Earlier this spring we were contacted by producers about appearing on the show Penn & Teller: Fool Us on the CW Network. They had seen us on Wizard Wars and we were recommended by some of the show’s consultants. They specifically were hoping that we’d perform an illusion on the show, since so many of the performances featured are card tricks. We were hesitant at first because we definitely didn’t expect an illusion to fool P&T and the majority of our illusions were onboard the Disney Wonder where our show is headlining all spring and summer in the Walt Disney Theatre. However, they reminded us that Fool Us is more of a showcase of great magic and they agreed to fly us out in between our shows on the Disney Wonder, so we saw it as an opportunity to perform our magic for a national audience in a first class production. Our goal was to have fun and not take ourselves to seriously, and we agreed to be a part of the show! Flights were booked and we were able to use one of our extra illusions that we had kept at home in Las Vegas, our Ring Escape. We chose this illusion because it’s pretty rare and hasn’t been seen on TV in the US, and it could showcase our style of allowing the audience to get up close and involved in the magic.
In late March, just before we were to begin our spring contract in the Caribbean, the production crew came to our house to film our introduction package, which lets the audience get to know us a bit. We filmed all day and only a few scenes made the cut, but we were happy with the way it turned out because it was lighthearted and fun. I got a kick out of the scene we were filming in the front yard, where I was strapping Kyle into a straightjacket. I’m sure our neighbors must think we’re crazy!
Filming of the actual performance for P&T was done onstage at the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. That was a hectic week for us to say the least! We performed shows on the Disney Wonder that Sunday and Monday, then Tuesday we flew to Las Vegas from Cozumel, Mexico. Our flight was supposed to land that evening around 7 PM but the winds were so strong that we tried to land unsuccessfully and the plane was back up in the air and now headed to Phoenix, AZ since landing in Las Vegas wasn’t an option. Kyle and I were panicking and already considering driving up to Las Vegas from Phoenix if we needed to, but after about an hour, the plane was headed back to Vegas and we landed successfully around 1 AM. We were exhausted and thankful that we didn’t have the early morning filming that next day!
The next afternoon we drove up to the Rio and waited in a holding area for several hours before we performed, and it was actually a nice time to hang out with the other magicians who were also filming that day. On the day of our filming we were there with a good friend of ours Rick Lax (and creator of Wizard Wars), as well as Chad Juros, John Carney and Shin Lim. It was all very secretive though, and when one person would leave to perform there was no talking to them when they returned, so as not to reveal whether they’d fooled them or not. Check out the photo below to see the group shot of all of the magicians performing that day as well as show’s consultants Johnny Thompson and Michael Close.
We had one quick rehearsal onstage then it was back to the waiting area for several hours, but we grabbed a few photos onstage first!
Once it was our turn we were excited to perform, and when we walked out onstage Teller instantly recognized us and smiled and waved. The host of the show Jonathan Ross was great to work with and a lot of fun. He had me laughing the whole time he was dancing behind me, and he’s not in on any secrets, so he showed a genuine reaction for our performance.
Once we got feedback from P&T, then both came onstage to show us a little drawing that Teller had made. It wasn’t exactly right but it was close enough, and before we knew it, the drawing went up in flames! Teller kissed me on the cheek and both he and Penn were very complimentary of our act. After the cameras stopped rolling, to my surprise Kyle pulls out his camera to snap a selfie and Teller runs over to photobomb us! Such a fun memory of a great experience.
The next day were were back on a plane flying into Miami to catch the ship for shows again that night on the Disney Wonder. It was a whirlwind week! This experience was actually very different for us than our experience filming Wizard Wars. In Fool Us, there was no pressure to create new magic under limited situations and time constraints, so it was much less stressful for us. We didn’t fool P&T on Fool Us, but ironically we actually did fool them on Wizard Wars! In our final round we created an effect with a judge’s borrowed ring that reappeared inside a solid, real egg behind the judges. When Penn announced that we were the winners he said that it “came down to deception and they were all scratching their heads over that damn egg!” After the show Teller asked Kyle if he could have a guess about the method, and he guessed wrong. So we didn’t win an “FU” trophy on Fool Us, but I’ll take the $10,000 we won on Wizard Wars any day
Overall, we were very happy to be showcased on national TV for a second time this year and have our magic viewed by millions of people, and the entire Fool Us team treated us well and was very professional. The show has been breaking ratings records and we are honored to have been a part of it. To see video from our performance click HERE and keep watching the show as it continues into October featuring new magicians each week, many of whom are good friends of ours! – Thanks for reading, Mistie
In Southern Nevada there’s a great organization called Win-Win Entertainment that pairs entertainers with local charities for performance opportunities, and this past July we were happy to share some magic with the children at the UMC Children’s Hospital of Southern Nevada! Their smiles were heartwarming and we are looking forward to working with Win-Win and more local charities in the future!
Check out the video below to see highlights from our performance at UMC:
Kyle & Mistie UMC Highlight Video
From May through September we are flying back and for between performing on the Disney Wonder and flying back home to Las Vegas, where we often have shows as well. Needless to say, it’s going to be a busy summer! On Disney Cruise Line the season has been awesome already. We really had a great time on the 5 day trip from San Diego to Vancouver, Canada, spending the day in San Francisco and catching up with a local magician friend of ours Alex Ramon. He was so kind to show us the sights of his beautiful city all day, and we even stopped at the local magic shop as well. If you’re in the Bay Area be sure to check out one of his shows!
Shows on the Disney Wonder have been going great, and we are loving Alaska. It’s our 3rd summer there, but we hadn’t been back since 2007 so it all seems new again. Check out the photo collage below to see some of our adventures so far:
Always a blast performing on Disney Cruise Line. On the Disney Wonder they have an exclusive Pixar Party where we caught up with Mike & Sulley from Monsters Inc!
Back in Las Vegas we regularly perform in variety shows all over town and on June 14th we appeared in “Toast of the Town” at Sam’s Town Hotel & Casino. We’ll actually keep our full illusion show onboard the Disney Wonder all season, but we also have a second set of equipment at home for other performances. Later on this year we’ll be headlining there with our full illusion show, details to come!
Later on this week we’ll be flying back to Juneau, Alaska to rejoin the Disney Wonder for more shows in the Walt Disney Theatre and in Wavebands nightclub! Thanks for reading – Mistie
This past spring has been exceptionally busy for us! In March we were guests on Las Vegas’ only late night talk show, The Will Edwards Show where we talked about winning Wizard Wars and performed a few pieces of magic as well. To see video from the show, click on the link here: Will Edwards Show
We also were featured in the April/May issue of Vanish Magazine in an article called “Married in Magic”, where I tell the story of how we met, talk aboutwhat it’s like performing together for 12+ years and how we balance our work and relationship. Download the article for free at www.VanishMagazine.com
In Maywe were guests on a Las Veags entertainment industry radio show called “The Jacobs Ladder Show” with Stephen & Carolyn Jacobs, where we Kyle and I each told the our stories of our journeys in the entertainment industry. You can listen to our interviews at http://www.vegasallnetradio.com/jacobs-ladder-show.html
As of April, we’ve also have our full illusion show installed in the Walt Disney Theatre onboard the Disney Wonder. We had a great time in the Caribbean the past couple months and we’ll be touring Alaska & Canada this summer, and then onto Hawaii this September!
In April, between our shows on the Disney Wonder, we actually flew back to Las Vegas to film a new television show with Penn & Teller that will air this summer on network TV. Stay tuned for details and follow us on social media for announcements! – Mistie
For this month’s blog I thought we’d give everyone a behind the scenes look at our experience creating and performing magic on SyFy’s Wizard Wars! For starters, the pressure of the show was very real, and the stress of creating magic under such limited parameters and time constraints was one of the most difficult experiences of our career. We only had a matter of days to create, build and test our routines before performing them for judges and for millions of viewers. At times it felt like complete insanity, and needless to say it was a lot of work with very little sleep!
Each team creates routines for both the challenger and the wizard round, with the assumption you will go forward and compete against the in-house wizards. We actually went through several different ideas for the routines that we wanted to perform, but one thing that was important to us no matter what our routine, was that it flowed and that each routine had a beginning, middle and end, and most importantly, that we try to combine all of the items in creating the magic. Kyle is quite the carpenter, and having built many of our illusions in the past, he was able to build props for this round while I focused on writing the script and streamlining the routine.
2nd call to the medic
Making the toaster work the way we needed it to was a never-ending project and
In the photo below we’re shooting our “side stage” magic performances featured in our intros on the show. We actually filmed two different effects including the rose production an our ring escape illusion, which didn’t air. You can see us below getting a make up touch-up between takes.
After we found out that we won the first round and were advancing on to the final round, we only had 10 minutes before we were to be onstage performing our 2nd routine, and in that time we had to change microphones, set up the props and change costumes. They have a curtain across the stage that is lowered once filming is ready to begin, and behind that curtain just minutes before the photo below was taken, it was total chaos for us. I was half-naked onstage trying frantically to get into my costume and the production assistant is telling me we have to film NOW! At that same moment, Kyle realized that someone had though they were helping us by filling our egg carton with eggs. Needless to say this was not helpful and Kyle was throwing raw eggs offstage and they were smashing all over the place! It was crazy, but once we hit the stage our head was back in the game and we nailed it!
What a month February was for us! We spent the beginning of the month in Japan & Thailand and the trip was amazing. We’d racked up a lot of frequent flier miles traveling for the show all of these years, and we decided to use some miles for a special trip since I’d always wanted to visit Southeast Asia. We had one day of exploring in Tokyo & Narita, Japan and then 2 weeks in Thailand with stops in Bangkok, Chiang Mai & Phuket. The entire trip was incredible and I will be posting photos and video from our adventures on my Youtube travel channel and my travel blog. The photo collage below shows some of the highlights of our trip!
While we were over in Asia, our episode of “Wizard Wars” aired on the SyFy channel back in the US! What amazing experience that was, creating magic with random objects and competing against other magicians on national television. In the end we won both rounds, fooled the judges – including Penn & Teller – with an original magic effect and took home the $10,000 grand prize! We got lots of great press for our win on Wizard Wars, including articles in VegasNews.com and on VegasChatter.com. If you missed our episode – “Silly Rabbits” – you can view it on demand on SyFy.com/wizardwars or download it on iTunes. Stay tuned for another blog talking about what it was like creating and performing magic under such pressure, with a look behind the scenes!
Onstage performing on SyFy’s “Wizard Wars”
With the “Wizard Wars” judges after our big win!
Also this month we performed at Wonderground, a show featuring magic and variety performances each month in Las Vegas. It’s always a fun scene, especially with so many magic industry friends in the audience. We even got a chance to try out a brand new magic effect with an egg, inspired by our winning routine on Wizard Wars.
With fellow Las Vegas magicians Jeff McBride & Jan Roven
If this month wasn’t busy enough for us, we also did an interview and performance on Channel 13 KTNV “The Morning Blend” here in Las Vegas. To view the full segment and see us performing some brand new magic, click on the link below the photo.
Kyle Knight & Mistie on “The Morning Blend” in Las Vegas
Around Valentine’s Day we were also featured on CNN.com in an article called “SoulMate Stories” and the story of how we met was featured in the February issue of MAGIC Magazine, the largest publication for the magic industry. For now we’re enjoying being home in Las Vegas for a few more weeks before we head back to Disney Cruise Line to headline on Disney Wonder in the Caribbean & Bahamas this spring! Thanks for reading – Mistie