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Creating Illusion – Tricks Of The Trade

by Karen Tortora-Lee on October 26, 2009

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What do Bernie Madoff, Wasabi Peas, change of a $10, Kaiser Soze, the shell game, orange juice, a bar bet, a deck of cards and a floating cigarette all have in common?  They’re all elements in Jeff Grow’s very entertaining part-magic-show-part-performance-art-piece “Creating Illusion” playing a limited engagement at the D-Lounge.

With a winning smile, a twinkle in his eye, and a quick hand, Jeff Grow (creator and performer) tells stories of illusionists who bring people into their confidence (“Confidence” the root of “con”) and then take them for their money … or for something else.  But usually their money.  

With astonishing tricks (hey, where did that ripped up newspaper go?) quick slight-of-hand (how did that card get there?) and good ole fashioned deception Jeff Grow states over and over again that he is distracting us, deceiving us, diverting us, all in the name of giving us the big reveal in the end.

Even in the wake of such spoilers as The Masked Magician a good performer still needs to be able to make you believe you saw what he wants you to think you saw … which is the whole point of any con from the shell game right on up to the man who masterminded the biggest ponzi scheme in history.  Jeff Grow’s stories are entertaining, his jokes are good, and his magic holds up, even from just a few feet away (which is where I was sitting).  If you like intelligent patter and a bit of a history lesson thrown in with your magic, then this show is for you.  But get tickets quick — with just one more show left you better grab it or POOF … it’ll be gone.




The D-Lounge

101 East 15th Street at Union Square East

Remaining Show: OCTOBER 30 at 10pm

Tickets ($15) are available online at or by calling 212-868-4444

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