Thursday, September 18, 2008

Kel And Jay On This Issue Of Mangaholix!

.:As Promised... Kel And Jay On Mangaholix!:.

For the benefit of those people who will obviously have a hard time seeing the text on the picture, I encoded the write-up here! If you wanna see how it looks like in the magazine, though, you can click here!

Much thanks to Ian, Marthy, Harvey, and the rest of the people at Mangaholix for featuring us! This was definitely great!

To everyone else, who wants to see it for yourselves and get treated to an awesome magazine at the same time, grab the latest copy of Mangaholix (Issue 6!) from your favorite newsstands and bookstores.

The Cosplay Community's Official Magical Tandem: Kel&Jay
written by Marthy Angue
photos by Harvey Lavina

When somebody tells you that you have a pair of magicians to interview in ten minutes, there's not a lot you can anticipate. Will they be magically appearing in front of our doorstep in a dust cloud? Will they be wearing cheap, ratty tuxes and cardboard top hats? Will first-aid treatment for dismembered showgirls be in order? Miles away from such magic performance hotspots like Las Vegas or Hogwarts, the easiest mental image to conjure up when you're talking "local magic" would be the dumpy-looking clown with the vanishing handkerchief trick at your little cousin's birthday party.

They arrived via car, entered through the door, and sat down for the interview with all the velvety prestige of a sack of potatoes. Kel Fabie, the chipper one, wore a plain white, long-sleeved shirt that wouldn't be out of place in a government office. Jay Mata, his surlier partner, wore a markedly unremarkable black shirt. Together, they make up the performance tandem "Kel and Jay", and their entrance was definitely a curious opener to the most fun I've had over a magic act in a long while.

Apart from the standard "things-pop-out-of-nowhere" schtick, the duo puts on a diverse show, performing everything from escapism (Actually, it's called escapology. :P - Kel), card tricks, hypnosis, mind-reading, and a good few things children should really not be trying at home (Driving a card blindfolded, anyone?)/ Their "don't try this at home" antics and death-defying stunts aren't the only parts of their act to merit a PG rating. This is not your little cousin's birthday magic act.

While the duo has had their share of children's parties, a Kel and Jay show with all the toppings often takes on a very mature flavor. Indeed, half the fun is watching the humorous dynamic between the two- Kel being the smiling, roguish jokester with a penchant for the mildly salacious, and Jay being the perpetually dour pragmatist with a bare-faced enthusiasm for scaring his audience witless. Together, they present a curious and entertaining contrast between the theatrically mystifying and the outright mind-boggling: since they don't claim to have supernatural powers, you're either left busting a lobe trying to figure the trick out or suspecting that they were lying and that there were actually supernatural forces afoot.

The two take great pride in the showmanship they developed for their sets. Believing that the techniques of the performance is just as important as the tricks themselves, their routines certainly make for a very entertaining show. As for their vision of elevating magic as a legitimate art form in the Philippines? One can certainly hope they'll bring a little magic back to our mundane lives.

Kel and Jay can be seen hosting events and parties as well as performing street magic for confounded cosplayers at fan conventions. For bookings, Kel and Jay can be reached through or

"You have to be working to elevate Magic as an art form."

Day Job: Radio DJ (Not at the moment, but who'm I to complain? - Kel)
Professional Profile: Performed for celebs at birthday parties.
Infamous for: a rope trick with very naughty undertones.

"It's not enough to know the trick. You have to make it a performance."

Day Job:
High School Teacher
Professional Profile: Plays the underground circuit performing for corporate functions.
Infamous for: tricks involving gambling cheats.

Tandem Origin:
Met up for a surprise birthday party thrown for Filipino comics mainstay Elbert Or.
No Longer Admitted in: Casinos.
Thumbs Up: The cosplay and anime community for being such great sports during performances.
Thumbs Down: Starlets who take tricks too seriously.

Q: Where do things go after you make them disappear?
A: ANYWHERE we want.

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