Scott and Muriel

From Circopedia

Comedy Magicians

By Dominique Jando

Scott & Muriel
California-born Scott Nelson developed a keen interest in magic at an early age, and started performing and supporting himself as a magician when he was eighteen. As his act was growing, he began to conceive his own illusions (not a frequent occurrence in the world of Magic), for which he generally needed an assistant. A friend introduced him to Muriel Brugman, a native of Weesp, in the Netherlands, who had a keen interest in physical comedy. Although he didn't consider her for his assistant, he fell in love with her.

Muriel went on to learn physical comedy at the École Philippe Gaulier in London—a school Scott attended eighteen months after Muriel, when he finally overcame his fear of the legendary teacher. Scott and Muriel shared common interests (one was unicycling), and both thought that magic and comedy were a very good match; in 1999, they began to work together in a magic show they had created, and which they titled Grand Dellusions.

Success came early: In June 2000, they won the title of "National Champions of Holland" at the Dutch National Congress of Magic. One month later in Portugal, they won the magic world’s highest award, the Grand Prix of the Fédération Internationale des Sociétés Magiques (International Federation of Magic Societies, or FISM), and with it, the title of World Champions of Magic. They remain the first and only comedy magic duo to have won this prestigious award.

Festivals, Awards, and Television

From then on, Scott & Muriel's career was launched. In 2002 they were featured in the Juste pour rire ("Just for Laughs") Festival in Montreal, Canada, and the following year, they were the first magicians to work with Cirque du Soleil, in their television series Solstrom, which was broadcast worldwide.

In 2004 they created their first full-evening show, Scott & Muriel's B!G Show with Joe!, together with Joe Dieffenbacher, of the theater group Nakupelle, which toured The Netherlands for three years. Produced by Kees van Liempt, of Interpresario, it was directed by Pieter Athmer, with music by Kino Haitsma. In 2006, Scott & Muriel took over the production of the show, and continued touring in Austria and Germany, and Monaco.

In 2007, they were semi-finalists in the popular TV show Holland’s Got Talent, and in 2008, they were invited to participate in the 32nd edition of the International Circus Festival of Monte Carlo, where they had the rare privilege of a standing ovation and won the Nice-Matin award, and a special prize from the Fairmont Hotel in Monaco. They were the first magicians to appear in the ring of the Festival since Lee Pee Ville in 1978. In 2009, they participated in the 2nd World Clown Festival of Yekaterinburg, in Russia, 2009, where they were awarded the Golden Clown.

Scott & Muriel have delighted audiences with their winning mixture of great magic and hilarious comedy in twenty countries, both live and on television (including four appearances on the highly popular French variety show, Le Plus Grand Cabaret du Monde). In Europe, they have been featured at the Théâtre Princesse Grace in Monaco, the Palazzo dinner-show and Circus Carré in Amsterdam, and the Royal Palace International Music-Hall à Kirrwiller, in Alsace—among many other venues. In the United States, they were featured in the Big Apple Circus production of Dream Big, in 2011-2012. Just before that engagement, they had created a new touring show, Magnificent Miss Muriel (and her magician...), with which they toured Germany, Spain, and France in 2013.

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