I guess now is a good time to acknowledge that I never did post that show review I promised. I’m truly sorry. I dropped the ball with the pictures I took (or more accurately attempted to take). And without pictures, my words would simply fail to capture the visual splendor that Morgan and John created for this show. But, hey, now there’s a website devoted to sharing it all with you. So, as I said, head on over right now and experience the amazing sets, costumes, comedy – and, my favorite part, the charming characters that vibrantly bring the magic and theatre of “Skullduggery” to life.
Skullduggery was awesome! What a great way to celebrate the Halloween season. And just as soon as things here at TDP’s Bullpen settle down after returning from my road trip out to see it, I’ll be writing a complete review.
Saturday and Sunday
Posted In: Blog Articles
Morgan and John have performed for audiences worldwide. Their inventive, high-energy shows, complete with wonderful costumes and elaborate scenery, offer a true and genuine theatrical experience.
They deliver not only awe-inspiring illusions, but delightful comedy through a wonderful array of characters. Their talent is truly inspirational.
Skullduggery is an enchanting show featuring all the thrills of a classic pirate adventure. This is a great opportunity for the entire family to share in a magnificent time of creativity and imagination together.
I’ll be posting further details when the show schedule is released in early September.
Posted In: Blog Articles
This past Sunday I attended the NJ Balloon Festival, where I finally had the opportunity to see Morgan The Escapist’s show. I consider myself among her biggest fans, and am honored to call her friend. So I’ve been looking forward to seeing her escape show for quite sometime. It was a truly wonderful experience. And I look forward to many more.
Morgan’s show is more than a fun-filled display of skill and daring. It’s also a genuine expression of her unique and special character. She shares her spirit and passion with the audience by infusing her performance with all the things she loves in life. She combines her deep interest in magic’s long and rich history with her love of the martial arts. And, of course, her wonderfully engaging sense of humor is ever present. There’s even a touch of Geekiness. All these things come together in her escapes to entertain, intrigue and inspire.
At the balloon festival she did two shows a day on Saturday and Sunday. Unfortunately, I couldn’t afford to go both days (entering my forties, I’m still a starving artist). On Saturday she endured scorching temperatures to thrill the crowds. On Sunday she braved the wind and rain when a storm rolled through to make things quite damp and murky. But things sure cooled off. And the audience wasn’t shy about the weather either. After the storm departed, the crowd must have doubled in size. Even a nasty storm couldn’t deter them from Morgan’s show. They wanted adventure. And Morgan delivered.
Morgan kicked off Sunday’s first show with some thoroughly funny escape magic. She invited two kids onto the stage to shackle her wrists. Putting her hands into a small sack, she included the kids in a charming comedy routine in which she pulled out all sorts of objects from the bag and casually and seamlessly switched back and forth between being shackled and un-shackled. It was good, light-hearted fun that still left me astonished at the wonder and mystery of magic.
Next she introduced her new Force-of-Will Challenge. This is where she extends her body’s energy to affect someone else’s. She counteracted a guy’s strength and prevented him from getting up out of a chair. Again, I’m simply in awe.
She then raised the difficulty level of the classic strait jacket escape by combining it with a demonstration of the Shaolin Iron body technique. A simple explanation of the Iron Body technique is that it’s a conditioning skill that trains the body to withstand impacts and strikes. Morgan escaped from the strait jacket while standing barefoot, and completely unharmed, on a set of three swords. This may be my favorite challenge. I know how much Morgan loves the martial arts, and how much of an inspiration it is to her. I enjoy it when she shares that affection with the audience. For me sharing is at the heart of creativity and art.
After the Iron Body challenge, she performed her signature Cell Escape. This is where John and a member of the audience chain Morgan and lock her into a rather small wooden box. Using a common, everyday object, something like a bobby pin, given to her by someone in the audience, she picks the locks to escape the confines of the cell.
For the finale, Morgan shared some wisdom from her Tang Soo Do instructor and, through a touch of magic, demonstrated that anything is possible . Closing a ball and bowl together in a case, she caused the ball to miraculously enter the bowl. It was a clear-cut and effective message.
It was during the break that the storm hit. Morgan, John, and the other magicians performing at the festival graciously allowed me to shelter with them. And let me say that I can’t think of a more enjoyable way to ride out a rain storm than hanging out in an RV filled with magicians. Everyone had such great stories. And Morgan further impressed us by snagging a troublesome fly right out of the air just like Mr. Miyagi.
The second show was originally planned to be the 55 Gal. Underwater Escape. But the storm, though eventually letting up some, didn’t fully stop in time for Morgan to perform it. Conditions just weren’t safe. Unfortunately, she had to cut it.
Instead, changing things up a bit, she did another longer show. In such murky conditions, it was, of course, much less dangerous to perform the strait jacket escape without the swords. Though, with or without swords, getting out of a strait jacket is an impressive feat.
This time, in addition to the handcuff act, she performed some magic where she wound a piece of rope in, around, and all throughout Houdini’s jacket (it was her way of paying homage to the master). And, when pulled tight, the rope was somehow completely free of the jacket.
She ended round two with another inspirational message. She dramatically demonstrated that nothing is impossible by breaking three boards in a single strike.
I fear that, even with how much I genuinely love Morgan’s work, my words will simply fail to do her justice (remember, I’m really more of a scenarist than an essayist). You really have to see her show live. My descriptions just can’t accurately recreate Morgan’s charm, wisdom, and skill.
I am so very happy to share this awesome experience with everyone.