Ali Cook leaves mouths gaping as people gasp in wonderment at magic tricks that make rabbits appearing in top hats seem like an everyday occurrence. Principles and Deceptions is Cook’s latest show in which he performs magic in all its most famous forms, and proves himself to be an exceptional magician.This show exemplifies accurately what professional fringe shows are all about. The show is perfection. Cook has a well-structured performance and an intriguing set comprised of a cage and a hanging shoe box. There is also plenty of audience participation and, despite my best efforts to look nonchalant, I was chosen to take part in one of his tricks. I quickly removed the press pass from around my neck to avoid being totally ridiculed, went on stage and was Cook’s not so glamorous assistant. The trick involved me having to drink and spit back out a series of drinks, not my most graceful of moments it has to be said, and with a flick of his wand-like hands I was saved from drinking a glass of water with a dead mouse in it. Thank goodness he is good at his job.Cook puts magicians’ theories and techniques to the test with the likes of disappearing shoes, goldfish and people. Yes, you read correctly, but you have to go and see it to believe it. There seems to be nothing this man can’t do.This is an excellent family show; Cook’s comic approach to magic is superb and the lack of the broomsticks and cauldrons we are used to seeing in Harry Potter make this frighteningly real. After seeing Principles and Deceptions all I want to do is ask the impossible of Mr Cook: How on earth did you do that? But a great magician never tells. I suppose I’ll just have to keep guessing.