The Edinburgh International Magic Festival

Kevin McMahon, director of the Edinburgh International Magic Festival, pictured in the maze at Traquair House. Photography from: Colin Hattersley Photography

Immerse yourself in magic this June with sleight of hand tricks that challenge the eye, world-famous performers, grand illusions and plenty of other exciting events at the seventh annual Edinburgh International Magic Festival.

The UK’s biggest festival of innovative and cutting-edge magic is back from 1-8 July and will have Edinburgh entranced with jaw-dropping stunts from some of the greatest illusionists in the industry, mind readers and accomplished magicians from around the world. Some of the top talent from the world of magic, both locally and internationally, will be performing at the festival.

Kevin Quantum, the Artistic Director of MagicFest who was tutored by magic legends Penn & Teller and is also performing, commented on some of the top acts: “This year we have arguably one of the greatest living legends in Magic, Juan Tamariz, and one of the greatest up-and-coming stars, Hector Mancha, both featuring at the Festival.”

It truly doesn’t matter if you are amazed by mind-reading; love big, bold theatrical stunts; enjoy simple sleight of hand or if you’re the type to question everything and are a true disbeliever, there will be an event you can enjoy – even if it’s just to say ‘Naaah, not fooled’.

One of the big highlights of this year’s festival is the introduction of the new three day MagicFair. From 1-3 July at Summerhall, visitors can watch up to 10 live shows with just one ticket. Between shows magic enthusiasts can indulge at the magic and circus shop, explore the ribbon maze and enjoy spontaneous close-up magic in the open-air courtyard with food, drink and music.

colin cloud
“Forensic Mind reader” Colin Cloud

The multi-room experience has morning sessions that are family friendly with magic school workshops, treasure hunts, wand-crafting, live shows and free entry for under sevens. The afternoon sessions are suitable for all ages with a mix of theatrical, close-up and stage magic whilst the evening sessions are adult themed with late night horror magic from Luke Eaton in the anatomy room, a special VIP performance from BBC’s ‘The Real Hustle’ star R. Paul Wilson and a potentially life changing experiment from sell-out Scottish mind-reader Colin Cloud.

The Secret Room is another highly-anticipated event which is returning to Lauriston Castle after three years of sell out shows. The show will transport guests back in time to explore clandestine laboratories and hidden passages as three of Scotland’s finest magicians animate the castle’s intriguing past with stories, performances and illusions.

The festival will also feature special one-off events including Magic a la carte at Tigerlily on 7 July, which lets you choose from the stylish restaurant’s a la carte menu, then choose from the magic menu and design your own bespoke show to be performed at your table, this event is £50 per person.

Award-winning magician Vincent Gambini will also perform on 2nd and 3rd July with his ‘This is not a Magic Show’, which is part-performance, part deconstructed magic tricks to allow audiences an insight into the misdirection, cliches and invisible mechanics at play in magic – this could be one for those disbelievers.

Artistic Director of MagicFest, Kevin Quantum, also added about the event: “It’s our biggest line-up to date with the launch of MagicFair, free entry for under 7s, and the addition of a matinee performance at the Gala Show, allowing us to share magic and its top stars with more people than ever before. Watch out for surprises around the city too!”

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