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10 questions with Ireland’s Houdini Master Magician Steve Spade!

Steve Spade – We ask acclaimed Limerick-born magician Steve Spade 10 questions about his life, his career in magic, and his love for his native Limerick!

10 questions with Ireland’s Houdini Master Magician Steve Spade!

steve spade

Steve has been doing magic since his childhood, performing at every opportunity on the streets and in the pubs and clubs of his native city.

Steve Spade was born in Limerick and has quickly established himself as a firm favourite on the Irish celebrity circuit. He combines top-drawer sleight of hand skills with psychological subtleties and great comic timing. His daring escapes – being burnt at the stake or escaping from a sealed box underwater – have garnered national headlines.


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Steve has been doing magic since his childhood, performing at every opportunity on the streets and in the pubs and clubs of his native city. He also worked the kid’s party circuit, honing his skills in front of the toughest audience of them all!

 

Steve has been heavily influenced by the masters of the past, including Harry Houdini. His Houdini tribute show Beyond Magic packed the City Limits Comedy Club in Cork in the summer of 2011, as well as playing the college circuit. He followed that success with a stunt Houdini would have been proud of – he was sealed in a wooden crate and dropped into the River Shannon in front of over 2,000 people.

 

This led to a regular slot on The Daily Show on RTE1 in the spring of 2012. Steve has also appeared on TV3’s Come Dine With Me.

 

For Steve, the intimate miracle of close-up magic is at the heart of his art. He has wowed many celebrities, including Mike Tyson, Russell Brand and Rihanna.

 

Tell us about your childhood?

 

That’s a while ago now. I had a great childhood, grew up with my very supportive mom & Dad and brother and two sisters. I was the kind of kid that questioned everything and took my toys apart to see how they worked. Curious about life I think sums it up well that’s where the start for wanting to learn magic came from before I even knew what magic was.

 

When did you know you wanted to become a magician?

 

I remember watching David Copperfield when I was very young and thinking what he did was amazing and also remember watching the Houdini movie with Tony Curtis with my dad one Christmas, and was hooked on Houdini’s life and career ever since but yes when I was younger and I was asked what you want to be when you grow up I used to say a magician. Not sure have I grown up yet, but I am a magician haha.

 

Has a trick ever gone wrong for you?

 

Tricks can sometimes go wrong when you’re learning them at first, and the worst thing that can happen is you get the card wrong, but as an escape artist and Stuntman when things go wrong you usually come away with bruised ribs or a dislocated thumb or shoulder, it’s happened… not for the faith hearted

 

What was the most difficult trick you have ever done?

 

That’s a tough question because every stunt I trained for has different challenges within it but one that comes to mind was the escape from being chained to a chair with 100 feet of chain and 4 padlocks inside a mobile home with explosives primed to explode if I didn’t get out in time and a shipping container hanging above (heavy stuff lol)

 

What is your favourite trick to perform?

 

One of my favourite tricks to perform to this day is one of the first tricks I learnt that made me an escape artist: the Houdini straitjacket escape or 100-ft rope tie and of course card tricks.

 

Who are your greatest inspirations?

 

I get inspired by a lot of different performers and people around the world, but I think I was always inspired by my Dad. If I could be half the man he was, I would be happy. My dad passed away 2 years ago, and I miss him a lot. He was a great support to me and my career.

 

How has your work been affected by Covid-19 and what are your plans for after lockdown?

 

2020 has definitely been tough for all artists in the industry. Some people have tried to adapt and go online and do virtual shows but it’s not the same. It’s been difficult as a close-up magician and stage performer also some stunts and TV projects had to be postponed this year due to the restrictions but we will be back bigger and better in 2021

 

What has been your greatest achievement so far?

 

I think when the Irish Media called me Ireland’s answer to Houdini. That was a big turning point in my career as there aren’t many professional magicians in Ireland, especially not escape artists that attempt stunts that Houdini did in his career. Also winning a set of Houdini’s handcuffs on an American TV show and performing for Mike Tyson.

 

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

 

In 5 years, I see myself doing what I love to do which is entertaining people and making people question everything they are seeing, just like I did as a kid. Magic is a gift you must share. I’m just about to become a Dad for the first time so in five years’ time I’ll be able to teach my child a little bit of magic so who knows we could have new little baby Spade Magician

 

What do you love most about Limerick?

 

What I love most about Limerick is my family, friends and the people of Limerick. That drive and passion we all have for a great city. No matter where I go in the world and perform for celebrities etc, I always love coming back and performing here in my hometown, or walking down the street and having someone shout “Well Spade do a trick”.

 

For more stories on magic, go HERE

 

For more on Steve Spade, go HERE

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.