I know, right?!
Opening night fast approaches and we touch base again.
K, I’m out in front of the venue.
I can’t see you.
I’m right here beside the main pillar.
That’s crazy. I’M right beside the main pillar. I’ve been here for 10 minutes. Wait, are you invisible?
There’s a pause. In unison we lean back and in a puff of imaginary smoke, magically emerge on either side of the grand illusion to appear face to face less than two feet apart. We share a laugh at the shenanigans and head into the show.
My magician friend and I settle into our seats with our collective note pads. Mine for this review, his for ideas to explore for future shows.
When writing a review for a show such as this it is difficult to do so without completely ruining it for future audiences. So much of what makes this show a jaw-dropping experience involves secret spoiler details that are essential to the orchestration and awe of the illusions. What a let down it would be to know it’s actually a relatively tame, domesticated lion they let loose on the audience, right? No one should mess with that adrenaline pump.
The show offers the incredible talents of five extraordinary illusionists: Colin Cloud (The Mentalist) who works with numbers, logic, and intuition; Adam Trent (The Futurist) who makes things shift to and from impossible places; An Ha Lim (The Manipulator) who is a world master of slight of hand; Darcy Oake (The Grand illusionist) who freezes time and makes things appear out of thin air; and Jonathan Goodwin (The Daredevil) who temps fate with hair-raising Houdini-esque feats.
There is a lot of audience participation as guests are woven into intricate guessing games with hidden treasures. Live audience participation can be a tricky venture and require a strong ability to think on your feet as it can offer up pretty much anything. It takes a cool head and a magical wit to make lemonade from many of the lemons tossed out at will. It is here, however, where the illusionists shine the brightest. The magical feats are extraordinary, no doubt about that, but it’s the humor that threads them together that props up the show and keeps it moving in an entertaining and enjoyable manner. Without the quick wit of Adam Trent and Colin Cloud we’d have an entirely different show. At one point in the show the couple sitting behind us murmur sentiments about one of the super scary daredevil acts going a bit too far. They are physically uncomfortable with what they are watching, which of course is the effective intent of the piece. Fortunately for them a few minutes later, during the following act, the intelligent humor of Adam Trent, coupled with his ability to connect to the audience, pulls them out of their nervous predicament as he fields comments from the audience and lobs back spontaneous punch line suggestions that have us all in stitches.
One of the most impressive acts of the evening involves Grand Illusionist Darcy Oake and a number of doves. That’s all you get. We try incredibly hard to work out how he is doing what he is doing, watching him like a hawk. Nope, no such luck. The guy sitting next to me is a freakin’ magician for crying out loud. I should have an in to all of this. His jaw dropped.
Throughout the show a couple of the illusionists offer up answers to some of the illusions, allowing us to see how easy some of the “tricks” are to perform. Timing is everything. We’re pretty savvy by the end of all this but time and again, just as we’re getting a bit too big for our britches they blow our minds with some absurd, impossible ending that leaves us blinking in wonder.
The visuals that accompany a few of the acts are spectacular and the performers have mastered the cues to split second timing. The supporting performers are essential to the show and deliver the goods with conviction and aplomb.
The show is flawless and breathtaking and offers a night to remember for a very long time. There are some scary bits indeed, but if you remember that this is a night of illusions, it is definitely a wonderously fantastical night for the entire family.
Click HERE for a link to tickets.