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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Grand illusion » » David Copperfield Show Reviews (5 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Christopher Starr
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David Copperfield's contributions and achievements in the art and performance of theatrical magic are beyond question. Even the current top performers cannot match his achievements and recognition.

I enjoy reading the persuasive arguments of the true fans, who essentially state that DC has a "right" to be less than good, less than personable, less than his best, if you will, after all that he has done.

However, the reality is that in the end, he will be judged by the ticket buying public. If this trend of apethetic, disengaged and unspired performances continue, the press and the public will finally catch on, and ticket sales will drop. Until then, Mr. Copperfield has nothing to worry about.

However, one cannot help but be concerned, when you read review after review in this forum of people who are generally supportive of DC, and are disappointed by what they see. This does not add up as an "off" night, or a fluke. There is, and has been, an obvious ongoing issue regarding DC's apathy with his stage performances.

Like many of you reading this, I hope that Mr. Copperfield can come to terms with his own personal issues regarding his future. Personally, I'd rather he just hang it up, while at the top of his game, as opposed to watching the general public write him off as a has been.

My 2¢

Chris
Laszlo Csizmadi
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Quote:
On 2008-02-14 01:20, Chad Sanborn wrote:
A lot of you mentioned seeing the show multiple times. If it was that bad, why go again?

Chad


I saw David twice. I went to see him again becouse I enjoyed first time. Second time David and the show was even better. Same happened on the Greg Frewin show. They did excellent shows.

Those are who are badmouthing David's show are all jealous. I would like to see how they are doing on stage. Just wonder what would you say if people said bad things about your show? How would you feel?

Best,
Las
Magic Patrick
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Laci,

I wouldn't say that it is jealousy as much as it was disappointment. You are correct that no one can compete with him in the volume of his show or the financial backing of his show. However, each time I have a show I do my best to make sure that the audience leaves feeling like their money was well spent. Criticism is part of the game, It makes you better. I never once said that the illusions or tricks, though old stuff, were bad. In fact he performed them very well, I was talking about his persona and monotone way of performing them. I have seen the tricks many times, that is not why I go I go to see how he handles the audience and his stage presence so I can learn. IMHO, I leaned what not to do on stage when I was watching him. It is my opinion and I am very happy that you loved his shows. Good for you.

BYUDAD
reynold
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Jason and Laci:
I couldn't agree more.

Thanks,
Reynold
KidMagic
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Hey, I have not seen his show yet but I am going March 30, 2008 and CAN'T WAIT!!!


Zach
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Payne
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Quote:
On 2008-02-14 17:48, laci200 wrote:

Those are who are badmouthing David shows all jealous. I would like to see how they are doing on stage. Just wonder what would you say if people say bad things about your show? How would you feel?



It's just not magicians who are less than pleased with Mr. Copperfield's recent performances. A couple of years ago after a gig an audience member came up to me to compliment me on my performance.
"You're better than David Copperfield" he said.
I thanked him but told him "No, really I'm not"
Just then two other audience members who were standing a few feet away piped in and said "Oh yes you are. We were in Vegas last month and saw him at the MGM and believe us, you're better than he was"

I haven't seen his show live for nearly twenty years so I really don't know whether any of the reviews I've seen are true. It's just that these days it seems to be a 50 50 split between the good and bad ones.

So no, I don't think all the negative reviews are just sour grapes.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
Magic Arty
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Houdini's last shows where met with less than favorable reviews. That does not mean I would of avoided a performance because of what I read about them!
if his performance looks tired, perhaps it is. Does that mean he shouldn't go on that night? Imagine the anger for a missed show?

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Donal Chayce
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Quote:
On 2008-02-14 14:58, Christopher Starr wrote:
...
However, the reality is that in the end, he will be judged by the ticket buying public. If this trend of apethetic, disengaged and unspired performances continue, the press and the public will finally catch on, and ticket sales will drop. Until then, Mr. Copperfield has nothing to worry about.



I agree that unless/until ticket sales drop, Mr. Copperfield has nothing to worry about as a professional magician. However, if I were him I'd be plenty worried about my reputation as a master of my craft and, dare I say it, as an artist.
Magicque
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We must keep in mind that the guy does 3 shows a day...More than 500 shows a year. It is IMPOSSIBLE to be at your best all the time. Even if David is tired, I bet he can do better than most of us...I'd bet my house on that...

Last time I've seen him, it was in Québec city and he gave a very good performance. He was top notch, flawless.

When David will leave magic, I think magic AND magicians will miss him very much. I'm pretty sure we'll tell our kids how good he was. The guy is VERY talented. He knows and breathes magic. When he'll retire (in 5 or 10 years maybe), and I'm not looking forward to it, I already know I'll miss seeing him on a stage! But I hope he'll do as he said, "I'll float with a cane!"

Have a nice evening guys!
Eric
Kevin Ridgeway
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Here is a review from a layperson. They had great things to say about parts of the show and not so great things to say about DC's demeanor. He is brilliant at so much, it would be great to see him focus on the things that made him what he is.


http://www.myanonymousblog.com/my_anonym......fie.html

Well anyway, I have quite a bit of recapping from Sin City to do and I'll start with the performance of magician David Copperfield's show at MGM Grand. We caught the show last Thursday night (February 7, 2008) after an incredible meal at Lotus of Siam off the strip and purchased our tickets through a half-price ticket vendor called Tix4Tonight located near the entrance to the mall across the street from Venetian. It ended up being a mistake buying them there, because for 20 bucks more a ticket, we could have both chosen our seats and sat a lot closer to the stage. Granted, the theatre was fairly intimate, but the seats that we were assigned after getting to the theatre and presenting our receipt were situated around tiny tables of four and we were placed with a rather large and antisocial midwestern couple who wanted nothing to do with us gays. It was fine once the show started, and there were plenty of distractions around us to take away from any awkward silence being felt by anyone.

Before the show started, there was a slideshow being projected onto the stage that highlighted all of Copperfield's accomplishments, such as Highest Paid Magician, Most Emmy Awards Won By a Magician, Only Living Magician To Have a Star On the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Highest Total Viewership of Any Magician on Earth, Most Unbelievably Vain ... okay, not really on the last one, but once he stepped out onstage following a five-minute video of random clips of famous people just saying "David Copperfield," I knew he was going to be a giant piece of work ... and in that respect, he didn't disappoint.

His tricks relied heavily on audience participation -- picking cards, numbers, holding objects that disappear and reappear -- the usual string of tricks one would expect from a master magician at his level, but it was how he interacted condescendingly with audience members and referenced himself continually in an almost godlike way that really began to wear on me. At least three times during the show, he would pick someone in the audience who spoke a foreign language and would mock their accent and tongue in offensively stereotypical ways. At one point, an obviously gay Asian man was selected at random who was wearing an admittedly unfortunate brightly colored rainbow sweater and Copperfield quizzed him repeatedly about how long ago he had sex, predicting it would be an impossibly long period of time and was surprised when he responded that it had been only four hours. In the right performer's hands, the comedy would have come off uncomfortably hilarious, but under Copperfield's heavy veil of smugness it did nothing but highlight his own narcissistic tone. I mean, this was the man who had to hold a woman captive on his private island in the Bahamas in order to have sex himself!

In short, David Copperfield should stick to doing what he does best -- magic -- because when he's not talking and instead pulling off one of his illusions, whether it's pushing his body through steel, guessing numbers from randomly selected participants or making a tissue dance around an audience member, his technique is flawless, mesmerizing and truly left me scratching my head as to how in the hell he pulled it off. Take the tissue trick for instance: Copperfield chose a woman from the audience, walked up to her and took an ordinary looking kleenex tissue, crumpled it up and it began magically dancing up and around his arm, and then hers. To prove there were no strings attached, he pulled out the requisite metal hoop and swished it back and forth around the tissue before taking the tissue back into his hand, fashioning it into a rose and then levitating the tissue flower around him and the woman and then, in a second, the paper flower burst into flames and became a real red rose, which he gave to her and sat her back down. It was a seemingly small trick -- and often times I love the intimate "hand magic" much more than the elaborate disappearing acts involving cars and such -- but it was so beautifully done and at such close range that it left me in awe of his skills, although not enough to forgive his arrogant air entirely!

And yet I'd still recommend the show wholeheartedly. This is Vegas, after all, a city filled with enormous egos and larger than life personalities that mostly land in Vegas to perform night after night toward the bitter end of their careers, faces tightened and make-up caked on for all the world to see in super-sized billboards announcing their whereabouts all around town. I'd be a bit insecure too, I suppose. It's a shame that his attitude stuck with me this long after his performance, because honestly his magic did as well, and for the most part more so. I'm still wondering how he made twenty randomly chosen audience members completely disappear at the end of the show, or how he picked strange facts about people and six numbers from audience members that were then found scrawled on a folded piece of paper that had been sealed away inside an acrylic vault that was placed in front of the audience in plain sight for the duration of the trick. I don't know how he did it! It's magic! Now if David Copperfield could only change his attitude with a wave of his wand, I'd give his show a higher grade than a B.
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Banester
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Quote:
I agree that unless/until ticket sales drop, Mr. Copperfield has nothing to worry about as a professional magician. However, if I were him I'd be plenty worried about my reputation as a master of my craft and, dare I say it, as an artist


Why should he be worried? The show he did last year close to me was sold out in three days. The next city, sold out in two weeks. Every person I talked to thought the video was a bit much, but the show was awesome. With the excemption of what Kevin wrote above, I see most reviews that are bad give the illusions by name (13, Portal, etc), not one person I know who is not a magician can name a single trick only what was done. Meaning most lay people are blown away by the performance and are not concentrated on he looks or if he is sluggish. Are we (Magicians) the ones who are disappointed?
The art of a magician is to create wonder.
If we live with a sense of wonder, our lives
become filled with joy
-Doug Henning-
Payne
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Quote:
On 2008-02-14 20:23, Magicque wrote:

We must keep in mind that the guy does 3 shows a day...More than 500 shows a year. It is IMPOSSIBLE to be at your best all the time. Even if David is tired, I bet he can do better than most of us...I'd bet my house on that...



And this I believe is the problem. He's working way too hard and too often. I've heard of at least two times he's collapsed from exhaustion onstage and no doubt his show and demeanor are suffering from this grueling schedule.
Perhaps if he cut down on the number of his performances or moved to a permanent venue in Vegas or Branson he could maintain a more consistant quality to his performances.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
JayH
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Can anybody tell me where can I find a video or name for David's performance with "third hand"?

Thanks.

Jay
Donal Chayce
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Quote:
On 2008-02-15 09:46, Banester wrote:
...
With the excemption of what Kevin wrote above, I see most reviews that are bad give the illusions by name (13, Portal, etc), not one person I know who is not a magician can name a single trick only what was done. Meaning most lay people are blown away by the performance and are not concentrated on he looks or if he is sluggish. Are we (Magicians) the ones who are disappointed?


No, I attended a recent DC performance at which laypeople had a disappointing and unpleasant experience. Here's a link to a post I made to a different--but similar--thread a couple of weeks ago:


http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/searc......=5392968
Laszlo Csizmadi
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Quote:
On 2008-02-14 19:52, Payne wrote:
A couple of years ago after a gig an audience member came up to me to compliment me on my performance.
"You're better than David Copperfield" he said.
I thanked him but told him "No, really I'm not"
Just then two other audience members who were standing a few feet away piped in and said "Oh yes you are. We were in Vegas last month and saw him at the MGM and believe us, you're better than he was"


Payne,

Similar happened to me almost two years ago when I was in Punta Cana (Dominican Republic) where XY started to perform on Thursday. (I don’t want to write his name) We arrived on Monday for my son wedding and later on I was showing some tricks for friends. Of course more people came closer and they watched. On Thursday we watched him. After the show some people came to me and said you were better than him. No I wasn’t just presented happily, joked and we had fun. He presented like he doesn’t even want to do it and looked very tired. (Of course he just arrived) I know he is a great magician. (He performed in Vegas and has DVD series) It wasn’t his best day. Everyone has good and bad days. I don’t eat seafood but my wife loves it. Next day lunch my wife was sitting by a table when He sat to the same table and my wife told him that I didn’t went up to the stage when he invited me because I’m doing tricks either. She said He was a real gentleman and just smiled all times.

Best,

Las
Magic Patrick
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Laci,

You are right, when people bond and have a great time they feel that you are better than someone else. You see it is all about presentation, creating that intimate atmosphere/relationship with your audience. If you can do that you will amaze them with that one old rubberband trick. Thanks for sharing. Anyone can do a trick technically perfect but can they bond with their audience while doing so.

BYUDAD
longhaired1
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Tired? Jaded? Burned out? No longer in the game?

The fact remains, it doesn't take any extra energy to show some class and appreciation for the people who paid money to see you, or even the people who are working for you.

Contrast the current DC attitude with Lance Burton, who is also an extremely hard working guy. Burton brings his A game every time.

From my review:

"Which brings me to the best news of all. Even after decades of performing on a nightly basis, you get no sense that this man is bringing anything less than his "A" game to the table. He is either the nicest man in show business or the best actor doing a nice guy act. The audience gets thanked, the crew gets thanked, the other performers are allowed to shine, and he handles volunteers with kindness. In perhaps the classiest five minutes of live theatre I have ever seen he pulled a piece of paper out of his pocket on which was written the names of several people in the audience who were having birthdays or anniversaries. He took the time to locate the people in the audience and congratulate them on the occasion."
illusionbuilder
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Longhaired1 - wrote



Which brings me to the best news of all. Even after decades of performing on a nightly basis, you get no sense that this man is bringing anything less than his "A" game to the table. He is either the nicest man in show business or the best actor doing a nice guy act. The audience gets thanked, the crew gets thanked, the other performers are allowed to shine, and he handles volunteers with kindness. In perhaps the classiest five minutes of live theatre I have ever seen he pulled a piece of paper out of his pocket on which was written the names of several people in the audience who were having birthdays or anniversaries. He took the time to locate the people in the audience and congratulate them on the occasion."
Vegas Magic Reviews





Are you talking about Lance Burton ?
longhaired1
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Quote:
On 2008-02-23 13:46, illusionbuilder wrote:
Are you talking about Lance Burton ?


Sorry, I should have been more clear. Yes, Lance Burton showed utmost respect for his audience, his crew and his art. That's who I was referring to above.
mydogripper
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My wife and I went to the show here in Atlanta saturday night.... I did not like it... boring. When he did the animated dancing ties... the stage was not lit... you could not see the props. Same set design all thru the show... no change. His stage demeaner was laking any sincerity. No respect for the audience. The audience was dead and hardly clapped. Opened with the bike shadow box , the car apperance, and spent most of the show on the front stage. C+ show
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