BEN Hart is a man on a mission - a magical mission.

Having wowed TV audiences on hit TV show Britain’s Got Talent when he left millions mystified en route to the final, Ben can finally get back out on the road with his show, appropriately titled Wonder.

“My job is to remind people that you that you are full of wonder and that what makes you human is seeing that the world is astonishing,” he said. “I’m just a tour guide.

“We are all born with that feeling of astonishment which we have as a kid; then as you become an adult you put up all these barriers. It’s still there, you have just forgotten where it is.”

If you are expecting spectacular constructions and masses of razzamatazz from Ben then think again.

“Magic is very much about construction in same way that comedy is,” said Ben. “If you get the rules right in the case of comedy it makes people laugh. With magic you’ll leave the audience amazed.


MAGIC TOUCH: Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)

MAGIC TOUCH: Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)


“I’m drawn in my own shows to using everyday objects from the audience. I borrow things from them so it’s very clear that we don’t have stupid boxes and elaborate things.

“I basically deliver an acoustic set on stage - it’s very stripped back, it’s a very different approach.

“But I must say that this approach hasn’t come out of necessity; it’s not due to budget reasons. It’s because I take away everything I don’t think is serving the magic. My only aim is to make you feel amazement, anything else can be lost.

“It’s quite hard to explain but there are really two types of trick. One is where the more you think about it, the easier it is to understand it. Those are the box tricks.

“Then there’s the other type of trick where the more think about it the more impossible it becomes. I always try to do those kinds of tricks. I want my shows to get harder to figure out the more you think; I want to wrap your brain in knots.”

Ben has always had a sense of wonder about magic. At the age of 16 he was awarded the prestigious Young Magician of the Year award by the Magic Circle and is one of the youngest ever members of The Inner Magic Circle (with gold star) – the highest level of the famous Magic Circle.


Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)

Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)


For many people our experience of magic was limited to watching the likes of Paul Daniels performing tricks on TV.

“I have to confess, I was really turned off with the magic I saw growing up on TV,” said Ben. “It never really did it for me.

“What I do is the antithesis of the cheesy, bad joke magician and the public seems to like that.”

The appeal of any trick is leaving an audience baffled. And yet there have been an increasing number of TV programmes which have tried to ‘lift the lid’ on the dark arts, revealing how many tricks are done.

“If the audience gets an understanding about the lengths magicians will go to fool them, I think that is interesting and potentially valuable,” said Ben. “What I don’t like is the completely emotionally empty exposure of magic which don’t think anyone really gains anything from but which has a kind of voyeuristic appeal. I don’t see benefit of that.”

Discussing the art of magic with Ben you soon realise the passion and depth of knowledge that goes into making the stage shows spellbinding.

“The job has to be driven by obsession,” he said. “If it’s not driven by love and obsession there’s no way it would make sense to be a magician. The way I approach it is that I’m going to do magic anyway and the fact it’s my job a nice bonus.”

Like all performers lockdown prevented Ben from getting out on the road but he still kept busy as he is much in demand from both film and theatre producers looking to him for effects.

“I worked on a movie and some plays designing some special effects so I was staying creatively engaged during lockdown,” he said. “It made me reflect on how important the live events actually are to a magician and that what I do is unique; that feeling of astonishment that we bring to audiences, I don’t really think you get that in other art forms. If anything lockdown made me more determined to book in as many shows as I can because I can bring something different to an audience.

“And now as I’m preparing to go on the road I’m really enjoying remembering all the things I have to do. Not just the things you do on stage, but all the simple stuff you have to do off stage like packing.”


Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)

Ben Hart (Picture: Matt Crockett)


Given the increasing demand for Ben talents for stage productions and movies it’s perhaps surprising that there aren’t more TV magic shows.

“I think I’ve spent most of my adult life talking to producers and TV channels about what we are going to do and nothing seems to present itself,” he said. “I think it’s because people see magic in the wrong way. It’s at its most beautiful and powerful when it’s stripped back without all the excess.

TV producers want a big stunt but if I ask you to hold a coin, close your hand round it and it vanishes are you telling me that is any less impressive? It’s a miracle, we just need producers to get their heads round it.”

If Ben does his job right on stage - which he does - audiences will leave the theatre entertained and yet mystified.

“There is a little part of me, the vanity part inside of me which thinks ‘I wish they knew what I was doing here because then they would appreciate it more’,” he said. “But being a magician is really is a completely selfless act and that appeals to me.”

Ben Hart brings his Wonder tour to The Lowry, Salford Quays on Monday, January 24; Burnley Mechanics on Friday, February 4 and Oldham Coliseum on Saturday, February 12. Details from