Mike Bliss performed to a crowd of nearly 200, amazing them all.

The Chillicothe Area Arts Council’s season performance with Mike Bliss, Magician and Comedian was a wonderful show. Bliss had the audience’s attention from the very start to end of the performance—old and young alike!

There were almost 200 in attendance despite the weather conditions and the Gary Dickinson Performing Arts Center was alive with laughter.

“Mike truly is entertaining and engaging,” said Mary Lou VanDeventer, administrator of the Chillicothe Area Arts Council. “Everything we read or heard about him was spot on.”

Bliss invited numerous members of the audience to the stage and be active participants in the show. The crowd roared when a young man appeared on stage, dancing as Bliss briefly exited the stage to cue music.

Chillicothe’s Mayor Reed Dupy and Hy-vee Manager Rick Williams were called to the stage and took part in one of the most memorable parts of the show as Bliss told the crowd he was going to read their minds and placed a plunger on both of their heads.

“He was a very good illusionist,” Dupy said. “It was a great show and he involved people of all ages. I really enjoyed it and am quite sure that everyone in attendance did as well.”

Williams attended the show with his 7-year-old son who has been using his magic wand from the show to do magic tricks at home. Williams said the performance was a great event for the whole family.

Other comments from audience members included:

“A real good, feel good show! It was heartwarming to see the children flock the product table and observe Mike’s interaction with all of them!”

“This show was the perfect remedy to brighten up these long winter snow bound days. Thank you Chillicothe Area Arts Council”.

Williams said the Arts Council's hard work to get top-notch entertainment to Chillicothe was evident through this performance. “I think the Arts Council is a great thing for this community,” he said. “They work hard to bring acts to town that may not come otherwise. This last performance was more proof of that. We all really enjoyed it.”

VanDeventer said the entire day was a memorable one. She recounted a behind the scenes moment that still has her, and others amazed.

“Just before heading out the door after his performance Bliss was chatting with several council volunteers the stage crew helped the artist load everything when, Donnie Wilhoit, Arts Council Board Member and stage production manager asked Bliss how in the world he could get a person’s watch or belt off of them without them knowing what was happening?,” she recalled. “Mr. Bliss said, “Oh, I just get to talking with them and engage them in conversation and said, as he handed Donnie the belt from his jeans, before they know it, I have their belt or watch or wallet”.

The few remaining people backstage erupted in laughter as they saw the trick up close and personal. VanDeventer said when she asked Donnie if he felt the belt come off he remarked “Are you kidding? He had my belt out of my pants before I knew what was happening!—the guy’s amazing!”