Magic Babe Ning

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'Magic Babe' Ning
Magic Babe Ning fullshot.jpg
Taken at TV Shoot, May 2011
Born Ning Cai
Residence Singapore
Occupation Professional Magician, Entrepreneur
Website 'Magic Babe' Ning
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Cai.

Ning Cai, better known as ‘Magic Babe’ Ning, is a Singaporean magician and entrepreneur. She has been recognised by Channel News Asia as "South East Asia's First Professional Female Magician".[1]

She is best known for her good looks[2][3] and the glamour she brings to magic in Asia and her entrepreneurial spirit. She was named "the sexiest woman in magic"[4] by MagicSeen (UK's largest magic magazine) which was subsequently used to describe her by many media publications in Singapore.[5][6][7][8][9][10] She has graced the cover of numerous local magazines.

Ning, along with partner J C Sum, have been credited for popularising magic in Singapore by the local media and magic organisations.[11]

Ning signed on as a FLY Entertainment artiste in March 2012 and was the one of the honorees of the Singapore Women's Weekly Great Women of our Time 2012 [12]

In October 2014, Ning announced her retirement from performing magic. She plans to teach yoga, and released her memoir Who Is Magic Babe Ning? in November. She married her Singaporean partner, who works in the arts, in December.[13][14]

Magic career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Ning’s first contact with magic was when she was 5 years old and watched David Copperfield on TV.[15] Her interest was revived in 2004 when she was involved with charity work for the Children’s Cancer Foundation and performed magic at their events.[16][17][18][19] At the same time, she became one of the founding members (as acknowledged by the creator) and moderators of Singapore Magic Circle (SMC), an on-line magic community and forum.[19][20]

In 2006, she joined a local magic competition and came in 3rd place. This led her to join J C Sum’s magic production house as a performer and marketing communications manager;[17][21] after graduating with a degree in Mass Communications from RMIT.[4][17][22] When Ning first burst onto the entertainment scene, she was acknowledged as "Singapore's Only Professional Female Magician" by all major national newspapers as well as many magazines including: The Straits Times (12 September 2008),[23][24] Lianhe Zaobao (9 September 2008),[25] The NewPaper (30 December 2008),[26] My Paper (8 September 2008),[27] Tiger Tales (September/ October 2008),[28] Vanilla (October 2008),[29] Mediacorp Channel 8 News (24 September 2008),[30] Art Jam (Jan–Mar 2009),[31] Teens (February 2009 and March 2009),[32][33] Lianhe Wanbao (May 2009)[34] and I-S Magazine (June 2009).[35]

Ning dislikes being typecast as a typical female in magic who plays submissive roles to males and only performs magic with silks, flowers, umbrellas or rabbits.[36] She incorporates samurai swords, twirling fire balls, spikes and weapons in her show.[29][37][38] Ning is comfortable with her sexy image on stage and she feels she has the talent to back it up.[4][5][15][16][26][31][37][39][40][41][42] Her influences in magic include David Copperfield, Princess Tenko and J C Sum.[4][9][18][43]

Current Shows[edit]

'Magic Babe' Ning with her fans after show, February 2009

Currently, Ning performs with J C Sum in their illusion show across Asia.[4][44] Channel News Asia highlighted that they represent “The New Faces of an Age-Old Art Form”,[45] and acknowledged them as "Singapore's celebrity magic duo".[46] The Straits Time called them "Asia's Most Famous Illusionists".[47] AsiaOne called them “The Hottest Duo in Town”.[48] AXN also acknowledged that "...J C Sum and 'Magic Babe' Ning have fast smashed some new grounds in Asian magical realms".[49] As a duo, they have helped put Singapore on the world map with their performances and illusions.[15][45][50][51] They continue to present their illusions shows across Asia.

In August 2008, Ning and J C starred in Ultimate Magic – Singapore’s First Permanent Illusion Show at The Arena in Clarke Quay, the top entertainment district in Singapore.[15][22][32][52][53][54][55][56] The show has since ended its year-long run in August 2009.

In 2010, Ning and J C performed at The Boiler Room in St James Power Station for a one-week run. Named Sexy Magic/ Urban Illusions, the show ran from 26 January 2010 – 30 January 2010.[57][58]

On 27 March 2010, Ning and J C also performed along other celebrities in the Earth Hour 2010 concert held at the Esplanade Park, Singapore's premier arts venue.[59][60][61]

Ning and J C are also currently the highest paid magicians in Singapore.[3][5][62]

Ning was invited to headline the gala show with her one-gal show at the South England Magic Convention ( on 31 January 2009. This is the first time in history that a Singapore magician headlined an international magic convention.[19][29][38][50][53][63][64]

Mega Escapes and Illusions[edit]

In August 2007, Ning played an integral role in J C Sum’s “The Impossible Teleportation” mega illusion where she headed the team on the roof that saw J C magically reappear 5 seconds after vanishing from street level.[4][21]

Ning attempted South East Asia's first ever mega escape from "The Impalement Cage" on 5 July 2008. In front of a live audience of more than 4000 people, Ning picked her way through handcuffs, locks, shackles and chains to free herself from a steel cage with a bed of 13 stainless steel spikes, timed to crash down on her in 90 seconds. To add to the difficulty and danger of the mega escape, Ning was also completely blindfolded.[6][37][40][65][66][67][68][69][70] “The Impalement Cage” mega escape marked the official launch of “Ultimate Magic”, Singapore’s First Permanent Illusion Show that stars Ning andandJ C Sum.

On 24 September 2008, Ning and J C successfully staged "South East Asia's Biggest Magic Event at the Singapore River"[71] by teleporting 3 people across the iconic Singapore River in 2.5 seconds.[9][24][25][30][72][73][74][75][76] The mega illusion was part of the F1 Singapore Grand Prix Season.[9][41][71][77][78][79][80][81][82] Named "The Impossible Journey", the illusion was witnessed by more than 5000 spectators.[25][30][74]

On 27 June 2009, Ning and J C set a new world record with their performance of 15 grand illusions in 5 minutes.[1][49][83][84][85][86][87][88] Entitled "The Impossible Record", the magic act was the closing finale for Singapore River Festival 2009.[49][89][90] The event was officiated by Singapore Book of Records and International Brotherhood of Magicians.[91][92][93] The event was witnessed by over 3000 people and is the first ever magic record to be adjudicated by Singapore Book of Records.[1]

As a teaser to "The Impossible Record", Ning also attempted a mega escape stunt named "Inversion" on 21 June 2009.[1][35] Ning successfully attempted an escape from a straitjacket while suspended 3 storeys above, upside down and blindfolded. The uniqueness of the escape lies in the fact that there were no safety lines for the stunt.[35][89]

On 22 August 2009, 16,000 people witnessed Ning and J C teleport a Volkswagen Golf 1.4 TSI from the Volkswagen showroom to the stage in 8.5 seconds.[94][95]

On 12 December 2010, Ning and J C vanished five audience while they were elevated 24 ft high up in the air in front of over a 1,000 strong audience at the Asian Civilisations Museum.[96][97][98] The illusion stunt was called “The Aerial Exit”, and it was the grand finale of the National Heritage Board’s 2010 “Explore Singapore” campaign.[97][98][99]

On 7 January 2012, Ning and J C officially set the world record by being the very first illusionists in the world to capture the thoughts of 100 random people in under 60 minutes.[100][101][102][103] The record was set with 9 seconds to spare.[101][102] Called "The Mind Heist", the world record breaking feat was also Ning and J C's first ever mega illusion that was streamed live on the internet.[104]

In June 2012, Ning became the first woman to successfully attempt a perform an inverted double Straitjacket Escape from a burning rope 35 ft above ground. Called the "Extreme Inversion", the stunt was part of a media launch for Superstars of Magic 2, a production show featuring international performers including Ning and J C.[105][106][107][108]

In August 2013, Ning and J C were part of the closing highlights for Singapore Night Festival 2013, for which they performed two mega stunts.[109] The festival was organized by Singapore's National Heritage Board and it was the first year where local acts were the closing highlights.[110] On 30 Aug, Ning successfully attempted "The Water Vault" which saw her escaping from a stainless steel water vault which was chained and locked up. As the grand finale of the festival, Ning and J C performed “The Ultimate Inversion" where they escaped in tandem from two straitjackets each while they were suspended upside 50 ft in the air from a burning rope. The feat was recognized by Singapore Book of Records as Singapore's First Tandem Upside Down Double Straitjacket Escape from a Burning Rope.[110][111]

The Impossible 4D Prediction[edit]

On 27 January 2010, Ning and J C successfully predicted in advance the winning 4D lottery numbers that they made one week before.[112][113][114] Named "The Impossible 4D Prediction", the stunt is a new psychological illusion stunt, different from past Mega Illusions.[57][58][115]

The prediction was sealed in a giant red packet which was locked in a clear container and suspended high above ground in front of mega nightclub St James Power Station's main entrance on 22 January 2010. The chest was under tight security for 5 days before Ning and J C revealed the 4D prediction "live" on 27 January.[57][58][116]

Before their prediction was shown to be correct, it was revealed that they had also sealed a cheque of $10,000 made out to the Children's Cancer Foundation as a personal donation to the charity.[112][113][114] It was later revealed that the donation did not come from the winnings of the lottery as they intentionally bought a "null" number of "0000" to reaffirm their stand of not condone gambling and not using their skills for unethical gain.[57][58][112][113][114][115][116]

The stunt created much media and online buzz resulting in the term “magic babe ning” being the No. 1 searched item on Yahoo Singapore on 21 January 2010. Their successful prediction was also one of the top stories on Google News Singapore as well as the top entertainment story on 29 January 2010, 11am.[117][118][119] Popular comedy TV show, "The Noose" did a satirical news story on the prediction (Season 3/ episode 3) in which J C and Ning made a special cameo appearance.[120]

3 Sides of Magic[edit]

"3 Sides of Magic" is a World Lecture Tour presented by Ning and J C Sum. It debuted in Penang in February 2012 with an attendance of about 35 magicians, including hobbyists, professional and semi-professional performers.[121]

The Duo presented a collection of practical and original routines that ranged from close-up acts, illusion productions and a variety of mental-ism routines.

It also made news in Singapore when Razor TV featured a 3-part series on the lecture on 7 April 2012.[122]

The hugely successful 5 Weeks Europe Lecture Tour brought Ning and JC Sum to 25 cities in 5 countries on a 9500 km road trip. They shared their magic with almost 1000 European magicians and showcased their original brand of magic in 21 lectures cum mini shows.

Achievements and Awards[edit]

Ning has achieved several records and awarded numerous awards including:

  • “Outstanding Achievement & Contribution to Magic” Award (2013), International Brotherhood of Magicians, Singapore Ring 115[110]
  • "First Tandem Suspended Upside Down Strait Jacket Escape" (2013), Singapore Book of Records[110]
  • "Patrons of Magic" Award (2012), International Brotherhood of Magicians, Singapore Ring 115[102]
  • "Largest Mind Reading Feat: 100 Minds in 60 Minutes" (2012) Singapore Book of Records[102]
  • “Special Recognition Award for Contributions to the Arts & Media Community” (2011) from the School of Film & Media Studies, Ngee Ann Polytechnic[123]
  • Merlin Award "Most Original Female Illusionist of the Year" (2009), International Magicians Society[10][124][125][126]
  • "Most Number of Grand Illusions Performed in 5 Minutes" (2009), Singapore Book of Records[93]
  • "Special Achievement Award" (2009) International Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring 115



Ning is a prominent media personality[26] and has appeared in numerous media publications in print and on-line; including The Straits Times,[20][23][24] TODAY,[21] Lianhe Zaobao,[17] Shin Min Daily News,[127] My Paper,[27] The New Paper,[5][26][50] AsiaOne,[8][128][129] Seventeen,[18] Simply Her,[43] HerWorld,[37] NewMan,[6] 8 Days,[40] I-weekly,[69][130] MagicSeen,[4][38] TimeOut,[131] FiRST,[7] Stuff,[66] NuYou,[132] Hot Stuff,[9] Teens,[16] Kozine,[22] and KuPon.[56] She was featured in the December 2007 of FHM Singapore in a 6-page pictorial and interview. In 2008, she was also featured in MagicSeen (Europe’s largest magic magazine) in a two-part feature.

Several magazines have featured Ning on their covers, including FHM Singapore (Oct 2009),[10] HOTstuff (Sep 2008),[9] Stuff Singapore (Jul 2008),[133] and Vanilla (Oct 2008).[29] Ning was also featured on the cover of the magazine, Guardian Feelings in Jan 2012.[134] Ning was also voted "16th sexiest woman in the world in 2008" by FHM Singapore in October 2008[135] and was one of the "10 Hot Single Women" featured in FHM Singapore Feb 2009.[136] Ning and J C have appeared together on the cover of Current Events[15] and ArtJam magazine.[31]

In August 2012, Ning graced the issue of Cosmopolitan Singapore magazine as one of its Fun, Fearless Females.[137][138]

Ning was also FHM's Cover Girl of the 2013 Valentine's Issue.[139]

In fact, Ning’s celebrity has even garnered her sensational news coverage in local Chinese language gossip tabloids based on quotes taken completely out-of-context.[127][140]

Ning’s blog is also very popular and often highlights upcoming projects in her professional and personal life.


Ning has also been featured on local, overseas and cable television. In March 2008, she was a featured celebrity as Singapore’s only professional female magician on ‘Record Breakers’, Kids Central MediaCorp Studios.

In February 2009, Ning, together with J C appeared on Channel 8's "Five Stars Carnival" for a series of segments which showcased their grand illusions.[51]

In May 2009, Ning and J C made an appearance on cable television. Ning and J C were the first magicians ever to appear on Asia Uncut, an English talk show that airs on the Star World cable network. They presented Ning's signature "Straitjacket Striptease" and "Light & Space" illusion.[141]

Subsequently, in July 2009, Ning and J C also appeared on AXN EBuzz for their "The Impossible Record" event.[49] They were also featured in Sony Style TV Magazine as well as the season finale for The Amazing Race Asia 4 in late 2010.

In Aug 2010, Ning and J C represented Singapore on "Duel Mahakarya Magician" on RCTI, Indonesia TV. They performed alongside Indonesia's top magicians and other international magicians including Peter Marvey, Marc Spelmann and Omar Pasha. The live TV show was watched by 20 million viewers.[142][143]

In 2011, Ning and J C were chosen to star and host one of the two Singapore's first 3D television show.[144] The show was to showcase Singapore's Arts & Culture and Ning & J C's brand of magic. The 3D TV Special, jointly produced by Sitting in Pictures, Ochre Pictures, 360 Production and Upside Down Concepts, was commissioned by Singapore's Media Development Authority.

Ning and J C are also the first ever Singapore artistes to be booked to perform on the famed long-running TV show, Le Plus Grand Cabaret du Monde in Paris, France. The show was broadcast internationally. The episode aired on 31 December 2011 and was the highest rated TV show of its time slot on French TV.[145]

In 2012, Ning and J C were featured in an episode of Itte-Q!, a Japanese variety show. The episode featured variety stars who took 'lessons' from Ning and J C.[146] In the same year, Ning and J C also appeared on Italian TV in the show, La Grande Magia.[147]

In December 2012, Ning and J C were invited back to Le Plus Grand Cabaret du Monde in France where they were booked to perform once again in the New Year's special.


Cointreau Gets Cointreauversial in Singapore in October 2012 with Ning. Rémy Cointreau hand-picked her to be a celebrity host for their “Cointreau-versial” party at Gem Bar. She was chosen for being a controversial and sophisticated woman with a passion for life.[148]

'Magic Babe' Ning, was seen at the Cosmopolitan’s Fun Fearless Females Oct 2012 Event, as a finalist and did a very sensual escape act from a double-strait jacket, which added to the excitement of the party.[149]

Other projects[edit]

Limited Edition "Pentad Deck"

Besides performing, Ning runs several businesses.[20][21][29] She was the owner of ‘The Little Magic Shop’, an online magic shop. In 2007, she rebranded the businesses and changed it to Magic Boutique that she calls “The Little Magic Shop all grown up!”.[4][17] Magic Boutique is the official reviewer for Asia for Murphy’s Magic Supplies, U.S.A.

Ning, together with J C, also released DVDs for the magic/ illusion industry in 2011. The DVDs were "Urban Underground" and "Behind the Illusions". "Behind the Illusions" was a best-seller in Murphy's Magic Supplies Best Seller List.[150]

In Dec 2011, Ning and J C also released a limited edition poker deck, "Pentad Deck". The deck commemorates Ning and J C's half a decade milestone as "Asia's Most Lethal Combination in Magic." The card deck was designed and hand-drawn by an artist based in Japan.[151]

Ning is also the co-founder (along with J C Sum) and creative director for Mighty Magic Factory, a kids’ educational and entertainment company. The shows she produces for the kids are generally educational that highlight important messages like fire safety, self-confidence and ill effects of smoking.[21][29][63][128]

She co-authored the book, "Adventures of 2 Girls",[152][153] based on her 9-month world travel with her best friend, published by Marshall Cavendish in September 2012.[154] which debut on Straits Times Bestsellers List at #8 in October 2012. "Adventures of 2 Girls" has remained a bestseller since its debut.

Ning will be part of the "Singapore Writer's Festival 2013, Words Go Round"

Her interests outside of magic include art, origami, motor-cross racing and violin.[4][29][44]

Ning believes in charity work and has worked on projects for the Children’s Cancer Foundation.[16][18][21][128] She has adopted a Mongolian Boy through World Vision.[21][29][63]

As the ambassador for Power Over Cervical Cancer (POCC) Campaign in Singapore,[155] Ning also helps to spread the word on Cervical Cancer and lends her support to the POCC Campaign.

Ning is also a featured personality for the Singapore Coke Zero advertorial which appeared in the 1024 issue of 8 Days that was released on 3 June 2010.[156] She was also the ambassador for LG Mobile Asia in 2010.[157]

Notes and references[edit]

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  2. ^ Lianhe Zao Bao's "ZB Now" (Cover Story), 23 September 2008
  3. ^ a b "Where S'pore and Asian entertainers are A-listers", My Paper, 22 October 2008
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i "The Ning Dynasty (Part 1)", MagicSeen magazine, Issue 19 March 2008
  5. ^ a b c d "She's the 'sexiest woman in magic'", The New Paper, 7 June 2008 Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "sexy" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  6. ^ a b c "Black Magic Woman", NewMan, July 2008 issue
  7. ^ a b "Faces: 'Magic Babe' Ning", FiRST, July 2008
  8. ^ a b "Escape From Bondage", AsiaOne, 14 July 2008
  9. ^ a b c d e f Hot Stuff Magazine Singapore, Cover September 2008 Issue 67
  10. ^ a b c "Trick Tease", FHM Singapore, October 2009
  11. ^ "Magic casts spell on S'poreans", The New Paper, 9 October 2010
  12. ^ [1] "The Singapore Women’s Weekly honours Singapore’s outstanding women achievers at Great Women of Our Time 2012"
  13. ^ "Magic Babe Ning reveals her life as a magician". Singapore Press Holdings. The Straits Times. 21 October 2014. 
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  16. ^ a b c d "Live for the Magic", Teens, February 2009
  17. ^ a b c d e "Singapore's Only Professional Female Magician", Lianhe Zaobao, 14 October 2007
  18. ^ a b c d "I Get Paid to Do Magic", Seventeen, October 2007 Issue
  19. ^ a b c The Quantum Ring July 2008 Issue (Official Publication of the International Brotherhood of Magicians Singapore Ring 115)
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  22. ^ a b c "Magic Babe Ning & J C Sum – It takes two to magic", Kozine, February 2009 issue
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  24. ^ a b c "Trick with Treats", The Straits Times LIFE!, 12 September 2008
  25. ^ a b c "新加坡河大型幻术表演 三人在数千人眼皮下消失", Lianhe Zaobao, 25 September 2008
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  28. ^ "Beauty & the Feast", Tiger Tales, September/ October 2008
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  60. ^ "Singaporeans are switched on to action against climate change", WWF, 30 March 2010
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  62. ^ Razorpop with Magic Babe and J C Sum, RazorTV, 2 October 2008
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  66. ^ a b "Vanishings? Singapore Style", Stuff Singapore, June 2008 issue
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  68. ^ "'Magic Babe' Ning tries to escape impalement by steel spikes", STOMP, 7 July 2008
  69. ^ a b "女人变魔术", I Weekly, Issue 10 July 2008
  70. ^ "Bookends", Sunday Times, 13 July 2008
  71. ^ a b Lifestyle activities planned for Singapore's first F1 race, Channel News Asia, 23 June 2008
  72. ^ "魔术宝贝2.5秒让你消失",WOBAO, 8 August 2008
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  84. ^ "中視午間新聞", CTV (Taiwan), 29 June 2009
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  91. ^ "6月新加坡河节 夜生活将展现历史魅力", Lianhe Zaobao, 26 May 2009
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  93. ^ a b "J C & Ning go for gold", MagicSeen, July 2009
  94. ^ "ST reader wins car in one try", The Sunday Times, 23 August 2009
  95. ^ "Gone in 8.5 Seconds (Destination X Part 2)", 24 August 2009
  96. ^ "Contest winners disappear in mid-air", Channel News Asia, 14 December 2010
  97. ^ a b "Now you see them, now you don't", TODAY, 13 December 2010
  98. ^ a b "美女帅哥魔术师 让5男女眼前消失", Lianhe Wanbao, 10 December 2010
  99. ^ “Singapore Top Illusionists to Give Five People a Chance to Disappear”, Retrieved 2 November 2010
  100. ^ "Largest Mind Reading Feat", Singapore Book of Records, Retrieved 16 Jan 2011
  101. ^ a b “本地魔术师1小时测百人心 记者:难以置信!”,, 9 January 2012
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  105. ^ [2] "Magicians take over Genting", The Sun Daily, 5 July 2012
  106. ^ [3] “全球首演女魔术师秀双夹克倒吊逃脱术” , Hisoing《绝代商娇》, 4 July 2012
  107. ^ [4]“8月魔幻旅程开跑 云顶办2012云顶国际魔术节”, NTV7, 4 July 2012
  108. ^ [5]“3分鐘掙脫2夾克逃火海‧幻術表演令觀眾直呼厲害”, 光明日報, 4 July 2012
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  114. ^ a b c “They had winning digits but did not bet”, The New Paper, 30 January 2010
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External links[edit]

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