The Musco Center presents the Mac King Comedy Magic Show on February 8

Mac King, the world’s first comedy magician according to MAGIC Magazine and what Penn and Teller call “the greatest comedy magician alive today and perhaps who ever lived”, presents his “Mac King Comedy Magic Show” at the Musco Center.

King’s shows captivate with illusions that include throwing a fishing line over his audience’s head to catch live goldfish mid-air, incredible stunts with a grizzly bear, having his head completely disappear into a bag in paper, turning invisible, and of course incredible sleight of hand…and all while getting some laughs along the way. Due to its quick wit and extensive interaction with audiences, no two shows are the same.

The Mac King Comedy Magic Show has been a Las Vegas mainstay for 19 years and nearly 10,000 shows, entertaining more than two million fans along the way. Las Vegas Weekly named him “Entertainer of the Year” and the Las Vegas Review Journal dubbed him “Best Magician” and “Favorite Male Las Vegan.”

King’s appearance culminates “Illusion Week,” a “Leap of Art” collaboration between the Musco Center and Chapman University’s Crean College of Health and Behavioral Sciences. It follows several weeks of illusionist Kevin Spencer’s “magic therapy” workshops for local students, teachers and healthcare providers.

A magical blend of illusion and comedy

With accomplished amateur magicians as grandfathers, King’s path was clear – if not preordained. Born in December 1959 in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, he carried his early interest in magic through to graduating from high school in Louisville and the University of Saint Paul, Minnesota, where he earned a double majoring in anthropology and magic on a national merit scholarship.

After college, King took his developing magic act on the road to comedy clubs across the country. For 19 years, he built his reputation, his fan base and his annual performances at more than 200 shows a year. The 20 seconds of his career, starting in the 1990s, saw him become a regular in Las Vegas and on national television. He has performed his incredible sleight of hand and irresistible humor in countless TV specials and performed on TV programs and theater stages across China, Spain, Japan, Germany , Australia, Denmark, Sweden, England, Argentina, Holland, Cuba, Mexico, Finland, Canada, Chile and Portugal.

In 2000, King’s Comedy Magic Show moved to Harrah’s Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas, where it continues to perform 19 years later.

In addition to television specials and Harrah’s performances, King performs at more than 60 private corporate events each year.

King is co-author of three books including Tricks with Your Head, for which his friends Penn and Teller wrote the foreword. Co-written with Mark Levy, Tricks With Your Head features a series of tricks that require minimal props. His Campfire Magic, captioned “Over 50 amazing, easy-to-learn tricks and stunts,” is co-written with Bill King. He also collaborated with cartoonist Jeff Knurek to create the “Magic in a Minute” line of promotions, toys, magic tricks, videos, books and events for children.

His educational efforts include teaching television audiences a minor effect before and after each commercial, calling the lesson series the Mac King School of Magic.

King met his wife, Jennifer Sils, with whom they have a son named Eli, when she was chosen from the public to help with a trick. Let this be a lesson to you.

This article was published by the Musco Center for the Arts.

Brian L. Hartfield