THE GLOBAL FILIPINO MAGAZINE Issue 9 Former waiter now master magician performing at Dubai’s most...

Former waiter now master magician performing at Dubai’s most lucrative events


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For Normando Morden Macalinao, magic is believing that one can make anything happen. Working independently in Dubai as a full-time magician, he performs close up magic across the region. He’s often found performing at Dubai’s most lucrative events. 

Popularly known as ‘Normando The Magician,’ he has already performed with the world’s famous personalities such as Paris Hilton, Ne-yo, Trey Songz, Obdel Becham Jr., Steve Aoki, Manny Pacquiao, and many more. Macalinao has also been hired to perform with ‘royal clients’ across the world. His networking in Dubai has brought him to many worldwide opportunities, performing at exclusive events in Saudi Arabia, Zanzibar, and the Maldives. 

The performer recalled when he first set foot in the emirate. It was 2014 when he arrived in the emirate and secured a job as a waiter. With his gusto to perform as a magician, he continued to perform it to their hotel guests, and luckily, he was talent scouted. After working as a server for four years, he, soon, found himself performing as a professional magician at events all over Dubai. 

His passion for magic was sparked at 14 when he was amazed by a local performer who transformed a red ball into two in his hands. Naive, he couldn’t believe what has unfolded before his eyes. “I was hooked. That moment has stayed with me throughout my career and I still actually use the ‘red ball’ illusion in my own act today. I just love magic, I know how it makes people happy,” he said. 

Macalinao said that when he makes his audience happy and amazed, it never felt like he’s working. “I enjoy meeting new people and the opportunities that I got to meet some of my idols,” he said. 

Prior to working in Dubai, Macalinao is involved in politics in the Philippines but he was yearning to be a full-time magician. He was trained at a university hospital, so he took a leap to join his brother in Dubai and sought opportunities in the hospitality and entertainment industry. 

A newbie in Dubai, he initially struggled to work as a waiter as his duty was 10 to 12 hours per day. “I felt so isolated and lonely at times and the small amount of money that I earned meant that my options were limited. It was also difficult to keep believing in myself when no one else did, they didn’t think that I could reach my goals and achieve my dream of working as a magician. I considered giving up at times as I felt unsupported but I never did because I believed in myself that I could do it,” he said. 

Macalinao advised his fellow Filipinos to ‘just keep focused, carry on working hard, and trust the process because one day it’s going to be worth it.’ 

This story has been featured on the 9th issue of The Global Filipino Magazine. To get a copy, you may contact Mr Orli Gayeta at +971503196856. If you have an inspiring story or know someone with one, please send an email at

The Global Filipino Magazine is the only Filipino magazine in the UAE that prints on a monthly basis. Its goal is to champion the success of every global Filipino across the globe.

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