Interview: The Illusionists’ Kevin James AKA “The Inventor”

Kevin James “The Inventor” is one of the seven Illusionists performing at The 5th Avenue Theatre through Sunday. He has performed across the globe and even survived America’s Got Talent. Hear all of the triumphs and tribulations of being magical in this mostly mundane world.

Don’t forget that Sunday is Father’s Day. Tickets to this amazing show would be a great Father’s Day gift and he wouldn’t even have to know that you totally forgot… Get your tickets here.

Direct from Broadway, the world’s best selling magic show is coming to The 5th Avenue Theatre! This mind blowing spectacular showcases the jaw dropping talents of seven of the most incredible Illusionists on earth. The Illusionists has shattered box office records across the globe and dazzles audiences of all ages with a powerful mix of the most outrageous and astonishing acts ever to be seen on stage. This non-stop show is packed with thrilling and sophisticated magic of unprecedented proportions.

Earle Dutton: Could you tell me a bit about your show?
Kevin James: Well, it has been a wild ride. We started three years ago at Sydney Opera House. The producer of have everything there in one show. We were from all parts of the world with different skills and vibes. We had no idea that it would be such a success. It immediately broke all of the box office records at the Opera House. We have been touring around the world ever since. This past November we began touring the United States. We started in NYC on Broadway and became a smash hit with rave reviews.

Kevin James on The Illusionists on

The magicians of The Illusionists – Witness the Impossible. (Photo Credit: Joan Marcus)

ED: What has been your favorite location on the tour so far?
KJ: Australia is really kind of a cool place. People are very nice there. One of my least favorite places was Dubai. It was totally a cultural thing.

ED: What was it like to perform on America’s Got Talent?
KJ: It is a weird experience. That is for sure. There is nothing like it. I have done lots of international TV. They always treat you with respect and pay you. America’s Got Talent just goes out of its way to create drama and tension where it doesn’t need to be. It was a bit stressful. I was on season two when they were still trying to figure out what they were doing. They would do things like schedule you for a six minute piece then tell you later you only have three minutes. So, you would spend all your time editing your performance and working with your music before they changed it all again. Then, the day before the show they would tell you that you have a minute to perform instead of three. They just keep cranking up with stress with stuff like that. You don’t really do on those shows to win. You go on them to get the most amount of airtime and be seen by the widest crowds possible. Hopefully, you get noticed. Everyone gets tossed under the bus at some point. There is really no other place in the US where you can get twenty million people to see your act at once. I still get work from that show though.

ED: I also heard you were related to P.T. Barnum. What was it like to learn that?
KJ: My grandmother would always tell me that we were related to P.T. Barnum. This was before I was even interested in magic or showbiz. Then before she passed away I asked her exactly how we were related to him. She said this relative of ours married his second daughter. So, we aren’t really bloodline but we are on the tree. I will still take that though (laughter). We have a lot of similarities in our lives and our shows. I think he would have approved of my act if he had seen it.

ED: Did those stories about P.T. Barnum influence you or shape your career choices?
KJ: No, not really. The desire to be a magician was instantaneous and overwhelming. I saw a magician at my elementary school and right then I decided that is what I want to do. Nothing else mattered after that show. He has a vanishing clock trick that completely amazed me. I don’t even remember his name.

ED: What has been your proudest moment as a magician?
KJ: Wow, getting to perform at the White House for Obama and some of his closest friends. It was his first year in office. There was just a ton of excitement there.

ED: Do you have a message for younger people that are interested in magic or becoming a magician?
KJ: Yes, definitely. Read books. Kids nowadays are stuck on watching DVDs and Youtube. There is so much more amazing information you can get from books. Get out there and learn to read.

ED: What would you like people to take away from the show?
KJ: It is a beautiful show. It is very well produced. We have seven top magicians from around the world. They are all champions of what they do. Instead of seeing one person for two hours, you get a whole smorgasbord of all sorts of people and acts. What I have noticed is that magic is one of these things that transcends barriers. It doesn’t matter how old you are, what language you speak or what culture you are from. It just really breaks all of those barriers. It is not really a show for kids but they could certainly enjoy it. The whole family will really enjoy the show and spend time together. We promise you will see things you have never seen before and that you will always remember. Hopefully it will make you feel like a kid for a few hours.

Remember this show only runs through Sunday. Get your tickets here. Keep up with Kevin James!

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Earle Dutton

Earle Dutton

Earle Dutton is the Chief Blogger and Editor of He founded in 2013 to provide information about LGBTQ friendly events of interest, and to support LGBTQ entertainers and supportive artists who visit our community. Earle is a successful businessman in the Pacific Northwest with a long history of support for and involvement in, the Northwest LGBTQ community. His personal interests include: music, theater, pets, culinary arts and technology.

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