Tag Archives: The York School

Magicians of York

25 May

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Magicana returns for the annual York School Challenge

The objective of Challenge Week  is to instill experience and to enrich and develop learning within students. Thus, Julie Eng and James Alan brought the challenge in the art of performing magic to eleven Grade 6 students. We started by teaching some of the classic of magic right off the top, with assistance from visiting UK magician, Will Houstoun. We customized “special tricks” and routines for each group to give a more intimate and personal experience. The students then spent two days injecting their own brand of creativity into their filmmaking as they learned the process of scripting, directing, acting and editing. However, the final challenge was on the last day–a live performance.

Armed with the knowledge of the different pressures that comes with a live performance versus a filmed one, our newly-minted magicians delivered a delightful performance at a senior’s residence, The Briton House. Students integrated humour to keep the atmosphere energetic, and called volunteers to the stage to further engage their audience. Their show ended with an enthusiastic round of applause and grateful shouts of “thank you” from the audience. We would like to thank recreation director, Susan Blye, and The Briton House for providing Magicana with this intergenerational opportunity, because, without an audience, there is no challenge!

Thank you Mr. Noestheden, Ms. Zhao and of course, our students of TYS, for all your hard work! You all showed great talent and potential throughout Challenge Week and we hope you continue with your magic endeavours!

Magic + Film = Challenge Week

20 May

After an exciting outing with the Toronto International Festival (TIFF) and the March Break Magic ‘n Movies partnership, Magicana redeveloped our annual Challenge Week Magic Camp (May 4 – 6) for the students of The York School. The mission of Challenge Week is to challenge the mind, body and spirit through authentic experiences which extend and enrich student learning. And that we did!

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In partnership with TIFF, we started the week learning cool magic tricks. Then, we injected the magic of the movie making process. Students learned to write a script; to pitch it to the group; followed by  casting, directing and filming the script. Everyone had a role to play in front and behind the camera.

Then, we learned the importance of creating texture and learned how to edit the films. From there, we learned more magic – armed with the new knowledge of moving making – to start the planning for a live performance scheduled for the end of the week.

Students learned the power and differences (and pressure) of creating a live performance versus a filmed one. They also realized that both can be highly successful once we integrated planning and added interesting (magic) moments.

As their lead instructor, I was very proud of the work that students created and the magic that resulted. Many thanks to the outstanding Mrs. Dionisio and Ms. Zhao and to all my fabulous students at TYS. I hope you will continue with your magical efforts as you all showed great talents!

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