High-tech magic show opens in Toronto in December

Immersive Van Gogh producers’ next project is a labyrinthine installation about the history of magic

The producers of Immersive Van Gogh are launching a new high-tech experience called Illusionarium this winter.

Part maze, part magic show, the installation will begin Dec. 14 and run through Feb. 15 inside the Toronto Star’s former print shop building, alongside Immersive Van Gogh and Gogh By Car.

Created by British magician Jamie Allen, the installation will combine 3D projections, holograms and live magicians. According to the producers, the show will combine “Jamie’s encyclopedic knowledge of the history of magic with state-of-the-art technology, bringing the illusions of the past into the 21st century.”

Illusionarium will include four rooms that represent a different era from the 17and century.

Lighthouse Immersive producer Cory Ross said the show was designed specifically for Toronto with pandemic measures, such as physical distancing, in mind.

“I had intended to bring Jamie’s iMagician stage show to Toronto in December, but when it became clear that was not possible, he and I began to wonder what might be possible in this new world,” Ross said in a statement.

The Illusionarium will feature renderings of iconic magicians Harry Houdini and Robert Houdin, as well as passageways featuring artwork and artifacts evoking the respective eras.

Visitors will see the show in physically distant groups, with a limit of four per “magic circle” and a maximum of 12 magic circles in a room. Masks are mandatory at all times.

Tickets go on sale to the public Nov. 14 at 10 a.m. here.

Ross is a seasoned theater producer and counts a Canadian production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats among his credits. He also staged the “unauthorized” show The Art Of Banksy in the Junction Triangle in 2018.

After announcing Immersive Van Gogh, the company quickly reworked the show for physical distance and in-car viewing.

Ross told NOW earlier this year that the massive former printing works at Queens Quay will continue to house “immersive” large-scale art installations until the building is demolished to make way for a luxury condo.



Brian L. Hartfield