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Magical Musings from Nakul Shenoy - Issue #101

Magical Musings from Nakul Shenoy - Issue #101
By Nakul Shenoy • Issue #1 • View online
I hope the year 2021 has brought with it the optimism and good fortune you were looking for, and with each passing day everything only gets better for you and your dear ones.
I thought two months into the year was as good a time to send in my occasional mail to check in with you. So here goes…

An Honest Liar?
I hear you think, “Issue 101, Nakul? Really? When and how did they go by?” Well, if I am to be honest, it should perhaps read “Issue 10.1”.
It was in mid-2011 that I succumbed to the idea of setting up a ‘newsletter’ and sent out an initial mailer to a bunch of friends and acquaintances asking if they would be interested in reading what I may have to share. And their enthusiastic response encouraged me to go ahead. In fact, the support that has come my way over these 10 years has been no less than overwhelming – considering that I have only sent 6-8 emails a year. Or perhaps that *is* the reason?
(I can also hear your quick mental calculations that scream, “you are quite short of the 100 number you are staking claim to”, but I will ignore that.)
It's All About Timing...
A lot of things have happened over the last year or so, least of which has been to move the home of these occasional letters. For starters, 2020 happened. In ways unimaginable in 2019. And in ways not really reconcilable in 2021.
Today, exactly a year back to the date, I was in the United Kingdom representing India at the Blackpool Magic Convention. An event that had more than 4,500 magicians from all over the globe at the Winter Gardens opera hall there.
Yes! You read that right. 4,500+ people from all over the world, locked together in one massive air-conditioned venue.
Nakul Shenoy
Photos Galore! Many photos were taken with friends and gods of magic at @Blackpool_Magic Convention, some of which I will share in this thread here. The first of these amazing memories was made with the @RealMaxMaven after his fantastic lecture.
As much as hobnobbing with the gods of magic and catching-up with friends was most special (and only getting more special with each locked-in day), I can’t help but feel blessed that this turned out largely okay. I think it was all a matter of perfect timing. If the event was even a couple of days later, who knows what may have transpired.
After a few gala days spent catching up with magician friends in Glasgow, Edinburgh and London, I returned to Bangalore at the end of February. And have been mostly indoors at home since. And yet, so many things have changed…
Zoom for Everything... Even Magic!
In 2019, who would have thought people would say they do not want a “Work From Home”? Yet with the world going into an indefinite lock-down, a couple of weeks was all it took for a lot of people to rue that they were unable to go to their offices and had to do everything from their homes. Zoom became the go-to medium not just for the corporate-types but also for families to try to stay connected and “catch-up” every now and then over the internet.
Magic has a rich history that dates back 5000 years. Magicians have always taken to moving along the times, and reimagining how they can mystify audiences.
Magic through the ages | Nakul Shenoy | TEDxSIUHinjewadi
Magic through the ages | Nakul Shenoy | TEDxSIUHinjewadi
Yet I don’t think anybody was quite prepared to how magicians the world over rallied to keep each other going and in high spirits. They were performing magic over the internet in ways never imagined before. The envelope was being pushed, and consistently. The collaboration led to interesting new developments – bearing in mind the context of performance: in front of a camera, and online.
Prem Panicker
I've seen @NakulShenoy perform live. And been privileged to listen to him explain some of the concepts of mentalism. Even so, yesterday -- when he did a remote act on Zoom -- was an extraordinary experience. Grab your seat, and your chance, while you still can. 👇
The reactions have been wonderful in themselves, from appreciative tweets to blog posts to podcasts dedicated to these shows. While not a patch on performing in-person, on-stage to an auditorium full of people, this is clearly what has kept me–and many others like me–*going* during these trying times.
Magic as I have said so many times, is really the best hobby one can have. And I am blessed to have been enamoured by it at age 5. It is in many ways the perfect hobby one can have:
The Benefits Of Learning Magic
So, what is your creative obsession? How does it help you get over the general difficulties life throws at us? I would love to hear from you.
Adversity is the Accelerator of Change.
In one of my recent letters, I had written how adversity brings about innovation in unique ways. And as bad as COVID has been to all of us–and we are a long way from returning to a (new) normal–I think the ‘forced’ changes it has brought about in society and polity are going to stay for a long time to come.
Having spent a year working, discussing, collaborating and most everything online, many a face-to-face meetings will be avoided in future too with online tools having improved a couple of generations in this short time.
Staying stuck at home has helped us respect each other, especially our closest people, so much more. Staying online all the time, has helped us appreciate the need for physical, in-person interactions. Staying cooped all the time, has helped us question the time we spend travelling from one point to the other.
There is always a perfect or opportune time for everything. Podcasts are back stronger than ever, and the Audible-led audiobooks market has never been as popular as now. And it does appear that the latest entrant on the social media scene, ClubHouse hit it spot on.
An iOS-only app at this moment, ClubHouse is like the internet radio stations of the 1990s with one important difference: it allows each of us to be the broadcaster! It facilitates audio-only conversations between one and many, always in the now and only Live. Only time can tell us whether it proves a short-term “coolest app on the store” or turns into a long-term habit-forming innovator.
After news of people having been in a @joinClubhouse room where a woman gave birth while all cheered; right now in a room with live mind reading & magic with @NakulShenoy 🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼 #amazed
In 2008, my friend and co-founder of Penguin Magic, Maxwell Murphy magnanimously shared his Audible library with me – in a bid to get me introduced to audiobooks. He could not for the life of him understand how it was that I–an ardent lover of books–could not jump headlong into the world of audiobooks.
I did give it a decent try on a number of occasions, but all my efforts appeared to go in vain. And it took me till 2018 to give audiobooks another attempt, and it suddenly seemed the time was now perfect. I took to it like fish to water, speeding through one book after another. And now that I am always listening to one book or the other, I can’t imagine why it took me so long!
There is a time and place for everything. And this right now is for me to stop typing.
As always, I look forward to hear from you. So do write in.
Stay safe, stay well.
Did you enjoy this issue?
Nakul Shenoy

Master of the Mystic Arts. Indian Mentalist. Author: ‘Smart Course in Magic'.

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