From street to stage

Chanon Cummings

Magician—a word that brings to mind the disappearance of rabbits, scarves, playing cards and tables.

Nate Staniforth brings a whole new meaning to the word “magician,” and he’s bringing that meaning to the Grand Valley State University campus. Booked by Spotlight Productions, it is the first time Staniforth will make an appearance in Allendale.

From the state of Iowa, he started doing magic at the age of 8, but started really getting into it and
serious about it when he reached the age of 10. Now performing around 100 shows a year at colleges, universities and small theaters all over the country, Staniforth is very passionate about the magic he performs.

“When you’re a magician, it’s like you’re building a cathedral, except you’re the architect and the
bricklayer at the same time,” he said. “The first step is to dream up this grand impossible vision,
but at some point you have to just step up and build it.”

Events and Traditions Chair for Spotlight Productions, Ashley Grzywacz, said in addition to the
Grand River Room show starting at 9 p.m. on Sept. 18, Nate will be around on campus between 5
p.m. and 6 p.m. performing street magic by the Kleiner Commons and Kirkhof Center. He makes it
a point to be out on the streets before any of his performances in order to get the crowd going.

“I’ve found that the best way to promote the show is to just spend some time going around campus
doing some magic with people,” Staniforth said.

Taking his magic to the streets, Staniforth delights and surprises his audience with his illusions and
leaves them ready for more—ready for his show.

“The show combines magic with original music, audience interaction and a multimedia presentation
that makes (Staniforth’s) appearances absolutely unique,” Spotlight Productions wrote in a release.

In an effort to make his performance unique from other magicians, Staniforth edits together a
highlight reel of that day’s street magic to show during his performance.

“Nate performs many of his own magic tricks, which are mainly based on illusions,” Gryzwacz said.

Staniforth spends about eight months of the year on the road performing his magic. For the
remaining months, he usually stays home and works on his show in his workshop, he said.

Having performed magic most of his life, Staniforth works hard to continue creating new illusions
and creating the best performance for his audience that he can.

More information can be found on the GVSU website under “Events.”

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