About Me

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Born in Stockholm (Sweden), now live in Sapporo (Japan). Hold a Ph.D. in computer science and work with computers during the days, perform magic in a bar during the nights (and weekends, for kids). Also used to teach historical fencing back in Sweden.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Playing card present


Yesterday I stopped by our magic bar on my way home from work. I ran into a friend of mine who I have not seen in months, and he gave me a birthday present. This was somewhat surprising, since my birthday is in October.

昨日、仕事帰りでうちのマジックバーに寄った。たまたま友達がいたんだ。僕が誕生日プレゼントをいただいた!誕生日は10月だけどね。


I received two decks of cards. Both are Bicycle playing cards, which is a brand of cards very popular with magicians. I do not normally use Bicycle cards (I use super cheap playing cards made for kids, since they have very cute pictures on them), but they are very high quality.

プレゼントはトランプ2個だった。バイシクルというメーカーのトランプで、マジシャンで一番人気のメーカーなんだ。僕は普段バイシクルのトランプを使わない(ダイソーの子供用のトランプを使っている。可愛い絵が付いているから)が質の良いトランプだ。

The two decks I got yesterday were special designs that were extra cute. I liked them. One even came with an extra card that can be used for certain card tricks.

昨日貰ったトランプは特別なデザインで可愛いトランプだった。嬉しい。片方にマジック用のカード1枚も付いていたし。

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Headless and stolen rabbits

A beheaded rabbit

On Friday night we had lots of nice customers in our magic bar. We also had some customers that I would not describe as nice. After performing for a group of around 20 or so, no less than three sponge rabbits that I had used ended up missing. Sometimes they get dropped on the floor and I find them after the guests have left, sometimes people hide them but most people return them when I say "Some rabbits seem to have gone missing... please return them to me before you leave if you see them." On Friday, three rabbits never came back. One more rabbit also lost its head.

金曜日にマジックバーに良いお客さんが沢山来た。そうでもないお客さんも来た。20名くらいの団体にマジックを見せてから、道具を片づけるとウサギ3羽減っていた。1羽は頭と体が離れていたし。たまにウサギがテーブルのした落とされる。たまにお客さんがウサギを隠す。だいたい「ウサギ3羽くらい逃げたみたい。後で見たら、返して下さいね」って言ったら、お客さんが帰る前に返してくれるんだ。たまにウサギが持って帰られるけど。金曜日に3羽も持って帰られた。1羽が死んだし。一日に4羽も減るのが初めてだ。

People being fascinated enough by some magic trick that they take some of your stuff with them when they leave is quite rare (unless stuff that you explicitly give away of course) but it sometimes happens. Losing three rabbits in one performance (four if you count the one that lost its head) is a new record for me.

印象が強すぎて、マジック道具を勝手に持って帰るお客さんがたまにいるがかなり珍しい(お土産みたいにあげるもの以外ね)。パフォーマンス1つでウサギ3羽もなくなるのが今まで一番だね。

Luckily enough, on Saturday one guy gave me a 1000 yen tip (we have a magic charge in our bar, so people are not expected to tip, though sometimes people who are especially impressed or who want to impress the people they came with by showing that they spend lots of money do) which is almost exactly what it will cost to replace the four lost rabbits. So it all evens out in the end.

次の日に1000円のチップをくれたお兄さんがいた。マジックチャージがある店なので、チップのシステムがない。たまに凄く感動してどうしてもチップ渡したいお客さんがいるけど。たまに、連れて来た女の子の前でお金沢山使いたいお客さんもチップくれるし。1000円でちょうどウサギ4羽が入っているセットが買えるから、結局大丈夫な週末だったね。

Monday, December 3, 2012

Magic bar review: Hearts


In Yokohama there are two magic bars (that I know of). Since I spent two days in Yokohama for work (my computer job), I managed to visit both. When I first arrived at the magic bar Hearts, they said that they were in the middle of a show just then, and asked if I could come back later. I went and had dinner nearby and came back at the time they had suggested. They were in the middle of the next show then, so I was placed at a table and told that I would be moved to the counter (where the magic happens) when the show was finished (so I could see the next show). I waited for 15 minutes or so, and then I was moved to the counter.

横浜に(僕が知っている)マジックバーが2つある。出張(パソコンの仕事の)で2日間横浜に行って来たから、両方行けた。マジックバーハーツに初めて着いた時に、マジックショー途中なんだから、もうちょっと遅い時間に来ても大丈夫ですかって聞かれた。近くのレストランで晩御飯を食べて、言われた時間にまた来た。又ショー途中だったので、取り敢えずボックス席で座って、ショーが終わったらカウンターに移ることになると言われた。ショーはカウンターで観るね。15分くらい待って、カウンターの席に移動した。

At the counter, I spoke to the bartender for awhile, and some of the other customers also asked me where I was from and how come I can speak Japanese etc. After some waiting, the next show started. By then it was just me and three other customers left. They had seen the previous show too, so the magician did a completely different show using only material that they had not seen.

カウンターでバーテンダーさんや他のお客さんとちょっと話した。どこから来たんですか?何で日本語話せますか?そういう話だった。ちょっと待ってから、次のショーが始まった。その時、僕と他のお客さん3人しか残っていなかった。その3人が前のショーも観たので、マジシャンが全部別のネタのショーにした。

In Sapporo, many bars and restaurants write "ram base" on the menu when they mean "rum base". This is apparently popular in Yokohama too.
The show was divided into two halves, with a short break to order drinks or go to the toilet. The magician Nakamura had the bartender control the music, sounds, and the lighting for him, and had picked different types of music to go with different magic effects. He seemed to have put a lot of thought into the presentation of the effects, and he got very good reactions from common tricks like the ash in spectators hand.

ショーは前半・後半に分かれて、ちょっとした休憩もあった。飲み物を頼む機会やトイレに行く機会。中村さんというマジシャンがマジックを見せてくれて、バーテンダーさんが音楽・音声・ライトの担当していた。見せるマジックに合わせて音楽を選んだ。中村さんが見せ方というか、ストーリーに結構考えてマジックをやっているみたい。割と普通なネタ(お客さんの手に灰が現れるとか)でも、良いリアクション取れた。

Magic at the counter
He did a quite a lot of magic, about 40 minutes in total. He did magic with many different types of objects. We saw some card tricks (card under glass, card into PET-bottle), some coin tricks, the gypsy thread trick, a floating rose that when set on fire turned into a real flower, an empty and crushed coca cola can came back to shape and cola came out of it again, a copper silver transposition in the spectators hand using keys instead of coins, a signed packet of sugar was torn up and the sugar poured out and then the sugar and packet magically became an unopened (signed) packet again, some mental effects, and a thing were a cacao bean and sugar was put in a tube and then lots of chocolate came out of the tube, and more.

ショーの中では沢山のマジックがあった。合わせて、40分くらいのマジックだったと思う。色々なものを使ってマジックを見せてくれた。例えば、カード(グラスのした・ペットボトルの中)、コイン・ジプシースレッド・浮く紙のバラが燃えて本物のバラになる・コーラの復活・カッパーシルバーの入れ替わるマジック(コインではなく、鍵で)・砂糖パックにサインさせて、開けて、砂糖出して、マジック掛けたらパックが復活して(砂糖がまた入っていたし、サインがまだあったし)・メンタルネタ・カカオ豆と砂糖を筒に入れて振ったら、チョコレートになった、色々。

A lot of the effects were quite original, and I liked his way of showing them. I like it when the magic "makes sense" in the sense that if you mix cacao beans and sugar, that makes chocolate. He also did some nice story setups with a photo frame with a picture of a snow covered tree onto which he kept dropping colorful light that he plucked from the air, and then the photo turned into a photo of a tree with colorful Christmas decorations. Finally, a small plastic tree (Christmas decoration) turned up out of a handkerchief. He also had a very nice presentation for the new Tenyo magic prop where a coin pops into existence inside a glass. Well thought out presentations over all.

オリジナリティの高い見せ方やネタが結構あった。見せ方、僕は好きだった。納得出来る見せ方が良いよね。カカオ豆と砂糖を混ぜたら、チョコレートになるとか、納得出来るね。綺麗系マジックもやった。写真フレームに冬の風景の木の写真を入れて、空中から色々な色の光をつかんで写真フレームに投げたら、写真が変わって色々な色の飾り物のクリスマスツリーになった。最後に小さなプラスチックのクリスマスツリーが出現したし。新しいテンヨーネタ(グラスの中にコインが出現するやつ)の綺麗な見せ方もあったし。見せ方に良く考えている。


Summary:
Location: Close to the Yokohama Kannai JR station.
Type of magic: close up.
Quality of magic: Good.
Cost: 4000 yen for magic and nomihoudai (unlimited drinking).
Interior: nice.
Staff: nice
Overall impression: Well worth a visit if you are in Yokohama.

まとめ:
場所:横浜関内駅の近くで便利。
マジックの種類:クローズアップ
マジックの質:普通
値段:4000円で飲み放題
インテリア:きれい
スタッフ:優しい
特典:ストーリーというか、マジックの見せ方がきれいだ。
全体的な印象:横浜に行ったら、ハーツが楽しいね。

There was an alien in a jar in the toilet.

The toilet also had photos that were a bit spooky.




Magic bar review: Kanperce


I was in Yokohama for two days for (computer) work and decided to check out the local magic bars when I had a chance. One of the magic bars I went to was Kanperce, which is close to the Yokohama Kannai station which coincidentally was were our work meeting the next morning was to start.

本職(パソコンの仕事)の2日間の出張で横浜に行ってきた。機会があれば、横浜のマジックバーも行ってみようと思ったから、Kanperceというマジックバーに行った。横浜の関内駅の近くにある(地下鉄の関内駅がもっと近いし)。次の朝のミーティングの集合場所も関内駅の近くだったから便利だった。

I got there quite late, so there were no other customers when I arrived. There were two magicians, though, and one more showed up later. First, "the new guy" Yuuki did some magic for me. He did an "any card at any number" trick, a trick where his thumb and index finger are taped together but still that finger link linked with my cell phone strap, and he did a card trick with kings and fours changing places or turning upside down for strange reasons. Later during the evening he also did a short Chinese ring routine and some other tricks. He seemed a bit nervous, and sometimes you could see things that you were not supposed to see (like a thumbtip), but he was very nice.

僕が24時過ぎに店に入ったから他のお客さんがいなかった。マジシャン2人がいたけど。後でもう1人のマジシャンも来た。最初、新人のユーキがマジックを見せてくれた。エニカード・エニナンバー・サムタイム・キングと4が裏返したり入れ替わったりするマジックを見せてくれた。後でチャイナリングやマジックの絵本みたいなマジックも見せてくれた。緊張していたみたい。たまに見えちゃ行けないものがちょっと見えていた(サムチップとか)が面白かった。

The magicians
Next, the magician Makoto did a fairly long show. He said he is friends with and received training from the magician Nihei, who runs the magic bar "Hey Pola" here in Sapporo. I have met Nihei a few times.

次、マジシャンMakotoもマジックを見せてくれた。割と長いショーをやってくれた。札幌の「ヘイ・ポーラ」というマジックバーのオーナーのマジシャン二瓶さんと仲良いって言ってた。僕も札幌で何回か二瓶さんに会っている。

Anyway, Makoto did all kinds of magic, and used a foot pedal for a sound system to get good use out of sound effects and music. He did magic with rubber bands, sponge balls, various penis shaped objects, a chop cup, coins, cards (ambitious, triumph, card into PET-bottle), some ESP card tricks, and a lot of other things. There were also many joke props, like a marker pen that could not write because if you opened it you could see that the battery had run out (why it was battery powered in the first place was unclear, haha).

Makotoさんが色々なマジックを見せてくれた。足で踏むペダルで音楽のコントロールもやっていたから、マジックに合わせた音を出したら、音楽に合わせたマジックをやったりしていた。輪ゴムのマジック・スポンジのマジック・チンコの形をした色々なもの・チョップカップ・コイン・カード(アンビシャス・トラインフ・ペットボトルなど)・ESPカードなど、色々あった。ギャグネタも結構あった。例えば、電池が切れたマッキー。

Me and the magicians of Kanperce
After Makoto's show was over, we talked about various things for awhile, and another magician, Mocchi, arrived. I have seen him twice before, once at Toto's Bar, and once in the restaurant Usagi-ya. He did a mental type card trick with a pretty impressive force, showed some fork bending,  did a Lennart Green style key card trick, and used a pretty cool tossed out deck. This time, he also remembered that we had met before, haha.

Makotoさんのマジックの後、色々な話をしていた。その後、もっちーというマジシャンも来た。前に2回も会っている。都々's Barで一回見たし、ウサギやというマジックレストランでも見たし。面白いフォースを使ったメンタルのカードマジック・フォーク曲げ・Lennart Green風なキーカードのカード当て・Tossed out deckのマジック、色々見せてくれた。今回、前に会ったことがあるのを覚えてくれたし、笑。

All in all, it was a lot of fun. The staff were very nice and spoke to me about all kinds of things. The magic they did was interesting, and they used techniques I have not seen other people use (like sleeving a coin to make it disappear after being put into a handkerchief, from which my class of tea appeared instead).

面白かった。スタッフ皆いい人で面白い話もしてくれた。見せてくれたマジックも面白かったし、見たことないやり方のマジックもあったし(スリービングでコインを消して、ハンカチに入れたコインが消えて僕のお茶のグラスがハンカチから出てきた時とか)。

Summary:

Location: Close to the Yokohama Kannai JR station, and even closer to the Kannai subway station. Lots of bars and similar things nearby.
Type of magic: Parlor type magic if there are more than one spectator, and close up.
Quality of magic: Good.
Cost: 4400 yen for magic and nomihoudai (unlimited drinking).
Interior: nice, though somewhat messy when I showed up.
Staff: nice and funny
Overall impression: Well worth a visit if you are in Yokohama.

まとめ:
場所:横浜関内駅の近くで便利。
マジックの種類:クローズアップ。お客さんが多ければ、サロンもやるそうだ。
マジックの質:普通
値段:4400円で飲み放題
インテリア:きれい
スタッフ:面白い
全体的な印象:横浜に行ったら、Kanperceが楽しいね。

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Needle swallowing and thread from my eye

I was a bit bored tonight and ended up shooting two practice movies of me trying out some new magic tricks. I want to learn needle swallowing, because it just seems fun. I still have not figured out a good presentation idea for it, though. I also tried pulling a string out of my eye. I have several ideas for presentations for that, but it turned out to hurt quite a lot. This is a bit worrisome when it is my eye that hurts... If it was just pain on some body part I do not care so much about, I would do it anyway, haha.

今日退屈になったから練習動画を撮ってみた。針を飲むマジックがやりたい。喋りというか、ストーリーが決まらないけど…目から糸を出したみたし。そのマジックのストーリーのアイデアが沢山あるが案外痛かった。目が痛いとちょっと怖いよね。怪我しても良いところなら、我慢するが目が…



Friday, November 2, 2012

Tenyo 2013 new lineup ・ テンヨー2013年の新作品

Today I stopped by our local magic shop and the owner showed me the new Tenyo items for 2013. They were all pretty cool. I bought three out of the four new items, so I will write more when I have had time to play with them a bit.

今日マジックショップに行ってきた。オーナーにテンヨーの新作品全部見せて貰った。4つとも結構面白かった。3つ買ったから、試してからまたブログに書くね。

The one I was most interested in was the memo pad thing where you write an image of a cup on a paper and then make coins disappear by putting them in the cup. The gimmick was not at all what I though it would be, and it is quite clever. There are some angle problems from the sides (and back, of course), and you cannot hand out the memo pad. You can tear off the paper with the drawing and hand that out if you like, though.

前から一番気になっていたのはメモ帳だった。メモ帳にカップの絵を描いて、本物のコインを描いたカップに入れたら、消える。想像していなかった仕掛けだった。賢い。横から角度が危ないけど。メモ帳渡せないが一枚(絵の紙)だけだったら渡しても大丈夫だ。

The cut up card that becomes whole was impressive. The weird glass jar thing that comes with it looks very suspicious, but you can do it on a close up mat too, at least if the light is not too bright. Ends very clean (at least the card) so most of the things that people might want to check later can be checked. Again, the gimmick was not what I expected.

復活するカードが良かった。ついているプラスチックの浅いカップみたいなのはだいぶ怪しいがクローズアップマットの上でも出来る。ちょっと薄暗いところなら。終わってからがクリーンなんだ。というか、カードやマットを調べても大丈夫だ。これも、想像とは違うことだった。

The coin through glass looks very nice. You can use any glass (that has an appropriate size). There are similar products that do the same thing (probably using the same principle) but this one looks very nice and you can hand the spectator everything and they might still not see the tricky parts (though they could if they hold one of the items in a specific way).

グラスを貫通するコインもきれいだった。グラスは何のグラス(というか、大きさがちょっと限られている)でも大丈夫だ。似たようなマジック道具が前からある(多分同じ作り方だろう?)がテンヨーだから割と綺麗に出来ているし、安い。グラス・コイン・コースターみたいなものを全部渡しても多分大丈夫だと思う。ある持ち方になったら、ばれる可能性もあるが大丈夫そうだ。

The envelope that money comes out of was also not exactly what I expected. I expected it to just be a slit, but it was a little bit more than that. The other part of the trick was quite clever actually, and not something I had ever thought of. You cannot hand out anything except the money that comes out but you can show everything very cleanly before and after. I did not buy the envelope trick since I cannot see myself performing this trick.

封筒からお札が出てくるネタも、想像と違うことだった。ただ封筒にスリットがあると思ったがそれだけではなかった。他のところ、賢いなと思った。そういうこと考えたことなかった。渡せるのがお札だけ。他の物は渡せないが、やる前にも終わってからにも綺麗に見せれる。封筒のネタを買わなかったけど。

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Zombie magic in Ropossa

Zombie Jonas starting a card trick.
Last year I dressed up as a zombie for the Sapporo Zombie Walk. I also visited our local magic shop on my way home, still dressed as a zombie. The mama of a "snack bar" who does magic was upset with me for visiting our common friend but not coming to her place looking like a zombie.

去年札幌ゾンビウォークというイベントに参加する為にゾンビの格好をした。帰り道に札幌にあるマジックショップにもちょっと寄った。ゾンビの格好で。マジックのスナックのママに「何でそこに行ったのに、うちに来なかった!」って、凄いクレームが入った(笑)。


Zombie Jonas showing a nail to be used as an ESP antenna to find a chosen card.
On Tuesday I was dressed up as a zombie for a Halloween party, so I also visited her place this time. They had me pose in different situations, and also requested that I do a magic trick where I hammer a nail into my nose. Hopefully I can get my hands on a video of that magic trick, since there was quite a lot of screaming, which is always nice.

火曜日にまたゾンビの格好をした。今回、ハロウィンパーティーの為だった。今年、ちゃんとママの店にも行った。大うけだった。色々なポーズを撮って写真撮られた。釘を鼻に刺すマジックのリクエストもあったから、やった。後でそのマジックの動画が手に入ったら良いなぁ。悲鳴くらい出た。楽しいよね。

Zombie Jonas with a nail stuck in his nose.

Zombie Jonas and a nail in the nose again.
Zombie Jonas and the nail, again.
Zombie Jonas pulling the nail out of the nose again.
Zombie Jonas the zombie bartender.
Zombie Jonas entertaining customers.
Zombie Jonas eating mochi.
Zombie Jonas drinking juice.

Zombie Jonas killing innocent customers.
Zombie Jonas killing more customers.
Zombie Jonas killing the owner.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Constructing a sponge dove and doing magic dressed up as a zombie

After 9 hours of work, the face paint has degraded but still looks pretty OK.
This year there were a lot of Halloween parties on the 27th here in Sapporo. The 27th was a Saturday so I was scheduled to work in our magic bar and did not have time to go any parties. I figured that if we were not busy, I might sneak out early and go to the last part of some party, though. So I dressed up as a zombie magician and went to work like that.


今年27日にハロウィンパーティーが多かった。土曜日だったから、僕がうちのマジックバーでマジックを披露する予定があった。パーティーに行く暇ないと思ったが忙しくなかったら、早くあがって、パーティーにも行けるかもと思って、仮装して行った。ゾンビのマジシャンの仮装した。


I also built a sponge dove to use as a zombie magician's sponge dove. I have a sponge dove but did not want to ruin it so I made a home made one instead. It turns out that if you smear a sponge dove in fake blood (I make my fake blood from syrup and food coloring) it does not get back into dove shape after being hidden in your hand... the fake blood is too sticky. Also, your hands get really sticky... So I am rethinking that part and think maybe using red paint could work instead.

ゾンビの鳩もスポンジで作ってみた。ゾンビマジシャンがゾンビの鳩を出すと面白いかもしれない。スポンジの鳩は持っているがゾンビにしたくなかったから自作の鳩を作り始めた。血まみれにしたら、手で握ってからふくらまないって分かった。僕が作った血がシロップで作るから、鳩が大変なことになった、笑。触ったら、手がべたべたするし…赤のペンキで作り直したほうがいいと思う。

Zombie transformation:

Paint white, draw lines.

Cover lines in blood.
Drool blood on shirt, add jacket and dove.
After a few hours of working, the paint starts to degrade but some parts look better (the blood on the shirt, for instance).
Making a sponge dove:




Me and my dove, having dinner in an Italian restaurant

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Weird experiments


I saw a clip of a guy showing a card that changed its text or picture just by moving it. My guess is that he was using lenticular film on the card, and that is a great idea. Possibly. It might also be completely obvious to everyone else watching, at least in good lighting... So I want to make my own prop like that with something funny written in Japanese. I went around to a bunch of stores that might sell this kind of stuff, but none sell lenticular film... But I did find post cards with such film, so I bought one and started peeling off the back. Not the smoothest way to make props, but it should be enough to make a first prototype at least.

動画で、カードに書いてある言葉(や絵)がカードを動かすだけで変わる不思議な現象を見た。レンチキュラーフィルムをカードに張ると出来そうだと思った。賢い!けど、すぐばれるんじゃないかと心配している。光のいいところだったら、見えると思うなぁ…だけど、作ってみたい。色々な売っていそうな店を回ったがレンチキュラーフィルムを売っていない。そういう絵葉書はあったけど。1枚買って、自分で裏の紙を取ってみた。きれいにならないが最初の試しの道具に充分だと思うから、来週作ってみよう。

My apprentice


I used to be a member of the magic club at our university. You can only be an active member for three years, though, so I have been retired now. This year, I have an apprentice though. My first ever apprentice! He is going to do a performance in the vein of my magical sketchbook routine:

前に大学の部活のマジッククラブに入っていた。3年間しか出来ないから、もうOBになった。今年で初めて弟子出来たけど。凄いよね、自分の弟子がいる何ってね!(笑)僕が披露したスケッチブックのマジックと似たようなのをやるんだ:


We  have met a few times and talked about how to do different things and what I think makes for a good performance. This week he wanted me to come and see his first full runthrough of his routine. It was pretty nice. There is still a lot of practice to be done, but the general idea of what to produce and so on was good. I am sure he will do fine at the Christmas stage show.

何回か会って、どういうやり方があるか、どんなもの出したら面白いか、僕がマジックに関して何が大事だと思っているとか、色々話した。今週初めて手順全部通すリハーサルがあったから僕が見に行った。良かった。勿論、まだ練習が必要だが全体的な流れとかが良かった。クリスマスショーで、全然大丈夫そうだね!


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Magic bar review: Toto's Bar

Toto doing some rope escape magic with two spectators (my friend on the right)
I have been to Toto's bar three times. The first time, Toto himself was not there (he was in America, performing at the Magic Castle in Hollywood, which he does regularly twice per year). There were other magicians there instead, of course, so it was still nice. Toto is extremely good at entertaining people, though, so missing him means missing a lot.

都々's Barに3回も行ったことがある。最初の時、都々さんがいなかった。アメリカのマジックキャッセルでマジックをやっていた。毎年行っているそうだ。代わりに他のマジシャンが勿論いたから楽しかった。都々さんが凄い盛り上げ上手だから、都々さんがいないとちょっと損するけどね。

Me and Toto
Toto's bar is located in the Ginza district in Tokyo. There are many magic bars in that area. The bar is fairly small, but looks very nice. There is a small stage area, a few sofa and table sets, and a counter. Toto does magic shows in front of everyone on the small stage, and he also does close up magic shows at the counter and in the sofas. If you book in advance, you can have a dinner and magic set with food that looks good (we never tried the food), or you can go there just for magic and drinks.

都々's Barが銀座にある。周りにマジックバーがいっぱいある。店がまあまあ狭いがきれいだ。小さなステージがあって、ボックス席もあって、カウンターがある。ステージで皆の前で都々さんがマジックショーをやる。カウンターやボックスでもクローズアップも見せて貰える。早い時間に行けば、ディナーコースも出来る。ご飯が普通に美味しそうだったがうちらはご飯試していない。

Toto's brother who makes food and handles sound, and the very nice bartender
Apart from Toto himself, there is a very nice bartender working there, making any drink you can imagine. Toto's brother works in the kitchen, and also does sound/music stuff for Toto during his shows. There are also other magicians working there, and they show you magic too.

都々さん以外も、優しいバーテンダーさんもいる。何の飲み物出すそうだ。都々さんの弟さんもキッチンで働いている。音楽の色々もやっている。他のマジシャンもだいたいいる。マジック見せてくれる。

On our first visit we saw Raito (apprentice to Toto, I think; all his apprentices have names ending with "to" by the way) and a guest magician called Mocchi. The second time I went there, Raito was there and Toto himself was back. The third time we showed up late and only Toto did magic. There was also a woman working there, but I do not know her name (or what her job actually was).

初めて行った時に都々さんの「来都」という弟子(弟子だったと思う。弟子たちが皆「都」が付く芸名にしているみたい)と「もっち」というマジシャンがいた。2回目の時に来都さんと都々さんがいた。3回目の時に都々さん以外は誰もマジックしていなかったが女の人のスタッフ1人もいた。どういう仕事の人だったかちょっと分からなかった。

The very skilled magician Raito
Raito was very technically skilled, and performed very slowly in a gentleman style. His version of the professor's nightmare (3 ropes that change length) trick is the most technically beautiful version I have seen so far. Very slow but with care taken on angles to stop precisely where you have to stop etc. He also did a very nice version of a trick with a playing card turning inside out while folded inside another card. He was very good.

来都さんが凄く上手だった。ゆっくりの見せ方で、紳士的なマジシャンの印象になった。色々なマジックを、全部凄い綺麗に見せてくれた。3本ロープのマジックが今まで観た見せ方の中で来都さんの見せ方が一番綺麗だったなぁ。他にカードの中に折りたたんだカードが裏返してくるマジックもきれいな見せ方で披露してくれたし。うまいって感じだった。タイミングとか、角度とか、きれいに見せるのを気にしているマジシャンだった。

Toto is also very good, but more than his technical skills you become impressed with his entertainment skills. He is very good at getting the crowd going. He does some very advanced magic, but the main focus is on entertaining presentation ideas. He makes very good use of music and other sound effects during his show. In a similar vein, when he does spoon bending or similar effects, suddenly his necktie is bent out of shape and when you look around, so is his brother's necktie as well as the bartender's necktie. Funny details like that help a lot.

都々さんも上手だがマジックのレベルより盛り上げ方に感動する。盛り上げ上手!難しいマジックもやっているがそれはどうでもよくなって、見せ方というか、テンポというか、観ると凄く面白いんだ。見せ方が面白いし、格好いいし。音楽や音の使い方もうまい。他にも、例えばスプーン曲げをする時に突然都々さんのネクタイも曲がっている。周りを見たら、バーテンダーさんのネクタイも、都々さんの弟さんのネクタイも曲がっている。そういう細かいポイントもちゃんとやってて、結構面白い。

Toto does a parlor magic show on the small stage, including things like a floating table routine that is very good, rope escapes, producing bowling balls from a sketch pad, flying handkerchiefs, and things like that. Very high tempo, very entertaining.

都々さんがステージでサロンマジックのショーをやる。フローティングテーブルとか、脱出のマジックとか、スケッチブックからボーリングボールが出てくるとか、飛んで行くハンカチとか、色々なマジックをやる。テンポが良くて、超楽しい。

He also does close up magic at the counter, including some very interesting coin magic, his signature effect where five spectators point their fingers at a deck of cards and go "bang" and for each bang that spectators selected card shoots out of the deck (he once mentioned that he sells this trick for 1 million yen but too many people kept buying it at that price so he upped the price to 1.5 million so he would not have to spend too much time teaching people that trick...), strange electric toy tricks, other fascinating card tricks, and more. Toto is one of the most entertaining magicians I have seen perform. Highly recommended.

カウンターやボックスでクローズアップもやる。不思議なコインマジックもやるし、都々さんの有名なわざのカード当て(5人の人が指を指して「バン」と言ったら、自分の選んだカードがトランプの把から飛び出る。100万円で売っているマジックだそうだが買う人が多すぎて、そのマジックを教えることに時間が掛けたくないから150万円に値上げしたって、笑)、不思議な電気系のおもちゃのマジックとか、他の不思議なカードマジックとか、色々見せてくれる。都々さんが今まで観たマジシャンの中でトップ3位に入っているから、かなりお勧めだ。

The entrance to Toto's bar is a mirror
Since Toto performs one or two weeks in L.A. every year, presumable he also performs in English. He said he just spouts random words that sound like English and hope people understand him through body language, but I think he may have exaggerated, haha. He probably speaks English fairly well, but we only spoke Japanese. The owner of the magic bar where I perform is also friends with Toto, so we talked about common acquaintances and things like that too.

毎年2回アメリカに行ってマジックキャッセルでマジックショーをやっているから、英語でもマジック出来ると思う。本人に、適当な英語っぽい音を出して気持ちでやりたいことが通じるように頑張っているだけくらいな話されたけど、笑。でも、ちゃんと英語が出来ると思う。僕とはずっと日本語で話していた。うちのマジックバーのオーナーと都々さんが仲良いから、お互い知っている人の話とかもした。

Summary:
Location: Good location very close to the Ginza subway station, in a district full of magic bars.
Type of magic: Parlor and close up.
Quality of magic: Very very high
Cost: 5000 yen for me, depends on what you order.
Interior: nice
Staff: very nice and funny people
Of special note: Very good use of sound/music. Shows pictures of spectators taken during the magic show on monitors afterwards. Serves food during the early hours.
Overall impression: One of the best magic bars I have been to. Toto is VERY good at performing entertainingly. Highly recommended.

まとめ:
場所:銀座の地下鉄駅のすぐ近く。他のマジックバーも近くに沢山ある。
マジックの種類:サロンもクローズアップもある。
マジックの質:かなり高い
値段:僕は5000円くらい払ったが沢山飲む人なら高いらしい
インテリア:きれい
スタッフ:面白いし、優しいし
特典:早い時間なら、ご飯もある。サロンのショーの間にお客さんの反応の写真とかを撮って後で店にあるモニターで見せる。音楽や音の使い方がうまい
全体的な印象:今まで行ったマジックバーの中のトップ1か2だと思う。都々が大変盛り上げ上手だ。かなりお勧め。

Friday, October 12, 2012

Magic Bar Review: Magic Bar Stockholm

The main hall, with the small stage in the background
In Stockholm, there is no magic bar culture like in Japan where I live. In December 2009, Sweden's first (Northern Europe's first) magic bar was opened, however. It is called "Magic Bar Stockholm", but it is perhaps more like a restaurant than a bar.


ストックホルムでは、日本みたいなマジックバーの文化がないんだ。2009年の12月にスウェーデンの初めて(北欧の初めて)のマジックバーがオープンしたけど。マジックバーストックホルムという店だがバーというよりレストランだ。

Salmon and stewed potatoes
They serve very nice food, and have lots of tables. There are several rooms, and in the summer there are also lots of tables outside. During weekends, there is a stage magic show on a small stage in the largest room, though I have never managed to get there on a weekend when there was still stage magic going on (the stage magic takes summer vacation in July, which is when I usually visit Sweden). There is also table magic, with a magician coming to your table and doing a 10 to 15 minute magic show. A lot of magicians perform at Magic Bar Stockholm, and there is usually a new magician every week.

本格的なフードメニューがあって、テーブルが多い。部屋が4つくらいあって、夏に外にもテーブルが置いてある。週末にステージマジックショーもあるそうだが僕はまだ観たことがない。僕がだいたい7月にスウェーデンに行くが7月にステージマジックショーは休みだ。他にテーブルを回ってマジックを見せてくれるマジシャンもいる。テーブルで10~15分くらいのマジックを見せて貰える。沢山のマジシャンがマジックバーストックホルム出ているんだ。だいたい毎週違うマジシャンが出る。

Garlic butter, wine sauce, and steak.

The interior of Magic Bar Stockholm is very beautiful. Each room has a different color scheme, and they have many strange decorations on the walls. Even the toilet is fun to visit. The food is good, and the prices are not high if you compare to normal restaurants in Sweden (though Sweden is expensive compared to Japan when it comes to food).

インテリアがきれいだ。各部屋が違う色で、色々な不思議な飾り物が置いてある。トイレもきれいで面白い。食べ物が美味しい。スウェーデンの物価にして、安いし(日本のレストランと比べたら、スウェーデンのレストランが高いけど)。

A chocolate cake dessert.

The magicians I have seen there were all very nice. The waiting staff are also nice when you get hold of them, but sometimes it is very hard to find anyone to take your order, or to tell you if you can sit at some table etc. In Japan, if no one acknowledges your presence within a few seconds of you entering a restaurant or bar, they are probably closed, so it was a bit unnerving for me when I got in there and no one seemed to notice me for several minutes. I no longer know what to do in Sweden, haha. Is it OK to just sit down at some empty looking table? And how do you get a menu if no one notices you? So the service is a bit slow (showing up with the food after you ordered can be slow too), but that is my only complaint so far I think.

今まで観たマジシャンが皆良かった。ウェータースタッフも優しいがなかなかいない時も多い。どのテーブルに座れたいいとか、注文したい時とか、誰もいないから不安になる時が何回かあった。日本の素晴らしい文化に慣れすぎて、スウェーデンでどうすればいいか分からない、笑。スウェーデン人の知り合いに聞いて、スウェーデンにしてもマジックバーストックホルムのスタッフの頑張る気というか、サービスのレベルというか、特別に遅いんだ。この文句以外はマジックバーストックホルムの悪いところがないと思うけど。

Tom Stone doing a rubber band trick for my father
I have been to magic bar Stockholm 4 times. The first time I visited with my parents, my brother and his girlfriend. We all ordered food, and got very nice food (there were some mix-ups with the orders, but everything turned out fine in the end). At that time, Tom Stone was doing table magic. I have seen him once before when he gave a lecture on magic and psychology at my old university in Stockholm (when I was still a student). Tom Stone is quite famous in Japan too, at least among magicians. Seeing him live again now that I have started doing magic myself was nice. He is one of the magicians I admire a lot. He did some rubber band magic, some coin magic, and some card magic for us. Very nice.

今4回もマジックバーストックホルムに行ったことがある。初めて行った時に両親と弟と弟の彼女と5人で行った。皆料理も注文して、色々な美味しいもの食べれた(スタッフの注文ミスもあって、ちょっと複雑なことがあったが結局問題なかった)。その時に日本のテレビも出たトム・ストーンさんがマジックを見せてくれた。前に僕が行ったスウェーデンの大学で一回トム・ストーンのマジックと心理の関係の発表も見たことがあって、今自分でマジックしてて又見れる機会で嬉しかった。尊敬しているマジシャンの1人で。輪ゴム・コイン・カードのマジックを見せてくれた。面白かった。

The magician John-Henry introduced me to a bunch of other magicians too!

Charlie Caper imitating a Japanese comedian
One year later, I went to the magic bar alone. A young magician called John-Henry was doing table magic, and he fairly quickly guessed that I was a magician too. You can usually tell, because people who know magic are surprised at the "wrong" timing, haha. He did some funny magic with ropes/strings full of bad Swedish puns, a lot of magic based on misdirection and stealing things off the table (like his own cards, my glass) or his own shoes. He later introduced me to group of famous Swedish magicians who were also drinking in the magic bar the same evening too. These magicians were also very nice! I was especially impressed by Charlie Caper being able to do bad jokes in Japanese (he toured as a street performer for a few months in Japan and learned a lot of Japanese then) and by Anders Moden producing a beer bottle out of his mouth.

次の夏またスウェーデンに帰っていたからもう1回マジックバーストックホルムに行った。今回1人で行った。ジョン・ヘンリーというマジシャンがテーブルに来てマジックを見せてくれた。早いうちに「お兄さんもマジックやっていますよね?」と聞かれた。マジシャン同士なら、だいたい分かる、笑。マジシャンがおかしなタイミングで驚くんだ。ジョン・ヘンリーさんがスウェーデン語のオヤジギャグだらけの紐のマジック・ミスディレクションを使ってテーブルからトランプや僕のグラスをスチールするマジックや自分の靴を出すマジック、色々な面白いマジックを見せてくれた。後でスウェーデンの有名なマジシャンのグループを紹介してくれたし。暇な時に皆マジックバーで気軽で集まって他の暇なマジシャンと飲むみたい。その人たちも優しかった。チャーリー・ケーパーさんが日本語で喋りだして、日本の古いお笑いネタとかをやったことにビックリした、笑。2~3ヶ月関西で大道芸生活をしたことがあるそうだ。その時に色々な日本語を覚えた。復活するコーラを考えたアンダーザ・モデーンさんが口から瓶ビールを出した時にも驚いた。

Peter Grönlund doing some mentalism
I went back the next week and then Peter Grönlund, a mentalist, was showing magic. Since I saw all the famous magicians drinking at the magic bar again and ended up sitting at their table, I did not get to see Peter Grönlund do magic for me, but I did sneak a look when he did magic for the table next to ours. It was interesting to see a mentalist do walk around magic, and he did some fairly standard magic tricks like the "Triumph" card trick, but with a mentalist presentation. He also did more pure mentalism effects, like having a user grab a bunch of cards and then walk with small steps towards the magician (outdoors, where they were quite a bit apart) and count the number of steps separating them. Which turned out to be the same as the number of cards she had grabbed.

次の週も又行った。ピーター・ゴローンルンドというメンタリストが働いていた。また有名人マジシャンたちが飲みに来ていたから僕も彼らのテーブルに座って、マジックを見せて貰わなかったが隣のテーブルでマジックをやっていた時によこから観た。メンタリストがどんなマジックを見せるか、気になっていた。結構普通なカードマジック(トラインフとか)をメンタリズムの喋りでやっていた。本格的なメンタリズムネタのもやったけど。外でお客さんがトランプをがばっと取って、だいぶ離れたマジシャンまで歩いていく。18歩で着いたお客さんがまさかの18枚のトランプを持っていた。そういう感じ。

Mr Dannyman, gentleman magician.
Half a year later, I was in Stockholm in the winter (for a business trip) and figured I had a chance of finally seeing the stage magic show too. It was not to be, however, since the place was booked for a private party the only day with a stage show that I was in Stockholm. I went there on my last evening in Stockholm, though, and got to see Mr Dannyman do magic at the table. He did rope magic, the Chinese rings, card tricks, etc. Very much a gentleman.

その半年後、出張でスウェーデンに来ていた。夏ではないからやっとステージマジックショー観れると思ったが僕がいた日、店が貸切だった!僕のストックホルムの最後の最後の日に貸切ではなかったが平日だったからステージショーもなかった。ミスター・ダニマンというマジシャンがテーブルマジックを見せてくれたけど。ロープやチャイナリングやカードマジックを見せて貰った。紳士のマジシャンだった。

The main hall again.
Summary:
Location: Located in an area where there is not much else to do. With some effort you can walk from Djurgården, which has some other tourist attractions. Nice area, though.
Type of magic: Close up, but has stage magic on weekends too (except when I am in Sweden)
Quality of magic: Many different magicians perform, but everyone I have seen was very good.
Cost: Cheap (by Swedish standards). No cover charge, you pay standard prices for the food and drinks you order. I paid around 200 SEK (slightly more than 2000 yen) for a dinner and a dessert.
Interior: Very nice
Staff: nice, but the service is slow. The magicians were all very nice and funny.
Of special note: Serves food too (good food).
Overall impression: Very nice place, good food, good magic. Only complaint is that the service can be (very) slow.

まとめ:
場所:何もないところにあるが頑張れば、Djurgardenという色々な観光スポットがあるところから歩いて行ける。きれいな場所だが特に何も無い。
マジックの種類:クローズアップ。週末にステージマジックもある
マジックの質:沢山のマジシャンが働いているが今まで皆良かった。
値段:スウェーデンにしたら安い。チャージ無しで、頼んだ飲み物や食べ物の値段しか払わないし、普通のレストランの値段と変わらない。僕が2000円くらいで晩御飯とデザート食べた。
インテリア:きれい。各部屋のインテリアが違うし。
スタッフ:優しいがサービスが遅い。マジシャンが皆優しかったし、面白かった。
得点:本格的なフードメニュー。料理が普通に美味しい。
全体的な印象:良い店だ。御飯が美味しいし、マジックが面白いし、毎週新しいマジシャン見れるし。サービスがかなり遅い時があるのがマイナス点だがそれだけだと思う。


The counter again.
Home made "impossible objects".
There are lots of strange items placed in the different rooms. 
Someone brought a fairly suspicious card with them.
The entrance in the winter.
There is a bar counter, though I have never seen anyone there.
The interior decorations are pretty.