“I enjoy discovering what lies behind a magic trick, like Sherlock Holmes uncovering a mystery.” Meet the Syrian refugee magic man – “Sherl Nazer” – named for his love of the famous Mr Holmes.
Magic is more than a hobby for Mohamad Al-Nazer, he practices for weeks before showing his tricks to enthralled spectators in Hungary. “I get ideas from YouTube, there was no YouTube in Syria, but here in Budapest there are magic shops and meetings for magicians.” Mohamad works 10 hours a day, six days a week, in a mini supermarket. He spends his spare time practicing magic, and entertaining journey-weary new refugee arrivals. His family fled Syria and were able to settle in Budapest because his father, physician Anas, first came to Hungary years ago as a medical student. “We were hoping that by some miracle we could stay in Syria,” Mohamad said. “But when a huge bomb exploded right by our house, we knew it was time to leave. All the windows were blown out and the building was shaking.”
“We are lucky. There were no arrests in our family and we did not lose anyone. Other Syrians have suffered much more and we are glad to help them.” Mohamad will soon take up a place at Budapest Metropolitan University, to study animation, on a course partly sponsored by the Walt Disney Animation Studios.