Magical times with the Visual Wizard — Chris Cheong

An entertaining spell with the Master of Illusions, Chris Cheong

Abhinaya S.B.
The Pragyan Blog
Published in
2 min readAug 2, 2017


Cheong in his happy place — Picture Courtesy: Pixelbug, NIT Trichy

The word “Illusion” may trigger a range of abstract pictures in the mind’s eye — disappearing rabbits, solid bottles emerging out of handkerchiefs and numerous other well played tricks of the light. When we sat down with Chris Cheong — the Infotainment artist for Day 1 of Pragyan ’17 — we got a glimpse into the art of illusionism and the amount of effort that plants the awe-struck expression on the faces of the unsuspecting audience.

Touted to be one of the best illusionists in the world and the youngest professional magician hailing from Malaysia, Chris, with a childish gleam in his eyes, spoke about the first trick he perfected.

“The one with the vanishing pinky, that was the first trick I mastered. It is quite simple, but for a second you really think that the finger has vanished”

When asked about his favourite trick, he referred to the fork trick he had performed in front of the Pragyan attendees just an hour earlier. Reflecting on the trick in which he appeared to — quite effortlessly — bend a solid, strong fork, he stated that he enjoyed it for the look of absolute bewilderment it brought to the viewers’ faces and that it took him a whopping 11 years to master it.

It was unnerving to realise how the huge amount of background work that went into every little magic trick remained largely unappreciated by the general public. Cheong spoke about how Illusionism as a profession did not get due credit in the society.

“The hard work and effort put into mastering the different magic tricks is not recognised. There is no specific institute to train yourself in this art. Everything is learnt on your own, through books; especially when you begin early, in your teenage.”

Cheong, who drew inspiration from the world renowned Illusionist David Copperfield, attributed his own success to sheer practice.

“I just kept practising again and again. It’s a tough thing to master.”

Practice makes a man perfect

On the one illusion he wished he could convert to reality, he quickly fired at us a ready response.

“ I would want to fly. Levitation. Imagine how good it would be to be able to fly!”

A bunch of intriguing magic tricks later, when we grudgingly decided to wrap up the interview, he gave some golden advice to all the aspiring magicians of today.

“Don’t lose hope, keep practising. Be prepared to face failure.”



Abhinaya S.B.
The Pragyan Blog

A reader, a writer, a nature lover.