I am a proud member of both The Magic Circle and of Equity. But what are these organisations and what does my membership mean to you?
Of course, lots of people have heard of The Magic Circle. But, many aren’t quite sure what it is… or even if it really exists! So, what exactly is a Magic Circle Magician?
The Magic Circle was founded in 1905 and is the world’s most prestigious magic society. The society is dedicated to promoting and advancing the art of magic.
Although based in London, it has a membership of approximately 1,500 magicians from all around the world. These include some of the world’s most accomplished magicians; from Dynamo to David Copperfield.
The Magic Circle’s membership meet at the society’s headquarters in Euston, London. Here they can attend lectures from visiting guest magicians, utilise the vast magic libraries, visit the museum or work on their acts with other like-minded magicians in the clubroom.
Membership of The Magic Circle is a real milestone in the careers of many magicians. However, the membership process is far from easy.
First, the magician attends an interview at The Magic Circle Headquarters. This ensures that his or her skills and knowledge are appropriate for the more formal examination (audition).
At the audition, the magician performs a six to eight-minute magical presentation. This will be in front of an audience of magicians, plus a panel of four judges. The judges assess everything from technical ability to presentation skills.
If the magician demonstrates good competency, they are recommended to the ruling Council of The Magic Circle. At this point, the council will award membership.
It’s only then that the magician can use the title “Member of The Magic Circle” and use the initials M.M.C.
Gaining membership to The Magic Circle is often just the first step for many members. This is because there are actually THREE degrees of membership.
More experienced performers sometimes volunteer to take a further, more rigorous examination with stricter criteria. If successful, the magician will then be able to use the title Associate of The Inner Magic Circle (A.I.M.C).
A.I.M.C is as far as it’s possible to progress by ability alone. I was proud to receive this degree in 2007.
Member of The Inner Magic Circle (M.I.M.C) is the society’s final level. Just three-hundred magicians may hold this degree at any one time. Membership is by invitation only and considered a great honour.
The council awards MIMC only to magicians who have performed a great service to the art of magic. It is a great honour.
The Magic Circle also makes a number of individual awards each year. The most well-known of these are:-
Two annual competitions decide these awards. Any of the society’s 1,500 magicians may submit an entry.
In 2018, I competed in The Magic Circle Close-Up Magician of The Year for the first and only time. I achieved second place.
Equity used to be known simply as “The Actors’ Union”. Nowadays, the union represents a broad range of more than 43,000 performers and creatives. This, of course, includes magicians.
Being a member of Equity comes with many benefits to the performer. However, to you as a client, it means that you’re hiring a bona fide professional. You will covered with £10 million public liability insurance should anything go seriously wrong during the act.
Contemplating what might go wrong is the last thing you want to be doing when you’re organising an exciting event. But by hiring an Equity Member, you don’t have to.