Kids, families and those who love to wonder are all invited to the 8th annual Festival of Illusions, running from March 24 through April 4 at the Lincoln City Cultural Center.
This year’s spring break fun fest will offer drop-in art workshops during the day, alongside evening performances by jugglers, mentalists, magicians and physical comedians from around the world.
New to this year’s lineup is Angel Ocasio, a nationally-recognized physical comedian who performs in both English and Spanish. A graduate of the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Clown College, he has performed with everyone from Pink Martini to Wayne Newton. He has also been named the Clowns of America International “Clown of the Year.” Ocasio will take to the stage at 7 pm on Wednesday, April 3.
The schedule also includes another Festival of Illusions premiere: Iman Lizarazu, on Friday, March 29. Originally from the Basque region of France, Lizarazu is the child of a dancer and grew up backstage at the Bolshoi Ballet and other companies. She studied juggling and circus skills in Dresden before she dedicated herself to physics and math — in fact, she holds a PhD in astrophysics. Lizarazu is a member of both Clowns Without Borders and Doctors Without Borders, and has taken her special blend of mime, juggling and comedy around the world. In Lincoln City, she’ll perform her engaging 75-minute solo show, “Basquette Quese.”
The 2019 Festival of Illusions schedule also features international mime and comedian Rudi Galindo, magician Jeff Evans, plate-spinner Henrik Bothe, mentalist Brian Ledbetter, Super Perfect Awesome Man Stefano Iaboni and, of course, two shows by The Amazing Bubble Man. The Festival of Illusions is planned to coincide with two special weeks: the Oregon public schools’ spring break from March 25 through 29, and the Washington public schools’ version which runs April 1 though 5.
Families are also encouraged to take part in the Abracadabra Open Art Space, led by arts educator Krista Eddy and a slew of cultural center volunteers. The workshop will be open for drop-in fun from 1 to 4 pm daily from Monday, March 25, through Friday, March 29. Some projects will be guided, like magical wands, magician’s hats and floating butterflies, while other tables will be “free art” zones, with paper, markers, paints, fabric, notions and the like. Children aged eight and under must be accompanied by an adult, but all others can attend on their own. Entrance fee is just $5. For details, contact Krista Eddy at 541-994-9994.
“We’ve got one more surprise up our sleeves in 2019: Reserved Seating,” said Niki Price of the Lincoln City Cultural Center. “In the past, all Festival of Illusions seating was first come, first served, and you had to get in line early to sit in the front row. This year we’re offering everyone the opportunity to choose their seats and reserve them in advance through our website, lincolncityculturalcenter.org. You can also drop by the LCCC Thursday through Monday, or call us at 541-994-9994.”
All evening shows begin at the same time: 7 pm, with doors open at 6:30 pm. Thanks to the festival’s premier sponsors, Oregon State Credit Union and Amy Graham at Taylor & Taylor Real Estate and Explore Lincoln City, evening show tickets are $8 for kids aged five to 18; $16 for adults; and $14 for seniors and students. Tickets are on sale now at www.lincolncityculturalcenter.org (click “Buy Tickets”), by calling 541-994-9994, or in person at the Lincoln City Visitor Information Center, located inside the center at 540 NE Hwy. 101.
The 2019 Festival of Illusions is also sponsored by Meredith Hospitality and Oregon Coast TODAY.