Ali Bongo Farewell to a legend

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Postby dat8962 » Mar 8th, '09, 17:56

This is indeed a very sad day for magic and my condolences to Ali's family.

I was fortunate to meet Ali for the first time last year and did so on three occasions since. Ha was such an inspiration to magicians of all ages around the world.

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Postby daleshrimpton » Mar 8th, '09, 18:10

you're like dont say much, but what you do say is worth listening to....
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Postby Special-K » Mar 8th, '09, 18:34

A sad loss to the world of magic. I grew up as a kid watching David Nixon's Magic Box 6.45 Mondays ITV just before Coronation Street and always remember Ali's credits rolling off screen each week. He had the two things that every magician needs, good tricks and a warm personailty. I shall miss him.

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Postby saxmad » Mar 8th, '09, 18:37

And, as expected, the BBC website has nothing on the sad news.
In spite of the huge contribution Ali made to British TV in the 70's.

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Postby dat8962 » Mar 8th, '09, 19:20

I also taook an earlier look at the BBC news website expecting to see something there but nothing. Nothing on ITV either :cry:

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Postby taffy » Mar 8th, '09, 20:27

RIP Mr Bongo! :cry:

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Postby FRK » Mar 8th, '09, 20:36

What a sad Loss


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Postby mark lewis » Mar 8th, '09, 21:05

I used to work with him on a daily basis in Hamley's. And part of my svengali routine contains one trick he showed me.

Very knowledgable and his "Shriek of Araby" act was quite a classic.

Sad he is gone.

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Postby keith atkinson » Mar 8th, '09, 21:22

Such sad news. I found this brief description of him.....
Found this about Ali.

Ali Bongo (born as William Wallace in India, 1929) was a British comedy magician who has an act in which he is known as the "Shriek of Araby".[1]

Bongo has written many books on magic, many containing tricks of his own. As well as writing them he also illustrates them in his instantly recognisable style. He has acted as magic consultant for many TV shows and musicals, including the Paul Daniels Magic Show for the BBC.

Ali Bongo was the presenter of the Ali Bongo’s Cartoon Carnival which featured himself and his assistant Oscar. It aired on UK Tv BBC1 on Saturdays between 12.5pm to 12.45pm 0ctober 23rd 1971 – 18th December 1971. (Nine episodes)

Bongo was featured in an episode of Children's TV show Rainbow and appeared in the science-fiction show The Tomorrow People in the serial "Revenge of Jedikiah". He also acted as the magical advisor to 70s cult TV show, Ace of Wands.

Bongo won the 1993 Carlton Award for Comedy. On 8 September 2008, he was elected President of The Magic Circle.

At the beginning of February 2009, Bongo collapsed while giving a lecture in Paris. He was taken to hospital and, whilst there, suffered a stroke. Bongo was subsequently returned to the United Kingdom and cared for in St Thomas' Hospital, London, where he later died from complications arising from pneumonia.[2]

Ali Bongo died March 8, 2009.

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Postby ifenn » Mar 8th, '09, 23:17

I'm totally gutted - his book was my favourite when I was a kid and it triggered a love of magic that continues to this day. I remember making props with my father using the instructions from his book. Years later I was thrilled to meet him. Today is a very sad day.

The BBC report is here:

And the Telegraph has an obituary: ... Bongo.html

I guess these things just take a little time, particularly on a Sunday.

All the best,


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Postby Tony Hyams » Mar 8th, '09, 23:20

Very sad to hear, my condolences go out to his family and friends.

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Postby crozboz » Mar 8th, '09, 23:41

Such a loss to the magic world.
All our love and condolences to his family.
Rest in peace.

All the best,
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Postby gunnarkr » Mar 9th, '09, 01:17

That's very sad news.

I was fortunate enough to meet him a few times and he was always very friendly and distinguished gentleman. This is a big loss for the magic community.

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Postby Dirty Davey » Mar 9th, '09, 08:41

Sad news indeed, my thoughts are with his family.

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Postby bananafish » Mar 9th, '09, 09:45

I too am sad to hear the news. He was a great man - a great magician who helped mold the image of magic in this country.

I didn't know him that well, but spent an hour chatting to him at Ipswich station one time, and would have gladly had the "session" go on all night.

a true gentleman.

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