For the first time ever, a magician performed in Rwanda on Friday evening. Dubbed the International Magic Night, the show was a combination of magic and comedy.
Held at Serena Hotel gardens, the show was well attended by a reasonable number of Asians, notably Indians.
There were some Rwandans, too.
The man of the night was Raja Moorthy, an Indian magic professor who is also the Director of the Academy of Magical Sciences, Trivandrum, and the National Award Winner for Close up Magic, 1998.
He was doing magic in Africa for the second time, having done it only in South Africa once. Moorthy does his thing with a touch of comedy. “I have an exceptional crowd tonight,” he said. “Wherever I perform, I’m used to having audiences screaming and lining up.” he said after urging the crowd to give him an applause.
Some of the outstanding magic he did was getting a Rwf 2000 note from one reveler, and turning it into a Rwf 5000 note. As if impressed by his own craft, he said: “You now know what I do at home.”Fresh from a comedy tour in Uganda, Arthur Nkusi - who was the night’s MC – would later reiterate: “I wonder if BNR (National Bank of Rwanda) knows about this!”
The other magic that hypnotized the crowd was making an egg out of a red handkerchief. He first pulled the hanky out of the egg shell, rolled in his hand, poured magic salt on the hanky which became an egg again. He then broke the egg in a glass and it looked real! “This is an egg by a magician,” he told the enthralled audience.
“But that doesn’t mean that it’s the magician who laid the egg,” he added, sending everyone into laughter.
Raja Moorthy has done over 200 episodes of magic. Speaking after his performance, he defined magic as signs wrapped in arts and expressed his wish to train Rwandans. “I’m glad to be the first magician to publicly perform in this country. The warm reception extended to me has filled me with a desire to teach Rwandans about the art of magic. I’d be willing if I’m invited back here for a workshop to share my skills with young peoples of this country,” said the professor who has been a magician for 21 years. Moorthy was with his protégé who also left the crowd gaping in awe of his acts.