The Magic Of…

Posted in Short Subject, Travel on April 25th, 2012

(13×60 minutes)


The company that brought you the Fantastic Festivals of the World series presents a visually stunning HD series that delves into the rich cultures of the world. This High Definition series explores the culture, cuisine, landscape and traditions of the world’s most captivating regions.
The ‘magic’ is viewers finding themselves immersed in a country and discovering a place and people more rich and dynamic than previously imagined. The Magic Of… highlights the people that make each area unique, the food that distinguishes one country from the next, the beautiful scenery found in every region, the architecture that defines each place and the history it boasts.
Episodes include Hong Kong, Burgundy (France), Sicily, Taiwan, Yorkshire (England), Wales, Argentina, Israel, Chile, China, Morocco, Bermuda, French Polynesia, Australia and more!


1.  The Magic of… Sicily

A visual show celebrating the food, people, and beauty of Sicily, the biggest island in the Mediterranean. Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Normans and Spanish all called Sicily home. The architecture and cuisine reflect this fact. We see why Sicily’s beauty and people, history and myth, have been the backdrop for many popular books and films. The Magic of Sicily takes us to small villages, like Agira, for the celebration of the ‘The Fair of the Macaroni’. We go to the Aeolian Islands for volcano hiking in Stomboli and caper picking in Salina. Then we go to a medieval festival in the Nebrodi Mountains and head south to the fishermen of Sciacca in the Agrigento region. We eat a lot of pasta on the way! More magical adventures at the capital of Palermo where a restaurateur did not surrender to Mafia extortion and at the city of Siracusa where the market has the friendliest cheese maker on the island. We finish off with a family gathering in a typical Sicilian village with songs, food and wine and a nod to the masterpieces that this islands have inspired.


2.  The Magic of… Taiwan

An insider’s look exploring the culture, cuisine and landscape of this fascinating island nation. Taiwan is a leader in technological advancement but the fertile green mountain range, marble gorges, and numerous hot springs slow the pace. The temples and shrines reveal the deep-rooted beliefs and beauty of this resilient populace.The Magic of Taiwan features edible replicas of the nation’s most prized possessions such as the famed Jade Cabbage. A hot cup of traditional Oolong tea made the Taiwanese way with leaves freshly hand picked in the Alishan Mountains. In sharp contrast there is the modern skyscraper resembling a bamboo shoot, called ‘101’, in the capital city of Taipei.We visit a magical marriage ceremony with the aboriginals of Taiwan, sail on a scenic boat ride to Bird Island and witness the traditionally wild firecracker festival.


3.  The Magic of… Yorkshire

Yorkshire is the largest county in England. It is known for its moors and dales landscape and literature’s most accomplished sisters, the Brontes. We go to the Bronte’s village and explore the settings that stirred their imagination. We set off on an intimate journey bursting with old world style, noble people and grand history, such as York, the gated capital with a towering cathedral and an underground Viking city called ‘Jorvik’. We travel by steam train and learn how the authentic engines still work on coal, as in years past. The stunning coastal town of Whitby is where Captain Cook called home, and the town’s panorama is documented in Bram Stoker’s Dracula. We walk around the enormous but roofless Fountains Abbey and hear stories about kings and wars.Yorkshire’s gastronomy is explored in Bradford where Kashmiri immigrants serve appetizing curry dishes at Mumtaz Restaurant. We see how two local chefs prepare the national dishes, one fittingly called, Yorkshire pudding, and eat the world’s best fish and chips at the Magpie Café.


4.  The Magic of… Wales

A refreshing program illuminating the wonders and spirit of this incredible country, where the Welsh language is spoken proudly and the men’s choir is a national fad. Immense castles dot the Welsh landscape, which is incredibly green and there are more sheep than people.
Some wonders are unique to Wales like the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, the highest canal aqueduct ever build, the smallest house in Great Britain as well as the city with the longest name. The Magic of Wales explores the unusual story of the Ladies of Llangollen, a pair who lived in a style way before their time and the house of the country’s most famous poet, Dylan Thomas. We take a rough boat ride to the isolation of the mystical Bardsey Island, where seals come to give birth and there are twenty thousands graves of pilgrims who wished to be buried there. The finest Welsh products are tasted at the fantastic Cheese Festival in Cardiff while some of the world’s top chefs use the extremely flavorful sea salt called Halen Mon, which is produced on the western coast of Wales.


5.  The Magic of… Hong Kong

A fast paced program about the hidden sides of this multi-colored, fascinating culture. On Hong Kong Island, a Chinese herb shop dispenses secret remedies while in Kowloon, a snake lady handles cobras like toys before making them into a healing reptilian soup. On the car-less Cheung Chau Island, elevated children in gorgeous outfits parade like divine beings at the amazing Bun Festival. At the bun race dozens of men climb bun towers and compete to see who can gather the most amount of them and get back down safely. The Magic of Hong Kong features the lush mountains, miles of hiking trails and a peek behind the scenes at a traditional Cantonese opera house.As a chef cooks the deadly poisonous “stone fish” we are exposed to the unusual local cuisine, mainly known for its excellent dim sum.

6.  The Magic of… Burgundy

A joyful romp that travels to France and the Burgundy region where wine is king and the food is the kingdom. A man who lives in a magnificent chateaux turns out to be an incredible collector of airplanes and vintage cars. The Chassagne-Montrachet family vineyard, run by a father and his two sons in St. Aubon, prepares for a celebration of Bastille Day. The Magic of Burgundy includes a visit to the kitchen of a superb three-Michelin star chef and his frog legs specialty. In Dijon we see the process of mustard making and at a cheese boutique in Baoune we learn what to buy for a real picnic, which we enjoy at the end of a bike ride in the vineyards. ‘Magic’ is experiencing the exciting atmosphere of a French market, visiting the kitchen of a local family and witnessing the quality of life – the French way!