Magifest 2021

September 16 - 18 2021

Magifest 2021 WILL take place! And you can attend from anywhere in the world, in person or online.

Columbus, Ohio, USA


Magifest Goes Global

We’re delighted to announce that the Magifest 2021 will take place, but later than originally scheduled: May 6-8, 2021, in Columbus, Ohio. Headliners include Nate Staniforth, Jon Armstrong, Eric Jones, Lucy Darling, and a dozen others. And we’re EXTREMELY excited to announce our Guest of Honor: the incomparable Steve Cohen.

A LOT of effort and consideration has gone into the decision on how and whether to hold Magifest, and we’re making some key changes to the format for the safety of our guests. Let’s talk about it:

Online magic convention

Online access for everyone

When you register (and for those who already have) you can decide whether you prefer to attend in person or to enjoy the convention by streaming it from home. All shows, lectures, and events will be viewable online, and we’ll set up virtual tours of the dealer room where you’ll be able to see and purchase the latest releases online.

And importantly, if you plan on attending Magifest in person, but need to change (even last-minute), switching to an online-only registration is free and easy. However you decide to join us, the price is the same: just $200 for the entire weekend of festivities.

More info about Magifest online

Live attandance

Live attendance

We're planning on putting on a convention just as fun as every year, but we will need to make some tweaks to ensure that everyone is safe. Last year 1,035 people attended Magifest. Currently we’re going to limit in-person attendance to 300 people. Two-hundred have pre-registered, so we’ll take just 100 more registrants at this time. It is likely that Ohio regulations will ease and the infection-rate will drop, and in this case we will open registration to more people.

There is no limit to the number of online attendees, but in-person attendees will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. It’s to your benefit to register now to “lock in” your place, whether or not you’ve decided to attend in person or from your home.

Whether you choose to attend online, or in person, were confident that this will be a convention to remember!

Magic dealers room

A revised dealers room

We'll have less dealers to ensure that registrants can safely browse new magic. Plus, each registrant will have a "morning" or "afternoon" dealer slot to help reduce the number of people inside the dealer’s room at any one time.

The postive here is that you'll get to browse and purchase magic much more easily, without the dealers room being crowded. And if you're online, you'll get to see live dealer dems and even interact with the dealers!

Magic convention online

Regular reviews of these plans

Here’s the truth — nobody knows what tomorrow will bring. We’re hopeful and confident that safer times are ahead. But in the event of a surge or outbreak, we’ll smoothly and calmly transition to an online-only model, where registrants will still enjoy all the events we have planned...from the comfort of home. We view this as an unlikely scenario, but one we’re prepared to accept in the interest of your safety.

And should we receive positive news, we'll be able to open up live attendance for more guests, whilst always considering the health and safety implications and advice.

View our full health and safety plan

Register now

Magifest Online

For the first time ever, Magifest will be live streamed! Guests can either attend in person, or online — and either way, you'll be able to stream the entire event!

• Online live broadcast of all events
• Online dealers tours and purchases
• Digital hangout and session rooms
• Streaming videos of everything afterwards
• Extra content for online viewers in breaks
• Switch to live or digital attendance at any time

More info about watching online

Performers & Speakers

Steve Cohen

Steve Cohen

We're delighted to welcome Steve Cohen as our Guest of Honor at the 2021 Magifest. Steve's contributions to magic are numerous, and he continues to shatter records as he surpasses more than 20 years of performances, welcoming more than 500,000 guests to his acclaimed show, Chamber Magic. Cohen single-handedly resurrected the high-end parlor show format in New York City, and he has realized his vision of a classical-yet-modern approach to magic through these weekly performances. His appearance on television are numerous, including his own special on the History Channel, Lost Magic Decoded. We're thrilled to honor Steve with our highest commendation, and to welcome him to our stage for both a show and lecture.

Jon Armstrong

Jon Armstrong

Not only will Mr. Armstrong be appearing, but his partner in crime, the Tiny Plunger, will also be in attendance this year. Jon Armstrong made a smash-hit appearance on Fool Us, and was the focus on the acclaimed documentary Magicians: Life in the Impossible. He is a winner of the Close-up Magician of the Year title from the Academy of Magical Arts. Jon will perform his one-man show, and also debut his lecture for Magifest guests.

Carisa Hendrix

Carisa Hendrix

Performing as her alter-ego Lucy Darling, Carisa will present her full evening show, full of improv and comedy magic, for our guests. Carisa has appeared on television numerous times and is the recipient of the coveted "Rising Star" Award from the Allan Slaight Foundation.

Nate Staniforth

Nate Staniforth

Nate's book for the public, Here is Real Magic, is an honest, impassioned testimonial on the author's journey to excellence. It's a fascinating read by a thoughtful performer who cares deeply about his craft. Staniforth is an elusive figure in magic: he was the co-star of Breaking Magic and released a stunning collection of original material in Clouds and Kingdoms. But throughout his journey, he has remained mostly away from the magic community. That all changes this year at the Magifest, where Nate will perform and lecture in a special 90-minute hybrid-event. Staniforth will also present a workshop masterclass immediately following the Magifest convention.

Brent Braun

Brent Braun

A consultant for stage and television acts, Brent Braun is also a technical guru. He was last on our stage five years ago, presenting a stunning handling of a table pass. This year he returns for a full lecture of his original sleight-of-hand magic.

Alex Boyce

Alex Boyce

As magic trends come and go, we find ourselves in a moment where there are fewer and fewer true stage manipulation acts. That's why we're thrilled to present Alex Boyce's suave stage act, which features many new and classical manipulations, including dove productions. Immediately following the show Alex will present a lecture on the original material he uses at SpeakEasy Magick, a sizzling New York City venue in which he appears weekly.

Magifest 2021: Five Reasons to Join Us

1. The best magic shops: We invite the finest magic dealers from around the world, and take care that each one is offering unique, different merchandise.
2. Attend online or in person. Safety is our primary concern. You'll be able to attend online, or join us in person. It's easy to change your registration type and either way, you get full access to the recordings after the convention too.
3. Access to excellence: Our headliners don't just amaze onstage. You get to meet and hang with them, too.
4. Our youth program. If you're a young magician, we have special programming just for you.
5. Extra workshops: For an additional fee, registrants can opt into private workshops, limited in attendance, just after the convention. This is a chance to take lessons from some of the finest magicians on Earth.

Health and safety considerations

It's more important than ever to consider the safety of our guests, so here are the changes we are making in 2021:

More Space: There will be increased space between seats in the ballroom, less chairs around each “jamming” table in the lobby, and less dealers in more space for our Dealer’s Room. We recognize that seeing friends and swapping tricks is a treasured part of the Magifest, so we’ve increased the area for jam-sessions so that magicians can swap tricks while maintaining a safe distance.

Masks, Cleanings, and Sanitizer Stations: The Renaissance Hotel will provide sanitation stations and frequent cleanings to railings, chairs, doors, bathrooms, and public areas around the clock. Should the government still advise it, our staff and the performers will be wearing masks throughout the duration of the convention, except on stage, and we’ll encourage attendees to take similar precautions. We'll even have some comfortable, fashionable masks available for you to use.

Extra Accommodations for High-Risk Individuals: If you consider yourself “high risk” for the disease, our staff will work with you for seating arrangements and dealer room visits with a minimal of interactions.

Our COVID-19 safety plans
Youth scholarships
Magifest schedule
Get in touch

Magic convention Andi Gladwin and Joshua Jay

Join us online or in person

Register now


Continue your Magifest through Sunday to join us for workshops with Nate Staniforth and Jon Armstrong. Register below:

Nate Staniforth (10am - 1pm)

Nate almost never makes convention appearances, and he has graciously agreed to deliver a workshop around the subject of his acclaimed online course: Making Tricks into Magic. You'll learn how to take YOUR magic to the next level and give people the sensation of real mystery during your show. This is your chance to learn some of the magic Nate has developed, as well as getting feedback and insights on how to take YOUR magic to new heights. This is a rare chance to spend three hours with a guru of our industry.

Space for this workshop is extremely limited, and the cost is $100.

Register for Nate Staniforth workshop

Jon Armstrong (2.30pm - 5pm)

Jon Armstrong's workshop (which will be entirely different from his lecture) will focus on a transition from close-up magic to parlor magic. Jon will cover three parlor in extreme detail. Here's how the format will work: first you'll see all three routines performed live for laymen. Then we'll spend roughly 45 minutes on each routine, with Jon walking us through every aspect of the piece with props in hand. That's right, you'll RECEIVE some key props to perform these pieces, so you will be able to walk out of this workshop ready to add these routines to your show.

The routines have never been published before and will be presented in this workshop only. They include:

• A coin routine, using a gimmick you all know, that plays huge in parlor.
• A three phase routine using an Uno deck that is as funny as it is amazing
• Based on an old chalk-talk stunt, this six minute routine with just a white board and three markers gives you an “in one” piece people will remember forever.

This workshop lasts 2.5 hours and is $100.

Register for Jon Armstrong workshop

Renaissance, Columbus Downtown

50 N 3rd St, Columbus, OH 43215, USA

Be sure to ask for the Magifest rate when booking a room. It's currently $112 (plus taxes) per night.

How to book a room

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