Top magic award for 25-year-old

25 April 2023

A magician, who has only been a Member of The Magic Circle for 18 months, has won the society’s prestigious Close-up Magician of the Year competition.

John Duffett, beat five other contenders for the title with his performance of card magic at The Magic Circle’s London headquarters last Monday (24 April). He convinced the judges of his skills as he made cards disappear and appear in impossible locations.

John 25, who lives in Redbridge, London, was diagnosed with autism when he was seven. He says: “It was then I realised why I was shy and struggled to make friends and understand people.”

He stresses that his condition has not affected his life in a bad way and has in fact helped him. “It allows me to focus and concentrate on detail and I never get bored learning.”

It was while revising during lockdown for his Politics and Philosophy degree, that magic took over his life. “I had been dead set on doing a regular job and but then realised that they would never give me satisfaction. I had been into magic as a young boy but it was not until I was stuck at home doing my revision – and I got my degree – that the cards took over as I sat there.”

On his winning the award John says: ”I don’t think I have ever been as nervous in my entire life. I have done some important gigs, like performing at the after-show party for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year and I regularly perform at The Magic Circle’s public shows but nothing compared to this.”

In the competition Douglas Tilston was second and Russ Appleby third. The other competitors were The Sepp, Matthew Garrett and Danny Lee Grew. John Duffett was presented with his award by The Magic Circle President Megan Swann. The organiser of the competition was Liam Ball.

Latest news

Youngsters conjure up top prizes

26 October 2023

A 13-year-old boy who lives in Spain and an 11-year-old girl from West Yorkshire were the big winners at this year’s annual Young Magicians Club Junior Day awards held...

Young Magician of the Year 2024 COMPETITION

27 February 2024

After an extended break, the prestigious Magic Circle Young Magician of The Year competition is back with a bang. Limited spaces are open to applicants aged 18 or below....

Young Magician of the Year 2023

05 March 2023

Having considered the five entries received for the Competition this year the Committee have decided that it is not possible to proceed to a Final. The event on April...