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Copyright © 2019 Elliott Hunter. All Rights Reserved.

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My Story

Hi folks,

          By now, you have probably already seen or heard enough about what I do, but I would be remiss if I neglected to share with you about who I am and how that ties into what I do.

         It all started when I was seven years old; I saw a magic show at the local library in my hometown of Anacortes washington. It was a semi-local magician who was about sixteen years old. But watching the miracles he could create drew me towards magic like a magnet… Immediately following his show I ran to the bookshelves in the library to check out every magic book I could to begin putting together a magic show. During that same summer, my Uncle bought me my very first magic trick at the California State fair… a brass gimmick which allowed you to change a stack of nickels to a stack of dimes. The following Christmas, another relative sent me a huge, 100 trick magic kit, and from there I was able to put together an act for my elementary school talent show and local senior center.

 

          Two years following that first magic show, that same magician returned to my town’s large theatre with his bigger, newly developed stage act. As nine-ten year old kid, I was blown away by not only the magic, but the flashy costumes, the colorful props and the sensational production value. The strides he had taken in terms of improvement from his library show was phenomenal. That was the first instance I remember really noticing how hard work and dedication can pay off.  I remember turning to my dad and saying “I want to do that.” I was inspired beyond belief.

Not for Promotional Use. 

My first public show at the Anacortes Senior Center. 2008

Not for Promotional Use. 

One of my first promo photos. 2011

Not for Promotional Use. 

Jeff McBride (Left) and Eugene Burger (Right) 2012

          By the time I had reached middle school age, I had been performing for Kiwanis functions, birthday parties, senior centers, and any other local gig I could get. I had developed an act and begun teaching myself sleight of hand card manipulation… the most difficult style of magic… I had ambition and was drawn to the immense skill required to create such an act. But when I was about thirteen years old, I hit a slump… I felt that I was not getting any better, and I did not have the resources to learn more about the art. Because of this, I burnt out for a period of time.

 

          But, my parents saw that the passion was still there, and with their help, I was given the opportunity to travel to Las Vegas to attend McBride’s Magic and Mystery School… The most prestigious magic school in the world. Classes were taught by Jeff McBride, a world class master of magic, Las Vegas headliner, and a pioneer in the world of stage magic, and Eugene Burger. With his circular spectacles and long white beard he wowed us with his intricate storytelling and close up magic. This is about as close as you can get to the real life Hogwarts!

 

          During my time at the Mystery School, Jeff and Eugene critiqued my act and gave me the necessary tools to learn more about stage presence, audience connection skills, and entertainment value. My passion for magic was completely re-ignited and I decided I would stop at nothing to be the best I could be. I kept in touch with Jeff regularly and still do to this day.

          Following that first Master Class at the Mystery School, I was given the confidence to compete in my first magic competition, where I took third place. But for me, that was not the highlight of the convention. Along with meeting numerous other fantastic people, I met someone I would never forget... first magician I ever saw…at the library when I was seven years old. I was lucky enough that he was one of the most gracious people I had ever met, and he took me under his wing. Sterling Dietz has been one of my mentors for over six years now.

         

          For the next three year period, I attended the Mystery School seminars on an annual basis to further develop my show into a full 90-minute evening show, with assistants and large scale illusions. Every year when I was in high school, my family would produce a full evening show at the local theatre as fundraisers for numerous organizations, such as my boy scout troop and my graduating class.

Not for Promotional Use. 

Show Poster from High School. 2015

Not for Promotional Use. 

Not for Promotional Use. 

          During my entire career in school, I was a competitive swimmer. I’ve been swimming for over fifteen years. While in high school, I would wake up at 5 AM every morning and swim for an hour and a half before school, then at 2PM I would swim for another two hours. I swam for the Anacortes High school swim team and by the time I was a senior, I had collected five state titles, and I held numerous high school and club team records. But I didn’t care about the trophies or the awards… what I gained from those experiences was much more valuable. I learned discipline, I learned how I could set myself up for success and keep myself accountable for my outcomes, and most importantly, I saw first hand how hard work , and all of the blood, sweat and tears can pay off in the end.

 

          Without my career in swimming, I would not have the motivation to perform magic. This is why I open my full evening show with the most technically difficult act I know; its an act about ambition and motivation to accomplish goals. This act tells the audience up front that this is who I am and this is how much work I have done in order to be where I am today. This is how I am able to tie in my experiences as an athlete into my show. When I was in high school, I would swim twice a day, go to school, do homework, and practice magic for at least three hours every night. Swimming taught me that you need commitment in order to set and accomplish your goals.

          When I graduated high school and decided to attend Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (My father’s alma-mater) to study Manufacturing Engineering, I didn’t know what would happen to my swimming or my magic. I brought my show to college with me, and practiced whenever I could, but I lacked the direction and the motivation that I once had. I was scared, because my passion was still there, but I was afraid I would lose everything I had worked so hard for. I began training and competing in triathlons as my athletic outlet on the Cal Poly Triathlon Team. And when I needed it most, my teacher appeared. Jeff McBride reached out me and offered to take me in as his private student. This was exactly what I needed. Through video conference, Jeff was able to coach me, rebuild my confidence and give me direction. Learning from a world class entertainer like Jeff is a huge honor. He gave me the confidence to reach out and continue to grow my market in California, compete and win in more magic competitions, and later, become a member and regular performer at the world famous Magic Castle.

Not for Promotional Use. 

Backstage with Jeff at the Magic Castle.  2018

Not for Promotional Use. 

Not for Promotional Use. 

I wouldn't be where I am today without my parents. 

          When I do magic… I like to tell stories. Storytelling is inarguably the oldest form of entertainment. Our ancestors have been sharing stories long before the written word, and storytelling still has the power to elicit the emotions within us to motivate, inspire, and create wonder. The story of watching Sterling’s show grow and evolve is what motivated me to initially move forward on my journey into the world of magic. This is what made me decide that I want to create that same emotion for my audiences. I don’t know everyone’s individual goals in my audiences, but I want to equip my audience members with the tools and the motivation to accomplish whatever goals they may have set. I do this by creating strong magic that is based on my own personal reality. In my show, I share personally and socially relevant stories that I have actually lived and experienced to create an authentic experience for the audience. Audience members can tell if something is a fabrication, and once that is discovered, credibility and authenticity is lost.

 

I do not consider myself as just a magician… I am an entertainer using magic as a tool to entertain. My goal is to share my passion with my audience in order to inspire them and build them up. Never during my show will I use an audience participant as the butt of the joke, or make them look like a fool onstage. I aim to make everyone in my show feel like a hero.

     People (children especially) often wonder if magic is real…. I will leave that decision up to you, but I strongly believe that magic is real based on how it connects to life itself… how a simple magic effect ties into a story or real life event… Every piece in my show is based on a real story from my life, and the power of a simple story and effect is able to motivate, inspire and entertain an audience. Love is a prime example of this… Love is an inexplicable force that brings people from all walks of life together, and can cause amazing events to happen, whether it’s the saving of a life, or a mother and father supporting their child in all of their endeavors...even if he wants to be a professional magician :).

 

     This is my show... This is me...  Oh yeah, and I have red hair. 

 

Thank you for your time.

 

All the best

Elliott Hunter