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Casting a magic spell

Alex alias A. Alexander’s flair in two illusory worlds, cinema and magic, is worth recognition, writes S. S. KAVITHA

PHOTO: G. Moorthy.

Levitation Alex

Presto...! The world of fantasy, the web of magic unveils for viewers.

The smoky effect on stage, jarring music blaring out of speakers, colourful lights blinking around, actor-turned magician A. Alexander --popularly known as Alex – appears on stage and makes an elephant and bike disappear, a car appear, walks on water and cuts a woman in two.

Levitation is part of his show. Alex himself floats in the air and makes girls hang in suspension in air while doing rhythmic dance movements.

“Cinema is a world of illusion. So is world of magic. While cinema is a pre-recorded and a world of make-belief on screen, magic unfurls right in front of the human eye. I enjoy being associated with both,” he says.

It was in 2002 while shooting for a film that Mr.Alex was drawn to magic while watching a trader on the spot perform some tricks.

PHOTO: G. Moorthy.

Floating in the air

It was then that he decided and strove to learn the art from best magicians in the world.

After completing his training in India, Mr. Alex went to Las Vegas in the US, a place that puts on show the best magical tricks from the world over.

Records

“I learnt the best tricks of every country there. I became the first person to perform 24-hour non-stop magic with 3,442 items that fetched me a place in the Guinness Book of World Records in 2005,” he says with pride. Besides, he also has made an entry into national-level Limca Book of Records twice for successfully completing a 12-hour mental magic show and a non-stop magic show from 10 a.m. to 6.15 p.m. that was witnessed by 59,276 students.

Mr.Alex defines magic as a bridge that links human world and more-than-a-human world filled with tricks and illusions for entertaining people.

“But performing magic is not just about entertaining. The task of the magician is to startle the senses and force or rather motivate the audience to think continuously all the possibilities of the trick,” he quickly adds.

Major categories

Magic as such can be divided into two major categories – Magic and Mental Magic.

“Magic is what I perform on stage while mental magic is what I make others perform.”

Attributing his success to determination, Mr. Alex says that he never retracts from his ambition of achieving greater things. “Come what may, I pursue my dream or goal transcending all barriers, achieve it and make it a record,” he says.

“Whatever you do you have to put your heart and soul into it to exhibit your uniqueness,” he says.

He also attributes his success to sincerity and an open mind to learn the art from any number of teachers available and within reach.

“My motto is to learn from whoever available and where ever possible and never confine to one teacher because from every guru you have something to gain,” he shares.

Theatre

Mr.Alex made a mark in theatre too. Based on religious tenets, he educated people on how to establish a violence-free, caste-free society and feud-free family.

The drama titled ’Renew 2000’ (Pudhuvazhvu-2000) with 36 scenes and six songs was staged all over Tamil Nadu.

Following this, he was awarded Doctor of Philosophy in Social Service by the Inter American University of Humanistic Studies, US.

In cinema Mr.Alex bagged the Best Villain Award for the film Mittamirasu in 2001.

The Best Character Artist for the film Kovilpatti Veera Lakshmi came to him in 2003 from the Tamil Nadu Government.

This year, the State honoured him with the ‘Kalaimamani Award for the first time in magic.

PHOTO: G. Moorthy.

Making girls dance to his tune

Claiming to be a mind reader or ‘mentalist’ who can read a person’s mind and make the person do what he wants, Mr. Alex says that mental magic is a special technique that peeps into one’s mind and controls it through mental suggestions.

About his future plans, he says that he wants to excel and bag more awards and recognition in the filed of cinema and magic. “They are my two eyes.”

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