×

Tokyo-born magician keeps spectators on their toes in show at resort in Wailea

Magical Mystery Show draws from a roster of world-class magicians

Shoot Ogawa, acclaimed as one of the most skillful magicians in the world, is performing in the Magical Mystery Show from Wednesday through Aug. 14 at the Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea. The show is loosely based on the concept of old Victorian era “parlour games.” In Victorian times, up-close magic shows were all the rage, with skilled magicians performing mysterious tricks at elegant parties in private homes. JON WOODHOUSE photo

I’ve seen amazing musicians on the shows like “America’s Got Talent” and “Britain’s Got Talent,” but nothing prepared me for the marvel of Shoot Ogawa performing at the Magical Mystery Show at the Fairmont Kea Lani.

Born in Tokyo, Ogawa is acclaimed as one of the most skillful magicians on the planet. Magicians Penn and Teller on their “Fool Us” show praised him as the “best sleight of hand of anyone in the world,” with Penn declaring “we’ve never seen moves done that well.”

A master of sleight of hand, also known as prestidigitation and legerdemain, Ogawa began practicing magic as a 10-year-old in Japan, learning how dexterous hand movements can be designed to manipulate objects and deceive spectators. A six-time Magic Castle award winner, by the time he was 17, he had traveled to America and won first place for stage magic at the St. Louis Magic Jubilee. Since then, he has won many awards.

Employing familiar objects like decks of cards, coins, ropes and thimbles, Ogawa miraculously made the impossible possible, with objects disappearing and reappearing, and totally mystifying his audience.

Jonathan Todd, the managing director of Hotel Magic LLC and the Magical Mystery Show enterprise, had earlier praised Ogawa, suggesting we prepare for “shock and awe,” and he was right.

A seasoned entertainer skillfully using humor to enhance his performance, he invited various audience members to participate in tricks, leaving them shaking their heads in wonder. With attendance limited to around 40, the impact of his thrilling act was aided by the close-up, intimate setting of the transformed Fairmont Kea Lani showroom.

The Wailea show is loosely based on the concept of old Victorian era “parlour games.” In Victorian times, up-close magic shows were all the rage, with skilled magicians performing mysterious tricks at elegant parties in private homes.

Mystery Show attendees are initially greeted by a museum entry room that sets the tone with Victorian antiques, old curios and oddities, photos of Queen Victoria and King Kalakaua, and a mini history lesson on how the two monarchs met.

During his European tour, Kalakaua first encountered a magic show by Scottish professional magician John Henry Anderson, known as The Great Wizard of the North. Anderson was credited with helping bring the art of magic from the street into theaters. When Anderson traveled to Hawaii, he met the king.

Todd, a Maui resident who formerly managed Mick Fleetwood, kicked off the magic show with a few tricks, followed by Australian magician Simon Coronel (who also fooled Penn & Teller), who wowed us with an astonishing dollar bill illusion. Then out stepped Ogawa to dazzle his audience. At one point, he even brought alive the famous “Son of Man” painting by Belgian surrealist artist Rene Magritte. “My passion is to make people happy,” Ogawa announced. We were all smiles.

The Magical Mystery Show draws from a roster of world-class magicians who spend a few weeks at the resort. Ogawa will next perform Wednesday through Aug. 14 in Wailea, followed by Nathan Coe Marsh Aug. 15 through Sept. 15. Marsh is known for creating impossible experiences that blur the line between reality and illusion.

“Providing magic and mystery in these times is awe-inspiring and brings people back to the wonder of childhood, instills infinite possibilities and creates awe that’s uplifting and simply makes people feel good again,” Todd reported.

The Magical Mystery Show is presented nightly except Wednesdays with shows at 5 and 7:30 p.m. The cost is $139 for adults and $39 for children up to 17, and $99 for kamaaina. Free magic classes also are offered at 3 p.m. daily except Wednesdays.

A portion of ticket sales are donated to the Shriners Children’s hospital in Honolulu. Tickets are available at hotel-magic.com. Valet parking is free.

NEWSLETTER

Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper?
     

COMMENTS

Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today