First Official Magic Academy of France

In the evening, Le Double Fond is a charming Parisian bar where the whole family can enjoy bites and drinks accompanied by magic tricks. During the day, however, the place transforms into a school for the next generation of magicians.

If Dominique Duvivier and his daughter Alexandra train students during the day and receive clients at night since the creation of the establishment in 1988, they have just achieved a new status: the Ministry of Labor has recognized Le Double Fond as an official academy of magic.

According to Reuters, the certification elevates the institution to the level of other performing arts schools and legitimizes it as a form of post-high school education. For 18-year-old Thomas Bioret, it was the prospect of a degree that prompted him to enroll in the three-month program instead of continuing on the path to becoming a professional croupier.

Before joining Le Double Fond (which translates to “The False Bottom”), Bioret practiced magic in his spare time and even organized high school productions. Now he spends 35 hours a week in the restaurant’s basement learning magic tricks, the history of magic, practical management skills, and more.

“It’s really gripping – you don’t notice the day going by,” Bioret told Reuters. “Of course, it’s 35 hours a week with a lot of travel, a lot of homework, but the time goes by at a crazy speed.”

With the Double Fund’s new position as a government-recognized institution comes opportunities for public funding, which will hopefully help ease the financial burden of aspiring magicians who cannot afford the three-month course, which costs just over $16,500.

Want to learn a little magic without traveling to Paris? Here are 15 magic tricks you didn’t know you could do.

[h/t Reuters]

Brian L. Hartfield