Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

New Venue To Serve as Downtown's Home for Magic

The intimate venue will offer close-up, "parlour" magic shows for small audiences beginning in February.

Photo by Sean Collier

Beginning in February, a new venue will offer Downtown visitors an enchanting twist on a night out.

Liberty Magic will be an “intimate, speakeasy magic arts space,” according to a release from the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. The space, located at 811 Liberty Ave., is set to open Feb. 6, first featuring a six-week engagement from magician Eric Jones, an “America’s Got Talent” veteran who has showcased at Los Angeles’ famous Magic Castle.

The details were revealed in an event featuring close-up performances from Jones and Liberty Magic’s artistic advisors, magicians Lee Terbosic and Dennis Watkins.

“We already have a growing audience [for magic],” says Kevin McMahon, Cultural Trust President & CEO. “At Highmark First Night, the lines for [magic] shows have continued to grow; it used to be in a small storefront, then we’ve taken it to larger and even larger venues.

“We think the city is hungry for this kind of entertainment.”

The intimate space — it was the original home of Arcade Comedy Theater, before the comedy hotspot moved down the street in 2017 — will seat only 68 patrons per performance, allowing for magicians to perform in the “parlour magic” tradition, focused on close-up sleight of hand and card tricks.

“There are not many traditional, close-up style venues in the world,” Jones says. “For me as an artist, it allows me to see to the back of the room, so that I can interact and engage with everyone in the audience.”

The theater will open for six shows per week, from Wednesdays through Sundays (with two shows on Saturday evenings). General admission tickets will be priced at $40; a limited number of “Skeleton Key VIP Experience” tickets will be available, offering artist meet-and-greets, the opportunity to participate in the show as a volunteer and more “close-up mysteries.”

Additionally, Liberty Magic will be a BYOB venue with a $5-per-guest corkage fee. The Cultural Trust recommends that audience members be over the age of 18, and no one under the age of 12 will be admitted.

Terbosic will take up the second residency at Liberty Magic, debuting a new show on March 20. Only those first two runs are confirmed for now. “More surprises will be announced down the road,” says Scott Shiller, Liberty Magic’s producer and the Trust’s VP of Artistic Planning.

For Terbosic, it’s the culmination of more than a decade performing magic around the world while maintaining Pittsburgh as a home base. His show at the Hotel Monaco, “52 Up Close,” served as an unofficial predecessor to the establishment of Liberty Magic — as did his death-defying “Houdini100” event in 2016, where he escaped from a straightjacket hung above Liberty Avenue, recreating a feat Harry Houdini completed a century earlier (to the minute).

“My dream when I was 20 years old was to someday bring a theater dedicated to magic to the city of Pittsburgh,” Terbosic says.

“I never really thought this would actually come true.”

Tickets for Liberty Magic are on sale now.


Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit Module Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Latest

Sweet Designs: Our Cookie Table Contest Winner and Runners-Up

These Pittsburgh couples certainly know how to bring the cookie table tradition to life.

Skip the Gift at this Wedding at the Carnegie Museum of Art

In a romantic twist on its Third Thursday events, the Carnegie Museum of Art is throwing a wedding this week, and everyone in Pittsburgh is invited.

See What Piece of Pittsburgh is Going to the Moon

Of all of the items proposed, this one earned the most votes.

The 5 Best Seats at PPG Paints Arena

From ultra-premium experiences to bargains with great views, here are five perfect places to watch the Pens.

Lawrenceville Distilling Co. Introduces Its Absinthe

Already known for its Parking Chair vodka, the Lawrenceville distillery introduces absinthe named for a haunted house.

What Brought Walt Disney to Pittsburgh

A futuristic attraction at the Allegheny County Fair drew a curious Walt Disney to Pittsburgh — and had a lasting impact on modern transportation.

Writer Damon Young on "What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker"

The co-founder of Very Smart Brothas chats about his new memoir — and the state of Pittsburgh.

Makeup Makers: More Beauty Brands are Coming out of Pittsburgh

A pair of local businesses are breaking into the health and beauty business with innovation and tenacity.

How Well Do You Know Pittsburgh?

What do you know about the fountain of youth in North Park? The relics at St. Anthony’s? The history of Pittsburghese? We bring you all this and more in our guide to Pittsburgh lore full of insider info and fun facts. Plus, take our quizzes to test your expertise of all things Pittsburgh.

Are You a Yinzer or a Pretender?

Whether you’ve lived in Pittsburgh your whole life or are a newcomer, there may be things you don’t know about our city — but you should –– so we have these quizzes to test your knowledge of the city’s pop culture, sports, food history and locales.

Restaurant Review: Northeastern Kitchen

The Squirrel Hill restaurant introduces Pittsburgh to Dongbei cuisine.

PM on KD: The Spring Weddings Issue

PM Content Coordinator Jesseca Muslin appears on KDKA's Pittsburgh Today Live to discuss our spring weddings issue.

Pens Need More from Malkin More Than Anything

Given what he’s capable of, and what we’ve too often seen instead, Evgeni Malkin has been the Pens’ most under-achieving player.

Pittsburgh's 12 Essential Restaurants

Step-by-step, these establishments helped build our dining scene. Even better, they still have something to offer today.

Finding a Unique Performer Close to Home

Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company searched across the country for a key role in “Savior Samuel.” Then they found Aaliyah Sanders — in Edgewood.