"How'd you do that?"
A woman from the audience called that out at a recent performance "Nothing to Hide," the magic show that debuted this week in New York after a storied run in Los Angeles, after she'd participated from her seat in a particularly mysterious trick. The two magicians on stage, Helder Guimaraes and Derek DelGaudio, laughed and blushed respectively, one of the few moments in the performance that couldn't have been scripted or rehearsed. It was both an incredibly sincere and objectively telling moment for the performers, as it reflected both the audience's immense delight for the show and the unpredictability of what could erupt on a given night during their run in front of Big Apple audiences.
Because these two are such seasoned pros, even at young ages, they took her befuddlement in stride and added some levity and ever more patter to their routine. They keep everything light throughout the night, perhaps reflective of director Neil Patrick Harris's vision for magic as a combination of both amazement and entertainment. In fact, during certain moments of the show, you can hear Harris' comedic voice creep into the dialogue.
Guimaraes and DelGaudio have such good chemistry and timing that it's as though they were born to perform side by side. However, as they reveal in the most candid portion of the evening, they actually weren't meant originally to pair up. Guimaraes stepped in when someone else left the show, and he quickly got up to speed. You'd never know it from how the two work alongside one another these days. They sell you on their friendly competition during some tricks, but you know that they rely on each other to make this show soar.
They perform eight tricks in total over the course of the night, all centered around decks of cards and many of them pulling information, card selections, or errands from the audience. it keeps everyone on their toes. You never know where the next turn will come from, arriving in the most unexpected places. But their showmanship, quick wit, and, yes, improvisational skills are what makes this production so wonderfully magical.