An October Fest filled with Magic and Joy

October 11th, Sunday, saw The Bangalore Ring host its monthly meeting via Zoom at 10:30am. There was no beer flowing, but the magic and camaraderie more than made up for it! The meeting began with the Ring President, Prahlad Acharya welcoming all the members and our special guests. Given that the pandemic is only appearing to get stronger and continuing to wreak havoc, a few minutes were spent enquiring to the well-being of all our members and their families.

Our Ring Secretary Nakul Shenoy had just received via post, his Order of Merlin certificate and lapel pin. He was requested to show off both these to the gathering, and all the members took turns in congratulating him. Leons George then congratulated the officers and members on the successful renaming of the IBM Ring 177 to “The Bangalore Ring”. Saying that this made him nostalgic about the Garden City, Leons added that this was indeed the best way to communicate what the Ring truly represents and stands for.

A joyful moment captured during the October Meeting of the Bangalore Ring.

This was followed by a slew of magical performances, beginning with the Shenoy “iTwins”. 11-year-old, Master Ishaan Shenoy rolled things off with a story of Time Travel, where a card everybody had seen vanished from the deck, only to reappear “back in time” in its hitherto empty pack! His twin, Master Inesh Shenoy followed him with a “Lucky Person Test”, which began breaking the card pack into four parts at the exact spot that a volunteer told him through the screen. He then turned over each of the top card of the four piles to show that they were the four aces – and announced that the volunteer was indeed a very lucky person.

Shameer Salim, one of our members based in USA, then performed another of his mind-blowing effects. He put his phone up on a stand, to ensure it was fully in view but not being handled by him at any point. He then showed a series of handwritten cards with names of famous personalities. A volunteer chose one of these – openly & in what was clearly a free choice – only to have his mind (and ours) blown away, when the phone was immediately turned around to display the photograph of exact same celebrity!

It was now time for Ajit Badarinath (AJ) to do a mini-lecture about the creative process involved in the innovation and manufacture of magic props. AJ shared a real-life example of a product he was involved with, taking us through the year-long process that took an basic idea to fruition, and ably demonstrated each of the kinks and improvements made to the same… before it was released to be a bestselling product in the magic fraternity.

Leons George, our member based in Australia, then performed his version of the “Bowls and Balls”, where he made full use of his prowess in both the western and Indian versions of the oldest magic trick in the world. Nakul Shenoy took the screen next and performed his take on an old, well-known effect: five randomly thought of cards, match the exact ones that were picked by the spectator. Nakul kindly shared his touches to this classic, making it Zoom-friendly and of course, bringing in many possibilities to make it a perfect miracle.

Clifford Norman Parakh seen performing for Leons George.

All those wonderful performances, and we were not done yet! The best was kept for last. Our past member and special guest of the day, Clifford Parakh from Goa has been performing many many online gigs, and he shared some of his learnings with us. Most of all, Clifford performed one of his favourite effects–a randomly stopped, face-up card matches a prediction always in view– and even shared his handlings of the same.

In addition to those already named above, the meeting was attended by Dr BLN Raju, Saurav Mohanty, and Ring Treasurer, Karthik Rao. The members also expressed happiness that the Ring was continuing to grow at a steady rate, and we now have 23 members! After a quick discussion, it was unanimously decided to advance the Monthly Meeting time by 30 minutes and changed to 10:00AM. This would help our international members logging in from Australia, USA, and the Middle East.

The October meeting of Ring 177 was grudgingly called to a close and we now look forward to the next monthly meeting to be held on November 8th at 10AM IST. See you there!

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