Illusionists have come a long way from pulling a rabbit out of a hat. The rise of technology, social media and the internet have created an accessibility to magic tricks that have left audiences wanting more and more. Up until recently, magic as a form of entertainment, has often been classified as silly or cliché in mainstream media. Television and movies have long portrayed magicians as crazy or not to be taken seriously. This stereotyped magic as nothing more than card tricks or appearing doves. Luckily, the perception is changing for magicians, thanks in large part to a cool dude named Mat Franco.
Franco is the first and only magician to win America’s Got Talent. He beat out tens of thousands in the show’s ninth season to land the first place spot. Franco’s energetic stage presence and compelling performances won over the hearts (and votes) of audiences and the judges, making a positive statement for magicians everywhere. Watch his finale performance here.
The art of illusion will never fail to fascinate. No matter if it’s marketed as corny street tricks or a larger-than-life Vegas performance, magic is rooted in the mystery that mesmerizes audiences. Franco being the first magician to win a popular competition has caused a revival of magic as a desirable form of entertainment. People want magicians at their parties, events and special occasions now more than ever!
According to a recent Denver Post article titled ‘Magic’s Reappearing Act Brings Illusion Back to Stage and Screen,’ the magic industry is booming. The Magic Castle, a famous clubhouse for the Academy of Magical Arts, currently has an all-time high of 5,500 members. The castle’s general manager notes a revenue increase from $8.7 million in 2012 to $14.8 million in 2014, according to the article. Magic is as “in” as ever.
“It never dies. But it’s booming right now thanks to the rejuvenated economy, a number of TV shows and the fact that it’s a little bit cooler than it has been,” said Stan Allen, founder and publisher of Magic Magazine, in the same article.
Mat Franco has brought an incredible amount of publicity to stage magic, further increasing its popularity as a form of entertainment. As a magician passionate about this form of visual art and enjoyment, I am so excited about this—dare I say— magical boom in the industry!
Related Article: Seattle Magician Nate Jester Appears on America’s Got Talent