We have just heard from the President of The Magic Circle, Scott Penrose, that Hugh Nightingale MIMC died in a tragic accident yesterday at the age of 62.
Update – 8:10pm:
We understand that Hugh was cutting a tree on his farm and a branch fell on him. There is no further information at this time.
Born in Kent in 1953, Hugh was educated at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex and later achieved a BSc (Hons) degree at Wye College, University of London. After leaving university, Hugh spent 10 years managing a large estate in East Kent. However, magic soon started to take over Hugh’s life. Whilst working on the estate, Hugh acquired the knowledge and experience in business which has proved invaluable in the corporate world.
Hugh had been performing magic for 25 years, the last 15 years as a full time professional. Hugh’s magic started as a hobby, amazing friends and family with his tricks. He was quickly discovered by a local restaurant and became their resident magician. Hugh quickly became known as The Entertainer to have at your party. He was proposed as a member of The Magic Circle and almost overnight Hugh’s magic grew into a business that took him all over the world.
Hugh could be seen at the most prestigious venues, working alongside top names in entertainment for world famous clients.
In Society circles Hugh was very well received. His easy, discreet manner and wit, readily fit all occasions. He was as comfortable performing on the quarterdeck of H.M.S. Invincible as in the armoury of Hatfield House. From a stand at the NEC to the luxury of the Cavalry & Guards Club, from the quiet exclusivity of the Ritz to the bustle of Brand’s Hatch, Hugh brought events alive with his magic, fun and brilliance.
He wrote 2 books on magic and had many articles published in the magic press. Hugh won many awards for his magical entertainment, including Kent Close-up Magician of the year.
In 2004, Hugh was elected a full Member of Inner Magic Circle and awarded the GOLD STAR – the highest degree in the world’s leading magic Society. Hugh was a member of The Magic Circle, the International Brotherhood of Magicians, the Kent Magicians Guild and Equity.
Hugh also loved to act and played major roles in many plays, comedies and music halls on the amateur stage over the last 20 years or so .
We don’t have any further information at this time, and it is too early to know what the funeral arrangements will be, but we will update this page as we hear more. We would like to offer his family our very sincere condolences. He was a lovely man, and we can’t believe he is no longer with us – we were only talking to him in December.
If you knew Hugh – then please leave your memories of him in the comments section below.
Rest in Peace Hugh.
Photo Credits: Mark Hesketh-Jennings and Gordon Drayson
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