A MAGIC TOUCH
Australia’s favourite illusionist visits Cunnamulla community
MAGICIAN Cosentino did more than perform tricks during his time in town, delivering a moving speech to more than 200 people from throughout the region.
Focusing on literacy and his own journey through childhood with learning difficulties, the showman encouraged kids to work hard at chasing their dreams.
CUNNAMULLA experienced a touch of magic last week, with a visit from Australia’s own illusionist and escapologist, Cosentino.
As well as the thrilling tricks, he enlightened the audience with another kind of magic – storytelling.
In a motivational speech to students and community members from Charleville, Cunnamulla and Thargomindah, Cosentino shared his experiences of growing up with his own learning difficulties, but still going ahead to achieve his dreams.
Tammy Hickey, of Cunnamulla Library, said he was an inspirational man.
“He spoke about the learning difficulties he had growing up and how he learned to read by going to the library and checking out magic books.
“When he could show his parents what he’d learned from reading the books, he felt proud of what he’d done.
“You could see that not only the kids, but the whole
community was inspired.”
More than a performance, Cosentino travelled west to show the value of literacy, Ms Hickey said.
“It wasn’t a magic show as such; the magic came out of his mouth in the way he motivated and encouraged everyone.
“There’s not only kids who have trouble reading, there’s adults as well.”
Off the back of his speech, people were lining up in the library to get their hands on Cosentino’s books.
His children’s titles are some of the most popular in the library, and are helping to focus on reading through teaching card tricks, the same way Cosentino himself mastered reading.
“They are very popular here.
“There’s a lot of kids who have short concentration spans, and these get them sitting down, reading, and intensely concentrating on learning the tricks,” Ms Hickey said.
“It’s a win-win situation for us.
“He also has his own autobiography out called
Anything is Possible and it’s about the same things he talked about here.
“It’ll no doubt be very inspirational.”
Getting the master magician out to Cunnamulla was no easy feat.
Ms Hickey said a great deal of work went on behind the scenes to make the event a special one for the community.
“Cunnamulla State School, Project Hope, Sacred Heart School, RESQ, Cunnamulla Aboriginal Corporation for Health, Rex Airlines, Paroo Shire Council and The South Dubbo Rotary Club all hand a hand in this.
“Rex donated his flights to come out west and the Rotary donated $1500 when they came through here on a rally, which we are extremely grateful for and humbled by.
“It was a totally unexpected gesture and it definitely couldn’t have happened without the support of all those people.”
It well and truly paid off for the small communities, who turned out in force.
“The shire hall was filled to capacity.
“I think there were 250 kids alone, plus two bus-loads from Thargomindah, another from Charleville and one from Wyandra too.”
Most of all, the magician’s visit had special meaning to Ms Hickey and the library.
“It was about what he could do in our community, it was all about education and literacy.”
LIVING HIS DREAM: Cosentino performed in Cunnamulla last Wednesday.
NOW YOU SEE HIM: The magician Cosentino spoke in Cunnamulla last Wednesday.