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FISM Day Five – Stage Competition

July 30th, 2009 by Craig Mitchell

Han Seol-HuiThe end is in sight as we continue our search for FISM greatness.

highlights were Soma, earning a well deserved standing ovation, along with Han Seol-Hui who also wowed the audience.

138 acts down.. tomorrow brings the finals, and the titles of the World Championships.

You can read Craigs view and reports of the acts today below.

1. Andost – General – USA
Vanishing lamp to book, color changing lightbulbs, lightbulb to cascade of sand ( beautifully visual ), airborne with sand ending with flashing disco lights. Felt that something was ‘missing’ from the act.

2. Maia Jiang – Manipulation – China
Clad in black leather & bling, a high powered card manipulation routine including jumbo cards along with flurries of multiple card fountains.

3. Xavier Tapias – General – Spain
Garbage guy … the creation of a ‘live’ character from pieces of trash strewn across the floor complete with the coming to life of a ‘rubbish bin’ dog.

4. Kenneth Chan – General – Hong Kong
Set in a bar – appearing drinks, vanishing bottle to billiard balls, color changing cigards, bill production, jumbo card manipulations, strange pictures of drinks on printed cards ending with a horrible production of a girl from behind the table. Looking at the girl as she moves into position is not very magical.

5. Liu Zihao – Manipulation – China
Dead pan expression as he went through the motions of the now standard card manipulation.

6. Soma – General – Hungary
Soma’s telephone booth act has been featured at many conventions of late and is a beautifully executed act – with motivation. Every action, every effect is motivated – from coin manipulation for the callbox to the multiply cellphones. It’s theatrically complete and earned a well deserved standing ovation.

7. Han Seol-Hui – Manipulation – Korea
Another recipient of a standing ovation with CD manipulation. Featured at IBM SAM if I recall.

8. Dion – Manipulation – Netherlands
‘Spanish dancer’ with candle productions, ball manipulation, fan productions

Timo Marc could not perform – his equipment having been detained at Chinese customs.

9. Elana Vok – General – Finland
Appearing canes, costume changes and a one-of-a-kind full frontal ‘Sharon Stone Basic Instict’ flash !

10. Qu Lei – General – China
Set in a bamboo garden, appearing parasols, flowing streamers, unbelievable production of parasols on one’s toes along with costume change.

11.Matsuda – Manipulation – Japan
Cards, card fans, billiard balls … I’m falling asleep. Some energy please.

12. Leriko – General – Russia
An undertaker wearing sequins with the production of a bizarre circus tent. Our undertaker then produces little cardboard boxes and velcros them all to his costume ( why ? ) and then promptly takes them all of again ( why ? ) Best of all – our mystery tent begins to ‘float’ off the ground ( please ignore the two legs protruding from the tent holding it up )

13. Gomez – Manipulation – France
A high-energy act with great poential. At 17 years of age, one of the youngest competitors I believe. M&M candy manipulation, growing M&M’s – color changing M&M’s along with fast paced CD manipulation. Just need to watch sightlines / camera angles.

14. Lord of Darkness – Comedy – Germany
A much anticipated act that was not funny. Although his assistant was a hoot – duct taping her own eyes closed instead of the magician’s. Set in Transylvania, the act was red lighted for being overtime. (dear Dracula was blindfolded at the time – so was blissfully unaware that the curtains had closed on him as he continued to perform … it was the funniest part of the entire show)

Having watched ( and reviewed ) over 138 magic acts … the overall level has been way down to previous FISMs. While the number of really bad acts has been eliminated – we have been left with a general band of mediocrity and then very few new or stand-out acts. I hope we can reverse this trend in future years.

It’s hard to believe but tomorrow is the last day for FISM China.

Friday’s programme features lectures by Lennart Green, Rocco, Miguel Puga along with Rocco’s One Man Show, Awards Ceremony and Grand Prix finals.

Until then …

Read all of the reporting as we get it Direct from China by clicking here

Craig Mitchell has allowed us to duplicate his reports from the Genii Forum