Why you need to see Magic Goes Wrong at the Vaudeville Theatre
As part of Mischief Theatre’s year-long residency at the Vaudeville Theatre, audiences can enjoy spellbinding, spectacular tricks in Magic Goes Wrong. Created in collaboration with legendary American magicians Penn & Teller, it’s a fun-filled show with death-defying tricks and plenty of action spiralling out of control. Read about the cast, what happens, what critics had to say and why we think you need to see Magic Goes Wrong. Book your Magic Goes Wrong tickets now.
Magic Goes Wrong at the Vaudeville Theatre
What happens in Magic Goes Wrong?
As the curtain rises, an ensemble of eclectic magic acts introduce themselves for the first time. The final person to walk on stage is Sophisticato, a top hat and tails wearing magician who tells the live and “television” audiences about the show that will take place before them. Magic Goes Wrong follows a charity event where some of the greatest stage performers will perform death-defying stunts and unbelievable tricks to raise money for a charity dedicated to magicians that have passed away.
Kicking the proceedings off himself, Sophisticato puts on an impressive display with a body-mangling trick that puts him in a sticky situation. A dedicated performer like him isn’t going to let anything put him off, but that’s just a sign of troubles to come. Throughout the show, Sophisticato introduces acts including the persistent yet flummoxed Mind Mangler, the kooky German duo Bear and Spitzmaus who aim to inject some fun into the proceedings and The Blade, who dreams of being a legendary stuntman. In true “Goes Wrong” style, it doesn’t always go their way, with plenty of failed attempts and near-fatal mistakes, but can the performers rally together to make their charity night a success?
Who stars in Magic Goes Wrong?
Mischief Theatre’s latest production sees the original company members reunite on stage, as part of the company’s season at the Vaudeville Theatre.
All three Mischief Theatre artistic directors star in Magic Goes Wrong. Henry Shields plays Sophisticato, hosting the charity event and aiming to impress crowds with his magic tricks passed down in the family line. Henry Lewis plays Mind Mangler, a magician who attempts to wow audiences by being able to read your mind. The trio of artistic directors is completed by Jonathan Sayer as Mickey, an audience member who isn’t as unsuspecting as it may seem from first glance.
Dave Hearn plays The Blade, a daredevil trickster who always goes one step further than his previous performances in the hopes of putting on a stellar performance. Nancy Zamit and Bryony Corrigan play Bear and Spitzamus respectively, a German magic duo who try their hand at a variety of magical tropes including quick costume changes, contortion and being fired out of a bullet! Roxy Fariday stars as Eugenia, a performer used to the magic circles and is willing to be involved in all tricks without thinking of the consequences!
The cast is completed by Natasha Culley, Lauren Ingram, Laurence Pears, Sydney K Smith and Liv Spencer.
Why should you see Magic Goes Wrong?
Delivering yet another comedy masterclass, Mischief Theatre definitely have plenty of tricks up their sleeves that are too good to miss! There’s hilarious performances from the try-hard magicians and televised appearances from some of magic’s finest including Derren Brown and David Copperfield. Tricks come thick-and-fast and at some points, you don’t know where to look, but you’ll want to look out for David Howe’s clever lighting design and televised charity event tropes that’ll leave you laughing in the aisles. If you’re looking to enjoy a simple night of light-hearted entertainment that doesn’t take itself too seriously, then escape to a charity night like no other at Magic Goes Wrong.
Magic Goes Wrong – What the critics said
“All the expected tropes are here: the magician who produces an endless stream of doves, except that they’re all dead on arrival; the mind-reader who gets everything he guesses wrong; the illusionist card trick man who can’t pull off his tricks either; and the woman who gets sawn in half – literally. The show is unashamedly silly but also affectionately celebratory of a kind of variety theatre that may have long vanished – but makes a welcome return here.”
“This is the latest wheeze from those incorrigible scamps Mischief – fringe whizz-kids turned theatrical world-leaders in the art of comic incompetence. Their winning formula lies in extracting mirth from the gulf between overweening artistic aspiration and the practical ability to deliver it.”
“Those who have seen Mischief Theatre’s similarly self-descriptive breakthrough farce The Play That Goes Wrong, which took these drama-school friends from a pub theatre to the West End and Broadway while they were still in their mid-twenties, or their present television spin-off, The Goes Wrong Show, will expect nothing else. So there is no purpose to Magic Goes Wrong beyond the simple delight in complex cock-ups.”
“Many of the illusions remain deeply impressive even when exposed. Otherwise it’s the same Mischief mix of shouty comedy, slapstick and humiliation, for actors and audience. Mischief is so adept at developing rapport with an audience, it works anyway.”
“The evening remains entertaining, and under Adam Meggido’s direction the performers’ comic and slapstick skills are on fine display. Henry Lewis’s repeated botched exits are droll, Henry Shields channels John Cleese to fine effect as the evening’s MC – and there’s real magic to enjoy alongside the tomfoolery.”