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Show combines flash, substance

Terry Evanswood produces a card from thin air during a night of magic at Kaneland High School Saturday.(H. Rick Bamman photo)

MAPLE PARK – When Tommy McGorty, 8, of Geneva, went to see magician Terry Evanswood, he dressed the part, with a top hat and wand.

Tommy said he knew one trick.

“You grab a glass and a coin, and then you grab a handkerchief, and you put it over the glass, and you tap it three times, and you tell them to tap it, and you check, and you tell them to tap it harder, and they tap it three times, and it disappears,” he said.

Evanswood, a St. Charles native, entertained Tommy and other magic lovers at Kaneland High School on Saturday night. After exploding from a flaming box, Evanswood offered a traditional magic show, down to the tuxedos, scarves and the lovely assistant in a box.

It was not the first magic show that Jonathan Wilson, 8, of St. Charles, had seen.

He said his prior magic experience showed him “card tricks, and they did that thing where he pulls the handkerchief out of his sleeve.”

Jonathan attended with his brothers Walter, 9, and Matthew, 6, and Ryan Regelbrugge, 4, of St. Charles.

Before the show, Ryan said he hoped Evanswood would perform one particular trick.

“Pull a rabbit out of his hat,” he said, laughing. “I like bunnies. Bunnies, bunnies, bunnies, bunnies, bunnies!”

After the flame-box entrance, Evanswood went into a quick “visual test” for the audience, holding up a black card with a white dot, which became two white dots, then three, and finally eight as he turned and flipped the card.

One lady-in-the-box trick and a high-speed montage of scarf tricks later, the audience laughed, clapped and whooped.

Evanswood, who has performed since he was 10, spends nine months a year performing in the Smoky Mountains. David Copperfield and Harry Blackstone Jr. endorsed him into the Society of American Magicians, and the International Magicians Society recently awarded him the Merlin Award, their highest honor.

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