In popular culture the “witching hour” is a dramatic time of night, midnight or shortly thereafter. At the Fringe, on the other hand, the “witching hour” evidentially occurs around three or four PM—consistently the busiest couple of hours for magic shows. So Caspar Thomas has his work cut out for him in getting people in to Sleight of Handkerchief. The theme, of course, is the handkerchief, that vibrant and ubiquitous magic prop.
As is expected given the theme, it’s a relatively old fashioned magic show. This is not to its detriment, it’s the show’s niche in the Fringe magic ecosystem. Good Omens fans, picture if Aziraphale used his celestial powers in that children’s birthday party scene and you’ll get a decent idea of Thomas’s magic style. The multicolored scarves make for a visually pleasing experience, and Thomas is adept at putting them through their paces. His range of tricks include the usual handkerchief effects, as well as many that he has adapted to make use of these pretty props.
In a cozy venue and with Thomas’s kind demeanor, joining him onstage feels less like joining a performance and more like helping a pal demonstrate his cool skills. Nothing remotely scary or onerous is asked of the participants, Thomas does all the work in this chill show. Many audience members are able to join in from their seats as well, such as when Thomas brings out his big rings. He asks a few people to give them a bit of a tug but when the magic happens it’s entirely in his hands.
The audience knows what they’re going to get with a show called Sleight of Handkerchief, and Thomas delivers it well. The relaxed atmosphere is very different from the high energy of, for example, a standard comedy magic show, and this is a nice change of pace at the busy Fringe. Magic fans could do a lot worse.
More information on Caspar Thomas and his performance dates can be found here.