The Beginning of My Las Vegas Adventure
I arrived in Las Vegas on Sunday. I was late to the opening night party for MAGIC Live, the magic convention I'd be attending, because I had a guest spot at The L.A. Comedy Club at The Strat. As you probably know, I'm both a comedian and a magician. I had a blast performing alongside my friends Jimmy Shubert and Johnny Pizzi. Here's a pic from my stand-up performance.
MAGIC Live 2023
MAGIC Live is the most attended magic convention in North America. Never heard of a magic convention? Well, you're in luck, because I'm going to share a few pics and tell you all about what goes on.
On one hand, magic conventions aren't any different than the conventions you find in other industries. For example, they happen in hotels and the attendees wear lanyards with name badges. That's about where the similarities end. Magicians are a unique group, and our conventions attract the most fascinating, brilliant, talented, and odd people you'd ever hope to meet.
The typical magic convention consists of lectures, contests, shows, and a dealers' room where different magicians and companies sell tricks, props, books, gags, and more. However, MAGIC Live is different. While there are shows, educational lectures, and a dealers' room, these activities are more unique at MAGIC Live. Also, there are no contests.
On a sidenote, I hate art as competition. There are some really talented performers on America's Got Talent, but I would prefer if the show was simply a showcase as opposed to a contest. Also, the constant cutting away from the acts to show the reactions of the audience, judges, and the people in the wings, drives me bonkers. I find the show unwatchable, but will check out clips, or watch when friends of mine are on it. For example, my friend Magic Mike Jacobson recently appeared on AGT and knocked it out of the park. Here's a picture of us together at MAGIC Live.
MAGIC Live takes place once a year and is held at The Orleans Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. I LOVE Las Vegas and The Orleans is a fun spot. As a matter of fact, a friend of mine, known as The Shocker, is in a show called Late Night Magic there. Here's a picture of me with the cast. Make sure to check out their show, especially if you want to see something totally different!
For me, one of the best parts of MAGIC Live is seeing old friends and making new ones. Of course, there's always a large contingency of my fellow performers from The Magic Castle! The Entertainment Director for The Magic Castle is Jack Goldfinger. He's the guy who hires me, so you know he's one of my favorite people. Seriously, I've known Jack for many years, and he's a great guy. Before retiring from performing, he was part of a magic duo called Goldfinger and Dove. Their show was always one of my favorites.
Here are a few more pics of some very well known magicians who attended MAGIC Live.
Since MAGIC Live happens in Vegas, most of the magicians arrive early and stay late to catch other shows in town. Downtown Vegas is my home away from home, and I usually stay at The Four Queens or The Downtown Grand. I've been meaning to check out Mike Hammer's Comedy & Magic Show for years, which is at The Four Queens, and I finally got the chance. He comes off as an incredibly nice guy, and did a great show. Check him out!
Like I said, for me, one of the best parts of attending any magic convention is seeing friends. Here are some of my best friends!
It takes a lot of people working very hard to put together such an amazing experience. However, Stan Allen is the guy in charge of everything.
This year, there was an amazing exhibit of incredibly rare magic posters. Here's a few of those:
I love driving to and from Las Vegas. There are quirky roadside attractions I've stopped at a million times, and they're always fun for me. Honestly, road-trips are one of my favorite things in life. One place I never stopped at, but had been meaning to for years, is The Pioneer Saloon in Goodsprings. This is the oldest bar in the Southern Nevada/Las Vegas area, and it's full of history.
There's also bullet holes in the wall from when a cowboy got caught cheating at poker and was shot. Below, you can see the holes from the inside and outside of the building.
So much happened at MAGIC Live that covering all of it would turn this post into a book. That said, I hope you enjoyed seeing a bit of what goes on at a magic convention. Next year, I may vlog about it, but until then, I'm going to dive into all of the new magic books and tricks I bought.
Speaking of which, if you're a past client, this means that the next time you hire me, you'll see a lot of new magic!
If you've never hired me, and have an upcoming private party or corporate event, I'd love to help make it magical, unique, fun, and filled with laughter! Give me a call at 310-935-3684 to discuss your event, or fill out my booking request form, and I'll send over a proposal.