TWO best friends from Eynsham who have transformed their love of magic into a successful magician’s double act will feature in a new TV programme tomorrow night seeking out the world’s next best magician.

Sam Strange, aged 31, and Richard Young, aged 32, met when they were children and quickly fostered a friendship through their shared love of all things magic.

The duo have performed at some 500 live performances in their eight years together including many across Oxfordshire and will appear on ITV's The Next Great Magician series which begins on Sunday night.

The six-part series features world-class magic acts from all over the world in a bid to find the best magician.

Sam Strange said on being invited to the show: “In our world being on TV it is quite a big deal for us.

“We were approached by the producers who said they were interested in us and said we would like you to get into the show. It was flattering to be asked.

“In our show we do lots of illusions mixed with a bit of comedy. We do the historical illusions like sawing a girl in half and we also add in a bit of comedy to it.

“Being on stage is exhilarating, it’s like going to a theme park.”

Speaking of how the duo first came to perform together, he said that it was a chance encounter when they were both children living in Eynsham.

He said: “Richard got into magic when he was about nine or ten when he got a magic set and that inspired him to pursue it.

“I was in my early teens when I first became interested in card tricks and the trickery behind that.

“Both of our parents were friends and by chance we came to meet each other and became friends at a family party.

“Our relationship is one of the things that has kept us going, we are best friends.

“Like any duo we have a relationship that’s like a marriage at times and it can be quite stressful but we support each other.”

The pair later moved to the Blackbird Leys area where they began creating the magic show which would culminate in their first ever live gig.

He said: “By developing our relationship we were able to keep each other motivated and develop our skills before starting up the stage show.

“Our first show was at Thame Theatre [The Player’s Theatre] eight years ago. We have since done around 400 or 500 live shows together including shows in Oxfordshire.”

The six-part TV series, The Next Great Magician, will be screened on ITV on Sunday night at 7pm until 8pm.