Ali Bongo painting

14 January 2022

Ali Bongo (William Oliver Wallace 1929-2009) was a British comedy magician, prolific inventor and former President of The Magic Circle. A flamboyant performer he was famed for his (perhaps now politically dubious) Shriek of Araby character with an exotic costume and headgear – he had been born in India, the son of an army officer. He appeared on many TV shows and was a creative consultant to performers including TV magicians David Nixon (see Object 28) and Paul Daniels (see Object 10). He filled his London flat with books, costumes and home-made props until there was no more room, so he bought another flat in the same building and filled that one too.

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