TWO Oxford students are throwing aside their textbooks in favour of wands, cards and full magical regalia.

Rhys Morgan and Rob West, both 22, are in the final years of their Oxford University science degrees – But are now launching themselves as ‘Victorian parlour magicians’ Morgan and West.

They hope their show, called Bamboozlement, will propel them into the world of magic with their own brand of tricks, with a comic twist.

Mr Morgan said: “We’re excited and incredibly nervous about the whole thing, because this is really about whether people like us and what we do, or not.”

The show will be premiered at the Wheatsheaf, in Oxford High Street, on Tuesday, at 8pm, before the pair take it to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August.

Mr West, who lives in Iffley Road, has a background in juggling but the students got together as a magic act after both coincidentally picking up books on magic at the same time.

They plan to continue their studies in Oxford next year. Mr Morgan will take a postgraduate certificate in education and Mr West a PhD, but they also plan to pursue careers as magicians.

Mr Morgan said: “We bill ourselves as Victorian comedy parlour magicians. Our idea of magic, and a lot of people’s ideas of magic, is of well-dressed Victorian gentlemen in the golden era of magic.

“That means lots of classic magic tricks and a few other things we have come up with ourselves.”

The pair dress the part, wearing double-breasted waistcoats, cravats and Victorian-style over-the-top facial hair.

Mr Morgan said: “It’s all very silly and doesn’t take itself too seriously but the magic is all high quality.

“The comedy comes from the interplay between Rob and myself and the rapport we have together.

“He is about 5ft 6in and thin, while I’m over 6ft tall and quite overweight, so there is a kind of Two Ronnies aspect to the comedy.”

He said his biggest magical inspiration was illusionist Derren Brown, for bringing magic back into popular culture, but said their interpretation was much more light-hearted.

Tricks include a ‘biscuit trick’, which Mr Morgan said involved teatime treats all over the place, a card trick using dozens of packs of cards, and one act where the pair hammer nails up each other’s noses.

Entry to the Wheatsheaf show costs £3. For more details, see their website