This special performance featured a troupe of 13 clowns who took part in a magic and clowning 10 week intensive program conducted by clown Liz Skitch and master magician Anthony DeMasi. The objective of the program was that clowns could learn some magic skills and the magicians within the group could learn some clowning skills which would enhance future performances and skills for all of the participants of the program (all overseen by Skitch and DeMasi). The culmination of the participants’ efforts would be two special magical clowning performances at the Melbourne Magic Festival.
Upon entering the theatre we were greeted by roving performers as we took our seats. Liz Skitch set the scene of the show and invited us all to unleash our inner child, idiot and cheeky monkey. From the very start I could feel the love, respect and positivity radiate from the theatre and its performers. This was a VERY interactive and action packed show with non stop magic and comedy in equal measures, and with so many performers it is a calvalcade of family entertainment. What I enjoyed most about the show was the reimagining of classic magic routines and pieces by the clowns. There were no standard or predictable routines here and each piece performed seemed to delight the audience more and more. Personal highlights were the very literal comedy magic chefs; and a comedic aerobics trio who set out to make a milkshake in a magical way. All of the clowning was simply wonderful – I laughed the hardest I’d laughed in weeks!!! At the conclusion of the show, the clowns came into the audience and hosted a clown dance party for everyone which was very enjoyable and ensured that they adueince left the theatre with high spirits.
VERDICT: clowning and magic combine to create a wonder filled experience for everyone (whether performer or audience member). Suspend reality for a short while and reconnect with your inner child and clown. A great initiate that I hope returns to future festivals.
*Disclaimer: I attended this performance as a guest of the festival.