Liam Rudden: And that’s magic...

The Illusionists. Pic: Comp
The Illusionists. Pic: Comp
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ALI Bongo, David Nixon, Paul Daniels and maybe even The Great Soprendo were the magicians of my generation. Then along came a new dangerous breed of people like David Copperfield, Penn & Teller and David Blaine.

Now it appears it’s time for them, if not to disappear, then fade into the background as The Illusionists, a seven-strong troupe of magic-makers set out to reinvent the medium once again.

Discover them for yourself on Saturday as they make their city debut. Meet Dan Sperry (The Anti Conjurer), Kevin James (The Inventor), Andrew Basso (The Escapologist), Phillip Escoffey (The Mentalist), Mark Kalin (The Gentlemen), Jeff Hobson (The Trickster) and Jinger Leigh (The Enchantress).

At the Festival Theatre, once home to master illusionist The Great Lafayette, each will showcase jaw-dropping acts of illusion, levitation, mind-reading, disappearance and, for the first time ever in history, a full view, water torture escape.

Inspired by the greats of the past, including such legends as Harry Houdini, it’s worth remembering that while the appearance of The Illusionists might seem far removed from the camp spectacle of the Great Lafayette (who, to this day, reputedly haunts the theatre, having burned to death there when it was The Empire) the chances are, it is not.

After all, as any truly great illusionist will tell you, there have always been but a finite number of tricks, it’s just the way you dress them up that changes.

The Illusionists: Witness The Impossible, Festival Theatre, Saturday, 6pm and 9pm, £32.50-£40, 0131-529 6000