IBM Ring 115 held its second virtual meeting for 2020 amid the COVID-19 situation in Singapore. We used the Zoom Meeting platform. It took place on the evening of 15th May 2020. Hosted by both Oberoi Bhushan Kumar aka Kogi, and Alvin Terence, with administrative and technical assistance from Tommy Chiang and Baharudin aka Baha, it had an appetizing theme, ‘Gourmet Magic’. Turnout was very good with 45 members signing up for it.


Performing before an audience via a virtual setting was a new experience for many and we had Alvin Terence to take us through the ‘crises and opportunities’ this platform could offer. He highlighted the many benefits as well as shortcomings for performing magic in such a virtual environment.

Tan Jui Kuan aka JK first used an experiment in physics utilising balls to illustrate the meaning of latent or hidden force. He then adopted this concept to a ceramic knife, waving it over (but not touching) a yet unpeeled banana. When peeled, the banana had been magically sliced into many sections.

Victor Heng shared a comical story where a couple rushed into a supermarket and came out with a different partner. Through the virtual platform, he invited a member to take out the 4 Queens and 4 Kings from the member’s own deck of cards. Victor gave instructions for the Kings and Queens to be mixed and dealt into 2 piles. He asked another member to choose one pile. In a process of mixing and discarding cards, 2 cards were left over. The 2 cards turned out to be a King and a Queen of the same suit. Unlike the story, the King did find his own wife!

Tommy Kian presented a prop (a collector’s item) that had a solid glass panel secured in a wooden frame. 2 external wooden panels covering both sides of it had 4 small holes. Using a large needle, Tommy threaded a red string through all the 4 holes. When the wooden panels were removed, the glass panel within was shown to be intact. He weaved a nice presentation about the unpredictable and uncontrollable elements in life that can present overwhelming problems.

Carson Goh displayed an empty box and then went on to pull out a bunch of entertaining tricks from inside it. He performed small to jumbo dice, spoon to fork in mouth, coin tray where one coin multiplied to 4 coins, prediction of one of 6 colour balls, and a pocket-sized pencil through glass panel. Finally, he pushed a coin into his iPhone and it became a 2D image inside his phone. Then, with a flick of his iPhone, the image changed back into a physical coin.

Jeremy Pei’s performance included airborne glass (with wine bottle), a version of sympathetic cards but using only one wine glass and a miniature deck where the face card changed 4 times to each of the 4 Aces, production of a basketball from a small box, and a prediction of 3 small balls from the same box. In his dealer’s segment, Jeremy demonstrated the Mental Photography Deck where a blank deck magically became printed with backs and faces. Not only did he make a special price for this deck, he also offered free postage if 2 decks were ordered together. Other gimmicked decks that he showed included the Stripper Deck, Svengali Deck, and Invisible Deck.

Kenneth Chia donned a chef uniform in his ‘kitchen’ set up with oriental music in the background. He then performed a series of tantalizing food-related magic including changing a spoon into a fork, producing tumblers from 2 empty panels and eggs from a red bag. He next had someone choose one of 6 buns, and then produce it, and the other 5 buns, from an empty Chinese steamer basket. He closed with hamburger production from poster-board, and evaporated milk to white streamer.

Enrico Varella shared his experiences performing magic in restaurants and pubs. With the aid of PowerPoint slides, he gave 12 valuable tips and advice. He ended by showing how he packed his various effects in transparent bags in his pockets.

David Michael Fillary attempted to eat a chocolate cookie but it turned into a coin. He produced 2 more coins and put all 3 coins into his mouth one by one, munching on them for effect. He then sneezed and produced each of them from an ear, nose and mouth respectively. He ended his neat performance by coolly chomping on the coins again and they all changed into a real cookie which he ate up.

John Teo‘s teach-in involved a thrilling detective story. A crime was enacted where the victim, weapon and murderer were identified by a spectator through a seemingly random selection of cards representing the various choices. These incredibly matched a prediction in the form of an old newspaper clipping headlining a murder. As a follow-up to the murder case, John continued with all 4 suspects being arrested and sent to prison. On the next 3 days, some of them escaped to freedom and some were caught and put back into prison. Who escaped and who were caught were all decided by a spectator. Despite these random choices, John could predict who was the last prisoner and whether he escaped to freedom or got caught and put back in prison.

Cassidy Lee, in his dealer show, introduced RD Insta where a mixed up Rubik’s cube could be solved instantly. He also recommended ‘21’ by Mark Mason, ‘In the Middle’, ‘ESP’ etc. as they were all visual effects with little chance of failure. Cassidy did an ambitious card without using sleight-of-hand, and showed that it was accomplished with a special Svengali deck called Black Triple Deck.

With the performances coming to a close, a Raffle draw was jointly conducted by Tommy Chiang and Baha. 2 Prizes, comprising a REM dvd and a Holey Shirt dvd were sponsored by John Teo. The lucky winners were Charles Choo and Ng Kah King.

Although the exciting meeting had officially concluded, interested buyers were put into 2 breakout rooms to browse and purchase items from our 2 dealers: Jeremy Pei and Cassidy Lee.