London, the “Two Ronnies” show, at the Palladium

May to August 1978

Omar Pasha is booked at London’s mythical variety theatre : The London Palladium. It is in the show of two British comedian stars, The Two Ronnies, Ronnie Barker and Ronnie Corbett. This show is presented by the legendary British producer Harold Fielding.

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Ronnie & Ronnie in one of their extravaganza scene

For 7 years, they make a weekly triumph every Saturday evening on television. It is their first show together on stage. Nine months before the opening, the booking is open and works already very well. Omar Pasha will contrast with the rest of the show.

This stage spectacular has a success without precedent. For the very first time on the West End (the London theatre area), a regular show will be allowed to play on some Sundays.

The act is noticed both by the newspaper critics and by the audience. A real turning point in our career.

After the creation of the show in a 3 week season in Bristol, it plays for 3 months at the London Palladium, followed by reruns in Great Britain : Southampton, Coventry, and 4 months in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia. Altogether it will be 12 months of unforgettable performances.

Four low movable podiums allow very quick set changes. They work with the help of a double floor and of a cable system. So, the audience can experience an effect looking like a movie travelling platform.

Omar Pasha works on the biggest of those podiums. It slides from the back of the stage down to the front, during the first bars of the Bolero by Ravel, played live by an orchestra of 14 musicians. The audience only sees Omar Pasha and the frame of red bulbs coming closer. Then the act takes place.

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Omar Pasha as seen in the program of the show

P.S. Ronnie Barker passed away on October 3rd 2005, he was 76. Ronnie Corbett passed away on March 31st 2016, at the age of 85. How sad it is. We all had so nicely worked, with a similar energy, in a great and happy atmosphere, in the same show, for the same audiences. Why such a sadness now, after such good and hilarious moments ?

Ronnie and Ronnie, tell us a secret, just for us : will you rebuilt the Two Ronnies team, wherever you are now ?

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The “Omar Pasha” family is invited at the Magic Circle in London, in July 1978, sitting : John Salisse, standing : Arthur Carter 

But for me the undoubted star of the show is a chap called Omar Pasha. He doesn’t say a word. What he does, brilliantly, is to make people and things disappear before your very astounded eyes.

What an illusionist !

Arthur Thirkell in Daily Mirror, Saturday May 27, 1978

For me, however, they were eclipsed by an illusionist called Omar Pasha who, in one of the classiest magic acts I have ever seen,actually makes a variety of objects appear and disappear before our very  eyes – including himself.

The Sunday Express, May 28, 1978

Omar Pasha is a delightful magician.

John Barber in The Daily Telegraph, 27 May 1978