Lancaster date for TV's Emmerdale and Hollyoaks magician who taught legendary Penn and Teller how to spin plates
and live on Freeview channel 276
Michael Jordan works under the stage name High Jinx and is renowned in the industry for the brilliantly natural way he engages with audiences.
The 31-year-old award-winning magician is a master of illusions and a specialist in circus skills so keeps audiences enthralled for every second of his show. Michael’s shows at the 1,200 capacity Blackpool Tower were sellouts last Christmas.
He’ll be at the Lancaster Grand Theatre in Lancaster for a matinee show on Saturday, April 8, starting at 2.30pm.
Michael said: “I can’t wait to get on the stage at Lancaster and promise to give you a performance to remember.
“There are two kinds of magicians – those who want to fool the audience and those who want to entertain. I’m certainly one that’s keen to entertain. It’s not all about the trick or illusion in itself, more how it’s presented that really counts and that’s what makes people love these kinds of shows.
“There’s definitely still a hunger for live magic because it’s always a journey into the unknown. You just don’t know what the magician will do or how they do it and that’s what makes it so entertaining.”It gives a sense of shock, awe, surprise and a few laughs, especially with lots of audience participation. Magic is also a great introduction to the world of theatre and live entertainment.”
Michael revealed his dyslexia led him to learn circus tricks. At school he used a wobble board – balancing on a board on a large semi-circular ball – which is supposed to help dyslexia by strengthening muscles, posture and co-ordination to enhance eye muscle co-ordination and make reading easier.
Michael realised he was a natural at this fine art of balancing and that ultimately led into self-teaching himself circus tricks such as juggling and unicycling.
He was so renowned for his plate-spinning skills that legendary American magicians Penn and Teller asked him to teach them how to do it.
Michael got his first big break when he appeared on a TV show hosted by the world-famous duo. He had to do an illusion that saw him sawing a girl into five and they had to work out how it was done.
“I don’t like to do things by halves which is why she ended up in five bits,” joked Michael. “It got me known though and gave me the break I needed to really get started with my career.”
Since then he’s worked all round the world including touring with the famous Le Festival International de Magie in France for several years, a travelling magic show which features Europe’s exceptional magicians with the focus on laughs and magic.
He has done 11 consecutive seasons in Blackpool since 2012 – the last three in the tower alongside its world-renowned circus – and has become a firm favourite at the Lancashire resort.
Michael is now on his biggest ever tour of theatres in 2023 – and has to adapt the show to each venue.
“Every one is so different and we can only finalise the show we’ll be putting on when we get there,” he said. “It depends on many factors ranging from the size of the stage to how accessible it is as some of the illusions and props we use are really heavy. But we can promise a spectacular show for every venue.”
Michael is a contemporary magician but also loves to pay tribute to magic’s past and one of the routines will be the Great Barrel Mystery which dates back 100 years and involves two full-size whiskey barrels and more than a touch of Houdini-style escape artistry.
Michael loves to inject comedy into his act and it’s a brave member of the audience who hands Michael his mobile phone – especially as he has a reputation for battering them with a hammer – but will he get it back in one piece after Michael’s Russian roulette treatment of it?
His favourite illusion is one called Excalibur which involves plunging swords through a glass cabinet while his assistant, wife Tamsyn, is in there.
The couple live in Taunton, Somerset, with their two young children, seven-year-old Logan and five-year-old Kiana, but Michael comes from Huddersfield in West Yorkshire where his family still live.
His grandfather, Barry Jordan, who is now 82, first got a young Michael fascinated in magic by showing him a magic trick every week but never told him how it was done.
Barry had become interested after visiting a magic convention in Blackpool and the first trick he showed Michael was a disappearing pen. It was enough to get Michael hooked although he never worked out how Barry had done the tricks until he got into the Magic Circle himself and was named Young Magician of the Year when he was just 18.
TV shows and dramas often contact High Jinx to loan equipment or as a consultant and Hollyoaks asked if he could do fire-breathing.
Michael reckoned he could although he’d actually never done it before. He contacted a fire-breathing friend who showed him how to do it and within a few days Michael was on the set of Hollyoaks breathing fire during a street party scene. He’s also juggled knives dressed as a clown in comedy drama Shameless and unicycled down a path on Emmerdale.
Britain’s Got Talent hired a couple of his routines to help a contestant on the show and Michael has also helped out Strictly Come Dancing with illusion props for spectacular dance routines.
To book for the show go to https://lancastergrand.co.uk/shows/high-jinx/