Fifer Kevin McMahon started out on a career as a scientist, but ever since appearing on a reality television show he’s now performing mindblowing magic for audiences around the globe.
And the 35-year-old from Rosyth is looking forward to sharing his magic show, ‘Quantum Magic’ with audiences as part of this year’s That’s Fife Comedy Festival.
The show comes to the Byre Theatre in St Andrews on Sunday and Carnegie Hall in Dunfermline on Friday, April 15.
Speaking ahead of the performances, Kevin explained: “When Karen Koren from the Gilded Balloon got in touch about the festival I was really excited.
“This is my first big show in Fife, I’ve never done my own one here before.
“After the success of the Edinburgh Fringe I thought it was a good time to come back home.”
Kevin’s interest in magic came about through the chance to appear on a television series, but that was 10 years ago and he’s been hooked on it ever since.
“I was on a career path as a scientist and went to Edinburgh once I finished school to study physics and I went on to do a PhD,” he said.
“I had the opportunity to go on the television series ‘Faking It’ on Channel4 where they train someone to do something they have never done before for four weeks.
“I was the scientist that became a magician.
“I was taken from Scotland to London and had training in London and then some time in Las Vegas with Penn and Teller.
“They put me on stage at the end of the four weeks and asked me to do a magic show in front of a judge who was asked if they thought I was a professional or faking it.
“I had to convince Paul Daniels, who sadly passed away recently, I was a professional magician.
“It’s been 10 years now and I’m still doing the magic. I have absolutely no regrets, I’ve had so many amazing opportunities and I think the degree gives me a bit of almost legitimacy.”
So what can people expect from ‘Quantum Magic’?
“Amazement, that’s the most important thing,” he continued.
“I want to bamboozle people and show them impossible things.
“It’s what I strive to do when I do any show.
“I have been known for comedy magic in the past so it’s delivered with humour a lot of the time. I’m not a po-faced magician.
“If you come to see magic you want to be amazed.
“My particular style I used to be a scientist so I’m always inspired by the world of science.
“I just want to deliver really cool and amazing moments.”
And for Kevin, Dunfermline’s Carnegie Hall is somewhere he’s very familiar with and is excited to be playing his own show there.
He said: “It’s a hugely special place for me I’ve been to ever panto there since 1982.
“I was on stage there with Fife Youth Orchestra and I did a production with Carnegie Youth Theatre there.
“It will be good to be back there as I’ve got my own special memories to look back on there.”
As a magician, what is it about magic that Kevin thinks keeps both the young and old entertained?
“I have absolutely no idea. That’s the one question I think I’ll never work out,” he said.
“I just don’t know.
“My early thinking was people like it for two main reasons. The first group are the believers who are happy to suspend the disbelief and go along on a magical road, they want to sit and be entertained.
“Then there are the sceptics and those who want to see it being broken down and solved.
“Their enjoyment comes from breaking it down and working out the trick.”
Kevin McMahon: Quantum Magic is at Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline on April 10 and The Byre Theatre, St Andrews on April 15.