My name is Glenn Mc Meeking. My stage name “Glendini” is a combination of my name and that of Houdini the Magician and Escape Artist, who was my inspiration for me to start collecting magic and escapology paraphernalia.
My fascination for magic and escapes began with childhood games of cops and robbers which ultimately involved me being tied up by my friends. I seemed to always escape with ease and only later on in life did I realize that I had a huge passion for Escapology.
My first magic trick was taught to me by my father, it was a card trick and I was always energised by the reactions that I got when I performed the trick for others and I always wanted to learn more.
I bought my first pair of shackles from Davenports Magic Shop in Charing Cross London when I was travelling in 1994. Thereafter I found books on magic at Camden Town and some included props and then I was hooked. I have since studied and practiced the secrets of the escape and magic trade getting ideas and concepts from these books. Self-teaching magic DVD’s, coaching and support from magician colleagues and the internet have also helped me grow.
When starting out, I performed mainly for friends, family and at some work functions, but in January 2007, I was approached by a leading SA bank and was asked to perform for 15 minutes at their marketing roadshow (its theme was “It’s a Kind of Magic”). The audience and event organizers enjoyed the magic and escape acts and this became the start of my magic and escape career.
It was at the same roadshow that I met magician Alexander May and on 15 December 2007 that same year Alexander performed a stage show at the “Milnerton Playhouse Theatre” where he asked me to do a 15-minute slot which then became my first official stage performance. The show, “Magic: One”, was a success and my escape act went down exceptionally well with the audience. Alex and I have been good friends ever since and we often meet up to discuss magic.
In June 2008 I was interviewed by Robyn Daly, Editor to the “Get It” magazine who was looking to do an article about someone from the community that was doing something unique and different. The interview led to an escape photo-shoot for the magazine and the result was a double page feature article in their July 2008 issue.
Just two days after the July issue of “Get It” was released, I got a call from officials at “Pollsmoor Correctional Prison” and was invited to perform for the staff. I visited the prison in the early hours of the morning just as the shifts were being changed and, as part of my act, challenged the prison staff to secure me in regulation handcuffs. I then asked the prison warders to place stickers over the keyholes to prevent me unlocking the cuffs using any type of “hidden key”. My escape time was under 60 seconds which left the prison warders in disbelief. The show for the warders went off well and I was given the applause that I deserved.
Since then it has been all systems go and my performances are now well into the hundreds. My stage name “Glendini” is well known around the city and if you are looking for a magician with a difference, I’m your guy.