Not the easiest show, with a bit of friendly heckling ('what's under the table?!!!'), quite a few kids making a concert of sweet wrappers or giggling in the quiet moments, and most strangely a small hen do sitting in the back row...
Yet this reviewer made my day. From Cambridge News:
Jude Clarke enjoys an evening of deconstructed magic with Vincent Gambini
"This is not a magic show," proclaim the publicity materials for Vincent Gambini's performance. But, like much of what was to follow in the Saturday evening performance in J3 at The Junction, that was slightly misleading.
Vincent is, in fact, a skilled and mind-bogglingly nimble-fingered magician, with a stock in trade of just the kind of tricks that you would expect from, well, a magician. Coins miraculously appear, then duplicate, from nothing in his hands. Seemingly 'normal' packs of cards take on curious features (at one point turning blank almost before our eyes) and formations in a manner that, being so close to the action, is that much more astonishing than when watching these types of tricks on a TV show or in a larger theatre.
But what makes this show special isn't really the magic itself, it's the way it is presented. Deconstructing the drama and performance of 'magic', Vincent's low-key, wry and witty delivery uses other tricks too. The show starts, for example, with Vincent sitting quietly at a table, narrating the preamble to the start of his show, as if he is an observer rather than the performer himself, recounting his pre-show warm-up routine, showing himself making last minute tweaks to his opening words etc, in an arresting monologue that begins to subvert the usual, perhaps stale, performer/audience dynamic of this kind of show.
Later, he shares with us his quest for a more original opening magic trick (the Junction's director having, we're told, emailed him to ask him to start with something a bit more interesting than his usual, rather dull, card trick), taking in a hilarious series of phone calls to the Magic Circle helpline, seemingly manned by high profile magicians like Derren Brown and David Blaine, dutifully doing their shifts and offering the struggling performer tips and suggestions for new tricks to dazzle us with.
There's a quite brilliant sequence where Vincent first reads out the stream-of-consciousness reaction of one observer to one of his tricks, before reading it out again while simultaneously performing said trick. It's hard to explain quite why or how (much like the magic itself), but this method of presenting his undeniably skilled magic is gripping, hilarious and really fascinating.
Not a magic show, then? Don't be fooled by the disingenuous title. Vincent Gambini is every bit the magician, if you like your performances smart, clever, witty and thought-provoking.'
Read more: http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Vincent-Gambini-Cambridge-Junction-Review/story-29277898-detail/story.html#ixzz48oRjyDvf