Behind the curtain: How L.A.’s working magicians hone their tricks in private ‘magic jams’
The private room where magician Brian Cardone prepares for his “magic jam” sessions
He’s one of only three magicians in the country and one of L.A.’s very own living legends. The other guys are Steve Niles and Richard Gere.
When you first meet Cardone he’s all smiles, a genuine grin, a genuine laugh. He’s about 6 feet tall, skinny, with a full round face, small nose, thin eyebrows and thin lips in the same sort of oval way he can be seen in a photo. He has the kind of face you can imagine falling in love with, and the kind of smile that says “you are going to like me” — and then you do.
His name, Cardone, means “small circle” in Italian. “Circle,” he says, “is the word for magic. It’s the magic circle.”
So how does he do it? What makes him a magic genius?
Cardone does a routine on most shows every bit as impressive as a magician’s standard trick. He does it on most shows.
“It’s like being on a live television show,” Cardone says. “You have the illusion of control, but you are not the one who is being controlled.”
He’s talking about the magician doing the tricks onstage — not the illusion, which is more like being in the theater, or the audience, who is more like his audience.
“You can’t make people say, ‘Wow.’ They do it because they watched him do it. They’re mesmerized by magic. They can’t get into the show. It’s like being in the moment,” Cardone says