Wednesday, 30 April, 2008
Vismayam 2008 gets the charm of traditional Street magic
Taking out the vintage wonders: Legendary trick of Indian basket being relived before a crowd at the Manaveeyam Veedhi in Thiruvananthapuram. From left: Chairman of K.T.D.C., Cheiryan Philip; General Convenor of Vismayam 2008, M.B. Sanil Kumar and Japanese magician, Fukai Masahiro are also seen.
Thiruvananthapuram: North Indian street magicians virtually stole show. The second precursor to Vismayam 2008 found the glory and gory of legendary street magic forms relived by ethnic magicians from north India. Several big illusion items usually found on the modern magic stages were so easily enacted along the pavements of Manaveeyam Veedhi by a group of traditional street magicians.
People were thronging on all sides and even on top of the adjacent walls, but the street magicians were undeterred. Instead, they adeptly relived the glorious Indian magical heritage. Blooming one after the other before the anxious eyes were vintage wonders.
Sky is the limit: Ancient trick of 'Flying man' being reincarnated during Vismayam 2008.
Magician Ashik Hussain, Farooq, Shamim, Assam, Ass Mohamed and Chand Pasha from Kalakar Colony of old Delhi reached the city by train. All of them are representatives of a legion pursuing magical art for centuries.
Ashiq Hussain was the first prize winner in the first ever street magic festival held in 2005 under the auspices of the Magic Academy and the Cultural Ministry. Ashiq presented his masterpiece item, the Indian Basket with great dexterity. In the act, a boy first vanishes into a basket made of reed and takes the form of a venomous snake. A spectator who inserted his hand into the basket in search of the boy got a startling encounter with the slithering cobra. Then the black cobra returns to its former state only at the throw of a crystal ball.
Logic, penetrated: Street magician performing 'tongue penetration' trick with deftness.
Farooq, another street magician is an expert the ancient Green Mango Tree trick. But on the floors of Vismayam 2008, he staged an astonishing show of pulling out several nails from his mouth. Joining him, Ass Mohammed another street magician produced one after the other a number of things from his apparently empty mouth. And the audience around stood with their jaws down in awe.
Dishing magic on the pavement: Ancient Indian Cups and Balls trick being relived.
Though flag bearers of a great magical heritage, they haven't yet received enough recognition from the authorities. Lack of money has denied even primary education for their wards.
For meeting the two ends together, they have no other way than performing through the shaky street sides. Fast urbanization is proving a real threat for them. Another agony has been the rough dealing by the Police.
Magical smiles: Fukai Masahiro, wife Kimika and disciples, Hikari, Shinichiro and U.S. magician, Kenrick ICE McDonald enjoy taking photos with traditional Indian street magician, Farooq Shah and magician, Rajkumar of Delhi.
Over these thorns of realities, they wander relentlessly in search of venues, carrying the bundle of a magical heritage. Revenue depends on the number of people gather. As modern electronic entertainment gadgets become common in cities as well as villages, only a feeble crowd remains to see these unsung heroes in magic.
Vismayam 2008 offers these street magic shows free for public on 2, 3 May at Hassan Maraikar Hall, thus becoming a platform for these heritage magicians to display their talents with all dignity and proud.