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Malaysian Magician To Perform In Hollywood


KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 20 (Bernama) -- Malaysian magician Kabir Khan Mohamad Reaz will perform in Hollywood and Las Vegas in the United States at the invitation of Magic Castle Club, the world famous club for magicians and magic enthusiasts.

Kabir Khan, 26, will perform in Hollywood in September and Las Vegas in October. His overseas venture will be sponsored by local firms including Kuala Lumpur Tower, Asian Kitchen Sdn Bhd and Erat Semarak Sdn Bhd.

The Penang-born magician told a press conference here that he would also be holding some of his performances with a 'Malaysian identity' to promote the country in the United States.

Prior to this, Kabir Khan had performed in the United Arab Emirates in 2009 at the invitation of the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, and at several luxury hotels in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Kabir Khan was a student of the McBride School of Magic and Mystery, Las Vegas, and also a graduate in Manual Dexterity and Prestidigitation from Chaves Studio of Magic, Los Angeles.

He said he had been interested in magic since the age of six, after he saw a magic performance by David Copperfield.

He had started his career in magic since school days by performing at corporate dinners.

Kabir Khan, who wants more Malaysian youths to be involved in magic, plans to open a school of magic to share his knowledge.

-- BERNAMA

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I'VE always been impressed by the magic tricks I have seen magicians do. So imagine my excitement when I got the chance to actually meet one.

Penangite Kabir Khan is a 25-year-old magician whose interest in magic started at the age of six. And guess what? It was by coincidence! Kabir's parents were the ones that set him on the road to magic.

My parents bought me a small magic set which had a device that made coins vanish. I started to practise and showed the tricks to all my relatives when we met up during the holidays. My granduncle George Chan, who is a ventriloquist himself and comes from a family of well-known magicians, took a personal interest in me after seeing how enthusiastic I was. So, every year when I visited him in Penang, he would teach me a few tricks for me to practise throughout the year. For my 11th birthday, my mother bought me a full set of magic equipment. As my repertoire of tricks kept building, I stated doing mini magic shows for my friends and at birthday functions. Later on, I performed at my school, St. John's Institution, for every major event.

In early 1990, Kabir watched David Copperfield perform his magic on TV1. Though all the tricks Copperfield did amazed the young magician, the one that sealed his future profession in Kabir's mind was seeing the Statue of Liberty (or the Little Green Building as Kabir called it at that time) disappear.

David Copperfield came to Malaysia in 1991. I was so excited. I really wanted to meet him personally. But of course I couldn't do so at that time. Kabir was not deterred by that setback.

When he was in Form 1, he somehow got Copperfield's fan club address. The fan club was in Los Angeles. I got the address at the perfect time since David's birthday was in the next 20 to 30 days. So, my father helped buy David a present on my behalf, and I wrote a letter which was about 20 to 30 pages long.

I mailed it to the particular address.

One month later, Kabir received a mail from Las Vegas. To his surprise, it was a picture of David Copperfield and it was signed by the man himself! Kabir took the picture to school and showed it to his schoolmates. But no one believed him. They said that the signature was Kabir's not the legendary magician's. I said to myself at that time that one day, I would meet David Copperfield, get his signature and snap a picture of me with him.

But Kabir had to wait a few years more before meeting his idol. During his teen years, Kabir was quite active in doing magic shows. His first paid gig was at a fundraiser for the Kosovo victims. I was very nervous because the shows that I did before it were all for free. I would usually just get small gifts, goodies or even a handshake. But this time, it was different. I was going to get paid to perform! explained Kabir when he was asked how he felt about his first paid gig. Although he was nervous, it was a successful show.

I used my own pocket money to buy my equipment from America, said this young man who conducted his very first magic workshop for the New Straits Times at the age of 15.

On leaving school, Kabir decided that a business degree would equip him with the right skills to manage his career and took a course at Help University in Kuala Lumpur. During this time, he had loads of working material and was hired to perform his magic tricks at a lot of functions. By 2007, he was performing every Friday night as the resident magician for the Subang Holiday Villa Resorts and Hotel.

Then, in 2008, Kabir went to further his knowledge and skills in a specialised advanced magic course in the United States. I was based in Los Angeles for six months and graduated from the Chavez Studio of Magic with a diploma in Manual Dexterity and Prestidigitation (advanced sleight-of-hand). I also attended another master class at McBride's Mystery and Magic School in Las Vegas.

His courses made him the first and only certified professional magician in Malaysia. In Las Vegas, he worked closely with Master Illusionist Tim Kole who was headlining there. With him, I was exposed to a whole new perspective of performing mega illusions in real time.

It was in Vegas that his desire to meet his idol came to pass. He made arrangements to meet Copperfield at the MGM Grand Hotel. He spent some time with me and we discussed a lot of stuff. Till today, meeting the man himself feels like an illusion. He doesn't just meet anybody but, through the grace of God, this dream of mine was fulfilled.

At that meeting, Kabir did just what he said he would do he took along the picture he received from Copperfield all those years ago and got him to sign it again. He also took a picture with his idol. How awesome is that?

When he got back from the US in 2009, Kabir was personally invited by the Abu Dhabi Government to perform at a grand tourism event they hosted. He was the only Malaysian of all the 10 magicians there (three were Singaporeans and the rest Australians). I was based there for two months and performed five to seven shows per day! His first international gig taught him a good lesson. Whatever you do, before you sign a contract, ask them when your day of leave is.

During his Abu Dhabi stint, Kabir's show was well-received and soon invitations to perform at private events came his way. One of them came from a luxury hotel in Dubai. So, was he nervous? I wouldn't say nervous but I still get worried before I get up on stage. Guess that is part of showbiz.

Does being a magician provide a stable income? According to Kabir, the answer is a definite yes. Having mastered magic, what is Kabir aiming to do next? Well, he plans to get his Private Pilot's Licence next year.

To be a great magician, one thing you need is the right mentor. And you couldn't ask for a better mentor than Kabir to take you through the basics of magic. He's passionate and constantly looking to better his magical skills, and at such a young age he is already an international performer. His advice to youngsters interested in this field is read books on magic instead of watching the videos. That way you will eventually apply your own style to the same trick. Decide on what you want to do in life and put your heart, soul and mind to it. NST. Read more...




 
 
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