CaptureSleight of hand, stand-up and spectacular furniture juggling will all play a part in one of the North East’s most magical events.

The South Tyneside International Magic Festival, organised by South Tyneside Council, returns in March with three public shows at the Customs House, South Shields.

Among the many highlights is an International Gala Performance on Friday March 11, featuring seven stars from across the UK, Europe and the USA.

This includes unique double act Men in Coats, who have already performed around the world and clocked up more than 20 million hits on YouTube, as well as multi award-winning Malin Nilsson, who was the first woman to be named both Swedish Champion of Magic and Scandinavian Champion of Magic.

They will be joined by American entertainer Chad Long, North East favourite John Archer, mind reader Kennedy and show-stopper Steve Rawlings, whose unusual routines involve juggling Ping-Pong balls with his mouth, furniture juggling and balancing bottles and glasses while simultaneously juggling blazing fire torches.

The show, which is open to all ages, will be compared by comedy magician Danny Buckler who has toured with Victoria Wood and hosted primetime BBC 1 show, The Secrets of Magic.

Councillor Alan Kerr, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council, with responsibility for Culture and Leisure, said: “The Friday night Gala Show has always been one of the South Tyneside International Magic Festival’s most popular events and this year looks set to be no exception.

“With the aid of John Archer, we have conjured up an amazing line-up, packed full of comedy, tricks and all-round entertainment to amuse and excite audience members of all ages.”

Tickets for the South Tyneside International Magic Festival’s Friday night Gala Show are priced from £13 each and on sale from the Customs House Box Office on www.customshouse.co.uk or 0191 4541234.

Other highlights in the 13th annual festival include a second International Gala Show on Saturday March 12, a Family Magic Extravaganza, sponsored and programmed by MagicBox on Wednesday March 9 and a three-day convention exclusively for professional magicians.

More information about the event, supported by the Customs House and BBC Newcastle, can be found at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/magicfestival.