David Copperfield’s Most Incredible Magic Tricks

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A magician reveals a card from their sleeve.
BetMGM Apr 18, 2023, 7:13 AM

While you may have a magical time playing casino table games or live dealer games, there’s something to be said about real feats of magic and illusion, especially when they’re performed by one of the greatest magicians of all time, David Copperfield. Copperfield has always had a love for magic and has been practicing it since the age of 10. By the age of 19 he was headlining his own show at the Pagoda Hotel in Hawaii which, needless to say, was quite literally just the beginning of it. 

After more than 50 years of magic there are undoubtedly some of Copperfield’s tricks and illusions which stand out above the rest. Join us as we take a look at four of the most astounding acts by master magician and illusionist David Copperfield!

1. The Flying Illusion

For centuries, human beings have dreamed of flying and even though we’ve taken to the skies in many machines including airplanes, helicopters and even modern-day jetpacks, people still wish they could simply walk outside and take off. It’s probably this universal desire that made Copperfield’s 1992 flying illusion so compelling. 

In the first of his four incredible magic tricks on our list, he brings many of his audience members to tears as he makes this dream a reality (at least on stage). Set against a blue backdrop of clouds, Copperfield played a man who dreams of flying and then takes to the air above the stage accompanied by enchanting music. He floated between rings and even entered a sealed perspex box before taking to the sky again!

2. The Disappearing Learjet

While many magicians have demonstrated the ability to make small objects disappear (the great Houdini had even made an elephant disappear,) David Copperfield is the illusionist who again demonstrated the mastery of his craft by making a Learjet vanish from view. 

The jet was parked on a runway, surrounded by a ring of blindfolded people. It was also enclosed on three sides by scaffolding with material that allowed silhouettes to be seen. Copperfield strapped the plane down to nearby concrete blocks and, bathed in light, the crew pushed the fourth and final wall up as Copperfield moved towards a switch. He pushed the switch and lights turned on around the jet, which showed the silhouette of the plane and the people surrounding it. 

He locked the final wall in place, returned to the switch, asked people to raise their hands (which they did,) and flipped the switch off. The silhouette disappeared and with a mighty shout of “now!” the walls collapsed and revealed that the plane, ostensibly surrounded by four walls and a ring of people, located outdoors on a concrete runway, was gone!

3. Making the Statue of Liberty Disappear

Clearly not satisfied by making a private jet disappear and rather than simply recreating his previous act with a bigger plane, Copperfield decided to go much, much bigger and make the Statue of Liberty disappear. 

A live audience was seated on one end of Liberty Island, a couple of hundred feet away from the statue. Two towers made of scaffolding were positioned on either side of the area where the audience sat, with a view of the statue in between. A helicopter flew above to capture all the action from the skies while radar was also used to locate the statue.  

A curtain rose between the scaffolding and obscured the statue from the audience’s view. Copperfield placed a finger to his temple and the statue disappeared from the radar screen. The curtain was then lowered to reveal that the statue had indeed disappeared! Footage from the helicopter, which had previously shown the statue clearly visible, was shown after the curtain fell, and the statue that had once been clearly visible had indeed disappeared.

The curtain was raised once more and after one final fall, the statue was back where it belonged. This is undoubtedly one of the best illusions executed by any magician simply because of the sheer scale of the object that was made to disappear. 

4. Escaping Chains Before a Raft Plummets Down Niagara Falls

In his most dangerous act ever, Copperfield demonstrated his impressive skill by being locked in chains on a board on a raft, his movement further restricted by a steel box. Once freed from the shackles, Copperfield needed to detach a jet ski which was secured to the raft and ride through the rapids before the raft fell hundreds of feet over Niagara Falls. Of course, to increase the stakes, he was surrounded by flames. All this happened in less than 60 seconds and was recorded using one continuous shot.

His assistants chained him up, secured him in the steel box, lit the fire and released the raft onto the hazardous waters. While we watched Copperfield retract his legs into the steel case mere feet from the edge of the Falls, we didn’t see him leaving the burning raft – it and the jet ski plummeted over the edge of the falls. However, just moments later, a helicopter rose from the edge of the falls, revealing Copperfield holding onto a rope attached to the bottom of the chopper.

Enjoy the Master Live at the MGM Grand

To witness these incredible magic tricks and illusions in person, be sure to book a ticket for one of David Copperfield’s spectacular shows at the MGM Grand! Tickets are also available for the premium Meet & Greet Experience, which doesn’t only offer the best seating, but also a chance to meet David Copperfield, get a photo with him, get a limited edition signed autograph and witness an illusion that’s only ever been seen by a select few!

And when you’re done, kick back and relax at any of the great MGM hotels and resorts or try your luck at one of our many exciting casinos with their wide selection of casino games. You may also be able to catch some of the other incredible artists that perform in Las Vegas and who have graced the MGM Grand with their presence. 

Have a Great Time at BetMGM

If you can’t pack your bags and head over to the Strip just yet, you’ll be happy to know that you can enjoy many great online casino games at BetMGM. Whether it’s online poker, online slots or live casino games, you can find a huge selection of exciting gambling titles to play.

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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.

Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.