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David Acer

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David Acer

CategoriesBooks by David Acer

David Acer (b. 1970) is an award-winning writer, comedian and magician from Montreal, Canada who has made multiple appearances on international television in all of these capacities. He also appeared as skeptical scientist Doubting Dave on the syndicated series, Mystery Hunters, and was nominated for two Gemini awards (the Canadian equivalent of the Emmys) for his writing on the show.


Starting out in magic around 1979, his first three original tricks were put on the market by Perfect Magic, the Montreal magic store at which he would later work as a demonstrator. Quartermain, the coin-through-deck routine that was his first release (circa 1984), was later republished in Natural Selections, Volume II (Camirand Academy, 1999), and Spare Change, a two-coin transposition that was his third release (1988), was bought from Perfect Magic by The Camirand Academy and re-released with a more detailed instruction booklet in 1994.

Acer's original tricks and sleights have appeared in a variety of magic magazines since 1985, including Apocalypse, The Magic Manuscript, MAGIC, The Linking Ring, M-U-M, France's Arcane, and Channel One. He has also been a columnist for The Magic Menu and Genii, and starting with the May, 2005 issue, he became the writer and editor of Genii's Magicana (i.e., trick) section. While the bulk of his published work is close-up magic, he has published some platform and stage effects as well, including The Body Swap, a two-person transposition he co-created with Richard Sanders that first appeared in Gary Ouellet's Fulminations column in Genii. and Party of Six, an interactive prediction effect involving six audience-members on stage (Random Acts of Magic, 2004).

In the late 1980s, Acer began fostering a relationship with the Camirand Academy of Magic, who would eventually release his most popular tricks, including a version of the classic Fred Trick (a.k.a. "Phil") plot called Nomen Omen (1990), which in turn proved to be the inspiration for John Bannon's Detour De Force[1]. David also wrote the instructions for many of the Camirand Academy's releases in the 1990s.

In 1989, at the behest of their mutual friend, Rick Bronson, who was already a mainstay of the Montreal comedy scene, Acer formed a comedy magic trio with Richard Sanders and Barry Julien and began performing in the area. One year later, Sanders moved to Toronto, and both Acer and Julien continued to pursue solo careers in comedy, dropping the magic and focusing on straight stand-up. Since then, Acer has appeared on a multitude of comedy specials in Canada, and performed 10 times at the international Just For Laughs festival, a benchmark achievement for comedians.

In 2002, Acer and Rick Bronson became the first magicians to perform magic live on the giant screen during a National Hockey League game, having co-produced a magic-themed home opener for the Edmonton Oilers (October 10, 2002, Skyreach Center - Oilers vs Flyers). Excerpts from the event appear on Acer's lecture DVD, Open Traveller.

Acer's first book of original close-up - Natural Selections (Camirand Academy, 1996) - is now out of print. The 1999 sequel, Natural Selections, Volume II and his 2004 book, Random Acts of Magic, also both published by (The Camirand Academy, are still available.

In 2008, Acer's first book for the public was published by Kids Can Press, a collection of paranormal tricks, hoaxes and experiments called GOTCHA! 18 Amazing Ways to Freak Out Your Friends. The book is a spin-off of his work as Doubting Dave on Mystery Hunters, with the goal being to teach kids to be open minded but think critically about claims of the paranormal (e.g., ghost sightings, UFO landings, psychic readings, etc.). The book was subsequently nominated for a Diamond Willow Award and won the 2010 Hackmatack Children's Choice Award for Non-Fiction.

In 2009, the Canadian Association of Magicians named Acer the Canadian Magician of the Year.

In 2010, he appeared on the cover of the October issue of Genii magazine, which included an interview conducted by David Regal, an article by Acer on the use of magic in Mystery Hunters, and five of his tricks (three previously unpublished).

Books By David Acer

Marketed Tricks by David Acer


Lecture Notes by David Acer

Magic Periodicals to Which David Acer Has Contributed

The Magic ManuscriptApocalypseGenii MagazineThe Magic MenuMagicArcane (France)The Linking RingMagische Welt (Germany) • M.U.M.Channel OneThe CAM FlashNorthern PeaksHalf BakedMagicseen

  • The Magic Manuscript, Nov/Dec 1985, Vol. 7, #3). "The Turnabout Card” (Acer notes in an interview in The CAM Flash that he was 13 when he sent this trick in, “and the fact that it got published was a clear indication that the magazine was on its last legs.”)
  • Genii 1986 May, (Vol. 49, #11). “Duplicate”
  • Genii 1986 December, (Vol. 50, #6). “Pasteboard Pickpocket”
  • Genii 1987 October, (Vol. 51, #4). “Drawback”
  • M.U.M., March 1990 (Vol. 79, #10). “Cheap Labor”
  • Genii 1991 July, (Vol. 54, #9) • The All-Canadian Issue. “Emotional Bonding”, “Around the World in Eighty Dollars”
  • Genii 1992 June, (Vol. 55, #8) • The Restaurant Magic Issue. “No Holes Barred”
  • Apocalypse, April 1992 (Vol. 15, #4). “Lickety Flip”
  • Magische Welt (Germany), Dec. 1993. “No Holes Barred”
  • Arcane (France), January 1994 (#73). “La Mission”, “Transposition d’une Bague Volee”, “La Corde Bancaire”
  • The Linking Ring: One Man Parade (Volume 78, #4 • April 1998). “Symmetry”, “Flipwich”, “Transposition Ring Flight,” “Color Scheme,” “Time Flies,” “Mail Fraud,” and “The Montreal Transpo” (with Jay Sankey)
  • MAGIC (June, 1998 • Volume 7, #10). “Madcap”
  • The CAM Flash #1 (Sept. 1998). "The State of The Art: Magic in Canada" (article) (CAM Flash was the official periodical of the Canadian Association of Magicians, and was later retitled Northern Peaks)
  • The Linking Ring (Feb. 1999). “Mousehunt” (this won the Howard Bamman award for Best Card Trick that year)
  • The CAM Flash #3 (May 1999). "More Magic in Canada" (article)
  • The CAM Flash #4 (Sept. 1999) “Mousehunt”
  • Channel One (Volume 1, #1 • Fall, 1999). “The Optical Vanish” (with Jay Sankey), "The Acer Coin Problem"
  • Genii 1999 October (Volume 62, #10), “Bespectacle”
  • Channel One (Volume 1, #2 • Winter, 1999). “Passe Passe Fingers” (with Jay Sankey)
  • The CAM Flash (Volume 3, #1 • January, 2000). "Let’s Make a Dealer: An Interview with Phil Matlin"
  • Genii 2000 February (Volume 63, #2). Confessions of a Road Warrior #1: Bombing/“Over Easy”
  • Genii 2000 April (Volume 63, #4). Confessions of a Road Warrior #2: The Suits Vs. The Talent/”Uppity” (with Jay Sankey)
  • The CAM Flash (Volume 3, #2 • May, 2000). Bibliography of Magic Books By and About Canadians
  • Genii 2000 June (Volume 63, #6). Confessions of a Road Warrior #3: “Packs a Wallet!”
  • Channel One (Volume 1, #4 • June, 2000). “Breakneck”
  • The Linking Ring (June, 2000). “Count On It” (with Jay Sankey)
  • Genii 2000 August (Volume 63, #8) “Books Vs Videos” (article)
  • Genii 2000 September (Volume 63, #9). Confessions of a Road Warrior #4: The Great Canadians/”Hot Pursuit”
  • The CAM Flash (Volume 3, #3 • September, 2000). "An Interview with Rick Bronson"
  • Channel One (Volume 2, #5 • September, 2000). “Nip-A-Nip”
  • MAGIC (November, 2000) “Fission, Fusion, Confusion” (an earlier, less evolved version of “Changes,” which was published in Random Acts of Magic, 2004)
  • Genii 2000 December (Volume 63, #12). Confessions of a Road Warrior #5: The Witness Approach/”Unflappable”
  • Genii 2001 March (Volume 64, #3). Confessions of a Road Warrior #6: Prop-aganda/”Tangent”
  • Channel One (Volume 2, #7 • March, 2001). “The Acer Coin Problem Solved” (with help from Simon Lovell and Steve Bedwell)
  • The CAM Flash (Volume 4, #5 • May, 2001). "Wise Guy: An Interview with Guy Camirand"
  • Genii 2001 May (Volume 64, #5). Confessions of a Road Warrior #7: Pet Peeves/”Mitosis”
  • Genii 2001 September (Volume 64, #9). Confessions of a Road Warrior #8: The Dark Side/”Child’s Play”(with Jay Sankey)
  • Genii 2001 November (Volume 64, #11). Confessions of a Road Warrior #9: The Rock/”Upon Receipt”
  • Genii 2002 January (Volume 65, #1). Confessions of a Road Warrior #10: The Fine Art of Bio Writing/”Separation Anxiety”
  • The CAM Flash (Volume 5, #1 • January, 2002) "Ariel View: An Interview with Ariel Frailich"
  • Genii 2002 April (Volume 65, #4). "Ariel View: An Interview with Ariel Frailich"
  • MAGIC (Volume 11, #8 • April, 2002). "David Acer and Richard Sanders on The Rub-Away Vanish"
  • Genii 2002 June (Volume 65, #6). Confessions of a Road Warrior #11: The Julien Incident/”Coke Induced”
  • The Magic Menu (Issue 62 • Spring, 2002) Lost & Found: Early Vernon (the first installment in Acer's new Magic Menu column reviewing old magic books).
  • Genii 2002 August (Volume 65, #8). Confessions of a Road Warrior #12: Five Card Mental Farce/”Splittant” (with Richard Sanders)
  • The Magic Menu (Issue 63 • Summer, 2002). Lost & Found: Early Marlo
  • Northern Peaks (Volume 6, #1 • January, 2003) "Illusions of Grandeur: An Interview with Ted Outerbridge" (Northern Peaks is the new name for The CAM Flash)
  • Half Baked (Issue 11 • January, 2003). “Tubbing the Nuts”
  • Genii 2003 April (Volume 66, #4). Confessions of a Road Warrior #13: Coins Across America/”New Millennium Tenkai Pennies”
  • Genii 2003 July (Vol. 66, #7). "Magic at the Just For Laughs Museum" (article)
  • Genii 2003 September (Vol. 66, #9). Confessions of a Road Warrior #14: As Seen On TV/ “Ghost in the Machine,” “Dry Spell,” “Get Bent”
  • Genii 2003 December (Vol. 66, #12). Confessions of a Road Warrior #15: Televise THIS!/ “Postcards From The Dead”
  • Genii 2003 December (Vol. 66, #12). "Hare Brained: A Wacked Out Interview with Nemo Turner"
  • Northern Peaks (Vol. 7, #2 • May, 2004). "The Professional Touch" (Patrik Kuffs & David Acer) (excerpted from Seven by Patrik Kuffs)
  • Genii 2004 July (Vol. 67, #7). Confessions of a Road Warrior #16: Bucking The Stereotype/“Fresh Mint”
  • Genii 2005 April (Vol. 68, #4). "Romaine: The Monarch of Manipulators" (interview + 3 tricks)
  • Genii 2005 May (Vol. 68, #5). Confessions of a Road Warrior #17: Caught in a Brainstorm/“Flatline” (with Rick Bronson)
  • Genii 2005 October (Vol. 68, #10). Confessions of a Road Warrior #18: Baptism by Fire/“Caffeine Overdose”
  • Genii 2006 May (Vol. 69, #5). Confessions of a Road Warrior #19: Readers Digest/“Rematch”
  • Genii 2006 November (Vol. 69, #11). Confessions of a Road Warrior #20: Bronson on the Phone/“Cellular Production”
  • Genii 2007 April (Vol. 70, #4). "The Zen of Ken: An Interview with Ken Krenzel" (interview + 6 tricks)
  • Genii 2007 September (Vol. 70, #8). Confessions of a Road Warrior #21: Remote Practical Joke/"Up in Smoke”
  • MagicSeen (Issue 17 • November, 2007). "Boom! It’s Jay Sankey" (interview)
  • Genii 2008 July (Vol. 71, #7). "Camera Payphone"
  • Genii 2009 December (Vol. 72, #12). "Holiday Miracle"
  • Genii 2010 May (Volume 73, #5). "Squancho 2.0" (with Bedros "Spidey" Akkelian)
  • Genii 2010 October (Volume 73, #10). "Rink," "Court Order," "Travel Visa," "Overtime 2.0," "The Sock Catcher"
  • Genii 2011 February (Volume 74, #2). "Movin' On Up Redux" (with Ryan Pilling)

In addition to the above, Acer has been the writer of the Magicana (i.e, trick) section in Genii since the May, 2005 issue.

Magic Books to Which David Acer Has Contributed

Forewords by David Acer

TV Shows with David Acer Currently Available on DVD



  1. Bannon's Smoke and Mirrors, pg 104
  2. GOTCHA! on
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