Ta Da! at the Edmonton Fringe Festival

Ta Da! at the Edmonton Fringe Festival. Photo credit: Lucas Boutilier

Ta Da! at the Edmonton Fringe Festival. Photo credit: Lucas Boutilier

Ta Da! by Sheldon Casavant
August 12 – 21 at the Strathcona Library
More information: casavantproductions.com/morton-magician-live-show

An interview with Sheldon Casavant.

Describe your show in five words.

Mask, magic, belief, imagination, heart

Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description?

Throughout TA DA!, the audience follows Morton on his journey to perform in front of an audience for the first time. Morton is a young boy who has always dreamed of being a magician. With his school talent show fast approaching, butterflies fill his stomach and stage fright fills his thoughts.

Morton faces his self doubt head on, and after a few small successes, his courage begins to grow. With his top hat and red satin cape, Morton slowly transforms into a confident performer. Throughout the performance, he discovers the courage and confidence he needs to put on his first magic show to overcome his fears to put on a truly magnificent magic show.

The main character of Ta Da! is based on a children’s book you wrote. Why did you want to bring Morton to life in this way?

Since the release of the children’s book, I felt that people of all ages could relate to the character, a person who lacks the confidence to really be who he wants to be. Bringing Morton to life felt like a natural progression for children and adults alike to interact in-person with him. This has allowed an opportunity for the magic in the book to expand and truly engage an audience. Over the past year, Morton has been a roving character at festivals and special events across Canada. The character of Morton makes his stage debut in TA DA!

Ta Da! uses mask to help tell the story – what do the masks add to the show for the audience?

Using mask has allowed us to fulfill the artistic vision of the children’s book. The mask is a 3 dimensional representation of the illustrated character featured in the book. The mask provides a truly unique experience for the audience since their imaginations are the last step to bringing Morton to life. It’s amazing how the mask allows the physicality of the actor to create the emotion… the fact that the actor is wearing a mask soon disappears from the audiences’ minds.

In your press release, you mention magic is a defining element of Morton’s personality. How is magic integrated into Ta Da!?

Magic is incorporated in TA DA! at every turn. From Morton practicing magic alone in his bedroom, to performing in his school talent show, magic is all Morton that Morton thinks and dreams about. Morton aspires to be a real magician, so he views life with a magic lens. Magic is all about belief. However, belief in himself is the one thing standing in the way of Morton sharing his magic with the world

Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?

TA DA! has been created with a young audience in mind, however the magic, character and story will be enjoyed by all ages.

The 35th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 11 – 21. Tickets go on sale August 3 at noon and will be available at tickets.fringetheatre.ca.

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