At around noon at the Fringe, getting to Cameron Young’s Secret Show feels like an early morning; perhaps the non-Fringe equivalent would be having to get to the office at 6AM. He has less time slot competition from his fellow magicians than with sleep. However, for the early birds it’s a worthwhile way to pass the time.
At the beginning of the show Young introduces the audience to his numbered binder of tricks—instantly appealing for its tidy organization, the audience knows they aren’t in for the kind of chaotic magic show that results in a mess of loose cards and sundry props strewn across the stage. Young allows the audience to choose the number of the trick that he’ll perform. This is a great gimmick, giving everyone a chance to feel agency in creating the direction of the show, and giving each day of the show a distinct flavor. As Young states, anyone who doesn’t like the show is welcome to buy a ticket for the next day and see him perform something a bit different.
Despite giving himself more to master, each trick that Young performed at the reviewed show looks well practiced. A highlight is a card routine that failed to get fourteen year old Young a date with his math class crush. The audience participant enthusiastically returned his flirtatious dance moves, and looked thrilled with the reveal that happened right between her teeth.
As an early show, the majority of Young’s audience were older folks and families with young children. He is great with both age groups, inviting older folks to get in touch with their silly sides and making sure excitable youngsters don’t interrupt him too much while avoiding shutting them down. At least two children in his front row left badgering their parents for magic lessons; we look forward to reviewing them in about a decade and hearing their re-telling of how Young inspired them.
The Secret Show is definitely worth a visit, perhaps especially for families but enjoyable for all ages. This is only Young’s first show of the day, like a few performers he runs two shows a day. However, what really makes him stand out (and is perhaps the most baller move of this year’s Fringe) is that he has this Secret Show through the paid Fringe, and his second show with the PBH free fringe. If it’s anything like this one his second show is surely worth checking out as well.
More information on Cameron Young and his performance dates can be found here.