Dwelling on Dreams- Show Report


It’s been five days since the show, and I’m finally sitting down to write this post. Before the show, I was neglecting so much in my day-to-day life that the past few days have been stacked high with to-dos.

I have a million thoughts about Dwelling on Dreams, but some of them are secrets.

About the show

My concept for Dwelling on Dreams is a combination of two themes: exploring dreams, and magic as a dramatic art.

The latter theme (dramatic art) is simply a consequence of my influences. I always loved David Copperfield’s dramatic stage illusions, and Henning Nelms’ Magic and Showmanship would be my book of choice if I could only ever read one magic book for the rest of my life.

The former theme (dreams) rose out of necessity first and intrigue second. The Contemporary Theater Company has a stage with seating on two sides. This means I could only choose effects that are very angle-safe. When I had compiled a list of effects, I started thinking about different themes that could run through them. “Dreams” came up again and again, and so I decided to write the show about that. The theme took on a life of its own, and made me think more deeply about the topic than I had ever done before.

Over about three months of pre-production, the show evolved to become a cohesive presentation.

How did it go?

I was terrified before the show because I had run out of rehearsal time and I still wasn’t totally happy (also because that’s just how I am before a show), but when I got out on stage, I was home.

The effects went off beautifully. The audience reaction was breathtaking! If you watch the video of the Linking Rings act, you’ll hear what I mean.

After-show selfie
My wife, Caitlin, who was my assistant, showed a strong talent for showmanship she had not previously shown around me. It was a very pleasant surprise, and an incredible bonding experience.

There were a few things that went a little wrong or could have gone better. “The Mistake,” an act I’ve been imagining for several years, is incredibly difficult to choreograph in a way that satisfies me. The Dancing Cane, which went so well in rehearsal, had some issues in footwork and balance. But nothing went show-stoppingly wrong, and the audience had my back 100%, which is the best feeling in the world for any performer.

Volunteer holds up an egg

What next?

Now that the show which has consumed all my time for a couple months has finished, it’s time to get back to life and back to hunting gigs.

It’s also time to start prepping for another showing that the theater offered after seeing my show!

What a magical time!