You have probably seen him on television performing incredible illusions such as making the Statue of Liberty disappear, navigating the rapids of Niagara Falls and flying over the Grand Canyon. Master magician David Copperfield seems to have done it all. His show in Las Vegas is a unique opportunity for audiences to see these larger-than- life illusions performed live and up close in the Hollywood Theater at MGM Grand.
Of course he can't exactly re-create all of them, but he demonstrates similar and equally amazing illusions using objects that are more suitable for a stage setting.
Copperfield alludes to an illusion he did where he walked through the Great Wall of China and then explains that he is going to re-create that same illusion using a large metal sheet as the indestructible medium through which he will effortlessly pass.
The metal sheet is placed on a raised platform, and Copperfield has two audience members come on stage to test it out by walking on it and hitting it with a rubber hammer.
Next, he lies under the piece of metal, and four assistants hold a sheet over Copperfield and the platform. The assistants spin the platform around proving to the audience that there is no way out except by going through the metal. First you see just a finger poking through and then, within seconds, he miraculously appears on top of the metal sheet.
This is just one of the mind-boggling magic tricks that he performs in the show. As the epitome of master magicians, Copperfield takes his illusions to another level of excitement and awe. Instead of doing the typical box trick where a woman is sliced in half, he locks himself in a box that begins to shrink in size. He smiles at the audience while moving his hands and feet as the box gets so small the entire length of his body has been reduced to mere inches.
The box gradually gets bigger and Copperfield hops onto the stage saying, "that's how they made mini me," before moving on to his next illusion. He integrates his casual and comical personality into every act, resulting in laughter from the crowd.
Audience interaction is a big part of the show as he incorporates a person picked at random for almost every illusion. You might even see him doing magic right in front of your seat when he performs illusions while standing in the audience. For one illusion he asks a woman to join him in the aisle on the side of the theater. He asks the woman to examine a piece of tissue paper before he rolls it into a ball and makes it levitate and dance along his arm with the tap of a finger.
Unlike other magic shows in Las Vegas, Copperfield does not implement flashy showgirls, dancing or over the top production elements to supplement his illusions. His magic has enough of a wow factor on its own.
His expertise as a magician dates back to when he was just 12 years old and started performing professionally. That same year he also became the youngest person ever to be admitted to the Society of American Magicians. From there, Copperfield went on to teach a course on magic at New York University when he was 16.
During his first year in college, Copperfield starred in the Chicago musical, "The Magic Man," and as a result of the show's success he was selected to host ABC's "The Magic of ABC." From there he was offered his own series of specials with CBS titled "The Magic of David Copperfield." The series has been aired in over 40 countries.
His illustrious career has made him a Guinness Book of World Record holder for having 21 Emmys, and he has a star on the Hollywood "Walk of Fame." Apart from his revue in Vegas, he continues to tour, performing sold out shows around the world.
His enduring presence as a magician and integration into pop culture and even postage stamps proves that Copperfield's magic has no boundaries.
He even demonstrates his ability to predict the future in an act where he gets people from the audience to provide him with different numbers that he later pulls from a box that has been hanging above the stage for the entire show.
If just having the numbers on paper is not impressive enough, Copperfield also reveals a cassette tape with a recording of himself reciting the numbers that he plays for the audience. It is an astonishing feat that amazes everyone with the impossibility of it all.
-- By Caroline Fontein