When we researched our 2019 Spring Break trip to Branson, everything said Reza was a must. I’ve never heard of the guy, so after exploring his website and reading a few reviews, I presented him as a possibility to the family. My wife and kids really like magicians and illusionists, so we figured we’d give him a shot.
We paid him a visit on a weekday in the afternoon. We could instantly tell that this would be a much different experience than Hamner’s Unbelievable Variety. The theater seemed newer and there were far more people in the audience.
Reza’s warm-up act came out to get us fired up. Do you like all the flame puns? I’m using them because this guy swallowed fire. He also told us to make a lot of noise–the more noise we made, the longer the show would go. He said Reza loves a rocking audience. Well, that got us going.
In fact, the beginning of this experience felt very much like a rock concert, which I think was the objective.
Reza soon appeared and he dazzled us from the start. His illusions are unique, kinetic, and even felt a little bit dangerous. He also took several moments to interact with the crowd by calling a few people up or taking questions.
Image seems very important to Reza. Though he had a dry sense of humor, he was careful to maintain a “cool” persona. He never got too excited, too loud, or too rushed. In fact, after every illusion, he kept a blank, almost withdrawn expression upon his face. After awhile, it got to be kind of funny to me.
Though his performance amazed us and we had a magnificent time watching him, I have to admit I was disappointed when the show ended right on time. I felt like the audience showed him a lot of love, but apparently not enough to extend the act.
I also appreciated that he stood in the lobby afterward and signed autographs for every single person who wanted to wait in line. He also allowed pictures on people’s personal cell phones. (Yes, he also had a professional photographer if you wanted higher quality.) My oldest, who was 10 at the time, was mesmerized by this man. Unfortunately, she said he didn’t even make eye-contact with her, nor did he speak to her beyond a quick “hello.” I realize Reza meets hundreds of people each week, but it would have meant a lot to her if she had gotten a warmer reception. She still cherishes that autograph, though.
Reza’s Edge of Illusion is a really cool show that’s appropriate for all ages. If you’re in Branson, I would consider him a must-see. Enjoy!
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