The magic of make-believe is something that children and even adults – who are still in touch with their imagination – can enjoy. Even just watching one skilled magician perform is usually enough to satisfy our need for the seemingly supernatural, but the “Champions of Magic” touring group is much more than that, boasting a total of five internationally respected magicians.
Illusionists and lifelong friends Sam Strange and Richard Young, escape artist Fernando Velasco, close-up enchantress Kayla Drescher, and expert mind-reader Alex McAleer are the “Champions of Magic,” who perform in one city after the next, defending their titles as the best magicians in the world. On November 23rd, they will be at Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts (specifically Segerstrom Hall) where they will perform not once but twice – at 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
This curious collection of performers, who represent the United Kingdom as well as Mexico and America, have been a stateside hit since 2017 where they’ve continued to garner acclaim — much of it quantifiable — in the form of 30 million overall views on social media in addition to appearances on “Today” and “Penn & Teller: Fool Us,” just to name a few. It’s been quite the ride for its vaunted members, too, who began by paying their dues with private and corporate gigs which usually only had a smattering of observers to appreciate their talents.
Nonetheless, by joining forces they’ve epitomized the adage, “the sum is greater than its parts.” Whether it’s reading one’s thoughts, doing card tricks, telling jokes, incorporating sports cars into their routine, levitating above the stage, performing death-defying aerial stunts, teleporting, disappearing out of thin air, or escaping a chamber that is submerged under water — à la the legendary Harry Houdini – there’s every reason to champion the “Champions of Magic.” What’s more is that they’re not all flash, either, as they balance style and substance in equal measure. If you can envision what some of the demonstrations of magic from the “Now You See Me” films would look like in a live setting, you would have this revue.
For those thinking of seeing the “Champions of Magic” in Costa Mesa, another important point is that the theatrical spectacle provided by this production is family-friendly and is committed to spellbinding audience members of all ages. Modern-day magic acts have a tendency to be ribald or vulgar, but this one is notable for not crossing decorous boundaries and being tastefully appealing across all sensibilities.
As far as what to expect, there will not only be collaborative exhibitions of magic, each “Champion” will have their own segment as well, so that the attendees will get the opportunity to become acquainted on an individual basis. Furthermore, audience members will be asked to participate in the fun, secrets will become uncovered, unpredictable events will occur, and by show’s end, the more fecund one’s imagination is, the more receptive one will be to the charms cast by the “Champions of Magic.” Those who believe in magic will become devotees and those who are skeptical will at least start to believe.
For more information about “Champions of Magic” at Segerstrom Hall, and to purchase tickets, please visit: