The only time you would see fairytale creatures roaming around would be on Halloween. However, in one particular place, fairytale folk seems to be adored. It wasn’t Halloween, and not on the way to a costume party, yet seeing a wizard in New Zealand is not something out of the ordinary.
Of all the careers we have, who would have thoughts that wizard was even a real job! It’s fun, entertaining and you actually get paid.
Meet the Wizard, Ian Brackenbury Channell, who is the self-described “Official Wizard of New Zealand,” a Living Work of Art, designer of Post-Modern Cosmology, theorist of the Fun Revolution, founder of the Imperial British Conservative Party, role-model for Post-Feminist men, and Metaphysical Engineer, according to art galleries and critics. His operations in Cathedral Square are well-known among both locals and visitors.
In the year 1932, Ian Brackenbury Channell was born in London, England. He served as a Royal Air Force Navigator during his service. He graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology with honors in 1963. He became a lecturer and eventually a Teaching Fellow in Australia after traveling in the Middle East and teaching in Teheran.
His career as a wizard began in 1969, when the Vice-Chancellor and Students’ Union designated him, Wizard of the University of New South Wales, allowing for the continuation of experimental teaching and social change approaches. The Wizard’s living body was also donated as a Living Work of Art to the National Gallery of Victoria.
The Wizard was named the official Archwizard of Canterbury by the Canterbury Promotion Council in 1980. Prime Minister Mike Moore named him Wizard of New Zealand ten years later.
Recently, the New Zealand city of Christchurch has cast its official wizard from the payroll after 23 years of service. Ian Brackenbury Channell, 88, was paid NZD16,000 a year (RM47,745) to perform “miracles” and promote the city. The city, on the other hand, has terminated its contract, claiming that it is moving in a more modern and varied path. Because he was a provocateur, Mr. Channell informed local media that he no longer fit “the vibes” of the city.
Not only that, he has been condemned recently for his jokes about women. The city’s decision to stop paying him in December came months after some of his statements, including jokes about violence against women, sparked outrage in New Zealand. He said that he adored ladies and that he always forgave them.
Despite the negative things, looking back on the now finished career of New Zealand’s official wizard, it’s clear that he was once quite beloved.