When Elloree’s Russell Anderson, a professional illusionist, discovered in mid-May that someone had made his livelihood disappear -- by stealing his utility trailer containing all of his tricks of the trade -- he counted on prayers and good old-fashioned “magic” to get his show back on the road.
Anderson’s career is levitating once again in the form of “It’s A Magical Christmas,” which he’s performing now at the Threshold Repertory Theatre in Charleston.
And he says the show is grander than ever.
“We’re back to making things float and making motorcycles appear and ladies floating in the air,” Anderson said.
“We replaced several of the illusions that were stolen and we added several illusions that we haven’t had before,” he said.
Anderson has been working as an illusionist/magician since 2005.
Through “It’s A Magical Christmas,” he said he’s bringing a bit of Las Vegas magic performances to the East Coast in his performance of David Copperfield’s “Interlude” and other illusions performed on the stages in the “Entertainment Capital of the World.”
Anderson bills himself as “the only touring singing illusionist in North America.”
He said he's proud to offer a show that’s friendly to the entire family with generous opportunities for audience participation.
For an hour and 30 minutes, the audience will witness 10 to 15 illusions, combined with Anderson’s talents of singing and comedy.
While he’s performed on cruise ships, at theme parks and in countries around the world, Anderson has something special in store for The T&D Region.
“We’re hoping to produce a Grand Illusion show for the greatest supporters right here in Orangeburg,” he said this week.
“We’re in negotiations in Orangeburg so watch for the dates in 2019," Anderson said.
He said the loss of his utility trailer - which contained approximately $20,000 in illusions, backdrops, sound system and other tools – “was very devastating.”
Anderson asks that anyone with information about his stolen trailer and its contents call him at 1-803-387-9451.
He’s had to rebuild a number of illusions, buy some new ones and refurbish a few that hadn't been used in a while. He's also received gifts to replace what he lost. Anderson said it took months for his livelihood to be restored.
As for “It’s A Magical Christmas,” Anderson said the show’s title says it all.
He said he’s thankful for the venue, which allowed him time to set up his backdrops, tools and what he needs to give the best show possible.
To see “It’s A Magical Christmas,” visit www.thresholdrep.org to purchase tickets before they vanish.
Tickets are sold at reduced rates for seniors, military members, children and students.
Anderson is performing “It’s A Magical Christmas” on the following dates: – at 7 p.m. on Dec. 1, 7, 8, 14, 21 and 22 and at 3 p.m. on Dec. 2, 9, 16 and 23.
The Threshold Repertory Theatre is located at 84 1/2 Society Street in Charleston.