Who am I?

I am a multi-award winning magician…
a stand-up comedian…
a best-selling author…
a celebrated educator…
and a collector of cons, scams, and fraud.

And I’m ready to spill my secrets.

More About Nicholas

See deception up close at Sleight Night

Join me and my friends each month at Sleight Night and witness the best close up magic in Australia. Shows book out early so book now to ensure you don't miss out.

More About Nicholas


Nicholas J. Johnson is a professional speaker, magician, author and educator who specialises in improving the public’s understanding of deception, and helping them to identify scams, hoaxes and suspect science.

For the past 20 years, Nicholas has worked with businesses, law-enforcement agencies and universities to uncover the tricks behind the tricks.

“No one likes the idea of being swindled,” says Nicholas. “But often understanding the reasons why we’re so easily taken for a ride can make us more critical and better able to spot dubious claims in a world filled with fake news.”

In Nicholas’s keynote presentations, you’ll not only witness extraordinary sleight of hand and baffling illusions, you’ll also learn the secrets behind the misdirection, perception and influence that make it all possible.

Get in touch to find out more about my shows and presentations in Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Sydney and around Australia.

Like most children, Nicholas loved magic from an early age. Unlike most children, Nicholas turned it into a career, performing his first professional shows at age 10.

After completing a BA Sociology in 2001, Nicholas combined his love of deception and education to create entertaining, enlightening presentations and shows that have earned him the moniker ‘The Honest Con Man’.

In the past two decades, he has presented for hundreds of organisations including ANZ,  Microsoft, ACCC, AusCERT, Consumer Actoin Law Centre and the Financial and Consumer Rights Council.

He has collaborated on projects with scientists from Monash University, RMIT, Swinburne University, CSIRO and the Centre of Excellence for Integrative Brain Function.

He’s also appeared as an expert on Fraud and scams on The Project, A Current Affair, Sunrise, TODAY and The Real Hustle.

Nicholas is the author of two best-selling novels, Chasing the Ace and Fast and Loose (Simon & Schuster). Both books use fiction to explore the facts behind the world of professional con artists.

“Most magicians are happy just to fool their audiences”, says Nicholas. “I want to turn them into walking BS detectors”.


  • 2016 Melbourne Magic Festival – Best Comedy

  • 2015 Melbourne Comedy Festival Moosehead Award Winner

  • 2014 Melbourne Comedy Festival Golden Gibbo Nominee

  • 2014 Candlelight Productions Award For Artistic Excellence

  • 2014 Ned Kelly Award Best New Fiction Nominee

  • 2007 Australian Skeptics Critical Thinking Prize (Special Mention)

  • 2000 Raw Comedy State Winner

  • 1987 Best Colouring In – Mrs Allan’s Year 2 Class