Let’s be clear what I’m talking about here. Whilst it is also very important, I’m not talking about this:
Equity – the quality of being fair and impartial
No, I’m talking about the Actors and Entertainer’s union, who work with and protect the rights of many of the famous names you’ve seen or heard on stage or in film. Many of your favourite actors are probably members.
Equity is the only UK Trade Union to represent artists from across the entire spectrum of arts and entertainment. Formed in 1930 it now covers a whole range of professional entertainers.
Members include actors, singers, dancers, variety and circus artists, stand up comedians, stunt performers and many more.
I just want to book some magic. Why is this important to me?
Equity membership is really something to look out for and tells you that your magician, actor, or entertainer has taken the right steps to look after your best interests.
Peace of mind in case of mishaps and accidents
Indicates your magician has considered your and your venue’s needs
Many venues will insist on seeing a performer’s Insurance Certificate. You may not be able to get a magician to entertain in a barn or church or other venues without showing a valid certificate
Proves that your magician is serious and accountable with their magic. A “hobbyist” magician might be able to offer a cheaper price, but won’t be able to offer you, the client, the same level of protection in case something goes wrong
Justin is fully insured with £10 million public liability insurance.
You can book with confidence and enjoy your special event, knowing your guests are being expertly entertained and mystified. Justin takes care of everything and communicates clearly with you throughout your booking.
Everything is agreed up-front and is readily checkable via a contract which he will agree with you.
Trust Justin to work with you clearly and professionally, in the run up to and during your party.
I met Kim Stewart recently at a wedding fair and was really impressed by her range of wedding stationery, which she makes all herself. Wanting to share some tips, I asked Kim about just what an impact quality stationery can make:
Your wedding stationery will set the tone for your big day. The invitations will give your guests that first impression and create the WOW factor. They can also give a flavour of your style as a couple.
Whilst heavy card embossed plain invitations still have their place, there’s so much more you can do with wedding stationery these days.
Whatever your budget go for the best you can afford. Here at Lilguy Designs we only use high quality materials for your wedding stationery. That doesn’t mean however that they cost the earth (although given an unlimited budget and free rein I could probably rise to the challenge!). I don’t believe in hiking prices just because it’s a wedding. Part of my ethos and advice is not to start your married life as far into debt as you can get just to have one spectacular day.
For example the All In One invitation shown above uses the same high quality card as the Charleston Glamour invitation which is a bespoke invitation but the prices are vastly different. This is because far more work goes into creating the bespoke invitation.
Items to consider for your Wedding Stationery Suite
Save The Date Cards
Day & Evening Invitations
Orders of Service/Orders of the Day
Table Number/Name Cards
Post Box For Cards
Thank You Cards
You may not need all of these items. For example you don’t necessarily need to send Save the Date cards out. If you are inviting guests who will be travelling a fair distance and need time to organise then they’re a good idea. Or if you’re getting married abroad and want people to come. However, if you’re getting married in 6-9 months time and everyone’s local save your money and ditch the Save the Dates!
Helping you to save money on your wedding stationery is part of what I do. But please don’t tell my bank manager!
Creating a style or theme with wedding stationery
Your wedding stationery can really help to bring cohesion to your wedding day. It can also help you to style your venue in your chosen theme.
For example Heather & Will Chose white and Cadbury purple for their colour scheme. This was used in their Table Name Cards, Table Plan, Menu Cards and Place Name Cards, really helping to bring a pop of colour to the venue. The use of the weather forecast areas shows their interest in sailing.
It’s one whole year since the legend that was Paul Daniels passed away from us. It’s been a year that has kept me (and I’m sure all of us) very busy, but I had noticed the date approaching and felt compelled to write something.
I (and an entire generation of magicians) owe a lot to Paul. Little did I know that as I sat spellbound watching him on TV at the tender age of 7 that he was setting a path beneath my feet that I over the years have found irresistible.
Sat there glued to the TV, I remember being completely absorbed. Everything else disappeared as I was mesmerised by his performance. I have actually found the clip – so please watch it here:
I had no idea where those pieces of fruit were coming from, and I didn’t find out until I was 23. If you see me performing at tables you can be assured that this is what I’ll start with, well my version anyway. I don’t think there’s anything else quite like it in close up magic. I often get asked to do the “fruit trick” and like Paul, this is something I hope to become known for.
I was so very lucky to meet Paul a couple of times. My amazing wife actually arranged for me to spend the best part of a day with him in his own home for one of my birthdays.
I don’t think I was quite prepared for the level of his generosity. Hearing people talk about him afterwards, I learnt that this was something he was known for. He was always interested in people. If you were his audience you were his world, and he never stopped striving for the perfect performance for you. If you were another magician or performer then he was a limitless font of knowledge, tips and advice, and was only too happy to go out of his way to help you.
Being more than a magician
Paul left a legacy with me of being true to yourself, being prepared for anything and thinking everything through, never taking anything for granted, and also a relentless search for being better.
How to be a more engaging performer, how to be interesting. After all – how interesting really is a pack of cards, or a cabinet, or a table, without an intriguing storyline or plot to captivate your audience? Then the magic enhances what should be an already entertaining story or experience.
Paul has left us with a staggering record of achievements which I’m not sure will be beaten by another British magician. He performed regularly on the Paul Daniels Magic Show and on several other occasions on Christmas specials and other events from 1979 to 1994, regularly drawing in audiences of 15 million viewers. He was also recognised with countless awards for services to magic and the entertainment world in general. In all that time (and right up until his later life) he held onto that goal of the perfect magic effect, which involved people with an elegant story, only to blow them away with an impossible happening which would engage them for long afterwards.
I shall forever be humbled and honoured to have such a body of work to be inspired by, and an incomparable example to strive towards.
Paul was known for his views on death, “When it’s your time, it’s your time” he was quoted to have said on several occasions. In the end, he had only 4 weeks and 5 days after being diagnosed with an incurable brain tumour.
Debbie McGee has asked that anyone who wants to make a donation in memory of Paul support the Brain Tumour Research charity and purchase one of their badges which she helped design. If you loved his magic or perhaps have been affected by someone with a condition of a similar nature then please consider it.
If asked what drives me forward to do what I do, my own personal love of magic can be summed up very simply:
If in performing magic you can make your audience believe, even if just for one second, that it may not be a trick. If the effect is so powerful that they are simply left dumbfounded and entertained, then we are all children again – being free from the troubles and worries of life and believing just for that moment that anything might be possible.
That is a huge gift to give, and Paul gave it in spades. I loved him, and I know lots of people liked him, even if not a lot.
It allows me to get to meet lots of people who are intersted in what I can do, and how that makes them feel.
I’m not just talking about performing at magic events (although of course I love that too). I mean bumping into people in the street, in the chip shop, or as recently, on the train.
I was watching some magic on my phone before getting off at my stop, when someone asked me if I was a magician. After explaining that I have pursued magic since I was 7 he really wanted to see something.
I loved seeing how this man on his way home from work was overtaken by a boyish wish to see something impossible. He got so excited, and was amazed throughout the magical story I wove for him. I was only too happy to leave him bounding off with a big smile on his face.
I’m so lucky to do what I do. Every time I go out I get to make people feel like the 7 year old boy that I was. Magic, real magic – making someone smile or forget their worries for a moment, can happen anywhere at any time.
We’re well and truly into October, so that means colder mornings, the leaves are turning red, and it’s a nausiatingly countable number of days until Christmas.
Yes, it’s coming. So now is the perfect time to be making sure you’ve got the finishing touches in place for your Christmas party.
Justin’s close up magic is the perfect addition to liven up the mood as your guests arrive, whilst you’re waiting for food, or after dinner. Making sure your party goes off in fine style, Justin performs his close up magic whilst mingling with your guests, making it perfect for a cocktail, canapé or dining environment.
With the right blend of lighthearted jokes, fun conversation starters and of course, impossible, baffling magic which will have people talking for weeks afterwards. Do something different for this year’s party: click here to get in touch for a free, no obligation quote and see what Justin can do for you.
It’s been a long time coming but I can finally reveal what’s been in the pipeline for months. Hopefully you’ll enjoy the new clearer, easier to navigate site where I can show you all just what magic can do for you and your guests, whatever the occasion.
There will be updates from me and what I’m up to, videos coming soon and lots of other bits and pieces. If you have a query of any kind please just get in touch with the form here.