A magician never reveals his secrets, but two Long Island magicians are happy to talk about how they got their start. Both will be performing at upcoming magic shows that should be entertaining for the entire family.
ALEXO (AND HIS ANIMAL ASSISTANTS)
Alexo, also known as Alex Fleming, started learning magic tricks at the age of 13. A lover of animals who had a fascination with big cats, Fleming got bitten by the magic bug after watching a Siegfried and Roy TV special, later going to the Longwood Public Library and devouring every magic book he could get his hands on.
Magic helped Fleming get over shyness and awkwardness as a teenager, and he now entertains at parties around the Island.
“You develop this kind of weird mystique,” says Fleming, who now lives in Coram. “You’re showing them something that is going to amaze them.”
Fleming doesn’t work full-time as a magician, but he is reluctant to spoil his persona by revealing his day job, except to say that it is related to animals. Live creatures are also part of his family-friendly act, though not just as props. His Chinese dwarf hamster, named Pippy, helps with one card trick, while a dove named Gabriel and a bull python named Alice (after rocker Alice Cooper) also have roles.
Fleming’s show on Jan. 6 at the Bayway Arts Center in East Islip is part of a new side of his career doing theater shows. For more information, visit magicofalexo.com.
JOE CORDI IS IN IT FOR LAUGHS
Joe Cordi of Farmingdale didn’t have the best start as a magician. Ten years ago, Cordi’s wife, Victoria, bought him a few tricks at a magic shop to perform at the his now-17-year-old daughter’s Communion celebration. He didn’t look at the tricks until the day of the party, and during the performance, every trick failed.
“But the kids laughed so hard,” Cordi recalls, and that started his career as a party magician, growing a following on Facebook.
“After a while, I figured the tricks would have to work,” says Cordi, who during the day works as a field technician for Verizon.
Still, Cordi says, he likes to think of his act as more of a comedy show. He dresses audience volunteers in costumes, such as a pirate or an artist, with a goal of making the kids — and their parents — laugh.
Cordi’s signature trick is getting the birthday boy or girl to serve as magician and make a birthday card with their favorite toy appear. He has an assistant, a raccoon puppet named Rocky, and says the “parents enjoy it more than the kids.”
Cordi will be performing Jan. 14 at the Nassau County Museum of Art as part of its “Fool the Eye” exhibition event that also includes a scavenger hunt and an activity where participants create works of art that merge art and science.
WHAT The Magic of Alexo
WHEN | WHERE 2 p.m. Jan. 6, at the Bayway Arts Center, 265 E. Main St., East Islip
INFO $11; 631-581-2700, tickets available at broadhollow.org
WHAT Magical Days at a Gold Coast Mansion with magician Joe Cordi
WHEN | WHERE 1 to 4 p.m. Jan. 14 at the Nassau County Museum of Art, 1 Museum Dr., Roslyn Harbor
INFO Museum admission plus $10 per family materials fee; 516-484-9338, nassaumuseum.org