Tommy Wonder was the stage name of Jacobus Maria Bemelman, a Dutch magician, inventor and author, who performed close-up and stage magic. He has published 2 major books, the Books of Wonder. Born in 1953 in Lisse near Amsterdam he, unfortunately, died way too early in 2006, after a brief battle with lung cancer.
He developed an interest in conjuring at an early age and studied acting, dancing and singing for three years at the Performance Academy in The Hague subsequently touring for two years with De Haagsche Comedie. Because Wonder designed and developed all of his own repertoires, he is still held in high esteem amongst his colleagues in magic.
I met Tommy Wonder at a magic convention in the ’90s in Ludwigsburg. At the time I had heard about him but had never seen or read any of his work. He had a certain quality, to give magic importance and certain class. I have never been so mystified by a magic performance like that. His direction of attention and how it is implemented in his effects were second to none. Because of this lecture, I started to work more on the finer points of a presentation and direction of attention. Here is a short video of a TV performance that highlights 3 of his effects, enjoy.
- Take your performance and magic seriously
- Give the performance a touch of class
- Continuous ‘re-engineering’ of effects and presentation
- To be effective you must be in command
- Books of Wonder Vol. l, 1996
- Books of Wonder Vol. II, 1996