Its a Good Start

I love magic.

Magic allows me to help people laugh and wonder, and think creatively. It allows me to express my creativity.

But, most of all magic allows me to ignore boundaries: the boundaries of science, of normality, of reality.

I enjoy the current show. It contains a beautiful, fun and funny, and exciting selection of effects. Audiences can directly participate in the Silk to Egg transformation, or wonder at the opening productions and the silk penetrating a balloon. They are amazed at the card effects, (and rope, and rings, and fire, and water effects and more) and the escape–which really contains a dangerous element–is visual and amazing. Throughout, we enjoy the wonder and humor together.

Its a good start, a great start for the customer’s dollar.

But it will never be enough!

Each day that I am not performing, I create. Sometimes sewing new costumes, or building new illusions, or exploring new venues. I go to sleep each night thinking, “Today, I made progress. Today, the show got better. Today was good start.”

And in the morning, as I sip my coffee, I think, “What’s next?”

The Illusionists: A Review

Last night, I was delighted by the “The Illusionists: Live From Broadway” at the Orpheum theater in Sioux City, IA. The show features seven magical personalities in a two plus hour spectacle.

Each magician performs as a prototype magician in a seamless show that overcomes one of the basic problems of the evening magic show: how does one provide variety while maintaining continuity?

Much of this success depends on the comedy of Trickster Jeff Hobson Dave Williamson, the whimsical visions of Inventor Kevin James, and the magnetic personality of Deductionist Colin Cloud. Their interactions with the volunteers and audience make the show work as a whole. Moreover, they each present masterful effects. Special mention must be made of Kevin James’ unique sawed-in-half.

By themselves, Hobson Williamson, Cloud and James, would be enough reason to endorse this show, but Weapon Master Ben Blaque and Escapologist Andrew Blazzo add danger and excitement to the show in just the right portion.

An Ha Lim, the Manipulator, is a master, and one of my magician heroes. His card productions and manipulation are a beauty that reach the level of art.

I left Anti-conjuror Dan Sperry for last. What can be said? His Edward Scissorhands meets Harry Anderson with just of touch of Lance Burton persona was alternately and collectively comic, macabre and wizardly.

As I walked out of the theater I said to my former assistant magician: the lesson is to take a great idea and push it to its logical limit. That is The Illusionists. Magician or fan go see their show.

Update: Many thanks to magician friends Dave Tenneboe and Dave Madsen for pointing out that Jeff Hobson was replaced by the hilarious Dave Williamson for the evening’s performance.