Consentino, the three times Australian award-winning magician, is bringing his spectacular live shows to Auckland’s Civic Theatre this August. He is renowned for expertly fusing sleight of hand magic, magnificent illusions, and death-defying escape artistry to keep his audience on the edge of their seats. I sat down with the grand illusionist to get to know the man behind the magic and the secret to his success.
Rhianna: How long have you been practicing magic for?
Consentino: Over 15 years. I started as a 12-year-old kid, it was just for fun, but as I matured it became my part time job. I started because I was a very shy kid growing up and spent a lot of time at the library because my mum was the school principal. I had a lot of learning difficulties as a kid and she would read these magic books to me, so I got into it because of the reading, the side effect was that I started learning the tricks.
R: Who would you consider to be your inspiration/idol?
C: Definitely Harry Houdini. At the time, he was the world’s first superstar, there were no rock stars or celebrities; he created that whole thing, it didn’t exist.
R: What was your big break/claim to fame?
C: The answer people probably expect to hear is coming runner up on Australia’s Got Talent, but I had done a lot of groundwork and television and radio before I got there, and I think it’s because of that work that I was able to approach Australia’s Got Talent from a different perspective than most other acts. I didn’t take the opportunity for granted, I knew what I was getting myself into and I knew how to capitalise on it.
R: What is it about your shows that sets you apart from other illusionists?
C: Most magicians focus on one particular genre, whether it be street magic, stage magic or escapes, but we do all of it. Everything from the television show we put in the stage show. It’s kind of like being a muso and saying I’m going to rap and then sing and then dance — we put all of these aspects together.
R: What should people expect to see in your upcoming Auckland shows?
C: They can see aspects of my television show, as well as the illusions and the escapes close up. Magic is so much more powerful live, it starts to play with your mind and that’s when it becomes a lot more potent.
R: What are your goals for the future?
C: Short term — to do more television shows and more touring, but the overall goal is the same as when I started: to make magic a respected art form, hopefully as respected as when Houdini was around.
Words: Rhianna Osborne