By R.A. Dyer
Found cards, crazy coins and good friends: the May meeting of Assembly 206 featured all of that — plus a live goldfish in a glass of water.
Organized by Cranius Astounding (also known as Assembly Vice President Dan Page), the annual Friends and Family get-together had acts by Steve Farmer, Kent Cummins, Albert Lucio, Tim Dietz, Roger Gorss and Paprika. As per the evening’s theme, any friend of the club was welcome.
The meeting was well attended, with guests grouped around tables set up in the Assembly’s new performance space at the All Saints Episcopal Church near the Univeristy of Texas campus. Cranius Astounding served as master of ceremonies.
First up was Paprika, a longtime friend of Assembly 206. Also known a Connie Leaverton, Paprika is an accomplished variety artist and juggler with experience both in trapeze work and stilt walking. Paprika recently has been adding magic to her act and for Friends and Family Night she incorporated silks and an appearing cane into her already charming Parisian busking bit.
Paprika worked up front, performing before the entire room. The evening’s other entertainers worked as strolling entertainers, rotating about individual tables for 10-minute sets. Cranius, as the ukulele-playing MC, kept everyone on schedule.
Tim Dietz, who performs as Thimeos, produced a selected card from his mouth — pre-folded and marked. He also startled his close-up audiences with the unexpected production of a live goldfish in a glass of water. It was, in a word, awesome.
Steve Farmer — also known as the Blue Saint — performed card miracles and sponge ball effects, each delivered with an infectious million-dollar smile and his impossible-not-to-like countenance. It’s not for nothing that the kids love The Blue Saint.
Albert Lucio — also known as Albert Lucio — dazzled with his superb close-up skills. He found cards from various spots in the deck, worked through tough sleight-of-hand routines and added in some interesting self-working bits for good measure. Cards changed color, cards were located and predictions were made.
Roger Gorss, another accomplished close-up performer, dazzled with a number of card and coin miracles — including an unnerving bit in which coins kept reappearing in his hand.
But if an award was given for the evening’s single most amazing trick, that award might go to Kent Cummins. He performed a card miracle in which a named and marked card was found in a quite astonishing fashion. The effect is an original creation of the Austin veteran, and one he may start marketing soon to other pros.
NEXT MEETING: Summer Magic Showcase at Dozen Street — Thursday, June 16, 8 p.m. Follow us on Facebook for latest details.