This week was a fun one! I was given the opportunity to entertain at “The Crease,” a 1920′s Speakeasy-Style Event put on by the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation in celebration of NHL All Star Weekend to raise money for children with Pediatric Cancer. The event, hosted by my good pal Johnny DiLoretto, and conjured up by the amazing IM Creative, raised $600,000 for the cause. I shared my close-up social magic with the elite attendees, including NHL All Star Team Captain Nick Foligno, Columbus Blue Jackets Head Coach Todd Richards and Former NHL Player/Commentator/CBJ Team Ambassador, Jody Shelley. The evening was full of surprises including music by NBC’s “The Voice” star, Maiya Sykes, amazing atmospheric performances around the room, professional dancers and a surprise appearance by Sara Bareilles!
Thanks to YOU, my amazing fans, friends and supporters, I’ve been voted Entertainer of the Year by Campus Activities Magazine AND Magician of the Year by APCA!
Entertainer of the Year
I was voted “Entertainer of the Year” by the readers of Campus Activities Magazine! As you can imagine, this is an unbelievable honor for me. After having been nominated for the last 3 years, it’s a huge thrill.
Read the Official Press Release Here
To be recognized in your field is something that always feels good. I’m humbled and honored to receive the title of “Entertainer of the Year” and will do my best to keep putting on the best shows I possibly can to truly earn the title. I was “real-life-share-a-drink-with” friends with all 4 of the other nominees in this category and they’re all amazing, top-notch entertainers. Adam Grabowski is a guy who is taking the college market by storm with his comedy, funny charts and observations about 90s life. Daniel Martin is someone I’m proud to call a friend and someone with whom I regularly workshop new ideas. His “making an audience member disappear bit is one of the most clever “I wish I had thought of that” things out there. Peter Boie is a magician who has a thing in his show with a harmonica that I have never figured out — and never want to. It’s a magical experience to see him perform. Matt Corey convinced me that the saxophone can actually be exciting and fun to watch (not to mention, he’s a fellow Ohioan)! I’d also like to say CONGRATS to all of the winners in other categories!
Campus Activities Magazine was nice enough to feature me on the cover of their April Issue, which is distributed to 4,300 colleges and universities nation-wide and ran a 3-page-spread about me.
The self-billed “Comedian, Magician, Smart@$$” has become one of the most respected and in-demand entertainers in the campus market and this win proves it.
You can read the full story here.
Thanks again for your support. I’ll do my best to live up to it.
Magician of the Year
In other exciting news, I recently attended the National Conference for the Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities in Atlanta, GA, where I was given the “2014 Magician of the Year” Award! The title is determined by votes cast through ballots given to Student Activities Groups in colleges throughout the country. I was genuinely surprised to be notified about this award!
Click to watch a video of Michael accepting his award!
Being recognized by your peers is always a wonderful feeling, and I smiled the whole way home from Atlanta. So thank you for the honor! The beautiful trophy I was given will be placed in my office display case next to other proud mementos that serve as reminders that I really am working in my dream job.
Thank you so much to:
- The APCA Administrators, Staff and Volunteers,
- All of the Student Activities Advisors/Directors and students who have enjoyed what I do,
- Entertainer friends with whom I regularly consult for improvement and ideas
and of course,
- My agent, Laura Gilman with Fresh Variety for helping me continue to move forward in my career.
Here’s a special story about Christmas – just for you.
This limited edition tour poster will only be available live at shows OR, for a limited time, on sale at the link below!
Get the poster HERE.
This will be an event you won’t want to miss. If you’ve heard any of Jimmy Mak’s stories about Bubba Jim, you know what I’m talking about.
- Some of my favorite bits of magic
- Jimmy and I perform a sketch written by Jimmy’s 5-year-old daughter – as written
- Jimmy’s HILARIOUS tales about Bubba Jim
- My stories from the road, including the story about recently having been bitten AND my experience auditioning for America’s Got Talent
- Behind-the-scenes stories
The show is TOMORROW NIGHT, APRIL 29 at Shadowbox Live’s Backstage Bistro (Directions). My “Magic and Stories” event in 2013 sold out, so you’re going to want to get your reservation in advance for tomorrow’s show. It’s going to be a fun one!
Click here for the Facebook event.
Pop-culture is a large part of my magic, but magicians are also a large part of pop-culture. Here are 10 awesome TV Moments that are about magic, but aren’t necessarily performances of magic themselves. This is, by no means, a comprehensive list. But they’re some of my favorites.
10. Pete Holmes on Magic and Magnets
This ultra-quotable bit makes me laugh every time. As a magician, I hear insane explanations for how people think magic works ALL THE TIME. So this totally hits home.
9. Curb Your Enthusiasm – Larry David battles the kid magician
I tell people about this clip quite often when they make the case that I should tell them how it works because someone taught me.
8. How I Met Your Mother – Barney’s Magic
Neil Patrick Harris is not only a life-long magician, he isn’t shy about bringing his passion for magic into his acting career, as he has done regularly throughout HIMYM. This is just one clip of MANY instances where Barney has performed magic on the show.
7. The Dark Knight Rises – The Joker’s Magic Trick WARNING – GRAPHIC/VIOLENCE
Had to include this clip of the late Heath Ledger’s Oscar-winning role as the Joker. Gross, but extremely memorable.
6. The Cosby Show – Carl Ballantine
Carl Ballantine was an actor and one of the GREAT comedy magicians. He made the “failed magician” act a thing, and no one has done it as well as he did. This episode also featured some great clowning by Bill Irwin.
5. Patton Oswalt – the Angry Magician WARNING: NSFW LANGUAGE
Not much I can say about this clip other than watch it and marvel at how well Patton Oswalt uses the english language. He’s one of my favorite comedians.
4. Scrubs – J.D. Meets David Copperfield
My childhood idol making a cameo appearance on Scrubs and exhibiting a very “real” moment when he mocks J.D.’s child-like excitement.
3. The IT Crowd – The Guy Who Looks Like a Magician
This clip doesn’t do the episode justice. Find it on netflix and watch the whole episode. And once you do, you’ll want to watch the rest of the show. I recently did, and LOVED it.
2. Arrested Development – Gob Bluth
Gob was brought up to me in no less than 4 media interviews the last couple years. I’ve even done a couple Arrested Development-Themed Events to commemorate the show. My favorite Gob Bluth line: “Yeah, but where did the lighter fluid come from?”
1. Steve Martin – Flydini
A classic. It doesn’t get much better than Steve Martin doing Flydini.
Great news! I’ve received a nomination for the third year in a row for Campus Activities Magazine’s Entertainer of the Year Reader’s Choice Award! It’s a huge honor and I’m extremely appreciative to be listed among the OUTSTANDING talent nominated.
In both 2012 AND 2013, I was RUNNER UP for this award. With your help, we can make 2014 the year that I take it home!
1. Go to http://CampusActivitiesMagazine.com/awards.php
2. Type in your email (use your .edu, .mil, or private domain email address like firstname.lastname@example.org (no yahoo, gmail, etc email addresses will be counted – everything else is fair game).
3. Enter your favorite artists in all categories, including Michael Kent for Entertainer of the Year.
4. Eat a candy bar.
5. Share this post using the icons below to tell all of your friends to vote for Michael!
I’m happy to announce that I’ll be doing some special “pop in” performances at Shadowbox Live in Columbus, OH as a Special Guest in their “Holiday Hoopla” show!
This marks the 4th production in which I’ve joined forces with Shadowbox Live. Dates that I’ll be appearing are:
December 3 7:30pm
December 4 7:30 pm
December 10 7:30pm
December 17 7:30pm
December 21 7:30pm & 10:30pm
Tickets are available here or by calling Shadowbox Live’s box office at 614-416-7625.
Check out some of the Fall 2013 Tour Dates! This isn’t a complete list – additional dates are still being added. It looks like when all is said and done, this tour will bring me to around 40-42 cities in something like 18 different states! There are a few days off in between some of the shows, so I’ll be visiting some touristy things like Niagara Falls and Disney World. But most of what I’ll be seeing is small-town America. I want to see all the interesting things there are to see in these small towns. Is there a city near you on the tour? Let me know what I should check out!
I’ll be constantly updating social media followers throughout the tour on my twitter and facebook.
Keep checking back! Also, see my official tour schedule for the most up-to-date information!
If you’re interested in attending a show listed in your city, let me know. Almost all of these shows are on college campuses. Sometimes they are open to the public, sometimes they aren’t.
August 6 – Columbus, OH
August 9 – Columbus, OH
August 10 – Columbus, OH
August 14 – Normal, IL
August 17 – Greenwood, SC
August 18 – Rock Hill, SC
August 22 – Highland Heights, KY
August 23 – Oxford, OH
August 24 – Urbana, OH
August 26 – Bowling Green, OH
August 27 – Tyler, TX
August 28 – Texarkana, TX
August 29 – Gainesville, TX
August 30 – Manchester, NH
September 2 – Manchester, NH
September 3 – Green Bay, WI
September 5 – Sanborn, NY
September 6 – Orlando, FL
September 14 – Rockford, IL
September 16 – Winona, MN
September 17 – Joplin, MO
September 20 – Emmitsburg, MD
September 21 – Columbus, OH
September 23 – Dayton, OH
September 25 – Bexley, OH
October 4 – Bronx, NY
October 5 – Angola, IN
October 15 – Lake Charles, LA
October 16 – Beaumont, TX
October 17 – Natchitoches, LA
October 18 – Buffalo, NY
October 22 – Columbus, MS
October 23 – Pittsburgh, PA
October 24 – Old Westbury, NY
October 30 – Eunice, LA
October 31 – El Paso, TX
November 1 – Hartford, CT
November 5 – Rochester, NY
November 6 – Gallatin, TN
November 7 – Peoria, IL
November 14 – Chattanooga, TN
November 20 – Akron, OH
November 21 – Barbourville, KY
November 23 – Dayton, OH
If you would like information on bringing me to your campus or corporate event, please let me know ASAP and we’ll get a date reserved for you!