This illusionist’s magic formula combines family, passion and decades of dedication

John “Magic” Wright fell in love with magic as a teenager and spent his entire adult life honing his craft. His career as a magician spanned nearly five decades, including a residency at the Magic Castle in Los Angeles. Today you can see him deluding himself at Theater and Museum of Magic in southwest Austin. To produce his shows, Wright collaborates with his children and his wife, Ruth, who is his main stage assistant and can be seen levitating on stage each evening.

“What makes a great magician?” It is a gift from God.

“I grew up seeing magic and magicians on television. And, for some reason, I never saw the magic. But when I saw an African American magician playing with, say, a rhythmic Motown doing magic, it felt like it was amazing to me.

“At the beginning it is very difficult because the art of magic is secret and the tricks have their secrets and they are kept by the magician. So it is a slow relationship that you have with the magician and you have to convince him that you are serious.

“My wife runs the Magic’s Theater Museum. She puts herself at 200% in the theater. My children, if I want to introduce a new allusion to the series, I will show it to each of them and I will make up my mind. ‘Daddy, don’t. Oh, daddy, I love it. ‘ Or whatever. So family is everything.

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