Thursday, February 27, 2014

History of Magic and Illusion in India

India has long been known and is still called by some as the land of magicians and snake charmers. The close association of this country with magic and illusion has a long history and this has added to its fame worldwide. Every age has had its own magicians and illusionists who have played a pivotal role in keep it alive and ticking through the times. The history of magic and illusion in India can be conveniently clubbed into the modern and the ancient periods.

While the ancient period can be related with the mythological texts wherein certain actions were considered to be magical since these were beyond the realm of understanding scientifically. Sages and mystics are also believed to be having the supernatural powers with which they can create magic. In this sense, magic is understood as a powerful phenomenon which can be used to make material changes rather than only creating the illusions.

On the other hand, the modern illusion or magic is more like a display of skills and is used for recreation, entertainment as well as learning. In India, this art began to be more prevalent in the public domain from 18th century onwards. Pir Mohammed Chhel and PC Sorkar are two names which are famously associated with magic in India. While the former never performed on stages and for commercial purposes and restricted displaying of this art only to the villagers and peasant, the latter is credited with commercialization of this art by showcasing it on stage. PC Sorkar is said to the Father of Modern Magic in India. He has been the inspiration behind the many budding as well as established magicians, including the illusionist Sumit Kharbanda.

Magicians have come up from different parts of India such as gujarat, West Bengal, Kerala, Delhi, Karnataka, Mumbai and from other parts as well. This proves that the heritage of magic in India has been shared commonly across the length and the breadth of country and the local artists have played important role in popularising this art in their own regions, in the whole country as well as abroad.

India has a long history of using magic as a tool of entertainment and learning. Shows have long been organized at various public platforms. Whether it is the grand illusion show for the birthday parties at home or at the functions organized by schools, at the circuses and even for the more corporate world, magic has found a place for itself for the purpose of entertainment. Nowadays, it is even popular in the corporate world. It is used for attracting the attention of the spectators to a particular brand or product. Magic forcorporate events and product launch has also gained immense popularity as an attention grabber.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, amazing details and information towards the magic and illusion in India. Thanks a lot for the share. Best Indian Magicians | Entertainment Magic Show in Coimbatore