The Session Magic Convention - The Ultimate Guide
If you're coming to The Session for the first time, here's some essential advice.
Where is The Session?
The Session magic convention takes place at The Radisson Hotel & Conference Centre, Heathrow, London. (It was formally known as The Park Inn, but it’s the same hotel we’ve been at for the last few years). Here’s a link to the location on Google Maps.
How Should You Get To The Session?
It really couldn’t be easier to get to due to its extreme proximity to Heathrow Airport. When you arrive at Heathrow (via underground, train, or plane), the convention is just a short cab or bus ride away. The closest stop is Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3. There are a number of local buses that will cost you a couple of pounds and take around eight minutes to get there. Or, you can get a black cab, or an Uber - but be warned, that will run you about £25 depending on the time you arrive. Unfortunately, it is not possible to safely walk from the airport to the hotel due to a distinct lack of pavements for one section of the journey.
What’s The Weather Like?
January in the UK is not our best time of year. It will be cold, grey, and rainy. Which in many ways is great as you won’t want to leave the hotel. This gives you more time for magic, which is why we’re all going anyway!
How Many People Attend?
Attendance is capped at 400 people. This makes it about a tenth the size of Blackpool Magic Convention. This is a very deliberate thing. We want The Session to be small and intimate. We want you to be able to meet your heroes, hang out with your friends, and make new ones. The queues for food and the bar are manageable, and every seat in the convention is a good seat.
Should You Register Ahead Of Time?
Oh yes. Very much so. We always sell out. Every single year, people email us and ask to be squeezed in, and we have to turn them away. We advise you to register now.
What Days Should You Attend?
The convention itself starts on the Friday morning. However, many people chose to arrive on the Thursday evening to squeeze in an extra day of jamming and magic fun. There are no official events on the Thursday, but you will find many magicians in the bar with a deck of cards sessioning.
The last event of the convention takes place on the Sunday evening, and everyone departs on Monday morning.
Where Should You Stay?
The show hotel has been specifically chosen because the facilities are just what we need, the rooms are more than adequate, and we’ve negotiated a very reasonable room rate. There are other local options if you’d prefer.
Are There Dealers There?
We have a Vanishing Inc. booth at the back of the main convention room which is open every day. This will give you a chance to see out latest and most popular effects and books.
We have a Dealers’ Room which is only open on the Sunday.
Can You See Every Show And Lecture?
100% yes. Unlike other magic conventions, we deliberately schedule our events to make sure you can easily see everything you want. We also leave gaps in the schedule to give you time to rest, eat and drink in comfort, and just decompress from all the learning you’ll be doing.
Where Should You Eat?
There is a restaurant at the hotel which is the easiest option. There’s a couple of other local options. There’s a McDonald’s about five minutes walk away for something quick and dirty, a Carluccio’s a couple minutes farther away.
Tips For First Timers
Sign up for Basecamp! It’s our new, free, initiative designed to make first-timers feel as welcome as possible. Read all about it here.
If you want the best seats for the performances and lectures, aim to arrive about 15 minutes before they are scheduled to start.
Everyone is super friendly, so if you see a famous face and want to say hello, or ask for a selfie, or even ask for advice, do it! As long as you are respectful of people’s time, and are polite, most people are very happy to chat.
Sleep! Don’t forget to sleep. We deliberately don’t start events until mid-morning to give you time to stay up late jamming, and still make the first event of the day after a bit of a lie-in.
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