured a thirteen-episode weekly Street Magic series, “Maya” on MediaCorp Studios’ Vasantham Central. This 30min series saw him carry out magic for the Indian network and celebrities across the us of a.

This decade has seen the creation of even extra magic stores and sellers run by means of young magicians to satisfy the demand of magic fanatics and magicians. These encompass new ‘brick & mortar’ magic shops along with Street Magic by using Tan Wei Ping, Tricky Business by Jimmy Wong, The Magic Hall by Kenneth Peh in addition to on-line stores like The Little Magic Shop with the aid of Ning.

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