Lawrence Khong

Lawrence Khong, PBM
Founding Chairman, Gateway Entertainment
Founding Chairman, TOUCH Community Services
Illusionist
Magic Consultant
Asia’s First Elite Diamond Merlin Award Recipient
Magician of the Year 2010

Lawrence is the first in Asia to receive the Elite Diamond Merlin Award for Magician of the Year. This award conferred by the International Magicians Society in 2010 is the equivalent of the Oscars in the international magic community and industry.

A passionate innovator in the field of magic, Lawrence founded Gateway Entertainment in 2000 to realise his vision of creating magic theatre productions that go being mere magic shows. Together with creative director and daughter Priscilla, Lawrence conceptualised and staged mega illusion theatre productions that meld extraordinary illusions with great stories and compelling theatre under the label, Magic of Lawrence and Priscilla. The label’s successful productions have confounded and enthralled audiences from Las Vegas to Seoul, and have been enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of people around the world.

Lawrence's passion for innovation led him to collaborate with some of the most acclaimed maestros of magic such as master illusionist Jeff McBride, a three-time award winner at the International Grand Prix of Magic, who contributed to the highly acclaimed production Magic of Love.

Other collaborators include Don Wayne, who served as David Copperfield's principal magic creator and director for over 18 years; Jim Steinmeyer, credited for defining illusions for David Copperfield; Joanie Spina who was principal performer, choreographer, and artistic consultant to David Copperfield for 11 years and John Thomson who was the consultant for MindFreak, Criss Angel’s hit television series.

Apart from magic, Lawrence is also a pioneer in public service. Lawrence founded TOUCH Community Services in 1986, a registered not-for-profit charitable organisation that serves the underprivileged and needy in Singapore. Lawrence has been instrumental in inspiring and mobilising the community to volunteer their service to the needy; he has supported and resourced TOUCH, which enabled the charity to grow, value-add and contribute to the professionalism in the social service sector. Over the years, TOUCH has been a pioneer in addressing social issues, even before there is a national agenda to tackle them. Such issues include cyber wellness education since 2000, and championing diabetes awareness and psycho-social support for individuals with diabetes since 1992.

In 2007, TOUCH Community Services was named Outstanding Non-profit Organisation in Singapore, and was awarded the Charity Transparency Award for 3 consecutive years from 2016 to 2018 by the Charity Council for its exemplary disclosure practices. In the Charity Governance Awards 2017 category, TOUCH Community Services was also conferred the Special Commendation Award for Clarity of Strategy.

In 2002, fuelled by a desire to do more for the community with his magic talent, Lawrence set up Project SMILE, or Sharing Magic In Love Everywhere, with Priscilla. This one-of-a-kind community initiative teaches and trains volunteers in the art of performing magic to spread joy and wonder among the less privileged in society. Through Project SMILE, Lawrence led a team with volunteers from TOUCH International and set off to China to share the spirit of volunteerism, promote cultural exchange and bilingualism amongst the youths from Singapore and China.  For 10 years, over 100 youths from different parts of China were trained in Service-Learning and Project SMILE each year, bringing a smile to the communities through magic. 

For his contributions to public service, Lawrence was conferred the prestigious Pingat Bakti Masyarakat (Public Service Medal) title in 1998. He was also twice nominated for the SIP-Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award (2007 and 2008) for his work on Project SMILE.

The multifaceted Lawrence is also a world-class polo player. He was part of the national polo team in the Southeast Asian Games in Thailand in 2007 where the team bagged the silver medal. The following year, Lawrence was voted by Singaporeans as one of Team Singapore’s Top 21 Singapore Sports Idols.

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