The Magical World of David Jans
Cornwall Ontario - When he was only 10 years old, little David Jans woke up Christmas morning to find out that Santa had come through with the magic kit he had asked for. He proceeded to work hard at learning each trick in the kit and would often sit his family down in the living room and try out his new skills. He enjoyed fooling people that were older than him.
“I didn't realize it back then, but the real reason I liked it so much was because I was able to show them something incredible that you don't see every day,” he says.
Fast forward 17 years and David Jans is building a reputation as a skillful and entertaining magician. He is in demand for private events and has performed on TV and at public events. He has also produced a couple of home-made videos on YouTube that showcase his illusory powers.
The Cornwall native comes by his performance skills naturally. His father is a renowned jester who never passes up a chance to play a trick on an unsuspecting friend on Aprils Fools Day.
“When I was very young I remember my Dad would do little gags and tricks at a big party that we would hold every year at our house,” recalls David. “He would take a little handkerchief and clearly cut it in half with some scissors and then fold the pieces together. When he unfolded it the handkerchief was back in one piece.”
Although David would eventually put away his magic kit as a kid, the spark of magic was still within. When he was 20 years old and attending college he saw Criss Angel demonstrate how to hold a toothpick and make it vanish. David learned the trick that night and performed it for his friends the next day. He was a hit on campus and the spark was rekindled. He vowed to learn a new trick every day.
David began to explore the techniques of some of the world’s most accomplished magicians, including David Blaine, Cyril Takayama, Criss Angel and David Copperfield.
“I really like their styles of doing grand illusions and demonstrations,” David says. “It inspires me and helps me come up with new and original pieces of magic.”
His first paying gig was for some friends of his parents. He walked around the party all night entertaining the guests. Since then there have been dozens of performances to crowds both big and small. The typical reaction is one of amazement and wonder. Then there are always a small handful of people who resent not knowing how the tricks or effects are done. However what all can agree on is that they have experienced something new.
“I love the interaction with people. You get to meet all kinds of people with all kinds of different personalities,” says David. “I love that I can give people an experience that they can talk about later on with their friends –something that they will never forget.”
David’s favourite demonstration is a trick he calls the “Right Place At The Right Time”. He asks a spectator to think of their favourite time on the clock (1-12). Then, using 12 cards the spectator has randomly chosen from a deck of cards, David builds a clock face by placing them face down in a circle formation. He then proceeds to determine which number on the clock they were thinking of and furthermore predicts which card is at that specific time on the clock.
Is it magic? Perhaps, David won’t say for sure. What is a given is that the trick will stump even the most eagle-eyed sceptic.
David sometimes will work weeks and even months learning a new trick. Once he has perfected the physical aspects of the demonstration, he never stops trying to refine the presentation.
“I’ve learned that the buildup to the trick and the interaction with the audience is the most important part of my performance,” says David. “You need to make that connection with each person, pique their interest and have them buy into what is about to happen.”
David and his magic act is in growing demand. He has performed 3 times as many shows in 2012 as he had the previous year. Most recently, he appeared on The Morning Rush with local radio personalities Jimmy Kalaitzis and Sue Stewart (watch video here).
He is currently working on a show for the New Year and has several ideas about a few large illusions he would like to try. The hard working young man is finishing up his studies in civil engineering in Montreal and when not performing, helps out his parents when back in Cornwall.
“There is nothing magical about success,” he says with a smile. “It usually comes in direct proportion to the amount of work you put in.”