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Paul Daniels

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Paul Daniels

Cover of Genii (1981)
BornNewton Edward Daniels
April 6, 1938
South Bank, Cleveland, England
DiedMarch 17, 2016 (age 77)

Paul Daniels (b.1938-d.2016) was a magician from the United Kingdom. He achieved international fame through his television series "The Paul Daniels Magic Show", which ran on the BBC from 1979 to 1994.


Daniels was born as Newton Edward Daniels at South Bank, Middlesbrough, England. He was the son of Handel Newton Daniels and Nancy Lloyd. Handel, who was known as Hugh or Hughie, was a cinema projectionist at the Hippodrome Theatre and a former worker at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) Wilton.

After Sir William Turners Grammar School on Coatham Road in Coatham, Redcar, and his first job as a junior clerk in the treasurer's office of Eston Council, Daniels served as a conscript in the 1st Battalion, the Green Howards, during his national service and was posted to the British garrison in Hong Kong, before training as an accountant in local government. Even at this early age he had thinning hair which he claimed to be an act of 'magic'. Daniels later sported a wig for much of his television career.[3] After working as a junior clerk and then as an auditor in local government, Daniels joined his parents in the grocery business they were running at the time.[citation needed] He later set up his own shop – at one point a mobile shop – but eventually gave this up in favor of his growing career as a magician.

Daniels' interest in magic began at the age of 11 when, during a holiday, he read a book called How to Entertain at Parties. He has stated that: "From that moment, I can safely say that all I ever wanted to do in life was to become a professional magician". He began performing magic as a hobby, occasionally entertaining at parties and youth clubs and later doing shows for fellow servicemen during his national service. After returning to civilian life he continued to develop his magic by performing in clubs in the evenings while working at his grocery business during the day. At one point he worked with his first wife Jackie under the name of 'The Eldanis', an anagram of Daniels. It was while working the clubs that he developed what would become his long-running catchphrase, "You'll like this ... not a lot, but you'll like it." He has stated that he first came up with the line at a club in Bradford as a way to deal with a heckler.


Daniels was awarded the prestigious "Magician of the Year’" Award by the Academy of Magical Arts in 1982, and was the first magician from outside the US to receive it.

An Easter special of The Paul Daniels Magic Show won the Golden Rose of Montreux Award at the International TV Festival in Switzerland in 1985.

Daniels was the recipient of The Maskelyne, awarded for services to British Magic by the Magic Circle in 1988.

Daniels was also awarded the "Great Lafayette Award" by the Edinburgh International Magic Festival in 2011.

Personal Life

In February of 2016, Daniels was diagnosed with terminal cancer.[1] He died the following month.[2]


  1. Paul Daniels 'diagnosed with incurable brain tumour'
  2. Paul Daniels: TV magician dies after brain tumour diagnosis
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