If you're looking for the best magic shows in New York City, we have all you need to know for all the shows in town! We have a great list for you that includes the large scale Broadway style shows to the small intimate parlour shows for twenty guests. So, forget that cheesy musical and catch some of the top magicians in the world. This is New York! Don't you need a little wonder and magic in your life from time to time?
Produced by Neil Patrick Harris and directed by Frank Oz, Derek's show is receiving rave review by the New York Times, Vogue and the Huffington Post. The show is called "In and Of Itself: Identity is and Illusion". Secrets, memories and inexplicable events all combine to create a perpetual paradox. A wonderful piece of theatre and a magical delight. This off Broadway show has been extended four times and this show encourages wonder, participation and discovery.
Dan's shows sell out fast! His show, "The Magician" is in collaboration with theoryII. This intimate show will have you totally fooled, baffled and surprised. Audience participation is a big part of the show, and guests are included in almost every illusion. Dan has been a consultant for David Copperfield in Las Vegas and has created magic for stage and screen, being featured on both the Discovery Channel and the Travel Channel. Dinner and/or cocktails can be enjoyed on property, but are not included in the ticket price. Recommended for adults, 18 and older.
THE BLUE DOOR at 59 CANAL ST. - SELECT EVENINGS THROUGHOUT THE WEEK
Joshua's new show, Six Impossible Things, is now playing in the performance space Wildrence. The very small audience of just 20 people is guided through each room in the space, revealing a new mystery in a very immersive experience. There is some sitting and some walking and some oohing and aahing along the way, and each guest is only allowed to see the show once! So pay attention and enjoy. Jay has a long list of accolades and experiences in magic under his belt, including being consulted on the new set of stamps for the US Post Office which celebrate all things magic.
Steve's show, Chamber Magic, takes place in an elegant "salon" inspired by Manhattan magic in the early 20th century. Limited to just 60 guests per show, you will be treated to "a demonstration of modern conjuring". Dress up in cocktail attire, arrive at the famous New York Palace and find yourself mesmerized by mind reading, conjuring and sleight of hand. Steve's show has been seen by a long list of celebrities and Woody Allen called it "a religious experience"! This show is for adults only.
THE PLAYERS THEATRE, 115 MACDOUGAL ST - MONDAY NIGHTS
Monday Night Magic in Greenwhich Village is the longest running off Broadway magic show in New York City. It has been host to several hundred different performers, both young up-and-coming acts as well as seasoned performers. Each week on Monday night the show will feature three different artists who each bring their own brand of wow to the stage. During intermission the crowd is also treated to some up-close magic at various locations in the theatre. And as an extra bonus, you can take your ticket for the evening and use it to get a discount that night at several select restaurants close by.
WESTSIDE THEATRE 407 W. 43RD ST - SEVEN DAYS A WEEK UNTIL SEPT. 30TH
Vitaly's show, An Evening of Wonders, is a limited engagement show, so don't wait too long before going to see it. Vitaly's unique style blends illusion with art, bringing to life enchantment, beauty and wonder in a fresh new way. He touches on poignant themes like love, loss, and aging and instills a transformational quality to everything he does. With his show you enter the world of pure imagination. His pieces are his own original creations, each uniquely creative and mesmerizing.
New York: The Magic City History
Magic, especially in New York, was originally seen as a lower-class, street level, spectator sport. People would stop on the street to watch a magic card trick while street urchins would pick the pockets of the staring crowd.
It is speculated that the first magic act was performed around 2700 BC. Recorded from fragmented accounts, a renowned Egyptian magician known as Dedi performed what many believe to be the very first ball trick, that is making one appear or disappear (the details are pretty sketchy). From there, royalty—noble men and women—looked for and employed magical entertainers within their court. From these humble starting grounds, modern magic was eventually born.
As magic traveled throughout the globe, with performers perfecting and creating new and entertaining acts, the crowds grew. The demand to be wowed only fueled magicians to develop more daring shows, better tricks and even more dangerous stunts. These magic shows stayed in New York longer because of the interest and size of the audience.
As magic shows moved from neighborhood to neighborhood in New York, so too did petty crime. Not many "genteel" people liked these magic shows, feeling that it only appealed to the lower classes and had no place among decent New York society. By the late 1800s that all changed.
The birth of Erik Weisz in Budapest Hungary in 1874 probably seemed like any other birth for that era. Erik migrated with his family to America and moved from Wisconsin to New York City. At the age of nine, young Erik became a trapeze artist and later in 1891 started his career in magic; changing his name to a more suitable stage name—Harry Houdini.
New York wasn't exactly excited about young Harry's magic career, so he set out on the road, earning his fame as an escape artist in Europe before returning to New York in 1904. Now, the city that wasn't so supportive of magic, wanted Houdini and his amazing escapes. One of his most popular escapes being the escape from the sunken box at the East River. Harry Houdini had converted New Yorkers into magic fans.
From sketchy beginnings to the world-famous Harry Houdini, New York became a town where magicians and magic shows could grow. Establishments like Martinka's Magic Shop and Tannen's became stores that catered to up-and-coming magicians. Later magicians like David Copperfield, Chris Angel and David Blaine found New York to be the place where their fame started.
Modern magic shows featuring illusions, escape artistry and even mind-bending thought suggestion are now considered the height of entertainment throughout the Big Apple.
As with many things in life, where you start out isn't always where you end up. This is true for magic in New York City. Once maligned as a breeding ground for criminal activity, now magic shows and performers are sought after entertainment throughout the world.
PAST New York Magic Shows
ATLANTIC THEATRE COMPANY
Darren hails from the UK where he has been bamboozling audiences with psychological manipulation and hypnotism for several decades. His TV show Mind Control in the UK was hugely popular and he has performed such stunts as successfully predicting the National Lottery and literally sticking TV viewers to their sofas. Darren's show "Secret" played off Broadway in 2017. Darren is also an accomplished portrait painter and photographer, with his works being shown in prominent London art galleries.