by Nick Anis
Steve Spellman, age 45, caught the magic, comedy, and
illusion bug back in 1960 when he was barely six years old. He
started out doing tricks with handkerchiefs, folding paper, cards, coins,
and so on. By age 17, Spellman had perfected slight of hand, stage
illusions, and comedic banter and began to perform professionally.
Spellman has been mesmerizing audiences for a quarter century and has
worked with celebrities such as Tiny Tim, Mohammed Ali, Michael Landon,
The Sultan of Brunei, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Three Dog Night, and the Electric
In the 1970's while stationed in Germany with the
U.S. Army Spellman began performing for military audiences with the
Special Services throughout Europe. Upon returning home to the East
Coast, Spellman worked nightclubs and hotels -- opening for well-known TV
and stage personalities. One tour took him from Maine to Florida
performing "Rock 'N Roll Magic" with the Lynyrd Skynyrd Band.
In the 1980's Spellman established his versatility
while performing on HBO, Comedy Central, The Tonight Show, cruise ships,
comedy clubs, USO tours, theme parks, circuses, and over 100 cable TV
stations from coast to coast. His magical associations include
charter membership in the Magic Guild of Southern California,
International Brotherhood of Magic, and the Academy of Magical Arts
(Hollywood's Magic Castle).
For the past 17 years Spellman he has primarily
brought his unique blend of comedy and magic to schools and corporate
events throughout Southern California as well as the glitzy clubs and
larger arenas. According to office manager, Chris Strock, "Spellman
loves to perform for children. The children, their parents, and
their teachers really love his quick wit, humor, and amazing
Speaking to the Travel Watch Stroke said, "The 1
1/2 hour 'Spellman's Magic Spectacular' show offers a high-energy
performance like no other offered to schools. There is no cost to the
schools because Spellman's production company sells tickets to the
families of the community for about the same price as a movie ticket.
Spellman also provides free educational assemblies for the children of the
school prior to the elaborate family magic show, Spellman's Magic
Spectacular, which promotes literacy, positive self-esteem, and just say
no to drugs. Spellman's assembly is a one man, high energy, 30
minute show with his magic bunny (of course) that really motives the kids
to be good listeners and stay in school - messages that he reiterates at
the family night.”
The Spellman troupe (a crew of 5-8) arrives in a
semi-truck filled with 10,000 pounds of lighting, sound, and staging
equipment. It takes a crew of five about 4 hours to setup for each
show. Shows can be done in doors or out, in daylight or darkness.
Spellman's Magic Spectacular show is a completely
self-contained and includes elaborate illusions and props that one would
one expect of a show at one of the major casinos at the Las Vegas strip
such as Houdini's Trunk (Spellman escapes from a straight jacket, while
tired with rope, handcuffed, and locked inside a chained and padlocked
trunk), The Twist, (Spellman's assistant is split in two and her torso is
practically twisted a knot to the tune of Chubby Checker's only hit
single), The Mismaid (girl is cut into 4 pieces and put back together as
if assembling a puzzle), levitation, and fire eating.
Children and adults in the audience can participate
in the show as volunteers while Spellman does some great ESP and card
tricks and demonstrates his amazing ability to pickpocket 3 or 4 totally
unsuspecting volunteers and relieve them of their watches, wallets, and so
on. The volunteers (especially the kids) really feel like stars on
In another illusion, "Where Did the Duck
Go" Spellman makes a live duck disappear and then does it again in
slow motion … seeming to show the audience how it is done, only to
surprise them again when a fake duck turns into a real duck in slow
Spellman's crew includes Cynthia Alamillo who has
been his technical director for the past six years, Alyshia Leisher,
Spellman's daughter (who has been a stage personality since age 14), Mike
Jeffries, crew manager and stage personality, Steve King and Matt Harris.
This motley crew, along with Steve Spellman performs up to seven nights
per week, 365 days a year making it the most popular family night
performance in the United States.
Spellman has a knack for incorporating irony and
hilarious comedy into the show. In the illusion, "The
Twist" Spellman splits his assistant in two, and twists her torso
into a knot to the tune of the original music from the song as the same
name, he plays mind reading music to the Mind Reading illusion, and so on.
When people ask Spellman how he does a particular
illusion he quickly replies, "Can you keep a secret?" And
when they said "yes," he replies, "so can I!"
Spellman periodically works with Tiger Rescue, out of
Riverside, who provides the show with a live Siberian tiger. He
transforms his assistant in a cage on the stage into the tiger and she
then appears in a puff of smoke behind the audience. In those shows,
Spellman donates one dollar from each ticket sold to the Tiger Rescue, a
non-profit organization that looks after endangered animals.
If you haven't seen this wonderful show, do it.
One of Spellman's specialties is connecting with young people as well as
adults. Spellman's boundless energy and enthusiasm is infectious;
his fast passed quick wit performance truly keeps the audience
"Spellbound" making it hard to believe and impossible to forget.
Spellman's Magic Spectacular
3802 Cornell Drive
Oceanside, CA 92056
Phone: 760-439-7581 - Fax: 760-439-0691
# # #
Nick Anis is a food, wine, and travel
and technology writer with over 24 books in print published by
McGraw-Hill, Random House, Bantam, Ziff-Davis, Tab, and others. Nick's
articles have appeared in The Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, West Coast
Media, The Family Publications Group, The Weekly News, and Travel-Watch.
His beats include food, travel, snow and waters sports, entertainment,
family recreation, consumer electronics, home improvement, and automotive.
He is responsible for the Restaurant Row Ethnic Dining Guide, co-published
by the Long Beach Press Telegram. Nick is an
accomplished downhill skier, PADI certified SCUBA diver, and when he's not
sitting on his butt goofing off, enjoys a variety of active recreation
including tennis, riding motorcycles, ATVs, wave runners, snow machines,
horses, skeet and trap shooting he's also taken a stab at riding camels,
donkeys, elephants, ostriches, lamas, dolphins, Reindeer, bulls,
mechanical bulls, and buffalo. Nick is a member (A
Secretary/Treasurer) of the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers
Association (IFWTWA), a member of the North American Snow Sports
Journalist Association (NASJA), Computer Press Association, The Writer's
Guild, and listed in Books in Print, Media Map, and Press Access.
You can reach Nick at Editor@Travel-Watch.com.