RIVERSIDE, Calif. – For the entertainment industry, the effects of COVID-19 have been devastating, but one decades-old Southern California magic act is hoping to reappear as soon as possible.
What You Need To Know
- Theme parks and venues closed in mid-March
- Anthony The Magic left without a place to perform
- Memorial Day was Anthony's 25th anniversary at Castle Park in Riverside
- Performs regularly at Tom's Farms and Welk Resort Theatre
A good magician never reveals his secrets. For Southern California entertainer Anthony The Magic, business has all but disappeared thanks to the coronavirus.
“It’s been the longest time I’ve never done magic for,” says Hernandez.
Hernandez has had a standing show at Castle Park in Riverside for the last 25 years and for the last 16, he and his partner and girlfriend Dawn Morgan have been creating illusions for all ages. From great escapes to being cut in half, the pair has been doing 650 shows a year.
In mid-March, the ride came to a screeching halt as the coronavirus banned one thing every good magician needs, a crowd.
“We thought two to four weeks to flatten the curve. We never two-and-a-half months later we would still be here not performing magic shows,” Morgan says.
Hernandez’s love for magic started when he was 12. A David Copperfield act he saw on TV turned into an unwavering commitment to put on his own show.
But in 2004, Morgan took his act to the next level. Seeing his ability to connect with audiences, she used her sports and entertainment background to get their show into venues like Tom’s Farms, the Newport Beach Marriott, and Welk Resort Theatre.
Memorial Day Weekend would have marked that 25th anniversary with Castle Park, but with all their shows on hold for now, Anthony The Magic is Anthony Hernandez and he and Morgan are working overnights at Amazon, picking up extra shifts where they can.
“I’m thinking I have an end soon. Soon I’m going to be back at Lawrence Welk’s, soon I’m going to be back at Tom’s Farms. But I have a whole new group of friends now that they don’t have that end,” Morgan said.
There is no trick that will help him reappear on stage, but Hernandez says this “new normal” will inspire their magic once they get it back.
“We hope you go away hopeful. Especially right now, these times. We want everyone to go away from our show being hopeful for the future,” Hernandez said.