The Naked Magicians
Brisbane Powerhouse & Samuel Klingner Entertainment Enterprises
Brisbane Powerhouse Visy Theatre
Feburary 25 – March 2 2014
Reviewed by Guy Frawley
Settling into my seat for the opening night premiere of The Naked Magicians I was looking forward to the show. After interviewing Chris Wayne the previous day he’d certainly piqued my interest. An interesting combination of comic stand up, magic show and titillating strip tease, The Naked Magicians would appear to be attempting to corner several markets at once. This attempt is generally, if not always, successful but either way, the audience is guaranteed a laugh out loud evening of risque entertainment as the magical duo Chris Wayne and Mike Tyler put their slogan to the test…
Good magicians don’t need sleeves. Great magicians don’t need pants.
After Simon Paynter came up with the original concept, based around his poster of a magician stark naked save for a strategically placed top, Chris Wayne was invited to help flesh out the idea before quickly bringing on board his long time friend, Mike Tyler.
Driving home, my date for the evening walked me through how a number of the tricks had been performed. He’s got a sharper eye than I, but fortunately, an explanation didn’t make the boys performance any less impressive. The Naked Magicians is carried entirely by the thoroughly entertaining performance of Wayne and Tyler.
The magic is cool and the magicians are hot but that’s all just icing on the cake. The core of this show is that Chris Wayne and Mike Tyler are great performers, and have an easy rapport with their audience.
In saying that, there is some polishing required, the ‘big reveal’ that was supposed to serve as the climax of the show fell flat through the delivery and the obvious nature of the trick. The Visy is an intimate venue so perhaps they had prepared this with a more distant stage in mind, but when the seams and pop-buttons of Tyler’s jacket were clearly visible every time he turned around there wasn’t any surprise or mystery left in the closing trick.
I loved the affable nature of the show. We really get the feeling that it was conjured on a Brisbane balcony by a couple of mates over many a beverage, and when those mates just happen to be established magicians with a cracking sense of humour then I think you’re probably onto a pretty good thing!
It was great to see the audience enjoying this new show so much and I’ll be interested to see how the tour goes. Discussing the show afterwards with the production team there were whispers regarding future tour dates and if I had a bet on I’d say the guys are onto something. We should expect to see them selling out theatres across the nation with The Naked Magicians.
You’ll have to rustle up some magic of your own if you’re hoping to get tickets for the final show tonight! The run at Brisbane Powerhouse is technically sold out, but if you manage to snag yourself a ticket or two you’re guaranteed to have an entertaining evening.