Magic, Laughter and Wonder (Bread)
Without an announcement of any kind, from stage left a shrouded figure appeared. The figure glided towards the audience bearing a puppet with the likeness of the devil.
“I am Satan”, the puppet drolly informed us. Clearly the show had begun or we were being put upon in a highly sacrilegious fashion.
“Satan” had come to offer “eternal peace and happiness and other great prizes” including get out of Hell free cards and gift certificates to Starbucks, among other treasures. Was there a catch? You betcha!
A gentleman called upon to make the acquaintance of Satan, muttered, “This is a set-up,” as he got out of his seat. Puppet Satan introduced himself and extended his puppet hand for a shake. “By shaking Satan’s hand you sacrifice your soul to Satan”, puppet Satan crowed. Generously, Satan agreed that if the gentleman participated in Satan’s exhibition the man could win back his soul
What did the gentleman win for indulging Satan? Absolutely nothing, which seemed to be the running theme of the evening.
The shrouded figure was, of course, David “just like the bridge” London. According to his website the show is a mix of “magic…storytelling, puppetry, comedy, performance, audience interaction, and that which cannot be defined”. Alternatively, London’s performance is a one man comedy act with magic tricks and the occasional audience participant.
David London informed the crowd that he has been practicing magic since the age of seven. According to lore, when all eyes were on him at a family function, he pulled a rabbit out of a top hat. Many members of the audience craned their necks anxiously hoping that a top hat would appear out of thin air or London’s trunk of tricks. Alas, no hats or rabbits materialized.
If you came to the show expecting a traditional magic show, you, like the handful of children in the audience, will probably be slightly bewildered. David London’s performance is more cerebral than mystical. The performance will engage and charm teenagers through seniors, younger children would be more at home with his performances specifically targeted at families.
Later in the performance, London recounts the tale of the conception of Wonder Bread. David London and Wonder Bread, according to himself, are astrologically connected due to their shared birthday. Anecdote completed, London hands a lady in the audience a small, velvet drawstring bag. Contained therein is a miniature model of Wonder Bread. The lady with the bag is invited down to the stage to participate in the world’s oldest game, Which Hand? The lady is
instructed to hide the mini-Wonder Bread in one of her fists and Mr. London will divine where it is utilizing his astrological connection to Wonder Bread. London guesses which hand… and fails.
A tremor of shock surges through the assembled throng. Reassurance follows swiftly. London reveals that he knew he would fail because his astrological connection is with Wonder Bread. The mini-Wonder Bread is a tiny foam block covered in paper! No small wonder London couldn’t detect its presence hidden in the ladies fist.
David London promises to prove his astrological connection to Wonder Bread, for real this time. He hands the lady from the audience a loaf of Wonder Bread and instructs her to hide
it in one of her fists. I repeat, a full-size loaf of Wonder Bread. Demonstrating a quick wit, the lady shoves the loaf of Wonder Bread up the back of her sweater while the audience howls with laughter. Then, she presented her fists for inspection. Mr. London is not fooled by the ruse and instructs her to hide the bread again. This time, despite a valiant again attempt at hide the loaf
in her sleeve, the Wonder Bread is found. Some members of the crowd are practically rolling in the aisles by this point. Clearly, David London’s astrological connection to Wonder Bread will be a saga which we will tell our children’s children’s children.
Our brave lady volunteer was gifted the loaf of Wonder Bread for her assistance.
Others tricks performed involved imaginary cards, alleged celebrity toenails, Robot Poems, and jelly beans. In order to maintain the wonder, I must implore that you come to witness the spectacle for yourself.
David London’s Magic Outside the Box is an experience like no other. Come experience the wonder, the weirdness, the whole shebang.
At the end of the show the stage is littered with bits of colored paper, paint, Wonder Bread, soap shavings, an opened marker, silvery cloth, plastic bags and perhaps, imaginary cards. If you take a moment to take it all in you will find yourself in the dark because David London has turned out the lights.
Magic Outside the Box is a must see for fans of avant-garde magicians and post-modern anti- jokes.
No soap, radio!
David London performed at the Baltimore Theater Project – 45 West Preston Street, in Baltimore, MD. For information on their upcoming shows visit their website. David London will be performing at various locations in the Baltimore-area until June. For more information, visit his website.