When Charli Ashby was growing up in New Zealand, she was obsessed with watching magicians on television.
Of course, they were mostly men. But Charli didn’t care.
“They always had female assistants, but I didn’t want the female role. I wanted to be one of the star magicians. I loved the extravagance and the theatrics of it all.”
Charli set about preparing herself for a life of magic. She studied dance and theatre while learning the secret arts of illusion in Australia and then the United States. She has since travelled the world specialising in large-scale illusions, close-up and classic magic and this November you can be amazed in-person when Charli joins an all-star cast at Canberra Theatre Centre for blockbuster show Metaverse of Magic.
The interactive spectacular features a bevy of world-class illusionists using game-changing technology with heavy doses of comedy and theatrical flair to wow audiences.
“This show has a bit of everything and will appeal to everyone,” said Charli.
She explains that Taiwan’s Horret Wu will perform an eye-watering card show while Japan’s Hara Hiroki, who earned a standing ovation from the judges and audience of America’s Got Talent, will combine futuristic technology and classical magic.
New Zealand’s Jarred Fell brings humour to the stage, combining comedy and a career that has earned him shows in Hollywood and the endorsement of celebrities from Jack Black to Chrissy Tiegen while the Netherland’s Sabine Van Dieman combines “badass” tricks, escapes, illusions, mind-games and even some cracking bullwhip skills.
For the Generation Alphas in the audience, Ash Hodgkinson, aka Ash Magic, might be a familiar face from Heartbreak High where he plays Ben, or from TikTok where he has 10 million followers, all eager to understand just how he does it.
Other cast members will dance their way across the stage, ensuring the show’s frenetic pace.
For Charli, it is a dream come true to pull together an international cast to tour the country. While she cites her two children as her most spectacular conjuring creations, she jokes that “Mummy might be disappearing for a while” to star in the show.
What: Metaverse of Magic
When: 22 November – 3 December
Where: Canberra Theatre Centre
Feature image: L-R Jarred Fell, Ash Magic, Hara, Charli Ashby