Deceptive Delights: A magician’s global journey

Stuart Lightbody performs in his show Deceptive Delights. Photo: Megan Kelly/ Cue.

The world is full of endless possibilities and life is an adventure. These are two ideas which the magic show Deceptive Delights with Stuart Lightbody thrives on.

The show itself is composed of an eclectic mixture of magic, sleight of hand and psychological illusion. In intervals between the magic, the narrative pertaining to Lightbody’s adventures across the globe beautifully unfolded like an intricate illusion before our very eyes.

In these moments one could palpably see Lightbody’s clear love and dedication to his craft. As he explained: “In my youth, magic helped me discover what I was most passionate about.”

As much as it is a narrative about Lightbody’s adventures the show also functions as a tribute to the renowned practitioner of up-close magic and card illusions, Dai Vernon. In a nod to his self-professed idol, Lightbody performed an intricate card illusion which had to be seen to be believed. The finale was met with a round of thunderous applause from the audience, many of whom stared at the stage in a kind of dumbfounded disbelief of what they had just witnessed.

The show incorporates sleight of hand magic which leaves the audience mesmerized. Photo: Megan Kelly.

In an interview held after the show, Lightbody delved deeper into the narrative and proceeded to explain how he first became enamored with the craft: “I started when I was 12 years old. A friend of mine introduced me. In the beginning I was very shy and didn’t want to be a performer. I just thought that the magic was beautiful and the psychology behind it was fascinating and the more I did it the more I loved it.”

Looking back on his 10 years of performing at the National Arts Festival, Lightbody reflected on the impact which the event had on his career stating: “Many years ago this event was my introduction into the world of arts festivals.” As if to psychically preempt the next question he then proceeded to say “I will always come back to the National Arts Festival because it’s a wonderful experience. I’ve met such wonderful friends and I’ve seen shows that have changed my thinking on magic and on life.

To all future magicians out there Lightbody had this to say: “Be passionate, be playful and above all be bold.”

Watch Deceptive Delights with Stuart Lightbody on 6 July at 17:30 and on 7 July 17:30 at Princess Alice Hall.

By Keegan Frances