How do I become a member of the Magic Circle?
We get asked this question almost on a weekly basis. There really isn't any secret to it, but it will take some commitment from you. Becoming a member of The Magic Circle gives the public a guarantee of excellence in magic. It's because of this seal of quality that The Merchant of Magic insists that all it's magic sales staff are Magic Circle members themselves.
Let's look at the joining criteria in detail.
1) You must be over 18 years of age.
If you are younger than 18, we recommend that you join the young magicians club instead. It's an amazing magic club and a great stepping stone into the Magic Circle when you are older.
2) You need to be proposed and seconded by magicians who are already members of the Magic Circle.
Those magicians must have known you for at least a year. This is the most common barrier to entry, but even though you may not know any magicians who are members and can propose you, that can be easily fixed. Magicians are a very sociable lot. After all, it's the sharing of ideas and tricks, that keeps magic developing. All over the country you will find smaller magic clubs. There's probably one in the nearest large town or city to you.
The first step is to join a local club. Some magic clubs call themselves by the town name and then magic circle, for example 'The Hogsmeade Magic Circle'. Don't confuse these clubs with the 'real' Magic Circle. They are great clubs and many of them are very old and established, but being a member of these and claiming that you are a member of the Magic Circle is rather misleading to the public.
We recommend joining a local club and becoming an active member. You will improve your magic skills and meet a community of magicians as mad about magic as you are. Many magic clubs hold audition nights for membership of the real Magic Circle, and will have members that will get to know you and can propose you when you are ready.
3) You must have an interview with a senior member of the Magic Circle to test that you have the skills and magical knowledge that is required to join.
The Magic Circle seeks members that have studied magic rather than the merely curious. You don't need to be a professional performer, but you will be expected to show a good knowledge of magic, it's performance and theory. The Examinations Secretary will chat with you and talk about your interest in magic, what skills you have developed, your plans for the future and how you will be able to contribute to the club. This takes place at the Magic Circle headquarters in Central London. Whilst you are being interviewed, it's a great opportunity to look around the headquarters and visit the Magic Circle museum.
4) You must pass the audition.
Applicants will often be asked to perform a small magic act in front of an audience of existing members. It's this part of the membership process that terrifies most magicians wanting to join. In reality, it's nothing to worry about. You are not expected to be one of the UK's top magicians. Just show that you are actually able to perform at a standard that the Magic Circle requires from it's members. After all, being permitted to join, in the publics mind, is a guarantee of excellence in magic.
The audition aims to judge your technique and performance skills. If you don't perform, but have a passion for the theoretical or historical branches of magic, you can request to submit a thesis on an area of magic instead.
Worried about that will be required of you in the audition? Download a guide to the examination for free.
5) The Ballot.
Finally, once you pass the audition, the Magic Circle will propose your membership to the ruling council to finalise your membership by ballot.
Once this process has been completed you will hear back from the Magic Circle with the results of your request for membership. The whole process does take some time to complete, but it's a very good system for membership as it creates a bar, that ensures each member is permitted based on their actual abilities. The process has resulted in membership of the Magic Circle being something to be very proud of by it's members and a good benchmark of quality for the public looking to hire a magician.
You can find out more about the Magic Circle and download a membership application form by visiting the official Magic Circle Website.