As you walk into the theater it is obvious you are leaving the present time behind. There is a Victrola on one end of the stage and a cart full with dated suitcases on the other end. There are old fashioned spotlights on the ceiling and old fashion foot lamps at the edge of the stage. There is also an arch that covers the percennium of the stage. It is the kind you see at a Vaudeville show. We are officially in 1903 at a magicians festival. There are nine performers each with a different skill such as DANA DANIELS THE CHARLATAN, CHARLIE FRYE THE ECCENTRIC, JONATHAN GOODWIN THE DARE DEVIL, MARK KALIN THE SHOWMAN, JINGER LEIGH THE CONJURESS, JUSTO THAUS THE GRAND CARLINI, RICK THOMAS THE IMMORTAL, and THOMMY TEN & AMELIE VAN TESS THE CLAIRVOYANTS.
The level of humor during the show is surprising and very welcomed. Not only are you amazed and marveled by what is happening on stage; but you laugh your behind off doing so. JUSTO THAUS was the best of all the performers. He reminded me of a young STEVE MARTIN during his SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE days. The level of audience participation is also surprising and a little unnerving. Not only did they come to the audience and interact with them, they brought about a dozen audience members on stage during the intermission for a so called magician’s parlor. JUSTO THAUS was the show’s host and hilarious as expected. It is everything from slight of hand to clairvoyants to juggling and dare devil acts of strength over might.
The ILLUSIONISTS is not just a show about tricks it is a show about challenging your belief systems as to what can and IS real and possible. JONATHAN GOODWIN THE DARE DEVIL really does some physically impossible stunts from laying on a nail to hanging 20 feet in the air by a burning rope as deadly spikes wait below him. THOMMY TEN and AMELIE VAN TASS makes you scratch your brain as they pull information and exact details from audience members. If you didn’t know there were almost 1500 people at the show you would think all the people they worked with were plants; but there is no way. CHARLIE FRYE THE ECCENTRIC was a delicious extra. He didn’t do anything you haven’t seen before but it was his execution that sold it all. The ILLUSIONISTS is VEGAS on BROADWAY, only what you see and experience there doesn’t have to stay there.