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Photos by Kelley Moore

Radford always needed a magician. This may seem like an overstatement, but after sitting through the show of Mike Super, the Phenomenon, you’d also realize how true it is.

I’d never seen the Bonnie Hurlburt Student Center Auditorium as full as it was on Wednesday, April 14. The magician captivated his audience with simple rope tricks to complex voodoo magic. He had no trouble inviting students on stage and encouraging them to participate in the experience.

He responded to the crowd as they reacted, pointing out the “child-like wonder” on faces, teasing specific students on their reactions and not hesitating to crack jokes about everyone, including himself. His humor filled the spots between jokes and explained why he’s made it so far in magic.

Mike Super, real name unknown, has received many awards and honors. The illusionist has captivated beyond the valley of Radford University, winning a live TV magic competition where he was voted America’s Favorite Mystifier on NBC’s “Phenomenon.”

During the night, Super had the audience gasping as he refilled an empty Coke can with fresh soda, re-attached a cut rope, levitated an audience member and had a student jump out of his seat through voodoo magic. Super had card tricks, pick- up lines and even convinced the audience he could read minds.

Tossing a giant toy die into the audience, Super played Clue. With each catch of the die, a student answered a question concerning a murder. An item: turtle; place: Cancun, Mexico; and a person: Christopher Walken were said to be the murder weapon, place and murderer. Prior to the show’s start, Super told the audience he made a prediction and enclosed it in a secure box in plain sight during the show. Near the end he unlocked and showed his prediction. That night and in that auditorium, Christopher Walken did murder someone with a turtle in Cancun, and the audience was even more shocked than before.

Super went on to levitate a napkin, bouncing it around his hand and up his arm before showing his last trick and explaining the dedication of his shows: his mom.

Super had always wanted to be a magician from an early age. His mom pushed him, telling him what most parents do, that you can do anything you put your mind to. He went on to explain that his mom never had the pleasure of seeing him perform a real show. Super’s finale created the one thing RU students had seen enough of: snow. However, they gasped and ended the show with a roaring standing ovation.

With each trick dropping jaws further than the one before, RU’s Student Programming and Campus Events team did an excellent job with this performer. They brought in someone that had me assuming magic was real, if even for one night.

[This story was published in the April 21, 2010 issue of The Tartan. It was published online April 19.]


About Me:

Kate Wilk is a Journalism major attending Radford University. She currently works for two Student Media organizations: Managing Editor for The Tartan, RU's student newspaper and Marketing Manager for Whim, RU's online magazine.

January 2019
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What I’m Working On:

Election: Coverage of Virginia's 9th District Congressional Election--Campaign profiles, Election Day Coverage, Interviews with voters

St. Alban's: Psychiatric Center is on path to rebirth. Interview with owner/patient Tim Gregory, Photography, Interviews with students participating in ghost tours

Animal Adoptions/Abandonment: Radford's student population cares for pets, what to know, resources and opinions

Best Pizza Around: Local food hot spots get analyzed by students at RU. Resources for late night cravings, delivery information, menus, best deals

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