Adelaide Art Blog-Adelaide Art Magazine-Fringe Festival 2017-Paul Dabek

Last night, magic was made at Adelaide’s Propaganda Club; patrons were treated to a taste of Look at Me!—an upcoming Adelaide Fringe show by British funny man and magician, Paul Dabek.

Paul presented the best possible hybrid of comedy and magic performance. He courageously built a rapport with the audience in the waiting area before the show which aided his interaction during the performance. Paul called it “magical terrorism” when he abandoned the stage and intermingled with the crowd.

Although the venue layout wasn’t ideal for guests seated in booths, it certainly didn’t seem to sour anyone’s experience. Those with tickets to the full show can look forward to an improved seating arrangement at The German Club on Flinders Street.

The patrons, appearing particularly formal, were rusty at first—frugal with their applause and laughs. Nevertheless, Paul handled us with grace and humour, comparing the patchy and dismal reactions to “a load of cows on smack.” Inevitably, the aristocratic exterior of the crowd melted into a sea of unattractive cackles and roaring applause when the tricks and banter grew.

Paul executed the striking wit and charm of typical British stand-up at an upbeat pace that spurt out jokes like a cannon. Some audience members were left in the dust, yet those who kept up laughed loudly enough to blur the patches of silence.

Paul’s act consisted of a run through and breakdown of the basics of magic—a kind of magic masterclass. During his reveal, he felt it was important to confess, “I’m a magician, not Jesus.” Tricks featured scarfs, ropes and playing cards; as an act of pure showmanship, he even turned my $20 note into 100 yen then resurfaced it from the middle of a freshly peeled banana. It was utterly mesmerising and insane-sounding to those who weren’t there, which I think is a sign of a truly enchanted show.

If these stories of fruit and jaw-dropping deceptions have left you curious, you can buy tickets to Look at Me! and Paul’s other show, The I Hate Children Children’s Show from FringeTix or from

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Photos: Supplied

Adelaide Art Blog-Adelaide Art Magazine-Fringe Festival 2017-Paul Dabek