Magician Justin Willman enchants crowd for Family Weekend

Justin WIllman performs magic show at Memorial Hall in Lexington, Ky., on Friday October 4, 2013. Photo by Joel Repoley | Staff

Justin WIllman performs magic show at Memorial Hall in Lexington, Ky., on Friday October 4, 2013. Photo by Joel Repoley | Staff

By Heather Whitaker | News writer

A table drifted above the ground Saturday night in Memorial Hall with no feet on the floor, and no strings seeming to connect it at the top.

Justin Willman, an American magician and host of the Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars”, held two corners of the table cloth as he danced the table around the stage to John Mayer’s  song, “Gravity.”

The Student Activities Board brought Willman to campus as part of UK’s Family Weekend festivities. Willman has been featured on shows like “Saturday Night Live” and “The Ellen DeGeneres Show”. At several points during his show, Willman brought children onto the stage and had them help him perform tricks.

Willman also incorporated his own background into his show, taking a moment  to “get real” with the audience. Toward the end of the evening, he sat down with a red heart-shaped balloon. As he relayed the story of how he chose to be a magician because he wanted to feel like a kid again, he broke off a piece of string from the balloon with each statement.

“I want to feel like a kid again, just for a second,” he said, releasing the balloon to reveal that the balloon’s string had returned to its original length.

Willman also told the tale of when he was a child  and rode his bike while wearing a pair of roller blades to impress a girl.
When he  broke both of his arms in the subsequent crash, his doctor suggested learning card tricks in order to get the dexterity back in his fingers, he said.
“That’s what got me into magic. Well, into magic seriously,” he said.

Willman finished the performance by accepting random numbers from the audience.

He then added, divided and multiplied them to form a large number that indicated the show was ended on 10/4/13 at 9:19 p.m.

“Thank you for living this hour in the moment,” Willman said in closing.