HUNDREDS of Ipswich residents were spellbound by the slight-of-hand tricks and comedy of magician Matt Hollywood at two charity shows at the weekend.
The Ipswich RSL Services Club hosted Mr Hollywood's Grand Illusion shows, which were organised by Dawn and Cameron Wyatt as a fundraiser for their one-year-old son Blaise.
In February Blaise was diagnosed with spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, so his parents decided to stage a number of charity events over the next 12 months to pay for his specialists and expenses.
And what better way than to start with Mr Hollywood, who has become a familiar face on TV after appearing on The Footy Show, Mornings with Kerri-Anne, The Shak, Ready Steady Cook and other shows.
Only a few weeks ago he was on stage with celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay and comedian Jerry Lewis, but at the weekend he wowed audiences with his first Ipswich shows.
“We've had a great response to the shows, people have loved it,” Mrs McKenzie-Wyatt said.
“We had good numbers during Saturday's day show and on that night we had close to 200 people.
“It's the first time we've tried organising something like this so I think it was a good first try.”
While the magic and comedy of Mr Hollywood was the headliner, Mrs McKenzie-Wyatt said young Blaise himself attracted his fair share of attention.
“People were coming up and asking ‘is this the boy we've come here to support?'” Mrs McKenzie-Wyatt said.
“We had a lot of people we didn't know who said they came to support Blaise, so that was really touching.
“Being young, Blaise didn't think too much about all the attention he was getting.”
She said they were planning to host a golf day and a community barbecue as their next fundraisers later this year.