RIYADH: Five professional magicians from around the world are thrilling crowds in the Riyadh Boulevard with a show that features illusions, sleight of hand and high-risk stunts.
Performer Josephine Lee described “Champions of Magic” as a “family show with something for everybody.”
“We have close up, card tricks, illusions; we have something to make you laugh, cry and be astounded. It’s an incredible show that is packed with amazement,” she told Arab News.
Lee, Darcy Oake, Harry De Cruz, Patrick Kun and Young-Min Kim make up the cast of “Champions of Magic” and will perform during Riyadh Season.
“The five magicians each specialize in a particular area of magic, and we have come up with our best material and brought it to Saudi Arabia for the first time,” Oake said.
Crowds chanted in anticipation between each of the shows as the performers took center stage. Unlike most magic shows, “Champions of Magic” features a group of talented individuals coming together to display their skills in the most effective way.
“It’s an amazing group of magicians working together which is rare because usually you are working solo as a magician. It’s amazing to be here with everyone else from the cast,” Oake said.
“Young-Min specializes in sleight of hand, manipulation and performance art. Patrick does close-up magic with cards like you’ve never seen before; Josephine and I are doing illusions; and Harry brings the quirky audience participation, fun and the element of danger,” Oake added.
De Cruz delivers an interactive show that involves the audience at every step, from the introduction to the execution of the tricks.
“I think what is so special about any magic show is that it brings the audience together. After the year we have had, connection is more important than ever,” De Cruz said.
“A show like ‘Champions of Magic’ unites everyone and brings us all together,” he added.
Kun, a master of sleight-of-hand card tricks, invites audience members on stage to join the performance.
“All of our magic is pretty universal; we don’t have to rely so much on a language and the audience can enjoy the show,” he said. “The audience here has been amazing, and we are having a good time.”
When Arab News sat down with the magicians after the show, they said that it was their first visit to the Kingdom. For many in the audience it was also their first experience of a live magic show.
“Magic is relatively new here in Saudi Arabia and the crowds have been amazing. The audience has been eating it up; it’s amazing to get that response,” Oake said.
“Magic isn’t something that people in Saudi Arabia are used to, but we have been doing it for our entire lives and maybe take it for granted. But when you put it in front of a new audience that isn’t familiar with the craft and get the response that the show has been getting, it’s amazing.”
“Champions of Magic” is staged twice a day in Riyadh Boulevard as part of a global tour that includes the Kingdom.