Ali Bongo - 1929 - 2009
William Oliver Wallace
8 December 1929 - 8 March 2009, known by his stage name Ali Bongo, was a British comedy magician and former president of The Magic Circle who performed an act in which he was known as the "Shriek of Araby"
Born as William Oliver Wallace in England,
where his father (also called William was serving as a sergeant major with the 1st Battalion of the Queen's Own Royal West Kent Regiment. Young William spent his early years on a British station in Trimulgherry, Secunderabad before going to Britain with his mother Lillian, at the age of seven.
After William Wallace senior had ended his army service, the family moved to Sutton Valence in Kent and young William won a scholarship to Sutton Valence School, leaving at 16 to begin his career as an entertainer. His time in National Service was spent with the Royal Army Pay Corps. He worked for Harry Stanley's Unique Magic Studio and was manager of the magic department at Hamleys toy shop in London's Regent Street.