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Illusionists 2.0 - Review

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by John Andrew (subscribe)
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How did they do that?

You may or not know that the collective noun for a group of magicians is an illusion. And this illusion of magicians known as the Illusionists 2.0 certainly fulfill the brief.

The cast of expert magicians each have their own style of 'magic' and the high-paced and diverse sequence of acts never let the audience become bored. The show ranges from the nostalgic and charmingly childish mimes and shadow puppets performed by the 'Unusualist' to the high octane Houdini-style escape acts skilfully enacted by the 'Deceptionist'. Another stand-out was the youngest member of the cast, the 'Manipulator', whose card conjuring set to piano music was both beautiful and mind-boggling (where did he hide them all?!). The show is guided along by the charismatic 'Master Magician' who introduces the acts and performs a couple of large-scale tricks with the whole audience.

There was a lot of audience participation. If you would like to hold a pineapple on your head while a blindfolded man with a sword (the 'Warrior') attempts to cut it in half then I would recommend sitting in the front row. For the rest of you, you should be pretty safe in the middle seats. And don't worry about not being able to see the close-up magic. Many of the acts are followed by a 3D camera and projected live onto a screen at the top of the stage - a first in the world for any theatre show.

There were six magicians in the show but seven in the programme. This is because the 'Hypnotist' recently and tragically died in Sydney. While the show must go on, the Illusionists 2.0 cast and crew have dedicated the Brisbane season to his memory.

The Illusionists 2.0 delivers a similar ascetic to the first manifestation of the Illusionists. Highly engaging and full of 'how did they do that?' moments, it is a show that is guaranteed to impress the whole family.
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Why? Because they're good
When: 19th - 27th January
Where: Concert Hall, QPAC
Cost: $79 - $99
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