JON TREMAINE. M.I.M.C.
Master Magician - Freelance Writer - June 2011
Jon has been a Member of the Magic Circle for 57 years.
He has been a full time pro for 53 years (“I’ve never had a proper job”)! He suffered an unbelievable trauma when only four years old. This left him with a broken arm and collarbone. It also left him dumb. He was not to speak again for two years!
When at last his speech began to return it was with a dreadful stammer. People used to cross to the other side of the road to avoid having a conversation with him. It was that bad. You may wonder how anybody with a stammer ever became an entertainer – especially a ‘patter’ performer. Jon found that the more he performed the better his speech became. What an incentive! The more skill he acquired the more he benefited. Any physically or psychologically handicapped person can only be inspired by Jon’s example. He has achieved a lot.
His interest in Magic began when he selected a book at random from a library shelf. It was The Royal Road to Card Magic. He also struck up a friendship with the enigmatic Tony Corinda – destined to be a strong influence in the early days of his career. They both joined the Magic Circle on the same day in 1954.
In 1958 at the age of 22 Jon became Manager of Ellisdon’s Magic Shop in Holborn, London.
Two years later he left to join Corinda, who had by then built up his own magical empire. They worked together for six eventful years and collaborated on the classic book Thirteen Steps to Mentalism – otherwise know as the Mentalists Bible. Jon drew the majority of the illustrations and contributed many fine effects for the book.
Corinda had a knack of attracting exceptional talent around him. Jon’s workmates at the time were Pat Page, Ali Bongo, Alan Alan, Eric (boon) Mason, Victor Burnett and Dick Chavel – quite a cast!
Working as a magical demonstrator honed Jon’s skills and also enabled him to build up friendships with the World’s leading magicians and mentalists. He became especially close to Maurice Fogel and Al Koran. Jon acknowledges a tremendous dept to them both for their selfless encouragement and advice. 1967 saw Jon’ elevation to Membership of the Inner Magic Circle and his departure from the World of the magic demonstrator. He took his mind reading act on the road. Corinda gave him six months and his blessing. That was 44 years ago! Not all Corinda’s predictions proved to be correct!
Jon quickly made his mark around the World with his acclaimed mind reading act. He has played in every major nightclub and quality venue around – including Windsor Castle for the British Royal Family. (“The best B & B I have ever stayed in”)!
Regular cruisers will be familiar with Jon’s work on such luxury liners as the QE2, Oriana, Arcadia, Aurora and the wonderful Celebrity cruise ships - to name but a few.
Jon has numerous television performances to his credit – most notably THE DAVID FROST SHOWS both in England and the United States of America.
Jon surprised everyone in 1976 by suddenly quitting the cabaret circuit and adding Children’s Entertaining to his repertoire. He had foreseen the imminent demise of quality cabaret nightclubs. Travelling 80,000 miles annually was also losing its appeal and Jon decided that a home base and family background should be his new priority.
Never one to do things by halves, Jon (performing as Jon Day), quickly produced a formula for solid commercial success and within two years was performing over 300 private shows every year. Many of you will remember his lecture at the IBM Convention in 1996. Terry Herbert said that it was the best lecture on the business of entertaining children that he had ever seen. Praise indeed!
These days, children’s entertaining takes a back seat. Jon, like many Magicians is heavily involved in the Close-up Magic scene. His lecture to the Magic Circle a few years ago called “Commercial Close-up Magic” proved his credentials in this department.
Jon’s mind reading act still occasionally sees the light of day at selected banquets and Society do’s. He finds that Mentalists have a special bond and, quite surprisingly, are extremely generous to each other – sharing their secrets and subtleties. Now that Jon has retired from the cabaret scene, Graham P Jolley, who Jon rates very highly and counts as a friend and confidant, has very successfully taken on his mantle as “The World’s Greatest Mind Reader” and filled the hole that Jon’s departure left. Graham describes Jon’s act as “the most ‘authentic’ demonstration of Mind Reading that you could ever wish to see.”
Always a controversial character, Jon has, in recent years become a highly regarded author and lecturer. He currently has 38 non-fiction books in print, ranging in subjects as varied as Astrology, Origami, Magic and Backgammon. He has developed his many talks and lectures from this wealth of output. His talks are extremely entertaining because he incorporates his desire to inform with his natural performing ability. His latest lecture is called “The Magic of Whisky” – which gives us a clue to one of his other interests!
Jon has made three instructional videos: “Painless Parties”; “Commerial Close-up Magic” and “The Close-up Mental Act” – all best sellers.
Jon lives with his wife, Suzy, in the Surrey Hills and Almoradi, Spain. She is a Promotional Sales Executive, Actress and Model.
He's also know as John Day as childrens magician.
Ghost-writter for Tony Corinda.