Welcome to the Magic Lantern Society

Formed in 1977 the Magic Lantern Society today enjoys a world-wide membership whose interests cover all forms of visual media and optical diversions right up into the 21st century and these interests are reflected in the Society's activities.

Our members are collectors, enthusiasts, students of film, visual media and popular culture, magicians, artists, performers, scientists and archival organisations from over 30 different countries.

More about us Join now

A party at Mr Lorraine's, Langside Hall


The only way to really appreciate the magic is to join the show at our quarterly meetings and world class international conventions.

All events

Publication cover


Purchase copies of our latest publications, browse our digitised journal issues and explore our full back catalogue.

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Optical media

Lantern History

An introduction to the world of the lantern from its origins to today with illustrations of lanterns, slides and accessories.

Delve right in

Book cover

Active Lanternists

Interested in putting on a lantern show but lack the equipment or expertise?

Browse our list of member lanternists to find a lanternist in your area

Find a lanternist

Did you know...?

It's time to take advantage of the dark!

Don't have a lantern of your own? Find someone who does or go along to a show in your area.

We highlight as many fantastic magic lantern shows as possible through our X (formerly Twitter) feed.

If there currently isn't a show on offer in your area drop us a line. Look through our listing of member lanternists and let them help you discover the magic!

Find a lanternist Follow us on X

Forthcoming Events

Spring Meeting 2024
13 April 2024, Birmingham, England

Special Meeting 2024
15-16 June 2024, Den Haag, Netherlands

Summer Meeting 2024
27 July 2024, Brighton and Hove, England

The programme and further details of each meeting will be sent to all members, and posted in the Members' Area of the website, about a month before the event.

If you're not yet a member and would like to attend one of our events as a guest, please contact us for more information.