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Born in Stockholm (Sweden), now live in Sapporo (Japan). Hold a Ph.D. in computer science and work with computers during the days, perform magic in a bar during the nights (and weekends, for kids). Also used to teach historical fencing back in Sweden.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Randomly attending Akira Fujii lecture

Right after my own presentation finished during the Tokyo review meeting, I got a friend request on Facebook from a guy I have met several times in Sapporo. He does magic as a hobby and became pretty close with one of the magicians in our magic bar, so he came to the bar quite a lot. Now he lives in Tokyo, so he doesn't come to Sapporo very often.

He had found a "You might know this Swedish guy" suggestion on Facebook that day and decided to add me. When I accepted the request, he messaged me and asked: "Are you in Tokyo now?", since I had written some status updates that strongly implied I that I was indeed in Tokyo. I said yes, and he said that this was the day of the March lecture in Akira Fujii's lecture series. He has magic lectures once per month (or whatever frequency they keep, I did not ask about the details). Akira Fujii is a very technically skilled Japanese magician who is somewhat famous abroad (among magicians) for doing some absurdly difficult things very well.

So my friend said I should come to the lecture. I said I would probably not get away from work that early (they start at 19:30, I rarely get off work that early), but he said that it was OK to show up late so I said I would try to find them if I got off work before they finished. They were in some remote location in Tokyo I had never visited before, and the lectures are held in what looks like a normal apartment building, with no signs in particular showing that anything apart from normal people living in normal apartments is going on.

Since the address seemed to be correct, I knocked on the door and stepped inside. There was indeed a lecture there. A very mixed group of around 15 people were there. A junior high student, a young woman, an old woman, retired men, young men, etc. The contents of the lecture were pretty basic stuff, but with good instruction and good theoretical discussion on why you should do things a certain way etc. Learning the basics correctly is important, so that was good I think.

My friend also asked me to do a trick he likes, which I did when he lived in Sapporo but have not done lately. In the end I ended up doing it, but screwed up the first move because I had forgotten how many cards to steal away or something like that. But the people were all very kind spectators, haha.

I was also asked to take a DVD and a box with breakable magic props to Sapporo to give to this magician in Sapporo who my friend in Tokyo is most close with. And to pay for the props and ask for money in Sapporo, haha. So they saved the postage on that. But that meant I could also get to see Akira Fujii do a three shell game routine, which was interesting.

We also went out to dinner together afterwards (7 or so of us). The lectures seem good and they were very cheap. If you live in Tokyo and want to learn magic, that might be a good way.

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