A MAGICIAN who grew up watching Dynamo and dreamed of performing magic has been named one of the best wedding entertainers in the country.

Warrington-born Brad Bennett first began his career in magic at the young age of 16, hustling on the busy streets of Manchester to try and get a gig if and when he could.

And now the 26-year-old has been given the award for best entertainer in the wedding industry by leading wedding planning platform Hitched.

The former Culcheth High School student spoke to the Warrington Guardian about where his fascination with magic evolved from.

“I started doing magic in high school and my dad would show me little tricks here and there,” he said.

“I started taking tricks to school. Then Dynamo came on TV and me and my dad would watch it together. My dad figured out how to do some of the tricks he did and showed me.

“I did them at school and everyone would go mad. I would show them to the teachers, and they would ask me to perform them in the staff rooms.”

Warrington Guardian: Magician Brad Bennett performing magic at an eventMagician Brad Bennett performing magic at an event (Image: Supplied)
After his early success at school, Brad then went on to Birchwood College. Despite a push from teachers to choose another career path to fall back on, Brad said he stayed focused on his dream of becoming a magician.

“I started going to Manchester Printworks and I would stand there and perform magic when I was 16 and 17. People would tip me, and I got to know the bouncers on the doors.

“Then I started going up to the club bouncers and would show tricks to the managers of places.”

Brad, formerly from Latchford, told how he would end up performing in high end nightclubs in Manchester including Club Liv and Bijou – known for having famous faces visit.

“I worked and would get paid pennies, but I didn’t care because it was a job.”

On one memorable occasion, Brad was even given the chance to perform magic to singer, Justin Bieber, at Bijou when he made an appearance there one night during one of his tours.

“His security was slapping peoples' phones out of their hands as they took pictures of him. I walked through a big crowd and his security said, ‘you have one minute’, and they let me perform magic to him.”

Following this, the entrepreneur faced a lull and decided to get some work to cover bills while he continued to try to build his career as an entertainer.

Age 20, he was introduced to the owner of Dead Eyes Cocktail Bar, on Bridge Street, Jimmy Bannister, who got him a job doing a regular one-hour gig in popular town centre eateries: San Lorenzo, Las Ramblas and Grill on the Square.

“Jimmy saw something in me,” Brad added. “Just by meeting clients there and word getting about, it has snowballed from there.”

Brad’s one-man-band, Brad Bennett Magic, has seen him do gigs in places all over the country including Edinburgh, Covent Garden in London and heaps of wedding venues.

Warrington Guardian: Magician Brad BennettMagician Brad Bennett (Image: Supplied)
Hitched is a leading platform for wedding planning and they hold awards each year to honour the best in the industry, each award based on the highest rated reviews couples have left.

Brad gained several five-star reviews from married couples who had booked him for their special day which led to him winning the award.

Speaking on what it means to be named best entertainer, out of hundreds of other wedding vendors, the dad-of-two said: “It feels good to get recognition for the stuff that I have been doing.

“I have actually put the work in and gained the rewards.”

The magician added that one of the best parts of the job, besides doing something that he loves, is being able to have the flexibility to spend as much time as he can with his children.

“When I was growing up my dad was always working and my mum, but with my job it gives me a lot more time to parent. It’s like a dream that I have been able to do this.”

Despite now having moved to North Wales recently with his partner and children, Brad is still well-known within Warrington for his gift.

“If I go anywhere in Warrington, I have to stop and get my cards out,” he laughed.

To see what Brad has to offer, visit his website Bradbmagic.com or visit his social media pages @Bradbmagic