pinoliIn 1905, at a meeting held in the large hall above the renowned Pinoli Restaurant in Wardour Street, 23 amateur and professional magicians formed a new magic club that was to be The Magic Circle. The meeting was chaired by the wonderfully named Belgian magician Servais Le Roy, who created, along with his wife, the Asrah levitation, where a magician’s assistant lies down, is covered by a cloth and then mysteriously floats in the air.

But what to call this new group of Magic folk? – 23 entertainers sitting in a Circle in the restaurant, of course the answer was clear – the Martin Chapender Club!

Yes, this was genuinely the initial name in memory of a founding member who had passed away at just 25, but it was ultimately agreed that The Magic Circle would be more appropriate and fortuitously shared the same initials as the late magician.

On Wednesday April 13th 2016, hundreds of magicians and members of the public gathered outside Pinoli’s, 17 Wardour Street, now Morden & Lea, to celebrate this momentous occasion with the unveiling of a British Plaque Trust, blue plaque.

The event was attended by Scott Penrose, the president of The Magic Circle, Dynamo who performed the unveiling, Mike Read, the British Plaque Trust chairman, who has fronted BBC TV and Radio shows over the last 30 years, along with members of the press and The Magic Circle.

tmc-blue-plaqueAndrew Eborn, member of The Magic Circle council for many years, was the main mover and shaker from The Circles side of things, working tirelessly to ensure that the formation of The Magic Circle was recognised by The British Plaque Trust. The event was supposed to happen a few years ago, but plans had to be changed when they found out a new Soho archway was to be built.

The “after” party celebrations were enjoyed by dignitaries of The Magic Circle, along with members who took part in a lottery for places due to limited numbers. Magic Daily caught up with a few of them to talk about the plaque and The Magic Circle – you can see the full exclusive recordings below.

The Unveiling

The Magic Circle Blue Plaque Unveiling

On July 1st 1905, 23 magicians met in Pinoli’s restaurant at 17 Wardour Street, and founded a brand new club, The Magic Circle. On April 13th 2016, Dynamo unveiled a blue plaque, from the British Plaque Trust, to celebrate that extraordinary meeting. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

Dynamo Talking About The Magic Circle

Dynamo talking about The Magic Circle

Dynamo talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

The Celebration Party

The Celebration Party

Celebrating The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

David Berglas Talking About The Magic Circle

David Berglas speaking about The Magic Circle

David Berglas talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

Marvin Berglas Talking About The Magic Circle

Marvin Berglas talking about The Magic Circle

Marvin Beglas talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

Fay Presto Talking About The Magic Circle

Fay Presto talking about The Magic Circle

Fay Presto talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

Mike Read Talking About The Magic Circle

Mike Read talking about The Magic Circle

Mike Reid talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

Fiona Daly Talking About The Magic Circle

Fiona Daly talking about The Magic Circle

Fiona Daly talking with Andrew Eborn about The Magic Circle in Pinoli’s at the unveiling of the British Plaque Trust plaque on 13th April 2016. Film by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design.

News Reports from around the internet

Dynamo unveils plaque to commemorate the founding of the Magic Circle

Dynamo celebrated a moment in history on Wednesday as he commemorated the founding of the Magic Circle. On July 1 1905, 23 magicians gathered at the Large Hall above Pinolia’s Restaurant in Soho and conducted a two hour meeting that concluded with the establishment of the exclusive organisation.

‘Dynamo’ makes Magic Circle plaque appear on Soho building as society’s Wardour Street roots are celebrated | West End Extra

Published: 15 April, 2016 by ALINA POLIANSKAYA A GATHERING of magicians left a spark in the centre of Soho this week, as the area’s magical roots were set in stone with a blue plaque. The Magic Circle – a society devoted to advancing and promoting the craft – was founded in 1905 at the Pinoli Restaurant in Wardour Street.

CHINATOWN – LONDON W1 | The Magic Circle Blue Plaque Unveiling

Your first stop for London’s Chinatown: find restaurants, activities, shops

Editorial Photos, Celebrity, News, & Sports Images | Rex

Rex Features is a leading photo agency supplying news, celebrity, editorial images and feature content for global media organisations and professionals.

Photos by Mark Hesketh-Jennings
Video by Gordon Drayson, Drayson Design
Resources: http://www.sternbergclarke.co.uk/blog/ooh-interesting-the-origins-of-the-magic-circle

Gordon Drayson

Professional Magician, working in the South London area. Close up magic, double act cabaret as well as UK Childrens Entertainer of the Year 2016/2017. Founding member of Magic Daily.

Websites: www.PipKennedy.co.uk - www.disbelieving.com

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