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Magic Society

Magic Society
An evening with Drummond Money-Coutts

Whilst at Eton Drummond Money-Coutts, then of PSTW, became interested in magic and was largely responsible for the reintroduction of The Magic Society.  Since leaving Eton, his conjuring career has flourished, he has studied with professional magicians Simon Lovell and Billy McComb and he has performed before the Queen, Hugh Grant and Michael Parkinson.

On December 3rd, Drummond returned to Eton and put on a spectacular show which thrilled hundreds of Etonians and left them asking the age-old question ‘how on earth did he do that?’

A packed Farrer Theatre was the venue for the evening’s performance and the audience was certainly expectant. They were not to be disappointed. Dressed in a red waistcoat, he had a mesmerizing patter which included a catchphrase ‘wir haben, wir haben’, presumably a result of lessons in Birley Schools some seven years ago.  Of his early tricks, some incredible sleights of hand and use of deception were definitely crowd favorites; he seemingly teleported a pen from one hand to another and eventually to behind his ear.

It was however a host of predictions and mind-reading tricks which particularly impressed. That he could correctly predict a randomly chosen card may seem quite ordinary. However, when he managed to make Mr Eddis, the hapless stooge, correctly predict a card chosen by a boy, the audience was quite baffled.

The highlight of the show, however, was undoubtedly the closing feat. A boy, in this case Jack Warburton (MAG), was randomly chosen from the audience whilst the magician was blindfolded. On the table lay four wooden blocks, one and only one with a sharp nail protruding from it.  Each block was then covered with a plastic cup and their order was rearranged various times, out of the magician’s view, so that it was quite impossible to know which cup covered the nail. 

Then, with everyone’s heart in their mouths, our magician placed his hand over Jack’s hand, chose a cup at random, and then pushed his hand rapidly downwards onto what could have been the dreaded spike. With a huge sigh or relief from everyone in the audience, the cup chosen did not conceal the nail and no harm was done.  As the tension grew, he repeated this apparently crazy act twice more, each time avoiding the spike, until only one cup was left standing. With a final flourish, he then revealed the spike underneath.

Overall, the evening was a great success; even the morning after, boys throughout the school were still puzzling over how it was all done. Drummond Money-Coutts was certainly most entertaining, a master magician and his career is surely on an upward path.  Furthermore, his dazzling tricks may well be the inspiration for current Etonians to pursue the world of illusion.

Sasha Salter (RGGP)

DATE POSTED: 03 December 2009

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