SINGAPORE RING 115 - May 2021 Magic Meeting Report

Written by Hwee Lang

IBM Singapore Ring 115 held its May meeting over Zoom on the evening of 15th May 2021. It was co-hosted by JK Tan and John Teo, and watched by 36 members. The theme for the evening was Novel Magic which could involve the use of unique props or result in unexpected outcomes. JK Tan illustrated an unexpected outcome by shaking a transparent container with a black dice inside and it transformed into a white one instantly.

The meeting kicked off with John Teo’s announcement that he would make personal arrangements with a few lucky draw winners (including those not in Singapore) to collect their prizes won over the last few virtual meetings.

Victor Heng showed a 4 X 4 matrix of numbers. Two different spectators chose 2 numbers, and the entire columns and rows of the 2 numbers were crossed out. The total of the 4 remaining squares was added up to arrive at “34”. A cut-out of a face was unmasked and shown to be Smiley, which had cut-outs where his 2 eyes and mouth were. The cut-out Smiley was placed over the 4 X 4 matrix in 8 different ways. In each of the 8 ways, the 4 numbers that were exposed by the cut-outs (2 at the eyes and 2 at the mouth) mysteriously add up to “34”. Victor followed this with a multi-phased oil-and-water effect using 5 red and 5 black playing cards. Despite randomly mixing up the cards, including turning some face up and some face down, he was able to magically separate the red from the black cards.

A very sporting Ng Ek Hwang, complete with a colourful wig and a Zorro-type of mask, performed a series of quick effects. She changed a toy caterpillar into a toy butterfly, caused a stalk of rose to wilt, transformed white rabbits printed on 5 cards into red parrots, and converted a long black cloth into a rainbow-coloured one.

Host JK Tan played a game of tic-tac-toe with a spectator, using a transparent game board. Despite the random choices made by the spectator, the completed game board was turned around to reveal a complete picture of the famed Mona Lisa.

John Teo asked a spectator to stop him twice as he dealt cards onto the table. These 2 randomly chosen cards were the 8 of hearts and 3 of spades, matching exactly 2 prediction cards, one had a cut-out of an “8” and a “heart” and the other one with a cut-out of a “3” and a “spade”. 2 more cards were chosen in the same manner. The third card matched the cut-out shown when the 2 prediction cards were placed together to form a cut-out of a “6” and a “diamond”. One of the prediction cards was turned over and replaced together with the other prediction card to reveal a cut-out of a “7” and a “club”, matching the identity of the fourth chosen card. His next effect was an interesting topological trick where a piece of yellow paper with a cut-out of an arrow was trapped by putting a black strip of paper through the slits at both of its other ends. Despite the fact that the yellow paper could not be turned over, John managed to get the arrow to go in the opposite direction simply by folding and unfolding the yellow paper.

Goh Yin Xian conducted a dealer’s demonstration. He showcased “Magnetoid Sphere” where a metallic ball defied gravity and would not drop out of a wooden container, and “Sweet”, the transformation of a card case into a box of chewing gum, with a folded chosen card attached to it. The “Optical Illusion Bundle” comprised 5 optical illusion effects: an un-reversible arrow, a 6 + 9 = 15 paddle, young lady to old lady through a mirror, table-tops illusion, and dubious domino. Finally, he combined “McCombical Drinks” and “Astonishing Bottle” in a nice routine involving Coca-Cola and Fanta Orange bottled drinks.

In the 15-minutes break, a montage of Ring 115 videos made by Baharudin was screened. It included a clip from the National Library Archives of Singapore on the origin of magic in Singapore that featured Ring 115 and an interview with John Teo by Gracie Lee, the senior librarian.

Kenneth Chia transformed himself into an Interior Designer, ‘Can’ Chia, aka everything also can. Tasked to design and fit a number of rooms, furniture and fittings within a fixed square space, he presented his design in the form of a jigsaw puzzle with the pieces representing different parts of the house. This was an interesting version of the “Winston Freer’s Tile Puzzle”. His customer requested for an additional toilet and an extra ‘secret’ room and Kenneth managed to do that without increasing the original floor area.

Kogi Oberoi presented a “Twisting The Aces” effect done with an Ace, a two, a three and a four. Each of these 4 cards magically turned face up one at a time.

Wee Kian Meng aka Mr Bottle, asked a spectator to “throw” 4 imaginary dice. The 4 numbers on the dice were used to locate 4 playing cards. They turned out to be the only 4 cards that were different from the deck which consisted of all 8 of diamonds! His second effect involved a flattened mixed up Rubik’s Cube which he proceeded to solve into the 6 different colour sides by folding and unfolding the flat Rubik’s Cube.

Jeremy Pei rounded up the evening with his performance cum dealer show. He presented a version of “Benson Bowl” using 3 sponge tomatoes, a rice bowl and a magic wand that doubled as a wand. The climax was the appearance of a small ketchup bottle underneath the bowl. His next effect involved 4 cards depicting 4 different flavours of chocolate bars. A chosen chocolate bar was the only one that had a piece missing (eaten). Both the dark and the white chocolate cards changed into 2 actual chocolate bars. A piece of white chocolate broken off transformed into a piece of dark chocolate. Finally the broken white chocolate was restored. Jeremy then introduced “Mindpod”, a mental effect reviewed in the TQR newsletter, at a special discounted price. Hs final offer was bundle deals of Magic Maker’s DVDs.

The meeting ended with a lucky draw hosted by Baharudin and Tommy Chiang with the two prizes won by Jeremy Pei and Wee Kien Meng.