Alan Hudson’s new Edinburgh Fringe show has no theme, camera tricks or bullshit, just a collection of his best sleight of hand tricks and some new ones. He’s an Associate of The Inner Magic Circle, so expect near miracles. Martin Walker talks to a magician who privately fooled Penn & Teller.
“I’m doing a magic and comedy show – something for everyone. In the past I’ve done themed shows like a life story or being a superhero – this year I thought I’d love to do an out and out magic show. All my favourite tricks and some new ones done to TV themes that everyone likes – Mad Men, Game of Thrones – that’s been the best fun, trying to think of tricks to match TV shows.”
How did you get into magic?
“No social life. I lived in a village and had a lot of spare time on my hands. We did football and I got obsessed by Paul Daniels on telly so my mum bought me a magic set. Most kids lose all the bits, I was anal about mine and started going out on the street and setting up a table and would charge 2p for someone to watch a magic trick. I invented street magic.”
What was it like meeting Penn and Teller?
“I actually didn’t meet them off air on the day of Penn & Teller: Fool Us. The only time I saw them was when I was doing my trick. Didn’t meet them before or after. Weirdly, after their live shows, they wait and meet the entire audience.
“I have met them before, I went in for an audition and fooled them with a different trick – unfortunately I wasn’t allowed to do this one on the telly as it’s a competition and ITV were paranoid people would find out.”
Tell us your best, worst experiences as a comedian.
“My best and worst times happen in Edinburgh – best is being on other shows in front of comedians I respect and going well in front of them. Worst times are whenever any of my friends come to see my show – for some reason they seem to suck any bit of atmosphere out of the room and it appears I am performing some artistic monologue that I’ve demanded the audience remain completely silent for 60 minutes… actually about 50 minutes, I always under run…”
If you were curating a magic/stand up show for television, who would be your guests?
“I’d have Dynamo for the ratings – I’ve known him since he was about fourteen and he probably owes me a favour, James Acaster because I would like to see him speak to Dynamo, Charlie Baker because I’m a big fan and was disappointed for him when I Can’t Sing closed, and Marcel Lucont as the host. Can you make this happen? I would love this.”